Composite veneers and laminate dentistry: which one is better?

A beautiful smile is one of the principal components of beauty. The appearance of your teeth has a remarkable effect on your self-esteem and confidence. At the same time, it makes you look more attractive and younger. If you don’t feel comfortable smiling because of uneven spaces between your teeth, it is no longer an insoluble problem. Thanks to modern cosmetic dentistry, you can enjoy a beautiful smile while greeting other people.

Composite veneer and laminate dentistry are aesthetic dental procedure and a state-of-the-art solution through which you can enjoy pearly-white and healthy teeth.  They are thin, wafer, tooth-colored, and custom-made materials that are attached to the front of your teeth and address a variety of dental problems. Deciding on which technique suits you comes down to a different set of criteria. After careful consideration of the pros and cons of dental veneers, you could weigh up each type to come to a reasonable conclusion.

good candidate for Composite veneer and laminate dentistry

Before choosing a certain type of veneer, you should first find out if Composite veneer and laminate dentistry are the right solution for you. Veneers are not appropriate for everyone or every tooth; thus, case selection is a very important factor in the success of this technique.

When are Composite veneer and laminate most often indicated ?

When are Composite veneer and laminate most often indicated

Composite veneer and laminate are very effective when it comes to:

  • correcting teeth that are crooked or badly shaped
  • restoring teeth that are broken or chipped
  • stained or discolored teeth when a teeth whiteningtreatment won't work
  • teeth that have been shortened by wear
  • teeth that are spaced too far apart

Advantages of Composite Veneers

Advantages of Composite Veneers


Composite veneers have a number of advantages over laminate, chief among which is cost. On average, laminates are twice as expensive as composites, which is very important for some people given that most treatments are not covered by insurance, meaning you are likely paying out-of-pocket for treatment.

same-day treatment

same-day treatment

Composite veneers can often be completed in a single appointment. Your dentist will prepare your teeth for the resin and then sculpt the veneers directly over the front of your teeth. The resin is then hardened using an intense light and finally your veneers are polished.

Direct composite veneers (also referred to as composite bonding) are actually sculpted on your teeth rather than in an offsite lab. The tooth-shaded resin is applied to teeth directly (hence the name) where it can be shaped and sculpted by the dentist. The shaped resin is hardened using a high-intensity light, after which additional layers of resin can be applied and sculpted as needed to elicit the desired aesthetic outcome. Once finished, the resin must be polished in order to elicit a more natural, tooth-like appearance. The composite procedure therefore tends to be much less invasive and noticeably quicker than porcelain.

The procedure for laminate takes longer, as your veneers need to be prepared in a dental laboratory and delivered to your dentist before your next appointment. Your teeth will also require more preparation before the veneers can be fitted.


Arguably the biggest advantage that composite veneers have over porcelain is reversibility. Porcelain requires reshaping of your natural teeth in order to fit the veneer. When it comes to composites, minimal prep work is required on your natural teeth, meaning that they are not permanently altered to such an extent that the composite material cannot be removed and replaced as needed.

Advantages of laminate dentistry

Advantages of laminate dentistry


Although composite veneers have a number of advantages, there is one area in which they cannot compete with laminate: durability. laminate is a far stronger material than composite resin (even with the improvements in resin materials over the years).

laminates last for 10-15 years on average, although when you practise good oral hygiene and follow your dentist's instructions, they can last for even longer. Composite veneers tend to last about half as long, usually 5-7 years.

It’s important to consider this tradeoff if you’re thinking of having veneers placed. That is, while composites may cost half as much as porcelain, they last only half as long. So which is the better value?

Most dentists agree that laminates offer the most natural, tooth-like aesthetics. laminate has a translucent quality that is quite similar to tooth enamel. It is also highly resistant to staining and chipping due to the strength of the material and the glaze that is applied after treatment. On the other hand, composite veneers are more porous and therefore susceptible to staining, meaning that you may need to adjust your diet in order to avoid certain stain-causing foods. Composite also needs to be polished in order to achieve a tooth-like esthetic. And even then it doesn’t quite compare.

