Perfume Reviews

Reviews of Safari by Ralph Lauren

Total Reviews: 37
Back when this came out, I really, really wanted to like this, because I was a tad infatuated with the bottle, but that was before I learned to love galbanum, and never warmed to it.

25 years later, as a devoted green chypre freak, impulse-bought a tester, and now I'm having a wild love affair with it. Green chypre, but not with the austerity usually associated with that genre. This has added lushness, spice and sexiness.
18th July, 2015
Oviatt Show all reviews
United States
Safari has a huge number of notes which--in any hands but those of a master--could have been a disaster. Dominique Ropion's elegant green floral (eight floral notes listed!) has a warm, musky base. Like Safari for men, this is a modern scent masquerading in period costume (the men's reminds me of Givenchy Gentleman and this one could easily fit in with Givenchy III), trying to recreate a world that never existed. More than evoking a campsite in Kenya, this is a ladies who lunch sort of scent, but there is as much big game hunting going on in Manhattan's Upper East Side as there is in Nairobi. The smart huntress arms herself with the weapons best suited to bag her game, wherever she is. Muthaiga Club meets the 21 Club. Beautiful marketing.
10th July, 2015 (last edited: 13th February, 2018)
Safari is what might be considered a transitional fragrance from the big green florals of the past such as, say, Givenchy III, YSL Y, No.19 and the more restrained floral style of the late 90's. Overall a good galbanum / floral driven composition with enough body to not result exactly *clean* but already devoided of the massive animalic presence of some of its similarly themed ancestors.

Honestly, I'm not crazy about it but put this juice in any of those modern *uber-luxury* niche packagings and you'll see…

12th January, 2015
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What a happy scent!

Barbara Herman nails it, describing it as a green floral with sweetness and fruit.

It is very bright, best used in spring or early summer. It radiates joy with its perfectly balanced ingredients, none of which take center stage, all of which support each other in radiance.

Most appropriate for a young lady in her late teens or early twenties.

Odd name, but nonetheless a winner from Lauren. Very feminine, not at all unisex.
24th June, 2014
I was given this by a fleeting, or fleeing? love. A big deal since it'd recently been launched and was expensive for him as a perfume, or EDP. OI made a big fuss, then I took it home- thought it smelled like something used to deodorize the bathroom- hated it. Threw the big sucker away, but kept the guy- waaaay better than the perfume! Now I have a vintage purse size of it. Bad pennies always show up !Where's he now? Ha!

Ick on this frag!

Be Well!

29th October, 2012
I almost squealed with excitement when I saw a Safari tester in a store I visited a few weeks ago. It was on my 'for test' list a year ago but I had given up hope when every attempt to find it had failed.

This fragrance was everything I hoped it would be. I can actually imagine myself wearing this on a safari, however it may not be too wonderful under desert conditions. Oh hell, I'd wear it anyway.

Safari is a floral green like the olfactive group suggests, however it's also an oriental in the sense that it relies on some rather spicy and earthy notes to carry the composition. It's feminine but also very warm and sensual on the skin.

At times it can be a little sharp, however I love its bold qualities. After some time the scent mellows into a spicy-floral soapiness which is quite different from the opening which was a combination of green accords, fruit and bold resins.

Safari is surprisingly an elegant fragrance, so not what I was expecting, that is, something that you could wear with your khakis and your sun-hat. It's spicy and clean luxury to my nose.

The sillage is fairly strong, however on my skin this fragrance struggled to last. I was very disappointed that such a classic fragrance didn't last the distance.

