Toothpaste is a relatively new invention of civilization. Before it was invented, people used its natural substitutes. The teeth of the ancient Egyptians who made the powder from the myrrh, lamb’s horn, raisins, dry incense, and the branches of the mastic tree, had very white teeth. The other recipe included even more exotic ingredients, like ashes from burnt bovine entrails. The ancient Chinese brushed their teeth with powdered horns and hoofs, shells and gypsum.
The first kind of toothpaste appeared in ancient Rome: even Hippocrates described the means, where besides tiny particles of pumice, tartaric acid or wine vinegar was added.
The ancient Arabs were particularly attentive to the health of the teeth. They cleaned them after each meal. Instead of pasty formulations and powders, they used special wooden sticks, and then necessarily lubricated the gums and teeth with rose oil, honey, or myrrh.
Attempts to Make a Better Toothpaste
The first toothpaste similar to the modern one only appeared in the 18th century. However, the toothpastes that were then sold in British pharmacies could damage the teeth rather than benefit them. After all, they consisted of brick crumbs, porcelain and clay particles, and to impart viscidity, all this was poured with soap.
Attempts to create a good toothpaste began only in the middle of the 19th century. The basis for the compositions at that time was a jelly-like mass based on starch or glycerin, in which the particles of chalk powder were added.
The first Colgate toothpaste was not manufactured in a tube, but in a large glass jar. The first tube as a container for toothpaste appeared only in 1894. The first fragrant pastes – with mint, vanilla, strawberry, and other flavors – appeared in 1915.
According to statistics prepared by experts of Nielsen, toothpastes with anti-caries effect are the most popular among consumers today. The second place belongs to the pastes that provide a comprehensive impact, and the third place belongs to the whitening toothpastes.
There is a rumor about the most expensive toothpaste in the world, which is specially produced for the English queen. The composition is kept in the strictest secrecy.
Toothpaste can also be collected like stamps or badges. The most fanatical collector in the world is an American of Russian descent, dentist Kolpakov. He has a collection of more than 1,800 tubes with a variety of tastes, including concrete and alcohol.
The most popular advertising myth about toothpaste is that you can get rid of plaque within just two days. Even pastes with the highest content of abrasive elements will do this for at least a month.