Best Cologne For Men – Your Masculine Fragrances To Smell Like A Million Bucks

best cologne for men home photo

Dior Sauvage is the best cologne for men by sales and popularity. Bleu de Chanel and 1 Million by Paco Rabanne are always in the best-selling category as well.

Writing the best cologne for men list is full of memories and hopes. I’ve been lucky enough to own or try most of these fragrances.

You might not know it, but your next fragrance might be on this list.

Forget about top-selling men’s cologne statistics, hypes and what other people like. This list has colognes men should try at some point in their lives.

So what makes the best cologne for men?

For me, it’s never the same cologne. It is the fragrance that tells a story at a particular moment in my life. If you’ve read my blog you know I love men’s fragrances that take me back to my best memories. However, you might look at cologne differently. Here are the nominees with the good and the bad they offer.

When I started thinking about all of the colognes I’ve owned or came across, it was really difficult to understand which scents I loved the most. However, I’ve written them all down and this made things a bit easier.m

Some of these colognes are very popular and you may already know them. Others are on the list simply because they are different, at least for my nose.

Quick points of what you’ll read next

  • 60+ colognes owned and tested by me
  • Colognes for men within all budgets from $20 to $300
  • New 2020 releases and older 1978 releases
  • Colognes for all ages from 18 to 75+
  • A combination of designer colognes, oriental colognes, and niche colognes
  • A short description with strong points and weak points for each cologne
  • Endless anecdotes of how I got to these colognes and what they remind me of
  • By no means to these colognes work for every occasion – I underline those which do
  • A growing list of colognes for men as I’ll add your favorites depending on the messages you send me at the end of the list

The best cologne for men – prepare to amaze your nose

Without postponing things further, here’s my list of colognes and some of the best old and new releases.

  1. Dior Sauvage Cologne For Men

It’s kind of difficult to ignore Sauvage. First launched in 1966, this cologne has made history. Men like it and women love it more.

There’s not a single day I wear this and someone comes up close and asks me what cologne I’m wearing. Guys at the gym ask me to borrow it and women give me compliments out of the blue.

For some, it has a mass appeal that becomes tiring. But at some point, as a man, you need to own a Dior Sauvage. Yes, it’s not cheap. Yes, it’s peppery with that ambroxan vibe. Yes everybody else seems to wear it.

Footballers have a saying ‘some guys play the piano while others carry it’. Sauvage plays it and it does it well for what it is.

Why men love it

  • It has a strong projection
  • It works for nearly any occasion
  • The fragrance is best for attracting compliments from women

Why men might not like it

  • Most guys already own it

 

  1. Chanel Allure Homme Sport Extreme Cologne

This is the type of fragrance in a similar price range to Sauvage but with a distinct attractive profile.

I also think it’s sexy.

For me, it goes down memory lane and it takes me places no other fragrances can.

Even the sports version has an impressive versatility. I’d see it as an option for short events. Dates. Workouts. Shopping.

At the office, it lasts about half a day, which is still not bad.

Why men love it

  • The cologne is an epic musk, mint, and pepper release
  • Very versatile for a man at any age
  • Guys at the work will ask for it

Why men might not like it

  • It doesn’t project more than 4 hours

 

  1. Dior Homme Parfum 2020

This is one of the most intriguing Dior releases you can smell. It’s also my favorite from this house.

Now, here’s the deal.

The fairytale-like 2014 release has been discontinued. I owned the 75ml version and I’m trying to buy it again, but it’s not available in stores anymore.

The good news is there’s a new 2020 version and rumors have been confirmed, it’s just as good.

This means you can expect the same Tuscan iris and leather favorite for some of the most memorable moments of your life. I see this fragrance as a luxurious release not many men know about.

Why men love it

  • The new cologne also comes with Tuscan iris and leather notes
  • Nearly perfect for mature men
  • The cologne gets 5 out of 5 stars for quality ingredients

Why men might not like it

  • The projection is reduced compared to the 2014 release

 

  1. Versace Eros

The Eros is another sexy fragrance for men. But this cologne might not have the same versatility based on its sensual vibe.

It works for men of various ages.

But I smell it in clubs the most. I think most guys simply wear the cologne with a shirt and never think twice about it.

With a creamy musky orange profile, the fragrance attracts attention and compliments.

A friend of mine even told me Eros makes him feel rich… on the inside.

Why men love it

  • The fragrance oozes passion
  • A fantastic option for women’s noses
  • A hard-to-match crowd-pleaser cologne

Why men might not like it

  • 2-3 hours projection

 

  1. 1 Million by Paco Rabanne

Back to the classics. 1 Million is the cologne I see the most when traveling in airports.