Despite the longevity being poor, I still adore Safari. It's a shame that this fragrance doesn't accompany the rather popular Safari for Men on the shelves anymore.
04th April, 2012
I'm at a loss for words with this one. All I can say is that I woke up this morning craving it. On me this smells like a somewhat green vintage chypre with galbanum and my beloved oakmoss (think Chanel No. 19) and all. Supposedly this was discontinued and then reissued (and most likely reformulated), so if you haven't yet tried this and want to, try to search the internet for one of the tiny, "vintage" 4 ml pure parfum minis ( which is what I'm wearing now) if you want to experience what I've described and to know what perfumer Dominique Ropion's original intent was. This has wonderful sillage and is unisex, in my opinion.
17th November, 2011
I am sad I can't really find this anymore. I always liked it. To me, it smelled like DIAL soap! I know that may sound weird, but it was a very clean and airy kind of smell.
30th May, 2011
This is great aroma.Warm and fresh at the same time!
Glorious woody green and flowery!Fine oils mixed with nice florals!
So precious and wild!Earthy,classy and refined!
Definitely a worthy trying perfume!
30th April, 2011
Why was it discontinued? Even if this is not the masterpiece I expected I think it could have always had a market. I didn't like the opening that was pungent and retrò. After few minutes safari opened up into a beautiful fragrance full of flowers, classy and well balanced. Unfortunately the drydown isn't very interesting. Patchuly and moss do not develop very well and stay to the skin withou blooming. But a good parfume anyway. Thumb up for me.
19th January, 2011
I hadn’t known that this was discontinued until I started to write this reflection. I’m of a couple of minds about Safari, but I’m sorry it’s d/c’d. It’s an interesting alternative to other widely-available, mainstream florals. It starts crisp and grassy. It’s heavy on the galbanum, but the high-pitched green florals (especially hyacinth) keep it from seeming chalky. The midnotes categorize Safari: green, woody floral.

I do like Safari for its crisp coolness, but this snappiness slowly fades. It remains cool to the touch, a great feature in a hot climate, but gets a little sweeter over time. The sweetness works well with the grassy, somewhat fruity topnotes and gives that feeling in the nose of taking a shot of wheatgrass. Eventually, though, the sweetness leaves the drydown lacking the dimension of the top and heartnotes. Overall, Safari is an extremely coherent design and has remarkable longevity.

A note: I haven’t the least idea how this fragrance relates to a safari. The typical Ralph Lauren notion of surrounding yourself with the trappings of privilege from some distorted fictional past is particularly horrifying here. If what Africa provides for North America and Europe is a cheap vacation (“safari”) why not go whole hog, stay a bit, and call it Colonialism?
29th November, 2010 (last edited: 03rd May, 2012)
genieg Show all reviews
United States
For YEARS I have avoided wearing this fragrance! I have 2 bottles of the EDP and I spritzed it on the back of my hand once and thought it was too strong, sharp, and too overbearing. I left it hidden for several years.

Today, I decided to try it. And YES, it is strong, sharp, overbearing, but that is just for a short while. The drydown is absolutely GORGEOUS!

Its soft, green, powdery, and I have been asking myself why I simply didn't force myself to wait til total drydown so I could give this a fair chance!

I will DEFINITELY be wearing this much more often!
02nd November, 2010
I had great hopes for this but the green notes are sharp and horrible on my skin. The sillage sticks in my throat. I get a sour grassiness that hangs around for hours gradually drying down to something flat and decidedly vegetal.
This green isn't lush and verdant it's more like school uniform drabness.
13th May, 2010
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I find this sweet and mild, with a smooth, almost oily texture. Rather heady at first, with upfront green and galbanum notes, that soften into a heart of honey, jasmine, and rose. Elegant and well-behaved, I think this would be an excellent perfume to wear at work or in company and would make a safe gift. Although projection and silage are moderate, the lasting power is excellent. Dry-down is a rather generic vanilla. It's hard for me to imagine anyone being offended by this soft, pleasant scent. If it has a fault, it might be that it's almost too easy to wear -- there's none of the bite or intriguing bitterness here that make my favorite green scents so memorable. That's a perfume-snob's complaint, though. This is a very nice way to smell.
26th January, 2010
Its a rich grassy scent that lasts a long time. I scarcely remember this scent but I remember liking it. I heard it was discontinued but I will go and purchase at least a parfum mini to keep around.
23rd January, 2010
Graceful, unapologetic luxury. It is clean, sweet and strong. There are hints of sensuality, slight soapiness, some fruit, lots of florals. Elegant without recourse, this I would recommend for a day time classy event. maybe something a mother would wear to college graduation, or perhaps an outside wedding in the middle of summer. Something for the confident, accomplished woman, with no pretenses. Every mother should have this.
01st November, 2009
Guys... can I just mention... come to South Africa on holiday and buy ALL the Safari you like at (for you people with REAL currency) rock-bottom prices! We must have all the stock that's left in the world sitting on our shelves. Does not seem discontinued here!
Am I the only one to see this as a much easier to wear No 19? Veeeery similar, just a lot softer. I quite love it, although I'd especially love for it to still be around when I'm a bit older and in my linen-shirt-phase. And the gorgeous bottle!!
EDIT: Anyone else have a longevity problem? I fairly bathed in this in store the other day, and very soon I almost couldn't smell it and nor could my friend. It wasn't gone, just wildly depleted and soft as snow, where did the galbanum kick go?? I need this to last a bit longer, sigh. No sale... but it's discontinued... I should buy while I still can, right? Sigh.
19th February, 2009 (last edited: 16th December, 2009)
I can't make my mind up on this one. I used to love it, I think the bottle is exquisite, but honestly it smells kind of like church to me. Which can be nice, but...It has lost it's appeal over the years.
01st December, 2008

