Spray bottles are a huge part of our daily life; so much so that we often don’t even recognize it, since they are so intricately woven into our routines. Hand soap, perfume, deodorant, cleaning products, make up and a whole array of products we use every day come in spray bottles.
The Uncertain Origins of the Spray Bottle
Before the middle of the 20th century, spray bottles were created using a rubber bulb that was squeezed to make air move quickly in order to siphon fluid from a bottle and spray it. The bottle was often made of glass and reusable. No one knows from where this kind of spray device originated, who invented it nor when it was created. It seems to be one of those inventions that simply had a life of its own with the idea being passed on from city to city. It was used as the primary mode of spraying until after World War II at which point the development in plastics began to change how a spray bottle could be used and manufactured.
The Plastic Bottle Goes Commercial
The biggest leap in the history of the spray bottle was made by Dr. Jules Montenier in 1947 when he invented the first plastic spray bottle for his underarm deodorant called Stopette. Montenier was a cosmetic chemist who founded his own cosmetics company, Jules Montenier, Inc. Stopette was his biggest seller and was the sponsor of the popular television program What’s My Line? The game cards even had images in the shape of the Stopette spray bottle. Montenier holds the U.S. Patent No. 2,642,313 for the “Unitary container and atomizer for liquids.” He worked with the Plax Corporation to invent the commercial use of the plastic bottle. This created an explosion for the plastic industry as this was the first time plastic began competing with glass for the packaging of many products. Beyond this, the Drackett Company, responsible for manufacturing Windex and similar products, became important in promoting the use of plastic spray bottles.
Advent of the Trigger Sprayer
In the 1960s, the industry took another turn with the invention of the trigger sprayer on bottles with trigger spray heads. The change in the spray nozzles meant that spraying was less tiring and more effective. Around this time, spray bottles became disposable as well. In the past, while plastic was improving, sprayers were used over and over again and they could become brittle and crack. Reusable bottles with trigger spray heads became the way of the future and trigger sprayer manufacturers benefited from the advancement.
Today we take for granted all the uses we get from our disposable plastic spray bottles but by looking back we can see the great advantage they’ve created. Over the years, developments in plastics and plastic design have allowed for the creation of more environmentally sound ways of creating spray bottles. Versatility has also expanded with additions like mini sprayers and the fine mist sprayer having been added to the list of options when it comes to choosing plastic packaging. So the next time you use perfume or spray a cleaning product, give a thought to Montenier and all those involved in making the spray bottle what it is today.