Is YSL's Belle d'Opium ad simulating drug use?

03 February 2011

We’ve been swept up in the dance craze of late – Black Swan, Pineapple Dance, that amazing Volkswagen tango ad (well worth a look if you haven’t seen it) so we’re not surprised that fashion ad execs are following on the trend. Our first thought when we saw YSL’s new advert was ‘it puts our dancing feet to shame’.

However others who’ve seen it haven’t been so complimentary. So much so that the ad’s now been banned after a (colossal?!) thirteen people complained to the Advertising Standards Agency. Was it too erotic? (that's the PC brigade's usual bug bear?) No, in this case it was condemned because it ‘could be seen to simulate the effect of drugs on the body’.

Can you see it?

Maybe the clues in the fragrance’s name - Belle d'Opium.  Which was always a risqué branding, especially as the line was launched in the Seventies – during the drugs-fuelled disco decade.

YSL said they’re disappointed by the Advertising Standards Agency’s decision.

‘The advertisement was not intended to make any reference to drug culture, but to promote the sensuality and seductive qualities of the fragrance in keeping with the Opium brand, which was launched by Yves Saint Laurent over 30 years ago.’

An unfortunate name maybe, but does this ad really deserve to be black-balled? Watch it yourself and tell us…
- Amy Molloy


All posts must obey the house rules, if you object to any comments please let us know and we'll take the appropriate action.

Maja Wisla-Szopinska (Mon Feb 04 09:16:27 GMT 2013): The ASA is fucking ridiculous with its bans on ads. And this ad is great.