Diesel is a top fashion brand, known for its incredible denim collection, but is Diesel a luxury brand? Find out everything you need to know here!
Diesel first rose to popularity in the 1990s with their eye-catching and surreal ad campaigns and has remained a staple fashion brand for customers all over the world ever since. Diesel is best known for their stunning denim jeans and denim jackets, but they also offer a full range of men’s, women’s, and children’s clothing, shoes, bags, eyewear, smaller leather goods, and home furnishings as well!
Diesel may be very popular, but there is some question as to whether Diesel is a luxury brand. Some see Diesel as luxury because of their high-quality denim with a high price tag, while others do not consider Diesel to be luxury because of the lower prices of their clothing and accessories range.
This article is going to delve into the history of Diesel, the quality of its pieces, and take a closer look at some of the best-selling products before coming to a conclusion on the question, is Diesel a luxury brand? Keep reading to find out everything you need to know!
Is Diesel a Luxury brand?
The History of Diesel
Diesel is an Italian brand that has become a favorite in the fashion industry since its founding in 1978. Diesel Founder Renzo Rosso first started making jeans on his mother’s sewing machine at age 15, making bell bottom jeans that he would then wear or sell to his friends.
Rosso went on to attend a textile manufacturing high school in Padua and then used these skills when he began working for a clothing manufacturer called Moltex, which was owned by Adriano Goldschmied. In 1978, Rosso bought a 40% holding in the company, by which point it had changed its name to Diesel and begun to sell jeans. By 1985, Rosso had bought out Goldschmied and was the sole owner of the company.
The brand began to grow significantly in the 1990s and expanded into international markets. The first international marketing campaign was launched in 1991 and was called ‘Guides for Successful Living’ and ended up winning a Grand Prix at the Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival – displaying the impact and popularity of this ad campaign.
This was the first step in Diesel’s alternative way of marketing, ignoring the common rules and focussing on working with creative agencies and photographers, including Ellen Von Unwerth, Rankin, and David LaChapelle.
In 1995, Diesel launched one of the first significant fashion retail websites to sell their clothing line, before the late 1990s saw Diesel stores opening across the United States and Europe, including New York City, San Francisco, Rome, and London. In 1998, The Wall Street Journal named Diesel the ‘label of the moment’ – showing how much this brand had grown in a decade.
In the early 2000s, the Diesel brand expanded further and Rosso placed more focus on purchasing additional fashion companies under the Diesel parent company, Only The Brave – these purchases included Maison Martin Margiela, Victor & Rolf, and Marni. In 2008, the diffusion line Diesel Black Gold was launched at New York Fashion Week, offering a line of luxury ready-to-wear clothing.
By 2010, Diesel has grown to have around 5,000 points of sale across 80 countries, including several large flagship stores and 270 Diesel retail stores. In 2020, Belgian designer Glenn Martens was appointed as creative director and so far has produced several successful collections shown at Milan Fashion Week.
The quality of Diesel
In order to determine whether Diesel is a luxury brand, we need to look at the quality of Diesel products through the price range, materials, and craftsmanship of the brand.
1. Price Range
Let’s begin with the price range as this will tell us a lot about how the brand compares to other well-establish luxury fashion houses.
Diesel is most famous for their jeans, which are available for between $117 and $1,250, while dresses sell for between $135 and $995, tops, shirts and t-shirt are on offer for between $65 and $895, and jackets range between $185 and $4,500. Longer, wool jackets and leather jackets sit at the most expensive end of this price range, while denim jackets are actually at the more affordable end.
There is a wide range of accessories available from Diesel too – the shoe prices range between $65 and $1,195, bags are available for between $95 and $550, the eyewear range sells for between $175 and $270, while wallet can be as affordable as $70 or as expensive as $395.
This is only the surface of the pieces available from Diesel the womenswear collection also offers underwear, fragrances, tech accessories, and jewelry, while there is also a whole menswear collection, Diesel Kids range, pet accessories collection, and a selection of home furnishings and décor.
The materials will also tell us a lot about how luxurious Diesel products are. The clothing is made from a wide range of materials, including nylon, rayon, cotton, spandex, polyester, polyurethane, and silk, while the jackets are often made from ovine leather, cowhide leather, cotton, and lamb fur.
There are a few leather handbags, made from cow leather, but most bags are crafted from crinkled nylon, waxed canvas, denim, faux fur, polyvinylchloride, polyurethane, polyester, and thermoplastic polyurethanes.
This range of materials shows how the quality of Diesel products is not up there with the well-established luxury brands like Saint Laurent and Gucci, who use mainly calf leather and lambskin leather in the bags, and more natural fabrics like cotton, wool, linen, and silk in their clothing.