The laminate procedure is more involved, and often requires temporaries be worn while you wait for the veneers to be sculpted in a lab. However more and more dentists are embracing chairside CAD/CAM technologies that help to speed up the process by allowing for on-site fabrication. If you are looking for a laminate solution, it’s important to evaluate the sort of technologies that your dentist has available. You could end up drastically reducing the overall treatment time.

viable treatment solution

Lastly, porcelain veneers offer a viable treatment solution for all cases of worn enamel, wear and tear, genetic defects, uneven teeth, etc. Composites may not be a viable option for severe concerns. For example, significant discoloration or spacing issues may not be adequately treatable with composite veneers, making porcelain your only option. Your dentist will conduct a thorough oral health evaluation as part of your consultation to determine your options.

When are Composite veneer and laminate dentistry not a good option ?

In some situations, certain teeth or people are not good candidates for dental veneers. This may include:

  • Teeth with decays or active gum disease. These conditions must be treated before fabricating and bonding dental veneers
  • Weakened teeth. If a significant amount of tooth structure is missing or has been replaced by a large filling the teeth will not be strong enough to function with a dental veneer. Dental crownsare more adequate solutions in this case.
  • Severely malpositioned teeth or misaligned teeth, overbites and underbites. Orthodontic treatment is required to correct these more complicated problems.
  • Habitual clenching and grinding of the teeth can easily chip or break dental veneers. Teeth grinding (also known as bruxism) must be treated before any placement of dental veneers can begin. Dental nightguards may be a solution for this in some cases.

Once you know that Composite veneer and laminate dentistry can be a good option for you (these is usually done after a thorough Cosmetic Analysis), you must make a decision about porcelain versus composite veneers based on a number of factors (such as your time and budget, the type of work that is needed etc.).

Maintenance of Your Composite veneer and laminate

Maintenance of Your Composite veneer and laminate

The maintenance of your Composite veneer and laminate dentistry is relatively simple. A few suggestions, however, are in order:

  • Please brush and floss as you normally would to prevent oral hygiene problems. Once placed, Composite veneer and laminate are typically the kindest restoration to the gum tissues that we currently have in our prosthetic armamentarium. You will not damage your Veneers by either flossing or brushing. Any non-abrasive tooth paste is acceptable. A good home care regimen will ensure the success of your laminate restorations for years to come.
  • Some sensitivity to hot and cold may be experienced after the placement of your veneers. Some sensitivity is absolutely normal and usually dissipates after one-two weeks. If this sensitivity should remain or concern you at all, please call your dentist.
  • Once placed your laminates are very strong and will resist most of the forces placed upon them by a normal diet. However, opening pistachio nuts with your teeth, chewing on bones or toffee apples is probably not a good idea. As with most things, common sense should prevail.
  • If you are known to be a grinder or clencher, please let your dentist know. He/she will fabricate a soft night guard for you to wear to minimize the stresses placed upon your teeth while you sleep.
  • Like anything in the mouth, it can be prone to wear and tear. Sometimes Composite veneers can chip slightly, but in most cases they are exceedingly easy to repair. One would be unlucky to have them chip within the first five years unless there was a significant grinding problem
  • If there have been substantial changes to the shape of your teeth, occasionally a patient may develop a lisp that lasts for about a week. On the rare occasions it does not resolve spontaneously, your dentist can make some adjustments to remove it.



Which veneers look the most natural?

Dental veneers are custom-made to look as close to your natural teeth as possible, while correcting the issues you want to.

However, laminates have the more natural finish, as the material reflects light in a very similar way to tooth enamel. Composite veneers still appear natural when they're polished.

Which are suitable for more severe issues?

If your teeth are more severely stained, damaged, misaligned or have larger gaps, your dentist may recommend porcelain veneers.

Composite veneers are better suited to mild to moderate issues. If your problem is too severe to be treated with veneers, your dentist may recommend options such as crowns or orthodontic treatment instead.

Which are stronger?

laminates are much stronger than composite resin, meaning they're less susceptible to chipping.

However, they can't be repaired like composite veneers. If the porcelain gets damaged, it will need to be replaced. This can be comparatively costly.