French fashion house Saint Laurent bares desire to go after condom market

The new gold-wrapped condoms are selling at Saint Laurent's new flagship boutique in central Paris. PHOTO: SAINT LAURENT

PARIS (AFP) - It is the ultimate tight-fitting - one hopes - outfit that no man wishing to impress can do without.

French fashion house Saint Laurent is now selling luxury gilt-wrapped condoms.

Having made fashion history with "le smoking" tuxedo and skin-tight dresses, it is moving into sheaths of a latex variety.

Its designer Anthony Vaccarello unveiled the latest creation on his Instagram account, with the ripped and heavily tattooed New York artist David Alexander Flinn apparently modelling one.

He appears in a daring new advertising campaign for the label called The Love Affair, standing in the buff in front of Polish model Anja Rubik.

She is fully dressed - in Saint Laurent of course.

The cheeky campaign appears to be an attempt by Vaccarello to wipe away the lingering memory of his "porno chic" ads for the brand in 2017, which the French regulator and feminists branded as degrading to women.

Many of the posters were torn down or had "sexist" stickers plastered over them.

Saint Laurent was later forced to alter images of painfully thin girls in rollerskates bending over a stool.

Rather than the "male gaze" of that shoot, the current campaign is intended to be seen from the woman's point of view.

Vaccarello has heavily sexed up the iconic label since he took charge in 2016 with ever shorter mini-skirts and leather hotpants.

But the Belgian admitted that his look, which has upped sales, has not gone down well with everyone. "They keep telling me, 'It's too short, or too transparent'," he said.

"I hate this new puritanism that judges everything," he added, noting that "it has become impossible to have an opinion that goes against" the herd.

The new gold-wrapped condoms are selling at Saint Laurent's new flagship boutique in central Paris.

Vaccarello, 37, is far from the first major fashion designer to want to wave their magic wand over condoms.

Last year, American Alexander Wang did a collaboration with condom brand Trojan.

Earlier this year, the bad boy of Paris fashion, Georgian Demna Gvasalia, sent a black and fuchsia-striped condom to fashion editors as an invitation for what would turn out to be his last show for Vetements, the rebel brand he founded.

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