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Celebrity hairstylist Vidal Sassoon, 84

By: JTA

Celebrity hairstylist Vidal Sassoon, who was committed to fighting anti-Semitism and fought in Israel’s War of Independence, has died.

Sassoon died Wednesday in his Los Angeles home. He was 84. He had been battling leukemia, according to the Los Angeles Times.

In 1982, he established the Vidal Sassoon International Center for the Study of Anti-Semitism at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. He toured the United States to raise funds for the center.

Sassoon, a London native, grew up in a Jewish orphanage after his father had left the family. He dropped out of school at age 14 to become an apprentice hairdresser.

In 1948, at the age of 20, he joined the Haganah and fought in Israel’s War of Independence.

He opened his first salon in London in 1954, and became known for his modern and low-maintenance hairstyles that used geometric cutting and layers to achieve a sleek and natural look. Soon Sassoon opened a chain of salons in England and the U.S.

In 1973 he debuted a line of shampoos and styling products, gaining fame with appearances in TV commercials using the slogan “If you don’t look good, we don’t look good.”

His philanthropy included the Vidal Sassoon Foundation.

Sassoon was married four times and had four children.

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