THE conclusive Ralph Lauren polo guide.
Look at the label on the inside of the collar.
Genuine polos will have neat stitching and there is a clear space between 'Ralph' and 'Lauren'.
On fake polos there is little to no gap and the stitching is too close to the polo box.
There are many variations of fake Ralph Lauren but on a men's polo the bottom one is all it should look like. Well, apart from either a slim fit, custom fit, or classic fit.
An easy way to spot an immidiate genuine polo is by looking for an RN number underneath the size. The polo I am looking at right now has the number RN41381 printed underneathe the And a CF number underneath the 'custom fit' tag.
The one with the RN on ofcourse is genuine
Step 2.- The care label
Turn your polo inside out and look at the care label, and instant way of spotting a fake is if the polo does not have a care label.
Ralph Lauren has two different types of care label:
1. Small- 'Machine wash warm non-chlorine Bleach when needed remove promptly tumble dry low iron warm if needed'- if this polo is genuine it will have MW9 on the reverse. If the label does not have this keep reading it may be a fake. Chineese replicas often use this label also so to be safe keep reading.
2. Large- If the care label is large there will be a N.I.F number this will mean it is genuine, not duplicted by the fakes.
There are also older ones, issues pre 2003 have different labels.
If you have bought an older shirt you need not worry about the care label and continue to read.
Step 3.- Look a the pony
For big ponys the horse needs to be upright, the proportions may be right, but look at the angle and the pony should be perfecly straight.
Often there are numbers located on the shoulders, there should only be the numbers 1-5 corresponding to the number of players on each polo team any number more than this is fake or sometimes there is a 0 on the shoulder, also a fake.
Here are the big pony formats:
FOR THE "3" RANGE, THE PONY IS THE SAME COLOUR AS THE NUMBER "3" THERE ARE ONLY:
1. WHITE WITH BLUE PONY / "3"
2. WHITE WITH GREEN PONY / "3"
3 WHITE WITH RED PONY / "3"
4. NAVY BLUE(NEWPORT BLUE) WITH RED PONY / "3"
5. NAVY BLUE WITH WHITE PONY / "3"
6. NAVY BLUE WITH YELLOW PONY / "3"
7.GREEN(NORTHWEST PINE) WITH WHITE PONY / "3" (only)
8. BLACK WITH YELLOW PONY / "3"
9. BLACK WITH RED PONY / "3"
10. BLACK WITH WHITE PONY / "3"
FOR THE NUMBER "4" RANGE, THE PONY IS MULTICOLOURED AND THE NUMBER"4" IS ON THE RIGHT SHOULDER. NOTICE THAT THE COLOUR USED FOR THE "4" IS ALSO USED FOR THE HEM/LINING. THERE ONLY 6 COLOURS:
1. RED WITH MULTI-COLOURED PONY AND "BLUE" "4" AND LINING
2. FRENCH NAVY WITH MULTI-COLOURED PONY AND "WHITE" "4" AND LINING
3. GREEN(NORTHWEST PINE) WITH MULTI-COLOURED PONY AND "RED" "4" AND LINING
4. WHITE WITH MULTI-COLOURED PONY AND "RED" "4" AND LINING
5. BLACK WITH MULTI-COLOURED PONY AND "RED" "4" AND LINING
6. NEWPORT NAVY WITH MULTI-COLOURED PONY AND "RED" "4" AND LINING (The colour THIERY HENRY was wearing when he signed his new ARSENAL contract!)
ANY OTHER COLOUR COMBINATION/ MIX IS DEFINITELY FAKE!
For small ponies it is the same.
Also what is becoming more and more common is print or RALPH LAUREN stitched under the collor, these are fake.
If you have a small pony polo turn it inside out and look at the stitching underneath the pony.
Step 4. Look at the hem.
The back should be slightly longer than the front. Classic fit polos will have an even longer back.Genuine Lacoste polos are similar to the fakes, and will have small slits.
Step 5. Look at the price tags
The Chineese fakes are almost identical to the real thing however they are attatched on with plastic to the polo. The genuine ones are strung with cotton . The one above happens to be fake as the tag is made of thin paper insted of thicker cardboard. Also genuine tags will often have the RN number on. Also if the tag has a N.I.F number on then it is also genuine.
Step 6. The buttons.
If your polo has either: POLO, RALPH LAUREN or POLO BY RALPH LAUREN on the buttons it is fake the only writing ever on buttons is Lauren.
The Buttons should not be clear
Genuine buttons are more rounded and have 4 holes, cotton sewed through each hole.
Also there should only be 2 buttons, never 3 on a polo shirt however this is common on a rugby shirt.
Step 7. The sizing
Possibly the easiest method of identifing a fake. If it says XL on the label it should be a size XL not a size small. Turkish fakes have a tendency to shrink rather a lot. Tip- check that the XL tag is for adults, if it is for children it will say (16/18).
Hopefully this guide has proved useful in classifing your polo :)