Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Polo Red by Ralph Lauren

In my opinion it would be near on impossible for Ralph Lauren to improve upon his offering within the fragrance market, particularly for me with a plethora of aftershaves, all with amazing scents. As time goes by my tastes in aftershave change, but Polo Blue and Polo Black remain as solid, dependable aftershaves that I never tire of wearing. 

Today I will be giving my thoughts on Ralph Lauren Polo Red, an aftershave that came courtesy of my dad at Christmas (in response to my asking for it so I could write about it here). Polo Red was one that I had let pass me by, and was not one that I was desperate to try, that is until someone on Reddit asked for my opinion on it.

The prices for Polo Red vary wildly, but you can expect to pay in the region of £35 for a 125ml bottle of the EDT.

This is the kind of marketing blurb that comes with the gift set that I received:

‘Polo RED is announced as a ferocious and energizing fragrance which includes ingredients fitting the red color. The composition opens with red grapefruit united with cranberry and Italian lemon. The heart of the composition emphasizes accords of red sage, red saffron and lavender, while the "red notes" in the base are described with red wood, hot amber and fragrant coffee beans! The spicy red composition of woody-spicy character is signed by perfumer Olivier Gillotin, carrying the scent of strength, masculinity and character.'

  • Head: Red grapefruit, Italian lemon, cranberry
  • Heart: Red saffron, lavender 
  • Dry-down: Redwood, amber, coffee

You would think that I would learn to be a bit frugal when applying for the first time, but no, not me, I sprayed far too much on, but accidents will happen. Time after time I do this, I should probably tattoo a warning onto my forehead as a reminder to be careful! After getting over the gagging sensation as the bathroom quickly filled with an incredibly potent fragrance I could start to pull out hints of the top notes. It wasn’t until about ten minutes later that I could smell or detect the top notes - my bad. 

First things first, I can’t tell the difference between a red grapefruit and a normal grapefruit - they smell the same to me, and it is that fragrance that immediately comes out after a few sprays. Within minutes the grapefruit blends with the lemon to create an uber citrus aroma that is both sharp on the nose yet very fresh and uplifting. First thing in the morning this baby gives your senses a kick awake. At no time could I detect cranberry, in fact my first thought was that this was repackaged Polo Blue! 

The head notes remain for around fifteen minutes before the sharp citrus starts to fade down to a more herbal aroma with far more body. If this makes sense it seems to have more substance to it, whereas the top notes feel as though they could pop off into the ether at any moment the heart notes blended with the citrus just feels hardwearing. 

Within thirty minutes you have the final dried down fragrance that is out of this world. You can still pick up light hints of citrus, but it has a warmth and edge of masculinity that comes from the wood and amber. You can’t detect any note at this point individually which is a massive plus for me, and shows how well this has been put together.

Well, did I end up all by myself after going out smelling of Polo Red? Wear this and you won’t find yourself all alone in the pub, people will sniff as they pass you, but in a good way and compliments are not a rarity. Bleu de Chanel remains my aftershave of the moment, but Polo Red is a close second and once spring gets here this will make the perfect aftershave to top off an outfit for a special occasion and give me the self confidence in knowing that I will be smelling gorgeous all day.

This lasts all through the day, hour after hour. Over time is does become more subtle as you would expect but even after ten hours and a long night I could still pick up hints of this on myself and when undressing it really was quite strong where it had transferred from my neck onto my jumper. A lovely reminder of the initial fragrance.

When you consider the mid-range purchase price, the fact that it lasts for so long and is perfect for every possible occasion, night and day then you have something special. Personally I have been using this night after night since Christmas and still have two thirds of a bottle left.

From the fall of autumn leaves, to the bright hot and sticky days of summer, I believe that Polo Red is quite possibly one of the freshest fragrances to have passed my nostrils. Yes indeed, this is the bomb and when you’re smiling as much as I do when wearing this then it has to get top marks. 


Ladies and gentleman, I would like to thank the songs of Frank Sinatra for helping with the writing of this post. There are a number of his song titles contained in this post, do you want to have a guess at how many in the comments below?

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