The global toothpaste market was valued at $22.89 billion and is projected to grow at a CAGR of 3.5 percent to reach $29.95 billion by 2027, driven by increasing dental issues and the rising popularity of herbal oral care products. Italy's oral hygiene market was estimated at €654.1 million in 2020, with toothpaste accounting for 70 percent of the market, equating to around €460 million. However, despite the overall oral hygiene market growing by 1.4 percent in 2020, the toothpaste sector saw a marginal decline of 0.1 percent. The COVID-19 pandemic affected the sector, as consumers prioritized affordability due to economic pressures, leading to a decrease in advertising investment in the industry by 28 percent to €18.43 million in 2020. Exports of oral hygiene products from Italy have risen by 14 percent in a decade and toothpaste prices have continued to vary, heavily influenced by the distribution channel. The need for sustainable and environmentally friendly toothpaste has been recognized, as searches for "solid toothpaste" spiked in Italy. There have been controversies surrounding fluoride, with some questioning its safety and manufacturers responding with fluoride-free products. Regulatory frameworks have been established to ensure safety and proper labeling, illustrating a high level of consumer protection in the cosmetics sector, which includes toothpaste.

Trends and Insights into the Toothpaste Market in Italy

In recent years, the toothpaste market in Italy has experienced modest growth, yet it remains a vital segment within the personal hygiene sphere. With an estimated worth of around 460 million euros in 2020, toothpastes make up a significant portion, roughly 70 percent, of the oral hygiene market space. Italians typically purchase their toothpaste from supermarkets, which dominate sales by over 86 percent, followed by pharmacies where a 1 percent increase was observed in 2020. This points to a distribution landscape heavily skewed towards large-scale retail, a trend also seen in the wider European context. However, there's a noteworthy trend of consumers gravitating towards more affordable products during uncertain economic times, like the ones engendered by the COVID-19 pandemic. Concurrently, there's a renewed interest in pharmaceutical-style toothpastes, possibly as a consequence of reduced access to dental services during lockdowns. The global market, predicted to climb to between 25 and 30 billion dollars by 2027, reflects increasing consumer concern with oral health aggravated by poor diets, coupled with a rise in herbal and natural product demand. Italy plays its part as a predominantly importing country, with imports outstripping exports in both volume and value. Interestingly, the COVID-19 pandemic has altered purchase patterns and consumption behaviors, with a pivot towards online shopping for personal care products, including toothpaste.

This shift is mirrored in a decreased expenditure in advertising within multiple media outlets – crucially, toothpaste advertising investments plummeted by approximately 28 percent. Consumer habits also point to a lenient approach to oral hygiene, with a sizeable portion brushing their teeth less frequently than recommended. In response to burgeoning environmental and health concerns, product innovation has led to the formulation of sustainable toothpaste options such as solid toothpastes and natural ingredient-based pastes. Searches for "Solid toothpaste" surged significantly post-2019, demonstrating burgeoning consumer interest in sustainable alternatives. Despite the benefits of fluoride in toothpaste, a rising wave of skepticism has prompted manufacturers to offer fluoride-free variants, catering to a segment of consumers wary of potential health implications. Manufacturers are faced with the challenge of aligning product offerings with consumer sentiment that increasingly favors health-centric and eco-friendly products. Controversies over toothpaste ingredients, have underscored the importance of consumer awareness regarding potential toxicity. Petitions and consumer demand have led to industry shifts away from harmful.

Key Players in the Global Toothpaste Market

The toothpaste market features a combination of general consumer goods companies and specialized medical entities that play a significant role in shaping the landscape of oral care products. These players vary in their scale of operations, portfolio, market positioning, and strategic focus.

