Tutorial + How-to

Published on August 5th, 2010 | by Kelly Rand


How-To: Colgate Toothpaste Tube, Toothbrush Holder

Make this upcycled toothbrush holder! Guest post by: Tiffany Threadgould, TerraCycle’s Chief Designer

Upcycle your toothpaste tubes into this fresh bathroom caddy

Looking for a refreshing alternative to throwing away your toothpaste tubes? This easy do-it-yourself project upcycles your empty tubes into a simple toothbrush holder. Upcycling materials like these are a great way to reuse without costing a mint.



  • 5 empty toothpaste tubes
  • scissors
  • ruler
  • clear tape
  • hole punch
  • ribbon or plastic lanyard
  • binder clips



  1. Collect five Colgate® toothpaste tubes. Clean them by cutting off the bottom and slipping your scissors into the side seam. Flatten them out and clean with soap and water.
  2. Cut four tubes to 3 ½” x 4 ½” and one tube into a 3 ½” x 3 ½” square. Fold down the top ½” of the four rectangular tubes and tape.
  3. Take one of the four rectangles and punch holes every ½” along the two tall sides and along the short bottom side that is not folded. Use this punched piece as a template and punch holes in the exact same spots on the other three rectangular pieces.
  4. To punch the small square piece, line up the short punched side of the rectangle piece with any side of the short piece. Repeat punching holes for the other three sides of the square using the short side of the rectangular piece as a template.
  5. Then punch two holes near the center of the square. This will be the bottom of the container and the holes will be for drainage.
  6. Match up two large pieces and lace up one side tying it off at the top and bottom. Open it up. On one of the non-laced ends, attach to the next rectangular piece in the same way with the printed sides facing out. Repeat for each additional rectangular piece. When you’ve laced all four pieces, connect the two end pieces together and lace creating a cube with your pieces.
  7. Match up the square piece with the bottom of the container. Use binder clips to hold it in place. Lace around the bottom of the container and tie it off. You’re ready to put your upcycled toothbrush holder into action.

Tip: This toothbrush holder can also double as a pencil holder!

If you have completed this project and still have more toothpaste tubes and other oral care products to upcycle, be sure to sign up for TerraCycle’s Colgate Oral Care Brigade and send them in!

Colgate, the global leader in oral care, has partnered with eco-innovator TerraCycle to help provide a second life for Colgate toothbrushes, toothpaste tubes and their packaging materials by converting waste materials into fun and unique products sold at major retailers!

Every time you buy a Colgate product, you and your organization can help divert toothbrushes, empty toothpaste tubes, and packaging from the landfill by sending it to TerraCycle. For each approved item received, two cents will be paid to the non-profit organization or school of your choice.

Participation in the Colgate Oral Care Brigade is completely free! There are no sign-up fees and all the shipping is covered by the program. All of the oral care items sent to TerraCycle will be transformed into new cool products.

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About the Author

Kelly covers visual arts in and around Washington, DC for DCist and is editor of Crafting a Green World. Kelly has also been published by Bust Magazine and you can find her byline at Indie Fixx and Etsy’s Storque and has taught in Etsy’s virtual lab on the topic of green crafting. Kelly helps organize Crafty Bastards: Arts and Crafts Fair, one of the largest indie craft fairs on the east coast and has served on the Craft Bastard’s jury since 2007. Kelly is also co-founder of Hello Craft a nonprofit trade association dedicated to the advancement of independent crafters and the handmade movement. Kelly resides in Washington, D.C. and believes that handmade will save the world.

9 Responses to How-To: Colgate Toothpaste Tube, Toothbrush Holder

  1. Pingback: Boulevard Designs - Just another WordPress weblog » A toothpaste tube toothbrush holder. Love it.

  2. Pingback: This week’s reducing, reusing & recycling roundup | How can I recycle this?

  3. Pingback: This week’s reducing, reusing & recycling roundup

  4. Pingback: Reducing, reusing & recycling roundup | CIWA Inc Blog

  5. Farookhrs says:


  6. Creative designs of crafts and holders are usually the ones that are made up of recycled things. Look at that toothbrush holder, it’s delectable! A person’s hygienic tools or toiletries should always be in a proper place, so he’ll know where to find them whenever they are needed.  

  7. Sal Casley says:

    Wow! This is so cool! I never thought you could turn empty toothpaste tubes into useful and cute toothbrush holder. I should teach this to my kids so they could learn simple but practical and useful recycling skills.

  8. Pingback: Where Can I (Wednesday)… Recycle Toothpaste Tubes? - Green Philly Blog

  9. mike says:

    “… without costing a mint.”

    you’re fired.

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