Once upon a time, back in 1886, John Pemberton invented Coca-Cola and sold it to customers of an Atlanta pharmacy. Over the course of the following century the world fell in love with ice-cold Coke.
And the rest was history. That was that.
Or, at least, it was until the birth of Diet Coke – the no-calorie alternative to Coca-Cola,– almost 100 years later. It made its US debut in 1982 at Radio City in NYC and a year later (the same year the first mobile phone was released) Europe got a taste.
Diet Coke was the first product since the very beginning to include the Coca-Cola trademarked name. Since then, the ‘Diet Coke break’ has become a cultural phenomenon and Diet Coke packaging has had makeovers from the likes of Diane Von Furstenburg, Karl Lagerfeld, Moschino and Versace.
Diet Coke: the timeline
1983: Diet Coke is launched in Europe
1986: Diet Coke becomes the world’s top low-calorie drink
1990: Advertising Age editors select Diet Coke as the Brand of the Decade
1994: The world gets a glimpse of Lucky Vanous, the original Diet Coke break hunk
1996: Diet Coke announces its partnership with the Grammy Awards
2001 – 2006: Extra flavour! Diet Vanilla Coke, Diet Coke with Lime and Diet Black Cherry Vanilla Coke are all launched in various markets
2012: Jean Paul Gaultier is appointed creative director, designing three bottles and two cans
2013: Diet Coke celebrates its 30th birthday. Marc Jacobs is unveiled as the brand’s new creative director. Diet Coke gets its fourth hunk.
2015: Diet Coke inspires fans everywhere to #RegretNothing
2015: Diet Coke collaborates with J.W.Anderson to create a designer collection including aluminum bottles, t-shirts, a tote bag, a premium notebook and a limited-edition collector’s box.
2016: To celebrate the partnership with Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie, Diet Coke released limited-edition Diet Coke Absolutely Fabulous-themed bottles and cans. The designs were decorated with a striking image of Edina Monsoon and Patsy Stone.
Watch our interview with two of the film's biggest stars, Jennifer Saunders (Eddy) and Joanna Lumley (Patsy) about adapting the much-loved TV series for the big screen.