The Truth Revealed: Here is What the Colored Squares on Tubes Really Mean

Probably you have noticed or read a graphic that appeared online in which were explained the colored squares present on tubes of different products.


These different colored squares on tube packaging show the chemical content of the product.

Well, it is not true.

These squares are known as “eye marks”. Here is what the graphic that appeared online claimed:

  • Green square indicates that all ingredients are natural;
  • Red square indicates that some ingredients are natural, but most of them are chemicals;
  • Black square indicates that only chemicals are used in the product.

Here is another variation claims:

  • Black/Blue line on the package indicates 100% chemical content;
  • Red line on the package indicates 50% chemical, 50% natural content;
  • Green line on the package indicates 100% natural content.

However, those colored squares on the crimps of those tubes have nothing to do with the formulation of the toothpaste inside. They’re an artifact of the manufacturing process known as “eye marks” or “color marks”, printed marks that can be read by light beam sensors and typically identify where product packaging is to be cut or folded as connected units stream through machinery at high speed.

Eye Marks

Actually, the squares present on tubes are marks used in the process of manufacturing. They are known as “eye marks” and are read by a sensor so they can detect and align squeeze tubes.

Usually the square color is a color of something else too which is printed on that side of the tube. For example, the tubes of Crest toothpaste often have blue writing and matching blue eye marks on the back of the product.

This means that the printed squares on the tubes are not related with the chemical makeup of the product inside. It is only an eye mark used by sensors in the manufacturing process. The available color used in the artwork on the tube chooses the color of the eye mark.

If you think the graphic shows real information, check those products who have greet square on their packaging and you will find out that they all contain chemicals.


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