Willo reinvents toothbrushing for kids

Willo, a startup with $17 million in venture funding and over 50 patents filed, is out to change the way kids clean their teeth. Rather than focusing on a traditional toothbrush design, Willo has developed a silicone-based mouthpiece that contains soft bristles, which a child fully inserts in his or her mouth. The base station circulates water and a flavored rinse liquid – from an assortment of flavors kids can choose – and the mouthpiece vibrates at the press of a button.

Many younger children have difficulty learning how to apply the right amount of toothpaste from a tube and how to brush their entire set of teeth properly. Willo’s mouthpiece solution eliminates this challenge while also offering smart technology integration for parents to track their kids’ oral care. A connected app informs the parent for how long the child used the device each day.

Compared to cheap children’s toothbrushes that typically retail for just a few bucks, Willo’s offering does require a significant investment. The cost of the device is $199, and Willo also charges a $13 per month subscription for the flavored rinse pods; the subscription also guarantees parents that they can receive new mouthpieces that will always fit their growing child.

According to Interpret’s GameByte® survey of children ages 3 to 12 and their parents, parents are more eager to purchase educational devices, such as robotic toys, over game devices. Nearly 30% of parents are agreeable to purchase educational electronic devices, whereas 25% are likely to purchase entertainment devices. While Willow’s product is in a different category, Willow’s management team should expect parents to value a device that makes good oral hygiene fun.