There’s a reason everybody is still pushing it in front of other colognes. It has a certain sweetness to it which is already confused with its name.

This musky heavy fragrance is a performer and people love it.

Traveling through Heathrow airport I sprayed it on my skin once. One single spray from the duty-free shop.

On the entire flight, people were asking me what I was wearing as I was going to the bathroom and back.

Why men love it

  • If you like heavy sweet fragrances, it’s almost #1
  • Very good performer for events
  • A safe choice for a man’s life events

Why men might not like it

  • This cologne can be too powerful when applied with 3-4 sprays

 

  1. Creed Aventus Cologne

Aventus is still one of the top 3 all-time performers. It’s a special cologne with a solid history.

Some say its history is fake.

But I believe it has a good story behind it.

Inspired by the French military and by Napoleon’s victories, the fragrance has that special vibe even as you hold it in your hand.

Men who value its story know some of its notes also come from France. Among them, blackcurrants from Corsica.  I don’t know about the pineapple, however. What I do know is this fragrance is never going to be out of my collection.

Why men love it

  • Aventus embodies the fruity-citrus cologne niche for men
  • Nearly 5 stars in all reviews
  • Men say women love it

Why men might not like it

  • Yes, it’s not the most affordable cologne

 

  1. Bleu de Chanel Cologne

Bleu de Chanel is a brand in itself. It has legions of fans.

I know men who only wear this cologne.

Some would say it’s the most refined blue fragrances you can buy at the moment. While I don’t necessarily think it’s perfect, this can be the type of fragrance you own without buying anything else.

Masculine, sexy and mature, the cologne is a safe blind buy. For most men, it has that refined quality to it which rarely misses its desired effect.

Why men love it

  • It has a very masculine scent
  • Intoxicating opening and a luxurious drydown
  • It feels fresh

Why men might not like it

  • It feels a bit pricy

 

  1. Armani Code Absolu Cologne
    armani code absolu photo
    Armani Code Abosulu cologne – a sweet performer I use often

Some may say that the original Code could be a better option. But Code Absolu performs better. Sexy, warm and sweet, the fragrance works for most occasions.

You can wear it at work, at university, for shopping sessions, at church, etc. You may struggle integrating it at the gym, but for all other occasions, it works well.

Code Absolu is the type of cologne that feels there.

I do struggle smelling other colognes on me. This is not the case here. Furthermore, it feels mature, not like an unfinished product.

Why men love it

  • A seductive sweet crowd-pleaser
  • A cologne which reads like a poem when worn at night
  • One of the top designer colognes on the market

Why men might not like it

  • 3-hours maximum projection

 

  1. Armani Acqua Di Gio Profumo Cologne

Yet another Alberto Morillas masterpiece.

With sea notes and bergamot in the opening, the cologne continues with sage, geranium, and rosemary. Incense and patchouli are there as base notes.

This lightweight cologne is one of my top options for white shirts and white T-shirts. I don’t know why, but as these items of clothing, it lifts my mood.

With excellent silage and projection, you won’t feel like you’re wasting your money. In today’s world of deceiving products, this is as good as it gets.

Why men love it

  • A very solid men’s signature cologne
  • Better than the original
  • Incense brings the fragrance to life

Why men might not like it

  • It’s not for you if you don’t like incense

 

  1. La Nuit de l`Homme Yves Saint Laurent Eau De Toilette

Bergamot, lavender and sweet cardamom are there in the opening of this classic fragrance.

But the name of this fragrance would be translated as the Night Of The Man. Yves Saint Laurent is telling us this is a nighttime fragrance.

I certainly agree with them. The cologne can be a top choice for movie nights, date nights or restaurant outings.

Since it’s a bit oriental, I’d see it as a great compliment for dressier attire. However, you will wear it comfortable in colder weather.

Why men love it

  • The cologne has a unique scent
  • It has strong silage
  • Sprayed on clothes, it lasts for days

Why men might not like it

  • Not easy on teenage men with its oriental scent

 

  1. Acqua di Parma Colonia Leather Eau de Cologne Concentrée

Launched in 2012, the cologne has that popular bergamot and Brazilian orange opening. Rose and petitgrain from Paraguay are present in the drydown. Leather, Guaiac wood and leather are its base notes.

This is the type of cologne that smells one way in the opening with its citrus vibe and other in the drydown where leather is pushed hard.

I’d see it on a masculine guy.

