From time to time you might have good reason to use a brushless cream… but using your hand to put it on makes your hands all sticky and gooey. But the a solution to that problem was patented by Testi Nicholas back in 1939: a roller that replaces the cap of the tube, aiding in the even, controlled application of shaving cream. Or, in the words of the patent:
This invention relates to collapsible tubes for dispensing cream, paste, ointments and the like and consists in a unitary device which may be supplied as part of the tube structure or as an attachment thereto for effectively sealing the tube, except when it is subjected to a discharging pressure, and for controlling and distributing or applying the discharged contents uniformly to the treated surface. An important field of use of my invention is in connection with tubes for. dispensing shaving cream. For purposes of illustration, therefore, the invention will be herein shown as embodied in an attachment to be retained by the user and affixed to the tube in place of the usual screw cap.
The whole invention consists of a frame, into which a distributing roller and a slotted rubber disk sits. The rubber disk keeps the cream from leaking out when there is no pressure on the tube, and the roller is then used to spread the cream evenly across the face.
Even if the original patent was assigned to Gillette it is long expired, so anyone wanting to have a go at this can… someone with some skill and a 3D printer can probably make bespoke dispensing tubes.