  • Johnson & Johnson (J&J): As a global leader in healthcare, J&J offers a broad range of consumer health products. Its oral care division includes well-known toothpaste brands which cater to general as well as specific oral health needs, such as cavity protection and teeth whitening.
  • Unilever: A behemoth in the consumer goods sector, Unilever's portfolio spans a variety of categories including oral care. The company is known for its innovative approaches in product development and marketing, with toothpaste brands that emphasize both functionality and sustainability.
  • Henkel Italy: A subsidiary of the German multinational Henkel, the company has a strong presence in home and personal care products. Its oral hygiene offerings include toothpastes that prioritize both dental care and consumer wellness.
  • GlaxoSmithKline (GSK): As a pharmaceutical giant, GSK extends its expertise into the consumer healthcare market with a range of medicinal toothpastes that are often recommended by dental professionals. These products typically target specific dental issues such as sensitivity and gum health.
  • Recordati: Primarily focused on pharmaceutical products, Recordati also offers dental therapeutics, which includes specific dental care products and toothpastes designed for particular oral health conditions.
  • Colgate-Palmolive: A household name in oral care, Colgate-Palmolive has one of the most extensive ranges of toothpaste products in the market. With a strong focus on innovation and consumer health, it provides options for every need, including regular, whitening, and therapeutic toothpastes.
  • Procter & Gamble (P&G): Home to the iconic brand Crest, P&G offers a wide selection of toothpastes and oral care products. Crest is known for introducing revolutionary products such as fluoride toothpastes and whitening systems.
  • Dr. Ciccarelli Pharmaceuticals: Operating as a niche player, this company specializes in the production of dental care products with a therapeutic focus. Its product range features toothpastes that boast specific treatment benefits.
  • Sunstar: Although smaller in scale compared to some of the giants listed, Sunstar provides specialized oral health care products and innovative toothpastes that focus on improving overall dental health with an emphasis on gum care. 
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Summary and extracts

1 Market Overview

1.1 Definition and presentation

Toothpaste is an abrasive and antiseptic paste, gel, or powder that is used to clean teeth together with a toothbrush.

The global toothpaste market is expected to grow at a rate of 3.5 percent through 2027. This growth is mainly driven by the increase in dental problems among children and adults due to poor eating habits and the rise in popularity of herbal oral hygiene products. Asia-Pacific accounts for an important share of the global market, mainly due to a strong customer base and changing lifestyles.

In Italy, the market is included in several Ateco Codes, but these do not exclusively identify toothpastes:

  • Ateco Code 20.42.00: Manufacture of toiletries: perfumes, cosmetics, soaps and the like
  • Ateco Code 47.75.10: Retailing of perfumery, toiletries and personal hygiene products

Toothpastes account for about 70 percent of the oral hygiene market, and their consumption has grown very slowly in recent years. The market is also highly concentrated, with a few international players such as Colgate and Mentadent accounting for a large market share.

Increased awareness of oral health and the importance attached to aesthetic appearance has led toothpaste manufacturers to expand their offerings by introducing whitening toothpastes. In addition, the consumption of more premium products and brands, such as Sensodyne, Elmex, and Parodontax, which are recommended by many dentists, has increased in recent years. The COVID-19 pandemic has increased the emphasis on hygiene, including oral hygiene. This trend has led to an increase for the demand for toothpastes.

List of charts

  • Chiffre d'affaires du secteur des dentifrices par canaux de vente
  • Evolution du chiffre d'affaires du marché du dentifrice
  • Evolution du commerce extérieur de dentifrices en volume
  • Evolution du commerce extérieur de dentifrices en valeur
  • Répartition du chiffre d'affaires des exportations selon la catégorie de produits
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Latest news

Johnson & Johnson values its products at over $40 billion - 25/04/2023
  • Kenvue: new company resulting from the spin-off of Johnson & Johnson's (J & J) hygiene, beauty and consumer health division
  • J & J to own approximately 92% of Kenvue after IPO
  • Kenvue sales (fiscal year ending January 1): nearly $15 billion
  • Kenvue: over 22,000 employees, 25 manufacturing sites, operations in over 165 countries.

Companies quoted in this study

This study contains a complete overview of the companies in the market, with the latest figures and news for each company. :

Unilever Italia
Procter & Gamble Italia
Colgate Palmolive Italia
Henkel Italia
Johnson & Johnson
Farmaceutici Dottor Ciccarelli

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