Composite vs. Porcelain Veneers: What's the Difference?

October 29, 2021

A couple smiling and taking a selfie.

What would you like to improve about your smile?Almost any cosmetic improvement you can think of is available with porcelain veneers in Gig Harbor, WA!Veneers can make your teeth look:

  • Whiter
  • Straighter
  • Free of stains, chips, and cracks.

They can also reshape any tooth, smooth out rows of teeth, and close gaps between them.How is this all possible?By bonding a beautiful covering on the front of each visible tooth. The veneer’s shape and color will become the new surface that people will see, and you’ll enjoy in the mirror.But veneers can be made of either porcelain or composite materials, and this is an important decision to make before we start.So, we’re going to explore composite vs. porcelain veneers in this blog post, laying out the advantages of each.

Advantages of composite veneers

Is there a major difference between composite and porcelain veneers? Are they just made of different materials?There are major differences in the process of getting your veneers, depending on the material.When getting composite veneers (also known as resin veneers):

  • Your Gig Harbor dentist can bond them to your teeth in one appointment.
  • Your natural teeth are not changed much beyond roughing up the surface to create a strong bond with the veneers.
  • The process is reversible if you decide to go in a different direction.

You’ll see later that with resin veneers vs. porcelain, the composite resin option is faster and a little easier on your teeth. Plus, your cosmetic dentist may be able to create your custom veneers while you’re in the dentist’s chair.

How are composite veneers made?

They’re shaped on the tooth itself, then hardened with a powerful light before more layers of resin are added to make your tooth the right shape and color.Finally, your dentist will polish the composite to make it look natural. Even with these steps, you can be finihed in one sitting because you don’t have to wait for veneers to be created off-site.

How long does a composite veneer last?

Each one lasts about 4–8 years on average, which is about half the lifetime of a porcelain veneer.At the same time, a composite veneer can cost about half as much as a porcelain veneer, which can make it a good option for some patients.

Advantages of porcelain veneers

So far, in the composite veneers vs. porcelain veneers race, we’ve seen that composites are faster to apply and cost less.So, are there reasons to get porcelain veneers?Yes! Hise are some of their advantages:

  • Durability: Porcelain veneers are very strong. They’re much harder to chip than composite veneers (which chip easily).
  • Lifespan: Porcelain veneers last about 10–15 years on average, as long as you keep them clean and treat them well.
  • Natural Look: Porcelain looks like natural teeth; it reflects light in just the right way. Plus, it resists stains better than composite veneers, letting you generally eat and drink what you like.

When choosing between composite resin veneers vs. porcelain veneers, think about the process:When you’re getting porcelain veneers, your dentist will first remove some enamel from the front of your teeth, which allows for a less bulky, more natural result. They’ll then take impressions of your teeth and send plans to a lab, which will create your veneers in 2–3 weeks. You’ll come back for a second appointment, and they’ll bond them in place, making sure you’re happy with them.Oftentimes porcelain veneers can get a better color match because the lab has more ability to make a customized shade, whereas in the office we are more limited with the shade options for composites.

Which one is best for you?

Book a consultation at our Gig Harbor dental office! We can discuss your goals, your budget, your insurance, and any concerns you have.Dr. Keith Gressell will help you decide which type of veneer is best for you. It may even be one we haven’t discussed yet - Bioclear! Just imagine the confidence and happiness you’ll have when you see your dazzling teeth in the mirror.

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Our office is conveniently located in Gig Harbor... opens in a new window to Google Maps... and proudly serves surrounding communities, including Bremerton, Port Orchard, Purdy, Port Angeles, and Tacoma, WA.

Composite vs. Porcelain Veneers: What's the Difference?

October 29, 2021

December 23, 2022