I'm a penny pincher from way back when. When my husband went to college in his late twenties and we had our two kids in private school to boot, money was tight. My motto was "use it up, wear it out, make it do, and do without". In light of today's economy that's pretty good advice still.
Being thrifty, I've always cut the ends off of a tube of toothpaste or hand/body lotion. Why? There's a lot of product down there that you just can't get out no matter how hard you squeeze. To access the toothpaste just stick your toothbrush down into the cut off tube. There's enough toothpaste for one person for another week or possibly two. Obviously you don't share this--open a new one for the rest of the family and when it gets down low, relegate it for your personal use once again.
Now for the clever trick. I hit on it with a tube of lotion from Bath and Body. Take a pair of scissors and cut off the upper portion of the tube--cutting off enough so you can reach the contents at the tube opening end with ease. You'll discover there is a lot of lotion down there. The problem though is keeping the exposed lotion from drying out. I'd been setting the tube in a plastic bag. Not handy and not attractive. But today I hit gold.
I saved the top of the tube that I'd cut off, scraping out the little bit of remaining lotion in the top half. Then I thought--hmmm..wonder if this would slip over the bottom half of the tube? Nope... they were the same size at that intersection. But genius--LOL--prevailed. I gently squeezed together and pressed one outside corner of the lower portion of the tube back onto itself, making the opening narrower, which allowed the upper cut off part to slide right over the lower part...and then---when the folded back part retracted----it caused the top to fit snugly over the bottom. VOILA!!...container sealed. This looks so much better than a baggie and is handier to use. I haven't tried this technique on the toothpaste tube , but it just might work on that too.
If you've always just chucked a tube of lotion when you couldn't squeeze out any more, you'll be surprised at how much remains. Give it a go--you've got nothing to lose and pennies to save.