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Time Line: The History of L’Oreal

A look at L'Oreal through the years.

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Special Issue
WWD Milestones issue 06/01/2009

1909
La Société Française des Teintures Inoffensives pour Cheveux, which will become L’Oréal, makes its debut.

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1910
The first demonstration room for hairstylists opens.

1925
L’Oréal d’Or hair brightener is introduced.

1928
Monsavon is acquired.

O’Cap hair water is launched.

1929
Imédia, the first fast-acting oxidation dye, comes out.

L’Oréal Blanc, dye for platinum blondes, is introduced.

1933
L’Oréal founder Eugène Schueller creates Votre Beauté magazine.

Dopal, the first soap-free shampoo, is introduced in hairdressing salons.

1934
Dopal’s name is changed to DOP and sold to the public.

1935
Ambre Solaire, the first filtered tanning oil, is launched.

1939
La Société Française des Teintures Inoffensives pour Cheveux is officially named L’Oréal.

Headquarters is moved to 14 Rue Royale, Paris.

1945
Oréol, the first cold-process permanent, comes out.

1952
Régé Color, the first direct color brand, is introduced.

L’Oréal creates the level system, the common language for hair color today.

1954

Cosmair is named exclusive agent for L’Oréal in the U.S.

A deal is signed with Vichy.

1957

Eugène Schueller dies.

François Dalle becomes president and chief executive officer.

L’Oréal Net, a precursor to Elnett hair spray, is introduced.

1960
Belle Color, the first at-home hair color shampoo, is launched.

1963
L’Oréal floats on the Paris Bourse.

1964

L’Oréal acquires Lancôme.

L’Oréal Recherche is introduced.

1965
L’Oréal acquires Garnier.

Lancôme Absolue antiaging cream is launched.

1966
Récital, at-home hair dye kits, are introduced.

L’Oréal inks licensing deal with Guy Laroche.

1967
L’Oréal Recherche is renamed Kérastase.

1970
L’Oréal acquires Biotherm.

1973
L’Oréal acquires Gemey and a majority stake in Synthélabo.

The “Because I’m Worth It” slogan is introduced.

 

1974
Gesparal holding company is created by L’Oréal’s two major shareholders, the Bettencourt family and Nestlé.

Ionène G molecule is patented.

1975
L’Oréal signs Cacharel beauty license.

1978
Cacharel’s Anaïs Anaïs fragrance is launched.

1981
Lindsay Owen-Jones takes the helm at Cosmair.

Galderma, a joint venture between Nestlé and L’Oréal, is founded.

1982
Plénitude skin care is launched.

Mexoryl SX molecule is patented.

1984
Charles Zviak is named ceo.

L’Oréal acquires Paloma Picasso’s beauty license.

1985
L’Oréal acquires Ralph Lauren beauty license.

Biotherm introduces skin care for men.

1987
Le Club des Créateurs de Beauté, a joint venture with 3 Suisses International, is founded.

1988
Lindsay Owen-Jones is named chairman and ceo.

Giorgio Armani beauty license is signed.

Helena Rubinstein is acquired.

 

1989
La Roche-Posay is acquired.

Charles Zviak dies.

1990

Lancôme Trésor is launched.

Aminexil molecule is patented.

1991
Céramide R molecule is patented.

Mizani is introduced.

1993
L’Oréal acquires Redken.

1994

Cosmair is acquired.

L’Oréal introduces first pigmented reconstructed skin.

L’Oréal takes controlling stake in Lanvin.

1996
Maybelline is acquired.

Garnier launches Fructis.

Giorgio Armani introduces Acqua di Giò for Me

1998
L’Oréal acquires SoftSheen.

L’Oréal and UNESCO launch the For Women in Science program.


1999

Synthélabo merges with Sanofito form Sanofi-Synthélabo. L’Oréal and Elf-Aquitaine jointly hold controlling interest with 54.8 percent of equity and 69.1 percent of voting rights.

2000
L’Oréal acquires Matrix, Carson, Kiehl’s, Respons and a stake in Shu Uemura.

Pro-Xylane molecule is patented.

Creation of L’Oréal’s ethics code.

SoftSheen and Carson merge to form SoftSheen-Carson.

2001
L’Oréal sells Lanvin and its stake in Marie Claire Group.

L’Oréal acquires BioMedic and Colorama.

2002
L’Oréal and Nestlé create Laboratoires Innéov.

L’Oréal signs Viktor & Rolf fragrance license.

2003
L’Oréal’s Institute for Ethnic Hair and Skin Research opens in Chicago.

Mininurse is acquired.

L’Oréal joins the United Nation’s Global Compact.

2004
Yue-Sai is acquired.

L’Oréal becomes majority shareholder in Shu Uemura.

Gesparal, controlled by the Bettencourt family and Nestlé and owner of 53.8 percent of L’Oréal’s capital and 71.7 percent of voting rights, is merged with L’Oréal. Nestlé and the Bettencourts get 26.4 percent and 27.5 percent of L’Oréal, respectively. A new shareholder pact is signed.

 

2005
François Dalle dies.

SkinCeuticals and Delial are acquired.

2006
Jean-Paul Agon succeeds Lindsay Owen-Jones as ceo.

The Body Shop, Sanoflore and SkinEthic are acquired.

Diesel beauty license is signed.

2007
Anita Roddick and Shu Uemura die.

L’Oréal Corporate Foundation is started.

PureOlogy, Maly’s West, Canan and Beauty Alliance are acquired.

2008
YSL Beauté is acquired.

Martin Margiela beauty license is signed.

Columbia Beauty Supply and outstanding 50 percent stake in Le Club des Créateurs de Beauté are acquired.

2009
Lancôme launches Génifique Youth Activating Concentrate.

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