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Dior vs. Chanel: Which Luxury Brand is Better?

By Mariela
March 28, 2023
6 minutes

Rivalry is as old as human existence, and while some can be brutal, others are pleasant to behold. When a man designs female dresses and seems successful in the adventure, such should expect some banters from his female colleagues.

Let me welcome you, my dear fashion besties, to another epic comparison between French luxury fashion heavyweights – Dior and Chanel. Both stamped their presence in the fashion industries around the 20th century when the first and second World Wars raged.

Choosing between the two brands can be tedious today if you seek exquisite, luxury, and cutting-edge women’s fashion items. That’s how close and competitive both have become. But while both are similar on some grounds, they differ on others.

By comparing Dior and Chanel on several parameters in this article, I hope to help you decide for yourself which is better. I will begin with their history.

Christian Dior vs. Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel: How They Started

Although both brands share common nationality, they didn’t begin the same way and year. Let’s learn a few things about what motivated each person to venture into the fashion niche and see how intentions differ.

Parameters

Dior

Chanel

Originating Country

France

France

Year of Establishment

1947 (76 years)

1910 (113 years)

Brief History

Christian Dior was born into a family of five children and was the second. He originally wanted to study Arts and Design, but his parents’ objection led him to choose Political Science. As World War II raged, Dior served in the French Army for a while. While there, the designer in him fantasized about confections, particularly couture and other designs that could establish him as a fashion house globally.

In 1940, when France conceded to Germany in the war, Dior returned to Paris and picked up a couturier job with Lucien Lelong. After working for a while and with financial support from associates, he began his designs in 1946.

Dior’s silhouettes sought to restore the feminine look by emphasizing more on shapes and curves and the need for women to fully cover their bodies.

Dior acknowledged that three women close to him heavily influenced his designs: his studio director, Madame Raymonde Zehnacker, who doubled as his wife, Marguerite Carre, and Mitzah Bricard.

Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel spent part of her early years in Covent, where nuns taught her how to sew. She ventured into women’s fashion around the same time US women were agitating for participation in voting. Chanel, who once worked as a singer in Paris with the stage name Coco, had always nurtured the abolition of restrictions that the era and culture she lived imposed on women.

As such, she ventured into styles and designs that she hoped could empower women and raise their social status. In achieving her aim, Channel borrowed heavily from menswear. She ditched corsets, crinoline, and bustle, traditionally women’s dresses, and designed cardigan suits and jersey dresses.

For over 20 years, Channels continued designing clothes that empowered women until she was forced to stop because of WWII. Her resumption on the fashion scene in 1954 was widely perceived as a response to Dior’s growing influence in women’s fashion, something opposite what Chanel earlier championed.

Main Features

Originally named Corolle in 1947, when it first started, Dior’s collections essentially sought to restore femininity in women’s dressing. The clothes generally feature tiny waists and full skirts, with many weighing as much as 23kg. The silhouettes inspired many fashion designers globally and were described by Haper Bazaar’s editor-in-chief as “The New Look.”

Chanel is renowned for its exclusive caviar leather, from which it manufactures its bags. The fashion house focuses primarily on women’s clothes that allow them to move freely like men. As such, it’s the luxury shop for ready-to-wear clothing items like skirts and blouses, jerseys, cardigans, suits, and accessories.

Fun Fact

Christian Dior, the brainchild of Dior Fashion House, fought for France during World War II before his country surrendered to Germany.

An estimated 2,500 people attended Dior’s funeral in 1957.

Chanel Fashion House closed up for about two decades due to a scarcity of materials occasioned by WWII.

Reputation

Dior is a globally acknowledged luxury brand for women’s clothing and accessories. European royals and many celebrities have worn and continue to wear its collection.

Chanel is equally renowned in France, Europe, and globally as a luxury brand with authentic leather bags and quality clothing for women.

Primary Focus

Clothes showcasing women’s feminity, especially those with narrow waists and fuller skirts

Ready-to-wear apparel such as jerseys, suits, cardigans, etc.

