Ipana was first introduced in 1901 by the Bristol-Myers Company of New York. Ipana was an early and large sponsor on radio starting in 1923 with the program The Ipana Troubadors. Ipana toothpaste achieved its greatest popularity from the 1920s until the early 1970s. With its renownedwintergreen flavor, the active ingredient was sodium fluoride (0.243%). Bristol-Myers's Ipana was the most popular U.S. toothpaste or powder from approximately 1920 to the late 1950s.
Sales of Ipana waned by the early 1970s due to increased marketing efforts from Procter & Gamble, Colgate, and others. Colour television was increasing in popularity, and Bristol-Myers was uninterested in investing in new colour television programming material. Bristol-Myers was making far more money in pharmaceuticals so Ipana and other brands were given up by the sales and marketing teams.
By the late 1970s, Ipana was discontinued entirely in the United States, but was sold elsewhere in the world. In 1986, a new gel version of Ipana containing two fluorides was introduced in Turkey. In 2005, River West Brands, a Chicago-based brand revitalization company, re-introduced Ipana into the U.S. marketplace. At present, the Ipana brand is a leading toothpaste in Turkey.
River West Brands divested itself of Ipana in October 2009. River West sold the Ipana brand and related IP to maxill inc. of Canada. Maxill, one of the top three selling toothbrush makers in Canada, brought Ipana back to life in early 2011 as a "retro brand" in the professional dental market, where maxill had come to dominate the oral hygiene category by that time.
Bucky Beaver (voiced by Jimmie Dodd) was the marketing icon and mascot of Ipana commercials from the 1950s. Bucky Beaver's slogan was "Brusha... Brusha... Brusha. Get the New Ipana - it's dandy for your teeth!"