Ralp Lauren offers a wide range of products, including menswear, womenswear, childrenswear, accessories, fragrances, home furnishings, and more. The brand is divided into different lines of brands such as the Chaps brand, Lauren Ralph Lauren brand, Polo Ralph Lauren, Double RL, Ralph Lauren Childrenswear, Denim & Supply Ralph Lauren brands, and Ralph Lauren Purple Label and Ralph Lauren Collection brands.
It has a total of 151 stores in operation around the world and its products are also sold in department stores and other retailers. The brand has been associated with mid-range up to luxury and high-end fashion.
However, some people question whether or not Ralph Lauren is truly a luxury brand. Let’s find out!
Is Ralph Lauren A Luxury Brand?
Ralph Lauren is a designer brand. While it is true that Ralph Lauren products are made with high-quality materials and the brand offers a wide range of luxury items, not all of its products are considered to be on the same level as other luxury; many of its lines or sub-brands are catered to the mass market.
Here are the reasons why Ralph Lauren doesn’t fit in the luxury brand category.
1. The Accessibility And Availability
Ralph Lauren’s clothing and other products are made to be accessible to a wider range of people, which means that they are not as exclusive as other luxury brands. Anyone can buy its products as they are widely available and accessible to the masses by buying them at the department stores.
The Ralph Lauren Purple Label and Ralph Lauren Collection are the only luxury lines of the brand which people can only buy from the flagship stores or through Ralph Lauren’s website. Meanwhile, the rest of the other products of Ralph Lauren are available in most department and retail stores that carry the brand for the consumers.
2. It Is Not As Expensive As Other Luxury Brands
Even though Ralph Lauren offers a wide range of luxury items, the majority of its products are still for the mass market. And the prices of many of its products are not as high as other luxury brands. This is because the company wants to be able to reach a wider audience and cater to a more diverse group of people.
For example, you can buy items from Ralph Lauren for below $50 such as the Allover Pony Stretch Cotton Boxer Brief (menswear) for only $14.99, while a Logo Graphic Cropped Jersey Tee (womenswear) for only $22.99. They are relatively cheaper than what a luxury brand sells for the counterpart items that could cost a couple of hundred dollars or a thousand grand per piece.
3. The Target Audience
The target audience of Ralph Lauren is different from other luxury brands. While most luxury brands focus on a more mature and sophisticated market, Ralph Lauren has a wide range of products that are meant for different age groups. This is evident in its lines such as Polo Ralph Lauren (which is intended for a younger audience) and Double RL (a more rugged and vintage-inspired line).
It is not as well-known for its high-end fashion or haute couture designs. However, the Ralph Lauren Purple Label and Ralph Lauren Collection are the lines that come the closest to what a luxury brand would be.
4. Ralph Lauren Is A Lifestyle Brand
Another reason why Ralph Lauren is not considered a luxury brand is that it focuses on being a lifestyle brand. This means that the company offers products for different aspects of people’s lives, from clothes to home furnishings. And while this might be a good thing, it doesn’t follow what most luxury brands are known for, which is selling only fashion-related items such as clothing, bags, shoes, and accessories.
In short, it is still considered a mass-market brand where many of its products are for everyday use and are not as exclusive or high-end as what luxury brands offer.
5. The Brand’s History
Ralph Lauren is a relatively new brand, having only been founded in 1967. In contrast, other luxury brands have been around for centuries and have established themselves in the fashion industry. This is one of the reasons why Ralph Lauren is not as well-known as other luxury brands and why it is not considered to be on the same level as them.
It will take time for Ralph Lauren to build its reputation and become a true luxury brand. Until then, it will still be seen as a mass-market brand that offers accessible and affordable products for the masses.
Does Ralph Lauren Hold Value?
Ralph Lauren definitely holds value but not for all of its products. As mentioned, many of its products are for everyday use and catered for the mass market. However, the Purple Label and Collection can be considered valuable.
The Purple Label and Collection lines offer high-end fashion and designs that are on par with other luxury brands. So if you’re looking for something from Ralph Lauren that holds value, these are the lines to check out.
On the other hand, Menswear Market has shared a concise explanation of how the brand holds value. According to the website, “selling Polo [Ralph Lauren] is separating the basic, everyday clothes from the special pieces, because only the rare and higher quality items will fetch a high resale price.
For example, some Polo sportswear items from the 80s and 90s have a collectible status. And their Italian made jackets or suits, in excellent condition, may be worth selling on consignment.
It’s important that you don’t confuse Polo with the many other Ralph Lauren labels.”
Thus, the website even gave a brief summary to distinguish which of Ralph Lauren’s lines hold value, in terms of reselling, and which are not.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who is Ralph Lauren’s target audience?
Ralph Lauren primarily focuses on the upper-middle-class to the upper-class range of consumers. According to Squarespace’s statistics, the brand has a variety of different demographics that include women, men, and children of all ages. This is because the brand offers a wide range of different products for different people.
Is Ralph Lauren made in the USA?
Not all of Ralph Lauren’s products are made in the USA. In fact, most of its products are actually manufactured overseas in countries such as European and Asian countries. However, there are some lines that are made in the USA such as the Polo Ralph Lauren line, or any other products for special occasions such as the 2018 Team USA Uniforms for the Olympic Winter Games.