Furthermore, its leather vibe is considerably smoother than what you can expect in other colognes. Tuscan leather is there.

Why men love it

  • It has a strong masculine profile
  • The cologne persists for 8 hours
  • A more affordable version of Tom Ford’s Tuscan Leather

Why men might not like it

  • It smells like a leather jacket to some men

 

  1. Tom Ford Noir Extreme

This heavier cologne is also highly appreciated by men. Available in 50ml and 100ml bottles, it represents one of the strongest options for those with a darker side.

However, you should not expect it to be too dark past its bright saffron, mandarin and neroli opening. There’s Kulfi in the drydown which gives it a bit of smooth milkiness. Vanilla is also there to tie all the ingredients into a pleasant cologne.

It is noted a summer cologne for men, of course. However, it works during the night, in early spring, late fall and in the winter.

Why men love it

  • It lasts on the skin up to 8 hours
  • A sweet feel-good cologne
  • It’s versatile with classy gentleman outfits

Why men might not like it

  • 2-3 hours projection

 

  1. Amouage Jubilation for Men

This rich fragrance is already a staple for men. The cologne has an exotic vibe and it comes with some of the best ingredients you can think of.

This includes top-quality Aman incense. Blackberry, honey, and myrrh are also there to add a bit of sweetness to it.

As a result, the cologne feels royal and special.

For some men, this almost feels as sweet as a delicious summer cake.

I see it as very versatile and a cologne that can be worn with any outfit.

Why men love it

  • There’s an exotic oriental profile about it
  • Suitable for men who love sweet fragrances
  • It includes luxurious incense

Why men might not like it

  • It’s not the most affordable sweet men’s fragrance

 

  1. Viktor & Rolf Spicebomb

Without a doubt, I see the cologne on an edgy man. Someone with a strong character would find it particularly appealing. But this fragrance goes a bit further and it has an aggressiveness to it you can’t see in the previous cologne mentions here.

I still like it and it might be a timeless release for other men as well.

Its peppery smoky opening is only balanced by a greenness which a sort of animalistic vibe to it.

As you may expect, it’s also the type of bang for your buck fragrance. It lasts a lot and its projection is worthy of applause.

Why men love it

  • It has an aggressive masculine scent
  • The cologne lasts for 8 hours on the skin
  • It compliments a confident man

Why men might not like it

  • It might be too spicy for some guys

 

  1. Paco Rabanne Invictus

Invictus might be one of the most popular men’s colognes but I still like to wear it on many occasions.

For me, it has that fresh summer scent which means I’m using it when the sun is high on the sky.

I’ve never seen a grumpy man wearing Invictus and I think it has that uplifting effect on me as well.

Heavy and masculine, the cologne has sea notes, citruses, jasmine and bay leaf to make you remember wearing it. But the fragrance also makes those around you very aware of it. I’d say it attracts well-deserved attention.

Why men love it

  • This is a young man’s fragrance
  • Fresh sea breeze vibe
  • Very good longevity and projection

Why men might not like it

  • Its official ads

 

  1. Dolce & Gabbana The One

The warm cologne is something all men should own at one point. I haven’t got one until a woman started talking about it to me.

As you’ll notice yourself, this is the type of fragrance women gravitate towards.

The sweet tobacco and amber mix make it the type of fragrance you need to keep close by when going on dates.

However, during the colder months of the year, you can take it out to the office and simply look at the reactions of those around you. It’s the type of fragrance extroverts love as it offers them even more attention.

Why men love it

  • Warm masterpiece with an inviting vibe
  • It attracts compliments from women
  • The dry-down tobacco amber mix is superb

Why men might not like it

  • Not for men who don’t like heavier tobacco colognes

 

  1. Valentino Uomo Eau de Toilette

After a heavier fragrance, Valentino Uomo cologne comes to elevate any man. It works for men with personality, someone with a rounded character.

This cologne is also always in my collection.

I’m not sure what to wear on some occasions. But whenever I go out with my partner to meet up with friends or family, I want something which I love and something that she’ll love as well. She feels comfortable around me when I’m wearing it.

Olivier Polge created a masterpiece here. Italian roasted coffee and gainduja with leather and cedarwood almost make it something you can smell all day long.

Why men love it

  • Excellent quality of ingredients
  • It announces itself as a royal
  • Less animalic than other colognes

Why men might not like it

  • Not known for its longevity

 

  1. Thierry Mugler – A*Men Pure Malt

This cologne certainly has that alcoholic vibe to it. At times, it smells like caramelized fruits.

To me, there’s a sweet cologne opening which I adore.

