There were so many ways that we followed the instructions: " Use it up, wear it out; make it do or do without." Those were the words we lived by during the Great Depression, and later they were used by President Roosevelt to have us practice during the war years.
Toothpaste was available but most people did not have the money to buy it. My mother mixed salt and soda to use as a toothpaste. It worked, removed stains and made a pleasant look to your smile, but it tasted horrible.