Safari opens green with galbanum, citrus with mandarin, floral with hyacinth and jasmine, and aldehydic. The green stays while the more complex florals of the heart rise up to take their place. The vetiver has been in the background since the opening, and rises to its own in the base where it shares the spotlight with moss and styrax and a bit of tonka. Just as with the men’s version, this one is a great fragrance. It’s different from most because of its dryness. There are just too many sweet fragrances everywhere… A beautifully constructed dry fragrance like this is so special...

21st November, 2008
I love this dry, crisp chypre. It seems to live for the hot, dry summers here in California. At other times of the year I feel more so-so about this scent, but when I wear it in July and August, it really shines and I realize all over again how truly stunning it is. It does seem to conjure the scent and feeling of dry grasses and open, arid plains. It's not a casual fragrance-- what chypre is? But I think it is one of the more easily wearable fragrances in that ofttimes challenging fragrance family. Hoarding is a good idea for this reasonably priced classic.
23rd August, 2008
Noraed Show all reviews
United Kingdom
Very concentrated, intensive, and strong perfume.
It is a Floral - Green type of perfume.
Smells powdery, woody, and citrusy with leather, moss and green notes.
There is something common between it and ‘English Leather’ perfume by Dana. I’m not sure which one of the above notes.
My husband thinks it is good, I don’t (sorry). It is just too strong for me.
For those who are sad that it is discontinued, you might find it in eBay at very expensive prices.
27th April, 2008
Pretty, but too sweet smelling on me and you know what the sweet smelling juices do to me--stomach churning, not good! The men's is nice, though!
21st April, 2008
A beautiful green chypre with solid woody notes thrown in for moderation. Beautifully blended, very much along the lines of Chanel #19.

For at least one reason, I can see why RL discontinued this one. Simply put, it was a fragrance out of its time. It did not fit into the "one size fits all" homogeneity of so many Nineties fragrances. It was lush and feminine and distinctive at a time when Tommy Girl and other bland, bottled banalities ruled the day.
29th December, 2007
~N~ Show all reviews
United States
Like Tovah, I have hoarded it as well.

I seem to be lost in the late 80s/90s scents.

Astonishingly, I wore this in the summer when I lifeguarded, so I associate it w/ summer (I know its pretty heavy for summer). I love the cedar and musk in association with a nice tan!
19th December, 2007
I guess I'm biased towards this one as it was always my mothers 'going out' perfume when i was younger. So i immediately associate it with happyness :) Smells very similar to Boudoir by Vivienne Westwood to me, which is the closest I can get to it seeing as it has been discontinued. Any chance of reissuing it at all Ralph? Hehe!
06th January, 2007
Um, how boring, how perfumey. Makes me wish I had my bottle of Bandit with me for a do-over.
14th October, 2006
Unmistakable (in my opinion), has all the marks of a good fragrance. I associate it with money as over here in the antipods it is a bit of a 'power-frag'.
19th September, 2006
In my opinion this is a would-be lovely scent completely ruined by the overuse of aldehydes. Could have been a winner, but quite an unpleasant drydown. A little heavy on the vetiver, and not one of the nicest vetivers, either.
31st July, 2006
Wow, I am totally in the minority here! This is not appealing to me in the least. Extremely dry chypre with too much vetiver and aldehydes for my taste. But, since so many people seem to love it, I can't help but think I'm missing something here...hmmm. Oh well.
11th June, 2006
Tovah Show all reviews
United States
Safari is one of my all-time favorite fragrances. It's sensual, multifaceted, and stunning. I've hoarded some of this, because it's getting frighteningly hard to find. It's beautiful, and I hope I never run out of it!
26th May, 2006