About us

Our story, from 1971 to today

Fifty years ago, a physiotherapist and his wife, an aesthetician, grew tired of using the expensive and often inadequate products available on the market and decided to start making their own cosmetics.

That was me, Romano Ravaglia, and my wife Armida, two dreamers enamoured by the herbal remedies that our grandmothers had passed on to us as children, lighting a passionate fire within us both.

Every company needs a name, and ours was inspired by my wife: Armida De Salvia. Ardes.

Thanks to our passion and cultural background, from the very beginning our cosmetic formulas were geared towards plant-derived active ingredients. But where could we find these natural ingredients? At that time, there were no specialised companies to turn to.

Walking along the stream we found the nettles needed to produce our anti-hair loss shampoo. Two flower beds in the garden were transformed into lettuce plantations to produce our moisturising cream.

Before we knew it we had five, then ten and many other natural products loved by all our customers.

So much has changed since those early days: our first five-kilo mixer was joined by a larger turbo emulsifier, the first manual filling machine was joined by new semi-automatic ones, then automatic ones, and so on.

50 years later, we are an industrial business operating in modern departments inspired by pharmaceutical standards. We are BIO, VEGAN and ISO certified, but we have not forgotten the simple and natural spirit that inspired the first steps in our journey.

I am proud of what we have created, but the hard work is not all down to just me and my wife: Riccardo, my son, now runs the company together with a number of partners and collaborators, many of whom have been loyal to Ardes for almost 40 years, and who work every day with an enthusiastic spirit that never fades.

And I, at the age of 90, am at the company every day alongside our workers to ensure that Ardes products always represent the highest quality.

What you’ll find here

Romano Ravaglia

Tradition and science

Since 1971, we have pursued our mission of combining knowledge, tradition and innovation to create safe cosmetics that really work, for people that care about looking after their face, body and hair.

In our 50 years of experience, we have created over 2,500 tested formulas – many of which are bio-certified and vegan – to satisfy all the health and beauty needs of our customers.

Nature and innovation

In our laboratories in Busalla, we create new formulations and curate the evolution of our older formulas by keeping up to date with regulations and market trends.

Our cosmetics are manufactured by selecting only the best raw materials and processing them in line with nature and our tradition.

There’s one phrase that has inspired and guided us every day in our work for the last 50 years:

Quality means doing it right when no one is looking.

Certified quality

We produce high-quality cosmetics every day, including creams, gels, oils, cleansers and serums, in our laboratories in Busalla, which are built to pharmaceutical standards.

All Ardes cosmetics are dermatologically and microbiologically tested. Many of our products are vegan, certified by the Italian Association for Organic Agriculture – because they are Bio Eco Cosmetics – and nickel tested.

The safety of our products is guaranteed by compliance with GMP (Good Manufacturing Practice), an international standard in cosmetics manufacturing, also known as ISO 22716 certification.

E-commerce is active only in the European Community.

Instead for purchases from the following countries you can contact the local distributor: