13 March 2018

About Packaging

Usually when I reach the end of a product I check to make sure the tube or bottle is absolutely empty before chucking it away. If I’m uncertain about what’s left I go on a money saving kick by cutting the ends off tubes to remove every centimetre of cream. Today was one of those days. I’d struggled to get the last of the skin enhancer out of the tube, squeezing and rolling the end up in the time honoured way, but absolutely no more would come out. So it was off with its head tail and in with a spatula. 

You wouldn’t believe the amount that remained. The tube was about a quarter full. Clinging to the sides was roughly two month’s supply of cream, if not more. It filled a Clarins jar (I save jars as if they’re going out of fashion) and considering I only use a dab of cream a day I reckon I won’t need to use another tube until nigh on Christmas. I had bought a replacement thinking the product was running out and now I find it was an unnecessary purchase. Of course it won’t be wasted, I will eventually get through the large residue.

Some tubes are easy to empty, even un-rollable plastic will roll given enough pressure but this one wouldn’t budge. Jars could be used in all cases but that would put the price up and anyway aren’t we supposed to be utilising environmentally friendly containers? It wouldn’t surprised me to learn that manufacturers deliberately use tubes that won’t empty out properly as a way of making a fast profit. At our expense! Of course, I could be wrong.

If any ladies or gentlemen out there want to get the most out of their products … any products, household as well as cosmetic … try cutting the tubes in half. You might be in for a surprise. 


  1. Yup, I do the same thing, Valerie! Not only to my face/hand/body creams, but also my toothpaste tubes. I can't get over how much more I get out of them after cutting them in half.

    "manufacturers deliberately use tubes that won’t empty out properly as a way of making a fast profit. At our expense!"

    Being in the beauty industry, I can tell you that you're right about that. But here in the States, our return policy is different than in Europe. Americans can return ANYTHING at ANYTIME, whether used or not used for either a refund or exchange because retail stores are so afraid of losing business that they would rather appeal to the customers than lose business. Also, retail stores here in the US don't lose any money from returns or exchanges because they simply write those losses off by returning those products to the vendor companies and simply purchase more products from them. It's a vicious cycle of returning, then buying, then returning, then buying. And customers know that, so they return anything they wish.

    By the way, I know that product in your photograph (Clarins Flash Beauty Balm) and think it's faaaaaaaabulous! Clarins is such a wonderful brand!


  2. Good gracious, Ron, our stores have a lot of catching up to do - of ever. I can't see our lot accepting half empty tubes of anything, let alone give refunds on what we are wasting. I wonder if anyone has put them to the test?

    Clarins products are favourite with me, even though they're more expensive. Their products last longer because we don't have to use as much.

  3. My wife ordered a rolling squeezer toothpaste dispenser from Geek. They only cost two Euro's including postage. I have posted blogs asking how much do we spend on packaging?

  4. Thanks, Dave. I would be interested in knowing more about that squeezie. I have bag sealing gadgets that I use to squeeze tube ends but they're not ideal.

  5. I do something similar. I squeeze whatever's left until there's nothing to use. :-)

    Greetings from London.

  6. I have never done that but have been known to fish shampoo and dishwashing liquid bottles out of the garbage because my family deemed them 'empty'. I add some water and store them upside down to get every last drop.

  7. kden, I tried that but the dog kept knocking it over, yes I know he shouldn't have been on the counter!

  8. That's a good tip, Val. I will have to try it because we have quite a few tubes that probably have a lot of good stuff left. Take care.

  9. I'm like you, Valerie, and when I buy a replacement product I will try to salvage as much as possible from the previously used container. Thanks for the tip!

  10. I'll try it with my toothpaste although it may be a bit messy!

  11. Joe, if you can get the dregs into en eggcup it will stay fresh.


If you're new to A Mixed Bag you might find something to interest you, a bit of mirth, a story or two, or some pictures. I'm so pleased you popped in, do leave a comment if you have time.