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Yves Saint Laurent is the French fashion house founded by Yves-Henri Donat Mathieu-Saint-Laurent. The house and designer are often abbreviated as YSL.
Laurent's career in fashion began at the tender age of 17, when he served as an assistant to Christian Dior. In 1961, he became chief designer of the Dior house, also making him the youngest designer in the world. In 1961, Laurent started YSL and went on to become one of the most influential fashion designers of the 1960s and 1970s.
Laurent became known for his exquisitely-tailored women's suits, and is credited with creating the first women's tuxedo. The first designer to announce his expansion from couture into ready-to-wear, he is credited with making chic ready-to-wear fashions available to the mass market, and for making ready-to-wear a reputable business for designers. Laurent's ready-to-wear line was sold in boutiques named Rive Gauche, which would later be commemorated with a perfume.
In 1964 Yves Saint Laurent launched his first women's fragrance - Y. This launch marked the first step in the diversification of the brand's activities and in 1965 YSL was named the king of Paris by the influential paper Woman's Wear Daily. The fragrance range continued to grow in the 70's with the launch of Rive Gauche for women. It's a state of mind, an attitude, a lifestyle. The bravado of Parisian chic! The fragrance for men Pour Homme was also launched that same year. In 1977 Opium for women was launched, as a window onto an imaginary world. Many more fragrances have followed, and in 2004 when Stefano Pilati was appointed as Yves Saint Laurent Creative Director he launched Cinema, which is a seductive fragrance, bringing out the star in every woman.
Cosmetics and perfumes have long been included in the designer's offerings. Yves Saint Laurent's first fragrance was launched in 1964 and the latest fragrance launch came in 2012.