Perfume Directory

Polo (1978)
by Ralph Lauren


Polo information

Year of Launch1978
AvailabilityIn Production
Average Rating
(based on 933 votes)

People and companies

HouseRalph Lauren
PerfumerCarlos Benaim
Parent CompanyL'Oréal Group > Prestige & Collections
Parent Company at launchWarner Communications > Warner Cosmetics

About Polo

Ralph Laurens first male fragrance contains a very distinctive pine note.
The packaging and bottle are a forest-green colour.
FIFI award winner in 1979

Reviews of Polo

rbaker Show all reviews
United Kingdom
The original version:

What a great opening. The pine notes is glorious, combines with a beautiful lavender and freshened up by some bergamot. Soon a mix of juniper and herbs - basil and hints of thyme - with a handful of marjoram is used to add further depth. The juniper is a bit pale amongst the pine-ing glory.

The drydown keeps the pine core, but the herbal green parts gain complexity by the addition of floral heart notes, mainly carnation, jasmine and and a fairly bright rose. There are counterparts in the more spices side, mainly coriander and on incense in the background, but the latter is quite faint on me.

The base is reduced in intensity, with a soft patchouli and a rather tame but natural oakmoss standing out. Hints of a darker leather cone and go, but again this is a domesticated leather without any of the wild gasoline-fueled rawness of, for instance, Knize Ten. Touches of a faint amber, and a stronger cedarwood are present toward the end, as are whiffs of a restraiend earthy undertone.

I get moderate sillage excellent protection, and six hours of longevity on my skin.

This autumnal is one of the great pine creations; pine is nowadays mainly known in bathroom cleaners, but over the years it has been used in ennobled and higher quality versions for some classics; with one being Pino Silvestre, and this original Polo being another one of note. Polo Green was part of my more regular rotations a couple of decades ago, with the more recent version having lost some of its complexities whilst keeping a slightly less complex pine core. A classic this one is indeed, and one of Ralph Lauren’s finest, especially in its earlier years. 3.75/5.
17th October, 2020
Never, I'd argue, has a perfume's packaging so perfectly matched the scent itself. Simply put, Polo smells gold and green. It's a deep and delicious blend of pine, grass, herbs, woods, and leather, dusted with shimmering spices (nutmeg, cumin, coriander), and underlaid with moss, patchouli, tobacco, and Lord knows what else in the rich, rounded base. I suspect a certain nutty sweetness is missing from current formulations, which skew a bit drier and more "ashy" than the versions I've smelled over the years, but make no mistake: Polo is Polo, from any vintage and every angle. One of the most distinctive men's fragrances ever created, it inspired a gazillion knockoffs and is almost inextricably tied to its era. But I love wearing Polo in the here and now, particularly during winter, when its full-throttle pine and tobacco sing a cheerful, festive tune. I feel like I'm walking through a snow-blanketed forest every time I give Polo a spritz. An instant mood-brightener. (Sexy, too, if you can get past any possible "dad's aftershave" connotations.)
12th August, 2020 (last edited: 21st August, 2020)
What can I say, I don't like Polo, never have. As I have continued exploring scents in the last few years I have learned to find great beauty in many that I didn't like originaly. (If you had put Kouros in my face 7 years ago I would have run out of the building for some fresh air, now my most worn). On paper I should love it, there's few classic 70s 80s fragrance I don't like, and this is a giant among them.I find it lacks any kind of flair and it puts me in a broodingly boring kind of mood. I like pine, I love moss, the culprit I suspect lies somewhere in the aromatic green notes, I can't point it out further as I lack the knowledge to elaborate in this case. The green in Polo conjures to me stagnant, cold, algae filled waters for some reason.
I will keep revisiting.

Vintage mini
28th May, 2020
One of the most iconic masculine fragrances ever created. An absolute joy to wear and one of the ultimate statement makers.

With Polo it's all about the pine. I think this is my favorite pine note ever. I also pick up on a fresh mint note. There is some dirty tobacco and spices with a touch of patchouli.

I remember the original juice from years back. I tried again around 2014 and it was pretty poor but surprisingly the most recent batches smell great. Doesn't quite hit the hights of the 80's & 90's but still very good and light years ahead much of the designer trash that is currently out there today.


21st December, 2019 (last edited: 02nd January, 2020)
There's nothing quite like Polo.

The Cosmair vintage version is a creation that would read entirely as "niche" were it not so familiar. It's a full-bodied aromatic experience, rich and spicy and deep and, in what makes Polo challenging for relatively younger folks like myself, dirty.

The current version (2019 and onwards) is definitely recognizable as Polo, and is a good step up from the formulation of a few years ago; it's lighter and cleaner, but the distinctive Polo DNA remains intact. The emphasis here is less on the earthy tobacco and leather and more on the green, coniferous elements, bringing the formula slightly more in line with today's tastes.
22nd August, 2019 (last edited: 23rd March, 2020)
Polo is one of the first fragrances I came to know very early in life. Since everyone around me was wearing it, this scent made quite an impression on my developing mind and has stayed with me my entire life.

I'm referring to a 60ml Cosmair edition which I recently purchased. The notorious Polo opening is indeed quite brash and I could see how someone could find it a bit unpleasant. But so many great fragrances open with notes that seem out of place until the fragrance settles on the skin.

What I find remarkable about Polo is how well all of the notes have been mixed in perfect proportions and harmony to create a vivid experience that few other scents ever produced achieve. I would say Polo is without a doubt one of the greatest scents ever created. A true masterpiece.

Polo is still widely available in 2019, though many prefer the vintages (produced by either Cosmair or Warner) which can be found on eBay. I will look forward to comparing/contrasting vintage Polo but haven't done so yet.

For people who aren't used to vintage powerhouses this could be an unpleasant experience because there are so many ingredients that have been banned or are simply unavailable in modern fragrance.

On how it wears: I don't find that Polo is compatible with warm weather, and I think more than 2 sprays could get you in trouble in a day & age where people are more sensitive to fragrance. The performance is spectacular and will stick around for a very long time on skin and clothing! It could be worn for either casual or formal occasions leaning on formal.

People will recognize this scent because it's still popular and worn by many people. I can safely say that Polo will appeal mostly to the mature male audience and that it might just be the very last scent you'd wear to try and be trendy!
17th March, 2019

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