Hai Karate was a budget aftershave sold in the United States and the United Kingdom from the 1960s through to the 1980s. It was reintroduced in the United Kingdom under official licence in late 2014 by Healthpoint Ltd.
The fragrance was originally developed by the Leeming division of Pfizer and launched in 1967. As well as the original Hai Karate fragrance, other versions named Oriental Lime and Oriental Spice were soon introduced. It competed successfully with other common discount brands including Aqua Velva, Old Spice, Lectric Shave, Jaguar, English Leather, British Sterling, Dante, and Brut before discontinuation in the early 1980s. It commonly sold via drugstore chains such as Walgreens and Osco.
Hai Karate was reintroduced in the UK in 2014, following the brand's original formulation, using a different bottle packaging.
Hai Karate is known for its amusing television adverts, and magazine ads, which included self-defense instructions to help wearers "fend off women" (a theme also used in TV commercials). The brand's marketing plan was developed by George Newall.
In TV ads for the fragrance, a stereotypical "nerd" applies Hai Karate and is then aggressively pursued by a female passer-by played by British starlet Valerie Leon. All of the brand's TV ads use the catch phrase "Be careful how you use it".
- Moshcovitz, Phillip B. (July 1970). "Martial Arts Media Madness". Black Belt: 49. Retrieved 14 August 2019.
- "Hai Karate ad". LIFE: 2. Nov 24, 1967. Retrieved 14 August 2019.
- Guillory, Monique, ed. (1998). Soul: Black Power, Politics, and Pleasure. NYU Press. p. 109. ISBN 0814730841. Retrieved 14 August 2019.
- Tuckwood, Jan. "Uncorked Machismo!", The Palm Beach Post (June 2001)
- Hai Karate Basenotes Fragrance Directory