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You see, I always use Ipana Tooth Paste, and if you want clean, healthy gums, and white, sparkling teeth use Ipana — I-P-A-N-A, available at all chemists.
And how strange it is, strange again, more strangeness, to feel a kind of homesickness for the things on the shelves in the houses that still stand, Old Dutch Cleanser and Rinso White, all those half-lost icons of the old life, Ipana and Oxydol and Chase & Sanborn, still intact out here in this nowhere near Mongolia, and does anyone remember why we were doing all this?
Ipana toothpaste for the smile of beauty, and Sal Hepatica for the smile of health.
Your cleaner of choice was probably the industrial degreaser trichloroethylene, a petroleum-based clear liquid that was as common in mid-20th-century America in Ipana toothpaste, Crackerjack and asbestos.
During the Depression, advertisers turned to funny radio performers to peddle their wares, among them Fred Allen, for Bristol-Myers brands like Ipana toothpaste; Jack Benny, for Jell-O; Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy, for Chase & Sanborn coffee; and Fibber McGee and Molly, for Johnson's Wax.
We were the picture-postcard refugee family: the heroic parents (my mother pregnant), the little girls learning English by memorizing TV commercials (”Brusha, brusha, brusha—Use the New Ipana!” being my favorite).