Power toothbrushes in India experienced a sea-change over 2019-2022, and the preference for electric toothbrushes increased significantly. Prior to 2019, battery toothbrushes were the default upgrade option for consumers who wanted better oral hygiene, as these helped to remove plaque more effectively through the oscillating and vibrating head. However, Indian consumers are increasingly embracing electric toothbrushes due to their improving affordability and better functionality.
Source: Euromonitor International
Improving affordability creates opportunities for electric toothbrushes
The improving affordability of electric toothbrushes is bridging the price gap between electric toothbrushes and battery toothbrushes, thereby attracting more consumers to jump on the bandwagon. The unit price of electric toothbrushes in India fell about 55% from 2017 to 2022, while the unit price of battery toothbrushes rose about 15% over the same period.
Major oral care companies, including Caresmith India and AGARO Lifestyle, offer electric toothbrushes along with replacement heads, and are priced in the range of INR1,000 – INR1,500 (USD13.50 – USD20.30). On the other hand, battery toothbrushes priced at INR600 (USD8.10) and above also require the regular replacement of the head, but some battery toothbrushes do not offer the option to replace the head, thereby making the toothbrush redundant after the head wears out. As a result, consumers can get better value for money by purchasing an electric toothbrush compared with a battery toothbrush.
Source: Euromonitor International
Improved functionality to provide a better customer experience
Electric toothbrushes provide enhanced functionality and features, such as different brushing modes, two-minute timer, long battery life and higher revolutions per minute, amongst others, ultimately providing a better brushing experience to consumers.
As a result of the better experience, consumers see more value in purchasing an electric toothbrush. Therefore, creating awareness around the value proposition, highlighting a clear reason to buy their electric toothbrushes over competing brands’ electric toothbrushes, is an important marketing strategy for companies in India.
Electric toothbrushes holds a promising future
The COVID-19 pandemic has made people much more conscious about their overall health, and companies in oral care are focusing on associating oral health with overall health. As a result, premiumisation is expected in the toothbrushes category.
Moreover, according to Euromonitor International’s Economies and Consumers data, the median age in India will grow from 28.3 years to 34.9 years over the next two decades. As a result, it will not be surprising to witness an increasing number of oral diseases in India. This will encourage Indian consumers to maintain proper oral hygiene, with electric toothbrushes offering a solution to maintain complete oral hygiene by protecting the teeth, gums and mouth.
Challenges to overcome for companies in electric toothbrushes
Increased marketing activities and campaigns to showcase the benefits provided by electric toothbrushes would benefit further uptake. There is a strong need to carry out promotional activities via television and social media to target a wider audience.
In addition, with the presence of many D2C brands in power toothbrushes in India, the larger rural audience remains less reachable. As a result, expansion to traditional retail outlets will be both a challenge and an opportunity for growth for brands offering electric toothbrushes in India.
Going forward, electric toothbrushes is expected to take the major share in power toothbrushes in India. With the focus on functionality, affordability and experience, it is forecast that electric toothbrushes in India will grow at a CAGR of 9.5% in terms of value sales over 2022-2027, which is higher than the CAGR of 5.8% for battery toothbrushes over the same period.
For further insight, see the report on Oral Care in India or for a complete industry perspective, Beauty and Personal Care in India.