In terms of craftsmanship, almost all Diesel denim is made in Italy, while the majority of their clothing, shoes, bags, and accessories are made in the production unit of their parent company, Only The Brave, in India.
This shows the focus they put on creating top-quality denim clothing in Italy close to the brand’s headquarters, while the rest of the clothing line is made a little further afield in India. The quality of the clothing and accessories is good, but perhaps not at the same level as luxury brands such as Chanel, Louis Vuitton, and Burberry.
Best-selling pieces from Diesel
There are so many incredible pieces on offer from Diesel, so we have narrowed it down to a few best-selling items that we think you really need in your wardrobe – hopefully, you find something you love!
We love the simplicity and versatility of this Diesel logo-embossed cotton T-shirt that really is a must-have item! This 100% cotton t-shirt is super soft and breathable and is available in both black and white so you can pick the option that best suits your personal style.
The front of the round neck t-shirt is emblazoned with the bold Diesel logo in contrasting red. Tuck into your favorite black denim skirt or style with your comfiest jeans for a chic, casual look!
The Diesel graphic-print cropped sweatshirt has a stylish retro feel with the printed logos and cropped finish. This sweatshirt is crafted from cotton for a soft feel and has a relaxed fit with long sleeves, a crew neck, and a cropped waistline.
The front of the sweatshirt is made up of a mix of different Diesel logos, everything from contemporary designs to vintage editions for an attention-grabbing look. Get your hands on this gorgeous sweatshirt for just $155!
The athleisure look is so fashionable at the moment and this Diesel logo patch striped jacket fits the trend perfectly. This pale grey cropped jacket has a bold white stripe across the chest and a high neck for a sportswear look.
The front zipper is finished with a Diesel logo zipper pull, while there is also a logo patch on the chest. Zipper pockets sit on the side of this versatile jacket for ultimate practicality. The neutral colors and slim fit mean this jacket can be thrown on with any outfit.
If you are looking for something a little smarter and more sophisticated, then this Diesel asymmetrical belted shirtdress is perfect for you. The shimmering silky materials and chic asymmetric hemline add a quirky Diesel twist to a classic shirtdress.
The dress buttons up down the center and a black belt that cinches in the waist for a super flattering look. The draped front and silky material give this must-have work dress a high fashion look – plus the dress is available for just $359.
Diesel is well known for its jeans so there are a whole plethora of styles to pick from. The looser fit of these Diesel 1999 straight-leg distressed jeans is perfect for every day with their eternally stylish cropped, high-waisted fit.
These cotton denim jeans have a stonewashed finish and have been distressed for that effortlessly cool look. The jeans fit straight through the leg, then you can turn up the hem for more of an ankle-cropped length – there are so many different ways to style these jeans.
Skinny jeans are a must-have in any wardrobe and we love the easy, versatile look of these Diesel 1984 Slandy skinny jeans.
These Diesel denim jeans are made from a mix of cotton and spandex so the jeans have a little more stretch, giving you that super skinny fit. The dark grey wash ensures these jeans will suit a whole range of different looks. The high-rise waist and cropped ankle length are super flattering too!
The practical nature and minimalist design of this guarantee this bag will become a go-to in your collection. This black, paired-back crossbody bag is crafted from calf leather and features a chunky black and silver Diesel logo plaque on the front that really sparkles in the light.
The shoulder strap is adjustable and detachable, so this bag can become a clutch, while the interior is fitted with a zipper pocket to help you keep all your everyday essentials organized.
If you are looking for a bag that will add a pop of color to your look, this Diesel sticker-print tote bag is exactly what you need. This bag is made from white patent calf leather and has then been decorated with a collage of stickers, including the Diesel brand name, and road sign motifs – creating a quirky and playful finish.
This tote is fitted with two black top handles, an internal slip pocket, and side zip fastening so you are able to expand the size of the bag – so handy!
There are lots of beautiful pieces available from Diesel, and lots of exciting collections are being released with Glenn Martens as the creative director, but overall Diesel is not a luxury brand.
Other than a couple of bags and jackets, most products are available for under $1000, and the majority are made from synthetic materials, such as nylon polyvinylchloride, polyurethane, and polyester. The price range and craftsmanship of Diesel show it is an entry-level luxury brand, just like Tommy Hilfiger, Coach, Guess, and Ted Baker.
Diesel is a great brand to go for if you have a limited budget or are just getting started in the world of luxury fashion, as they have a fantastic range of chic clothing and accessories, available for an affordable price.
We hope you found this article answering the question, is Diesel a luxury brand, helpful! For more luxury fashion content, check out the links below.