In the drydown, the sweetness of the vanilla, patchouli, and coffer make sit a very cozy cologne. The added malt and whiskey certainly give it a winter-like profile as well.

Since it’s not easy to wear with any outfit, I’d see the cologne for guys between 35 and 50.

Why men love it

  • A winner cologne for the winter
  • It has a mesmerizing alcoholic profile
  • The fragrance projects for 3-4 hours

Why men might not like it

  • Too strong for some guys

 

  1. Rasasi La Yuqawam Homme

I love this cologne.

When I first read about it I wasn’t sure it would be something for me. However, its manly, distinct and it smells good.

When I got my sample in the mail I was hooked. I’ve never smelt something like it before, even if other smoky leather fragrances are in the same area.

Similar to Tuscan Leather, it has leather, amber rose and some sweetness in the background.

I find this cologne to be very linear. As a result, I can wear it in any situation. However, I would skip office use as I’m sure, as Tuscan Leather, it’s not something to be categorized as a crowd-pleaser.

Why men love it

  • Strong nighttime performance
  • It attracts compliments on masculine guys
  • The cologne has 10+ hours longevity

Why men might not like it

  • It gives the impression other Rasasis colognes are also good

 

  1. Guerlain L’Homme Ideal Cologne

This fresh cologne has a touch of sweetness to it.

With a playful character, it does justice to a house with so many releases as Guerlain.

Fresh, light, and suitable for casual use, this is the fragrance that is often in your travel bag.

I don’t like to carry more than one cologne with me and Guerlain’s release is one of my few select options whenever I leave home.

Orange, pink pepper, grapefruit, and bergamot are in its opening.

Neroli and almond notes are there in the drydown.

Musk and vetiver are also present but they don’t feel as heavy.

Why men love it

  • Made for men who love the smart casual look
  • It lasts up to 8 hours
  • Very versatile in terms of occasions to wear

Why men might not like it

  • Not known for a strong projection

 

  1. Parfums de Marly Herod

Of course, not all of you know about Parfums de Marly, but it’s time to include these houses’ release in your best articles. They are amazing.

Herod has an interesting formula.  It has that elegant royal profile which means it makes you feel special while wearing it.

The fragrance has a mature tobacco impression. But it has a seductive edge to it which means it’s easier to include on dates. I’d never worn a tobacco scent to dates before it.

There are vanilla and patchouli in the drydown which means it remains sweet and inviting.

Why men love it

  • Excellent presentation
  • One of the highest-quality tobacco colognes
  • Suitable for that royal vibe

Why men might not like it

  • It’s just too masculine for some men

 

  1. French Lover Frederic Malle

This elegant cologne comes to meet the needs of those who need a signature scent.

Men can wear it all year long. It comes as a top solution for summertime and wintertime.

Its projection is impressive, but maybe not as impressive as its longevity. Even the second day after applying it, the cologne was still on my skin.

In terms of the age range, I’d see it as a reliable option for guys 20+ to more mature men.

Why men love it

  • Creamy opening
  • Incense and cedar offer it an elegant appeal
  • The cologne has an excellent signature profile

Why men might not like it

  • Very similar to an oud fragrance

 

  1. Jimmy Choo Man

This has that generic fresh water-citrus vibe. It represents an interesting option for those who want to simply smell good, even with generic notes.

Some of its accords are inclined towards tropical summer use. Pineapple, green notes, patchouli, melon, and suede are there.

But most men distinguish the melon more than other notes.

I can say it has the same generic feel as Bleu de Channel but at a fraction of the price.

Why men love it

  • The cologne works in warm weather
  • This 2014 release is a crowd-pleaser
  • Not too expensive

Why men might not like it

  • Simply too generic for some men

 

  1. Jazz Club Maison Martin Margiela Cologne

Deep and rich, this unique fragrance is liberating. It takes you away from the classic crowd-pleasers and it has that cocktail cologne profile which so many strong men are after.

However, this cologne is mainly worn in the fall and the winter. But I’d say a strong man doesn’t care what the world thinks and he wears whatever he wants and when he wants it.

You may be even able to smell it at your local Sephora but you’ll certainly find it cheaper online.

Why men love it

  • It smells like a real jazz club
  • The cologne works for dressier outfits
  • Quality ingredients with excellent longevity

Why men might not like it

  • Not the best compliment-getter

 

  1. Bottega Veneta Pour Homme

If you’re looking for a mature-casual cologne, Pour Homme is here to help. It has that mature appeal that men over 35 might look for. However, the cologne also features a casual scent which makes it a bit easier to integrate into daily use.

