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What Braces Colors Are Available & How to Choose the Best Colors For You

Written by: Dr. Laura Edwards, Orthodontist

Medically Reviewed by: Dr. Oleg Drut, Orthodontist and Diamond Braces CCO

Date: October 8, 2020

What Are The Best Braces Colors?

  • Many guys look good in darker braces rubber bands, especially hunter green, and navy blue.

  • Many girls will shine in a brighter color scheme, such as lighter blue, or even gold.

  • Adults may want to consider a more subdued palette, especially if they are going to work. 

  • Avoid lighter colors like white or pale yellow that will potentially make your teeth look discolored or stained.

  • Opt for fun color combinations to celebrate the seasons or support your favorite sports team

  • You can also match your eye color or choose a complementary color

  • Whatever braces color your choose, make sure to take good care of them to ensure proper results and a healthy, beautiful smile! 

Patients smiling with colorful rbaces

Best Braces Colors for Guys

Guys tend to look best in darker braces colors (this is true for anyone looking for a more masculine presentation). A darker palette is a suitable match for some of the darker menswear, including blue or black suits.

Consider hunter green, dark violet, or navy blue rubber bands to complement your braces for a more masculine presentation. For guys with lighter skin tones, darker colors may complement you best, including bronze, dark red, or even silver. Guys with darker skin may opt for a brighter color, such as deep green or turquoise.

It’s best to avoid the darkest colors, like black and brown, because they can make your teeth look stained – and yellow, white, and clear will discolor easily, so avoid those as well.

Remember – everyone's personality is unique, so the color scheme you choose should reflect your unique self!

Best Braces Colors for Girls

Girls or anyone interested in a more feminine look can opt for lighter, brighter tones for their braces rubber bands. Light blue, violet, or green go well with a softer, more feminine vibe. Pastels can be a lovely way to enhance your smile with a feminine look.

For a bolder feminine look, try a color like gold or bright magenta – these will definitely pop, and will be a fun accessorizing option for anyone looking for a more feminine look. Have fun and don’t be afraid to experiment with your braces colors: after all, you can change them every month.

All braces wearers should avoid extremely dark colors like black and brown, as these can make your teeth appear stained or discolored. The same goes for white and yellow, as well as clear rubber bands, which tend to pick up color from dark beverages like coffee, tea, and red wine.

Braces Colors for Adults

Adults, unlike kids and teens, need to think about their professional responsibilities when choosing braces colors. Consider whether your career will allow you to wear bright colors – professionals such as lawyers or accountants may not have as much flexibility to show off their personality with braces colors, and should instead opt for a more muted palette like dark green or black.

However, adults look great in a wide variety of color options, so if you have a career that allows you to show off your style, opt for something more expressive, such as gold, bright blue, or even pink! Your colleagues will definitely be impressed with your bold style.

Adults may prefer to use only a single color, rather than alternating colors, which can look more playful and less professional. If you find a color that works for you and matches your work outfits, don’t be afraid to stick with it!

To avoid the appearance of discolored teeth, avoid colors like white or pale yellow, which will show up against your teeth in unflattering tones.

Colors to Avoid

Getting braces rubber bands changed

While colorful braces rubber bands are an awesome opportunity to share your personality and unique style, there are some colors that are simply best to avoid. You shouldn’t choose any colors that will make your teeth look stained or discolored, or that will create the effect of having food stuck in your teeth.

The important thing to remember is that your braces are affixed to your teeth, and you want your teeth to appear as white and clean as possible. Colors that can make your teeth appear stained are extremely dark colors, such as black and dark brown, as well as very light colors like yellow and white.

Clear rubber bands sound like a good option, until you consider that they stain easily: clear rubber bands will pick up the color in dark foods and beverages such as coffee, tea, or colorful curries. If you want a subtle look that won’t stain, opt for silver or gray rubber bands, which will blend in with the metal brackets, or something neutral like navy or violet.

It's always worth experimenting with rubber band colors – you can try out a new color and a bold new look, and if you don't like it, you can change your mind at your next orthodontic visit.

Braces Color Combinations & Ideas

Changing out Rubber Bands at the Orthodontist's Office

You have many options for braces colors! Most orthodontic practices offer up to 40 different braces rubber bands colors, with a huge variety to help every patient express their unique personality through their orthodontic treatment.

Because you can change out your colors at every visit, it can be fun to switch out colors whenever you want a fun change. Below are some great color combinations to celebrate your unique personality, all throughout the year.

Colors for Holidays

Lots of holidays have signature colors – and what better way to celebrate the holidays than wearing those seasonal colors on your braces!

For winter solstice holidays, go for green and red (Christmas), blue and gold (Hanukkah), or red, green, and black (Kwanzaa). To celebrate spring, Easter, or the solstice, go for pastels such as pale blue and pink. Check out the full guide to Christmas braces colors below.

And for those who want to go all out for Halloween, consider orange and black during the month of October – or for even more fun, glow-in-the-dark.

Colors for Skin Tones

For a reliably great smile, you can match your braces rubber band colors to your skin tone.

Lighter skin tones are complemented by darker, bold colors, like navy blue or violet, deep red, and hunter and deep greens. These won’t make your skin look washed out, and have the added benefit of making your teeth appear whiter.

Darker skin colors look best with brighter jewel tones: choose rubber bands in colors like bright blue or teal, a bold pink or magenta, or ruby red. These colors will provide a nice contrast to darker shades of skin, and also make your smile dazzle.

