Three-dimensional representation of the Vita Toothguide 3D-Master: An in vivo clinical study

J Esthet Restor Dent. 2024 Mar;36(3):421-428. doi: 10.1111/jerd.13173. Epub 2023 Dec 6.


Statement of problem: The Vita Toothguide 3D-Master (Vita Zahnfabrik) is considered the dental shade guide in which the three dimensions of color - lightness, hue, and chroma - are most well-ordered in the CIELAB color space. No research has yet explored how well the Vita Toothguide 3D-Master is ordered in the 3D color space by recording color coordinates in vivo.

Purpose: To evaluate the spatial color distribution of the Vita Toothguide 3D-Master's lightness, chroma, and hue groups and its 26 physical shade tabs.

Materials and methods: The dental color (L*, C*, h°, a*, and b* color coordinates) of a healthy maxillary central incisor was recorded for 1361 participants (aged between 18 and 89 years) using a Vita Easyshade Compact spectrophotometer (Vita Zahnfabrik). The R 2.7.2. statistics program was used to create the visual representations.

Results: The five lightness levels are those that are best distributed in the color space, in relation to the L* coordinates, followed by the chroma group and, finally, the hue group. The 5M1, 5M2, and 5M3 physical shade tabs are situated at a greater distance apart from the other tabs in the color space.

Conclusions: The Vita Toothguide 3D-Master's 26 physical shade tabs are satisfactorily distributed in three-dimensional space, although strict mathematical criteria are not followed. The natural dental shades that fall lower on the lightness scale are the most poorly represented by the physical shade tabs.

Clinical implications: Darker teeth are poorly represented by the Vita Toothguide 3D-Master's physical shade tabs. The spatial distribution of dental shade guides needs to be improved to ensure they provide homogeneous coverage of the entire chromatic spectrum corresponding to natural teeth. This would help reduce the errors inherent to the subjective visual color selection process.

Keywords: 26 physical shade tabs; CIELAB; Vita Toothguide 3D-Master; dental color; spectrophotometry.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Color
  • Dental Prosthesis Design*
  • Humans
  • Incisor
  • Middle Aged
  • Prosthesis Coloring* / methods
  • Spectrophotometry
  • Young Adult