When Diet Coke first debuted in 1983, soda drinkers who were used to Classic Coca-Cola may not have predicted how its no-calorie version would go on to be “not only the second most popular soft drink in the world but…also become synonymous with the fashion industry.” In The Guardian, Christa D’Souza traces the key moments that led to Diet Coke’s preferred status among the fashion set.

It all boils down to the soda’s knack for being seen in the right place at the right time with influential celebrities. Diet Coke premiered with a TV commercial featuring “Linda Evans, Telly Savalas and Bob Hope toasting its success.” Six years later, it became Batman’s refreshment of choice. Then, in 1994, the soda became even more image-savvy, targeting women as its main consumer base with the commercial Diet Coke Break. Getting photographed at numerous major fashion events only helped to seal its fate.

Not that fame hasn’t brought Diet Coke’s share of detractors and low points. Its Twitter following stands at about 1,739. And a model Poppy Delevingne told D’Souza, “Without sounding crass, it makes me burp like a trumpet – spoiling instantly the model-as-perfection persona. Pass me the coconut water any day.”

Amid recent news of a link between diet soda and depression, Diet Coke is probably just going to brush its shoulders off. Especially when the New York Daily News has highlighted its role in liquifying indigestible build-up in your stomach like “gastric bezoars.”

[via The Guardian]