History of the brand

History of LISTERINE<sup>®</sup>

The history of LISTERINE® goes back more than 130 years, to the beginnings of modern medicine.

It all started in 1860, with the work of Sir Joseph Lister.

The English doctor and surgeon was at that time applying the theories of the famous scientist Louis Pasteur: theories according to which invisible germs could be the cause of numerous infections.

In 1865, Sir Joseph Lister became the first surgeon to carry out an operation in a chamber sterilised by pulverising antiseptic in the air. During the 19th century this resulted in a significant fall in mortality rates in patients.

A man to be remembered

In 1876, following a conference on his research activities, Sir Joseph Lister drew attention to the work of two men who were to play an active part in the history of LISTERINE®:

  • Doctor Joseph Lawrence, creator of the brand
  • Robert Wood Johnson, founder of the Johnson & Johnson group which markets the product today

Two men, one aim: to modernise surgical practice …

Listerine Mouthwash HistoryIn 1879, Doctor Joseph Lawrence created a unique formulation in his laboratories, inspired by the research of Sir Joseph Lister, and called it LISTERINE®.

He then formed a partnership with the pharmacist Jordan Wheat Lambert, and together they created the Lambert Pharmaceutical Company. 

In this company they produced and sold LISTERINE®, used as a disinfectant in operating theatres and as a solution for bathing wounds.




Listerine History of the Brand

LISTERINE® is used today as a daily mouthwash. Our product is aimed at improving oral hygiene for everyone, by supplementing the brushing action.

LISTERINE® has been taken up by more than a billion people throughout the world.



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