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Smart toothbrush


IDEO x Perrigo


Team: Industrial Designer, Design Researcher, Electrical Engineer, Graphic Designer, Interaction Designer, Prototyper, Business Designer  

Project Details: A 28-week  professional project designing a brand new smart toothbrush that will launch between 2023 and 2024. 

How can we discover the habits of Millennials and Gen Z in the oral care industry that influence their purchasing decisions?

We wanted to create a toothbrush that's a perfect fit for the younger generation. It looks and feels like a manual toothbrush, which they prefer for its portability. However, it also works like an electric toothbrush, providing effective cleaning. It charges quickly and is easy to track, making oral hygiene a breeze.

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Manual toothbrush

Our design

Electric toothbrush

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Our innovation revolves around "Simple & Smart." Picture a toothbrush that cleverly combines the ease of a manual brush with the advanced features of an electric one. It's compact, recognizable, and wire-free for charging, fitting into any outlet and using a waterproof magnetic connector to secure the brush during charging. Plus, it won't hog all the plugs; you can use your hair dryer at the same time.


Sustainability was a big focus, as Millennials and Gen Z care about eco-friendly products. Our design includes a replaceable and recyclable head to prolong the main body's life. The packaging is made from aluminum and paper, serving as both the packaging and a handy travel case.

We partnered with Perrigo's engineering team to rigorously test the mechanism, ensuring safety and preventing choking hazards.

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Throughout the project, I collaborated closely with the electrical engineer, from the development of working prototypes to the preparation for the manufacturing phase. We had a follow up phase for DFM and it will be released in the market soon. 

Design Research

We began by conducting research to deeply understand the oral hygiene journey for Millennials and Gen Z. The oral care product space is crowded and competitive; identifying user needs was key to revealing rich opportunity areas in product development for the client—particularly around the idea of a “Simple & Smart” very portable electric toothbrush with minimal charging needs.


We sent working prototypes to participants used the prototypes for 2-3days and gave us feedback on what could be improved and what kind of aspect they are buying it. 


In crafting our color, material, and finish approach, we are focused on crafting a visual language that resonates deeply with the millennial and Gen Z demographics. Our intention is to create fresh, clean, and eco-friendly color palettes that not only please the eye but also resonate with the aspirations of these environmentally conscious generations. We're weaving in the key elements of "natural" and "sustainable" that reflect the values of these generations. In our creative journey, we're also exploring eco-friendly packaging options that match our dedication to sustainability, aiming to have a positive impact on our shared world.

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The mindset of the younger generation, who desire the assurance of brushing correctly without feeling overwhelmed by health tracking apps, led us to design simple color-changing LEDs. These LEDs guide your brushing pressure, with white indicating the right pressure and red signaling too much. They also display charging speed, pulsing while charging and remaining steady when fully charged. In today's busy world, rapid charging and long-lasting battery life were key priorities.  Plus, the charger is designed to accommodate both horizontal and vertical orientations, ensuring compatibility with any outlet, and it also has the capability to charge two toothbrushes simultaneously from a single charger.

Some of behind scenes...

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