The new restrictions on carry-on items have put a cramp in my style, so to speak. I don't like checking luggage on short trips because of the extra time checking bags introduces, and the inherent risk of lost stuff (I've had my share of lost luggage and pilfered items from my luggage).
Since I can't carry gels, creams, or liquids in my carry-ons, I've ended up buying a lot of toothpaste and hair gel in hotel gift shops. Unfortunately, many of the hotels are out of these items and it's no fun to wander about looking for a drug store in an unfamiliar town - usually late at night. I also hate having to throw out perfectly good hair gel and toothpaste when I've only used one day's worth of them.
On the toothpaste front, I think I've found a solution: good old tooth powder. My grandparents used to use this stuff, and I haven't found it in a grocery or drug store locally, but I have found it online. I ordered mine through Amazon (there are a number of types and flavors to choose from). I settled on mint tooth powder from Eco-Dent, for $4.80 per package. Spendy? Yep. But easy to cost-justify when you compare it to the cost of toothpaste in hotel gift shops.
Now - does anyone have any solution for hair gel? I haven't found any "just add water" products for that...yet.
Update: I've received a few questions on how this stuff tastes. It's a baking soda base (sodium bicarbonate) and has a bit of sea salt in it, so it tastes a little salty when you use it. However, after trying it for a few days, I really like it. It leaves your teeth very smooth and clean, and the "aftertaste" is minty fresh and clean - not salty.
Also, they estimate that this 2 oz. container will be good for about 200 uses. Not too shabby.