The eco-friendly design removes aluminum from packaging so that tubes may be recycled in most curbside programs in America.
Toothbrush and Toothpaste in Bathroom
Credit: Westend61/Getty

You may have already noticed that tubes of toothpaste can't be recycled after you've used them up-as it turns out, most tubes contain a mix of aluminum, which is usually excluded from curbside recycling programs. To fix the issue, toothpaste conglomerate Colgate has spent the last five years designing a toothpaste tube that can finally be recycled in most programs across the United States. The company plans to roll out the recyclable toothpaste tubes to all of its products and namesakes across the world by the end of 2025.

According to Fast Company, Colgate is one of the manufacturers that have signed up for a new program called Loop, which enables manufacturers to pilot ways to reuse packaging they create for their products. Colgate's new tube won't feel or look much different from the current models; engineers at Colgate settled on a combination of different types of high-density polyethylene (HDPE), which is a compound commonly used in the production of milk jugs and laundry detergent bottles.

Currently, Colgate's toothpaste is sold in more than 200 countries and, according to industry estimates, is used in half of all households across the global market. While the company plans to roll out the new design to all of its namesake Colgate products in the next six years, they just announced that they'll start using the eco-friendly tube in making Tom's of Maine products, a toothpaste variety focused on natural ingredients, as early as next year.

Though they're focused on making their products more eco-friendly, the company wants to see the entire industry do better. In order to create even more green changes across the toothpaste market, Colgate has said it will share their designs publicly so other companies can use it for products like balms, creams, and pastes.


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