From a biased point, one might be tempted to conclude that only women know what is best for women to wear. As such, one may want to give it to Chanel based on its history and founder. But considering that women also played significant roles in Dior’s designs, it’s not an easy pass to whisk it aside. You may need to check other differences between these two luxury brands before concluding.

Dior shop

Dior vs. Chanel: Price Range of items

Dior bag While both brands are luxury brands, one is significantly more expensive. Let’s take their bags as an example. Chanel bags cost between $2950 and $10,000, while Dior’s selling price ranges from $3,000 to $7,000.

Similarly, Chanel’s day wear begins from $20,000 and can reach $100.000, depending on the specific couture dress you chose. Chanel’s bridal dress begins from $100,000

Chanel’s prices double every year, with some items witnessing a 40% increment yearly. Dior’s prices also increase yearly, but not as sharply as Chanel’s, which only reflects current market situations.

Therefore, while luxurious, Dior’s bags and clothes are more pocket-friendly than Chanel’s. It can be a deciding factor for any buyer that wants to enjoy classic items without breaking the bank.

Dior vs. Chanel: Availability & Exclusivity

Getting Chanel products from their store is getting more difficult because of its exclusivity and rules. For instance, new buyers cannot purchase more than a classic bag yearly. Also, there are no representative sellers of Chanel’s products except its official store and website.

Such rules of exclusivity and limitedness do not exist with Dior. You can purchase as many bags and clothes as you can afford, and it’s readily available.

Dior Vs. Chanel: Celebrities’ Approval

Both brands enjoy celebrities’ attention and approval, depending on tastes. However, it seems royals prefer Dior because of its modesty. Below are some of the famous personality that prefers these brands.

Dior

Chanel

Princess Margaret (1930 – 2002)

Keira Knightley

Ballerina Magot

Kristen Stewart

Nancy Mitford (writer)

Lily-Rose Depp

Kate Mara

Diane Kruger

Emma Watson

Julianne Moor

Felicity Jones

Kate Bosworth

chanel celebrity

The list of celebrities and important dignitaries that love and have used products from any of these brands is endless. Both have people who adore their design ideas.

Dior vs. Chanel: Social Media Presence and Influence

Dior and Chanel are well-represented on most social media platforms, with millions of followers. The followers for each brand represent the extent of acceptance and popularity among the people.

Social Media Platforms

Dior (Followers)

Chanel (Followers)

Facebook

882k

22 million

Twitter

9.2 million

13.5 million

Instagram

43.6 million

55.1 million

One can deduce from the table above that Instagram is the most used social media platform for Dior and Chanel. And based on the number of followers, Dior seems to be less popular with people than Chanel.

chanel ins

dior ins

Dior vs. Chanel: Items Sold

Both luxury brands focus on women’s fashion and beauty products. However, the specific products you will likely find in each store are below.

Dior

Chanel

Mitzah and Silk Scarves

Shoes

Stoles and Shawls

Clothing: suits, outerwear, swimwear, dresses, etc.

Hats and Gloves

Accessories: gloves, handbags, costume jewelry, scarves, keychains, belts, etc.

Sunglasses

Silver and Gold Jewelry

Handbags

Eyewear

Perfumes

Skincare Products: skin treatments, moisturizers, creams, etc.

Ponchos and Blankets

Fragrance (perfumes)

Dresses

Make-up (lipstick, foundation concealer, eyebrow pencils, mascara, brush, etc.

Conclusion

Dior and Chanel are two luxury rivals with different focuses. While Chanel believes in cutting-edge, ready-to-wear apparel miming menswear, Dior is about preserving femininity. Both brands have significantly impacted the global scene and continue to do so.

Which is better? Perhaps Chanel. But that depends on your philosophy of dressing, availability of funds, and the item you desire. Both brands sell almost the same items, but their designs differ. Both founders are also dead, and lots of adjustments have been made by successive managements to improve on what they met.

Therefore, you may need to check each website to learn about their latest products. But based on public opinion, Chanel is ahead of Dior.

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