A new look in toothpaste: stripes!
• Modern toothpaste made its debut in the late 19th century, mass-marketed first by Colgate in 1873 as tooth cream sold in a jar. In 1892, Dr. Washington Sheffield invented the collapsible toothpaste tube in the U.S.
• Beginning in 1914, some manufacturers began adding fluoride to toothpaste, but it was not until the 1950s, when Procter and Gamble introduced Crest toothpaste as "clinically proven to prevent tooth decay" that it became a standard ingredient.
• Leonard Lawrence Marraffino patented his striped toothpaste making device in 1955. He licensed it to Unilever, which sold the world's first striped toothpaste under the name Stripe in the U.S., and Signal in the U.K. At the time when this 1959 clip first aired, an article in the Globe and Mail reported that Marraffino was due to collect somewhere in the vicinity of $250,000 in royalties for his little device (nearly $2 million in 2009 dollars.) He told the Globe he'd probably use some of it to finally buy the "missus" a mink coat.
• In 1990, Colgate-Palmolive was granted a patent for a device for a tube that adds two coloured stripes to toothpaste.
Broadcast Date: Sept. 3, 1959
Guest(s): Leo Marraffino
Interviewer: Bill McNeil
Last updated: April 14, 2014
Page consulted on April 14, 2014
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