Skip to content
Made in Italy
Navigation menu
Marvis – Made in Italy

Marvis: much more than a toothpaste

A toothpaste that offers an authentic sensory experience. Marvis, with its retro look and available in unique flavours such as liquorice, aniseed and cinnamon, is one of the flagship brands of Ludovico Martelli. This company has been involved in beauty and personal care since 1908.

reading time minutes

Throughout history, white teeth have always been synonymous with health, beauty and strength; probably because of this the habit of cleaning teeth dates back to ancient times. The first kinds of toothpaste – in powder form – date back to the Romans and Egyptians, who used a mixture of flowers, resins and abrasive substances. Other homemade recipes involve the use of burnt bread, coal, or crushed bricks, and the ingredients vary according to time and place. Toothpaste, however, continued to be sold as a powder or paste contained in a glass tube until 1893, when Dr Washington Sheffield was the first to produce a paste distributed in a squeezable tube.

A product designed for smokers

However, it was Colgate, not many years later, who started the industrial production of toothpaste as we know it in the United States. American soldiers brought toothpaste in tubes to Italy, and soon, it became very popular. Count Franco Cella di Rivara registered the Marvis brand in 1958 with the idea of creating a toothpaste dedicated to smokers. The toothpaste had a strong mint flavour, a taste that still distinguishes it today. The name Marvis might come from the union of the words ‘Marvel’ (wonder) and Vis (strength); however, the toothpaste stands out above all because of the original bouquet of flavours developed over the years. The brand experienced its heyday in the 1970s, only to be forgotten until the 1990s when it was acquired by Ludovico Martelli Spa, a Florentine company founded in 1908 as a cologne distributor and beauty creams producer. Thanks to the acquisition, Marvis became an iconic product in the luxury life segment.

Marvis new life as a style icon

Giovanni Galeotti, CEO of Ludovico Martelli, had the idea of transforming simple oral hygiene into an authentic sensory experience and decided to add exclusive Made in Italy flavours to the toothpaste, such as liquorice from the renowned Amarelli company in Rossano Calabro, Sicilian lemons, star anise and even a limited edition Nestlé Nespresso. He also chose to keep the packaging evocative and retro, using hypnotic colours to enhance the brand with graphics. Today, Marvis toothpaste is available in seven different flavours and also sells well abroad, especially online. Marvis is popular in China and the US, where it can be found in prestigious, high-end stores such as Bigelow Apothecary in New York, the oldest pharmacy in the US and Marvis US distributor.

Ludovico Martelli: Made in Italy production, with a passion for vintage

Ludovico Martelli Spa, based in Fiesole, owns thirteen brands, including the historic Proraso. It entered the market in 1908 by importing beauty products from large German companies, including Schwartzkopf, but experienced its first big success with the registration of the Proraso brand. Today, the company’s philosophy is to rescue and propose brands with a vintage flavour, giving them new appeal and new life. The Proraso and Marvis brands alone account for 70% of turnover. The company produces exclusively in Italy, in the Florence factory. In 2023, it had a turnover of more than 90 million euros and more than one hundred employees. The company plans to expand further in Italy and abroad.

Congratulations to those who bring Made in Italy flavours and lifestyle to the world!

Discover more of Tuscany’s outstanding products.