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Toothpaste, Before The Tube

Toothpaste Tubes

How Product Packaging Improved Oral Health

You might think tubes would make an obvious package for toothpaste, but the first toothpaste in a tube wasn’t sold till 1892.

These kinds of containers had been around for 50 years but were only used for storing oil paints. Most folks associated collapsible tubes with “Burnt Umber” or “Cadmium Yellow.” Hardly the sort of thing you applied to your teeth.

Up until then, toothpaste was packaged in expensive porcelain jars that only the rich could afford—making it virtually impossible for lower classes to clean their teeth with toothpaste.

Putting toothpaste in paint tubes suddenly made toothpaste both convenient and universally affordable. It was an early milestone in dental health, and one of the greatest advances in product packaging ever devised!

About Yuri Kaneda, DDS

Dr. Yuri Kaneda was born in Japan and immigrated to the US when she was 4 years old with her family. She lived in Ohio, Nebraska, and Illinois before finally settling in the San Diego area. A graduate of Bonita Vista High School, she went on to the University of California Berkeley where she obtained her Bachelors in Microbiology and Immunology. After working for 2 years in growth plate research at University of California San Diego, she went to the University of California San Francisco Dental School for her Doctor of Dental Surgery degree. Upon graduation, she returned to San Diego where she worked as an associate in the practice of Drs. Morimoto and Yaryan, her childhood dentist. She then started her own practice in 1995 and has been at her present location since 1999 which happens to be across the street from her high school!

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