Lacoste Polo Authenticity

Authenticity is a huge issue when buying a Lacoste polo. Due to the expensive price tag of genuine Lacoste polo’s and their increase in popularity near the end of 2002 an opportunity opened up for garment makers in Thailand who hade access to the necessary equipment and cheap labour to make replica garments for less than a US dollar each. These garments were of a very low standard of quality and can be easily identified by a the collar tag which will state made in France, and will be in the shape of a horizontal rectangle, earlier fakes also have Lacoste written within the crocodile on the left breast and also on the buttons. The picture below is of a Thailand fake.

Later in 2003 many Indian garment manufacturers began producing a more realistic replica which was targeted specifically at the US market. These garments were also produced cheaply but had a much more realistic look about them. These fakes gained credibility by claiming to be produced in Peru, which is where authentic US bound Lacoste polo’s are produced. The crocodile logo also looked a lot sharper than the Thailand polo’s and the buttons had been made of a higher quality compound. A Devenlay wash care label had also been added just as in the originals.

The major downfalls of the polo’s however were not in their attention to detail, but in their construction. The first problem was that the logo had been produced first and then sawn onto the polo later which left obvious stitch marks on the inside of the shirt. The second was the weave of the material, the first fakes to come out of India had a honeycomb weave which is easily identifiable by it’s hexagonal look. The later designs which are floating around today were closer to the Lacoste "petit pique" but use much less cotton and are thus much thinner. A good way to test for authenticity of fabric is to put your hand inside the shirt and if you can see it, it is probably fake. There are other minor details which can be used to pick between fake and authentic polo’s which I have out lined below.

The Fake Crocodile has very little attention to detail the teeth are less apparent The original Polo has sharp stitching which appears much tighter and more luminescent.

The fake button has hard edges The real button has soft edges

Very little detail on the fake crocodile The eyes of the croc in particular are more detailed