Travelling toothbrushes

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Last reviewed: 13/08/2012
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Last updated: 01/07/2010

The museum has a significant number of toothbrushes in its collection including many nineteenth century brushes made from natural materials and twentieth century brushes made from synthetics. Until the 1920s most brushes were made with a bone handle and horse or pig-hair bristles. From the 1920s this was replaced by plastic handles and then nylon bristles. These two brushes however are both made from silver with removable natural bristle heads so the handle could be retained. Their small size made them ideal for travelling. The lower one was made on the continent while the upper brush is British, made circa 1900 with decoration in the form of angels’ heads.