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Deep But Versatile: Polo Black Cologne Review

In 2005, Ralph Lauren introduced Polo Black cologne for men. Like other Polo fragrances, it has a fresh, outdoorsy scent with hints of the woods and tropics.

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It is a variation of the popular Polo Blue’s aquatic notes. But unlike other colognes, Polo Black has retained most of its popularity over the years.

After reading our Polo Black review, you’ll know how the cologne performs, along with when you should wear the scent. You’ll also know if Polo Black cologne is worth adding to your fragrance collection.

polo black cologne

Who Makes It? 

Ralph Lauren produces Polo Black cologne. It was created as a complement to the company’s Black Label clothing line. Master perfumer Pierre Negrin designed this deep and dark scented men’s fragrance.

herbs polo black

Born in Grasse, in southern France, Pierre Negrin grew up among aromatic plants used by perfume houses around the world. Both of his grandfathers were merchants who sold products, herbs, and flowers to create fragrances.

Fernweh Editions Fern & Petals Candle

He was awarded the International Prize for Fragrance Creation in 1990 by the French Society of Perfumers. Along with experience working with perfumers in France and Mexico, Pierre Negrin also works with designers in the United States. In 2008, he became a member of Firmenich’s New York Fine Fragrance Center.

Scent Notes 

When you open a bottle of Polo Black cologne, one of the first notes you smell is mango. It gives the cologne a light, fruity, tropical fragrance. From there, you’ll start to notice the underlying spicey, woodsy tones that come from the sage and patchouli notes.

polo black bottle & box

Other citrus notes, primarily tangerine, are also present. We found that while the cologne is sweeter, the darker notes prevent it from becoming overpowering. To finish off the scent, the smooth hint of sandalwood and tonka bean gradually take form.

While the woodsy notes do come to the forefront as the cologne settles down, it never loses its fresh, citrusy aroma. The various notes give the men’s cologne depth and dynamics that live up to the brand’s reputation.

Packaging and Presentation 

The cologne’s packaging matches its name. It comes in a sleek black box embossed with a silver script, along with the Ralph Lauren trademarked logo. The elegant bottle is designed with men’s tastes in mind. It’s black glass, with a gold polo played on the front. A silver cap tops off the bottle’s elegant appearance.

Polo Black’s bottle is topped with a small spritzer that makes it easy to apply the right amount of cologne. It emits a light mist that you can use in targeted areas or for more coverage. With its elegant, yet simple design, you won’t mind displaying the cologne in your bathroom or bedroom.

woods polo black

Personal Impressions 

Ralph Lauren Polo Black is a fresh and fruity men’s cologne that has remained fashionable since its introduction in 2005. It’s a light, masculine scent that isn’t overpowering, even when too much is accidentally applied. The woodsy notes are stronger after the cologne dries, but you won’t lose the tropical citrus hints.


Polo Black men’s cologne has a moderate longevity rate. You can expect to get about six hours out of the scent. Its projection is also not the strongest, but it’s more than enough for close contact. Its blend of citrus and more earthy scents makes Black an excellent cologne for both work and casual play.

polo black

Who Would Like It? 

Polo Black cologne was created for younger men that wanted a fresh scent, similar to Polo Blue without the more robust aquatic notes. There are still some in Polo Black, but it is more of an underlying aroma that briefly tickles the nose.

Its appeal extends to all types of guys and all ages. While it is a little more casual than other men’s fragrances, almost any man can successfully wear Ralph Lauren Polo Black and make it his own.

Where Should You Wear It? 

Unlike other tropical men’s colognes that are designed for warm weather wear, the darker, woodsy notes make Polo Black cologne ideal for all seasons. The scent is casual enough for the gym, lunch date, or evening out with friends.

Its subtle and moderate range also makes it ideal for wearing to work. The mango and other citrus notes are tempered by sandalwood and sage to prevent the scent from overwhelming co-workers.

mango polo black

Where Can You Buy It? 

Even though Ralph Lauren Polo Black was released in 2005, the passing years haven’t diminished the cologne’s popularity. You won’t have any problems finding a bottle at a department store perfume counter or a retailer online.

While finding a bottle of the cologne for sale isn’t difficult. You also have options for sizing. Try a small .5oz bottle if you’re not familiar with the cologne. For those that list Polo Black cologne as a favorite, there’s a 4.2oz bottle available. There are also options in-between priced to fit any cologne-lovers budget.

Colognes Similar to Polo Black 

It’s tempting to compare Polo Black vs Polo Blue. The men’s fragrances are both from Ralph Lauren, however, the two couldn’t be more different. They were created by different perfumers, each with a unique vision. Polo Black cologne is darker with more undertones than the lighter scented Polo Blue.

One men’s cologne that comes close is also from Ralph Lauren. Polo Double Black is the original reimaged. It was created by Ellen Molner and has top notes of mango and pepper. Nutmeg and roasted coffee beans comprise the middle notes, with cardamom and juniper berries for the base.

Even though Polo Double Black has a tropical, woodsy scent, it lacks the richness sandalwood brings to the original Polo Black. For those that want a men’s cologne that is both light and deep, you’re best staying with the original. Polo Black cologne may lack some longevity and range but it won’t disappoint every time you wear it.


What does Polo Black cologne smell like?

Light tropical mango is what comes first, followed by spicy and woodsy notes, accompanying an everlasting citrus tone.

Is Polo Black a winter cologne?

The darker woodsy notes would make one believe it is designed for cooler weather but its complexity with tropical mango makes it perfect for any season.

Who makes Polo Black?

Pierre Negrin, a master perfumer, designed this men’s fragrance for Ralph Lauren which launched in 2005.

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Deep But Versatile: Polo Black Cologne Review

Born and raised in Austin, David is a dedicated writer and avid fragrance lover. When he's not trying out perfumes, he enjoys traveling and exploring new restaurants.