Here’s the low down for those who are unfamiliar with the Polo Ralph Lauren Bear. It’s not a new thing, the Polo Bear has been around since the 90s, it’s just making its comeback like all things from this decade. Drawn by Mr Lauren’s brother, it first appeared in 1991 and has since made many appearances in a variety of preppy ensembles.
It’s the hip-hop world’s love for these seemly feminine teddy bear sweatshirts that may seem a bit of a shocker. Rack-Lo, a founder of the notorious Brooklyn Lo-Life crew, made it a prerequisite for any member of the 100-strong crew to don the Polo Ralph Lauren. Seems a random choice for streetwear right? They saw that Polo wasn’t made for urban kids, it was for the privileged living up in their penthouses and going to Ivy League schools. So the gang got their reputation by stealing Polo Ralph Lauren merchandise from any stockist they could find, dressing head to toe in it and hitting the clubs. And so the obsession with Polo Ralph Lauren began.
Now we’re seeing a resurgence in 90s brands, the POLO BEAR is back and far more accessible than back then. The likes of Kanye West and Drake have been seen wearing it, as well as NFL stars and athletes. At the end of the day what’s more masculine than a grown man wearing a teddy bear sweatshirt? Nothing.