Colors Based on Your Style

If you have a go-to wardrobe style already, braces colors are a great opportunity to further enhance your look. Look at the clothes you already have and find a common color: maybe you wear a lot of blues or greens. Matching the clothes you already wear frequently is an easy, ready-made solution to great-looking braces.

If you wear mostly black, find a color that complements your palette rather than opting for black braces rubber bands, since these can make your teeth look discolored. Gold or navy rubber bands pair excellently with a black wardrobe.

If you have an amazing shoe collection, pull out some colors from your favorite pairs for a stylish look. Pro tip: choose a bright jewel tone from a colorful pair of shoes, and then choose a more muted palette for your clothes: your shoes and your smile will be sure to make a splash.

Do you have an important event coming up? Plan ahead with a braces color that will match your outfit! For instance, if you’re in a wedding party, think about the color of your wedding outfit – then select a complementary accent color, or the same color, to make your celebration outfit truly shine.

Colors Based on Eye Color

An excellent, simple way to look great in your braces is to match your eye color. For those with light-colored eyes, such as blue or green, a great option is to choose the same color, in a darker shade. This will enhance the color of your eyes.

For those with hazel or brown eyes, a complementary shade will work best: choose a bright or deep blue or green, or even a silver or gold, to balance your eyes and create an attractive contrast.

If you're not sure what color will work best, try holding up different colored shirts to your eyes and see if you find a shade you like. Whatever color t-shirt you like is the braces rubber band color you should choose.

Best Color Combinations & Ideas

Patient smiling with colorful braces Box of colorful rubber bands

It's always fun to combine colors, especially to celebrate seasons and favorite sports teams.

Combine 2-3 colors in alternating patterns. It's usually best to stick to 1-3 colors, as 4 can look busy.

The exception, of course, is a rainbow pattern, which looks great on everyone! For a great rainbow look, begin the rainbow on one of your canines rather than a far back molar, so you can see the full rainbow. Then start the rainbow over to cover the remaining brackets.

Awesome seasonal combinations for braces rubber bands include:

  • Green and red for Christmas (see the guide below)

  • Blue and gold for Hanukkah

  • Black, red, and green for Kwanzaa

  • Light blue and green for spring

  • Red, white, and blue for the Fourth of July and Memorial Day

  • Black and orange or glow-in-the-dark for Halloween

  • Red and orange for autumn

  • Gold and silver for winter

  • Sports teams colors

How do you know what color braces to get?

If you're not sure what braces colors to get, it's okay – you have many options, and you can always switch at your next orthodontic visit.

There are certain choices that work for nearly everyone: navy blue or hunter green are neutral, cool tones that will brighten your teeth and not draw too much attention to your braces. This is a great choice for anyone who doesn't want to make too many decisions about their braces.

When you go in for your braces, the orthodontist and assistants will likely have some great ideas as well. After all, they help lots of people choose rubber band colors and have plenty of experience. Don't be afraid to ask for help. Your friends and family may have great advice for the right color for you, as well.

Christmas Braces Colors

Christmas Braces Colors idea: Red and Green

Do you want to get fancy with your smile for the holidays? Try Christmas colors for your braces! There are a few different great ideas for celebrating the holidays with your braces rubber band colors – and they’re all very popular during the holiday season!

“I always know Christmas is coming because everyone wants Christmas colors on their braces,” says Diamond Braces Registered Dental Hygienist Iryna Shpindler with a smile.

“Red and green are the most popular, but people get very creative with their rubber band ideas!”

Below are some fun color combinations to ring in the Christmas holiday season in style. Ask your orthodontist which colors they have, to see if you can try each of these great seasonal styles.

The Christmas Classic: Red and Green

Did you know that Coca Cola helped promote the now-classic Christmas colors of red-and-green in 1931? It’s been the essential Christmas palette since then, with the holiday season dominated by red and green everything, from coffee cups to sweaters – and, of course, braces!

For the classic look, alternate between bright red and a hunter green rubber bands across the top and bottom rows of the teeth. Or, for a more striking look, do one whole row of teeth red and the other green.

The O Holy Night: Blue and Silver

For an elegant, Christmas-party ready holiday look, try an alternating palette of deep blue and silver. This color combination will have the added advantage of making your teeth look whiter, since deep blues enhance the natural whiteness.

Pro tip: skip white or yellow rubber bands, as these can quickly become discolored or make your teeth look dull or stained. Silver will stay shiny and bright, and enhance the appearance of the blue rubber bands, for a festive, bright white smile.

The Christmas Gift: Red and Gold

Nothing says holiday gift giving like a bit of shine! Gold rubber bands look great against the bright metal of the braces bands and wire, and are appealingly offset by a deep red or maroon. To strike the perfect amount of holiday cheer, alternative between deep red and gold, and give yourself the gift of a dazzling Christmas season!

Braces & Proper Care

Whatever color rubber bands you choose, you'll need to change them out regularly, at every trip to the orthodontist. The rubber bands are elastic and gradually become less effective, which is why your orthodontist will change them out when you come to visit. You can keep the same color throughout, or try something new.

Be sure to follow your orthodontist’s instructions exactly when it comes to caring for your braces at home, as this is an important part of treatment. No matter what color elastics you choose, staining and poor at-home braces care will affect the appearance of the bands.

Regular brushing and flossing will keep your brackets and wires clean, your teeth fresh and healthy, and your treatment progressing smoothly!