The cologne comes with leather-pine and a bit of bergamot to offer that mature vibe. However, even if reviewers say this is for older men, I love it as well.

Pine or no pine, it has a fresh vibe. I’d wear this continuously throughout the year, without thinking about it twice.

But,

You can’t expect the most compliments when wearing it.

Why men love it

  • It has a mature appeal
  • Distinct fresh pine aroma
  • The cologne is unique

Why men might not like it

  • I’d keep looking for a good online deal

 

  1. Gucci Guilty Absolute

This is another mature cologne which certainly draws in attention.

Its attention is based on its smoky-incense vibe, which you can probably guess simply by looking at the color of the liquid.

Vetiver, cypress, and patchouli give it a greenish accord but it remains smoky.

Again, this is not the type of cologne to use at the office and hope for compliments.

It’s the type of manly cologne you wear while riding your motorbike.

Why men love it

  • Very rugged and masculine
  • There’s nothing like it in the fragrance designer world
  • Linear smoky scent cologne

Why men might not like it

  • Not easy to wear at the office

 

  1. Calving Klein Euphoria Intense Cologne

There are so many good Calving Klein to include on this list.

However, I want to leave you with the Euphoria fragrance and its distinct gentleman profile.

Some may say it’s similar to Tom Ford Noir Extreme.

But in a way, they are similar as there can be oud in Euphoria according to some men.

Black pepper, ginger, patchouli, mint, and sage are in there. Amber and vetiver might also be in there.

Why men love it

  • A spicy fragrance with a note of amber
  • The cologne is a happy medium between 1 Million and Fan di Fendi
  • It lasts for around 4 hours on the skin

Why men might not like it

  • Not the best for projection

 

  1. Guess Seductive Homme Noir

For such an affordable cologne, this might just be a steal.

Apple and amber are dominating here. A few spices are added to the background, but they don’t overpower the main friendly notes.

If you want to compare it to other fragrances, it would be, again, 1 Million. However, it’s a version that is not as sweet.

Why men love it

  • Suitable for clubbing
  • It works for guys 18+
  • Heavy projection

Why men might not like it

  • Not something mature men would wear

 

  1. Encre Noire Lalique

This is a must if you love a good deal.

I still can’t believe how good this cologne is for its price. There’s a certain earthiness to it which you will find extremely manly.

If you find it similar to Dsquared² He Wood Rocky Mountain, but indeed, it’s a bit darker.

It has that ruggedness to it which you might not find in a city boy.

Why men love it

  • Made for rugged muscular men
  • The cologne has an ink note
  • It’s very affordable

Why men might not like it

  • Too strong on the younger crowd

 

  1. Bvlgari Aqva Pour Homme

This is one of the sexiest fragrances you can find.

I just find it particularly appealing during the summer months. Those of you who know me are already familiar with how much I sweat during the summer. This is the type of cologne I need to deal with high heat.

If you love summer fragrances or if you like aquatic fragrances for the gym, you need to put it on your list.

Why men love it

  • It has a fresh shower appeal
  • The cologne works well on very hot days
  • Surprisingly-good on sweaty men

Why men might not like it

  • Only valuable in hot weather

 

  1. Dolce & Gabbana Pour Homme

This is yet another attractive fragrance. It has the brand name of an attractive house but the fragrances don’t get mentioned as much as others.

Still, if you want a sexy light silage fragrance you can wear at the office, to school, at university or when you’re out to have fun, this is a home run.

Why men love it

  • Very attractive, similar to Eros
  • It suits casual outfits
  • The type of cologne you wear from 20+

Why men might not like it

  • Not the best projection

 

  1. Dunhill Icon Elite

This is the first release in the Icon range from Dunhill. A friend introduced me to it saying ‘now here’s a manly cologne for you’.

To this day, this is how I interpret it. The cologne has the manliest vibe you can think about.

Cardamom, bitter orange, lime, and bergamot are in the opening accords.

Vetiver, black pepper, juniper, and sage are its midnotes.

Ebony, sandalwood, leather, and labdanum are its base notes.

Why men love it

  • It projects like a charm in the winter
  • It’s very unique given its affordably
  • The cologne stays manly from the opening to the drydown

Why men might not like it

  • Not the top choice for teenage guys

 

  1. Yves Saint Laurent L’Homme Ultime

While this cologne lists a few citruses such as grapefruit in the opening, they’re not as strong as with other fragrances.

As a result, it has a very unique vibe. To me, the cologne is one of the best of all time.

You can just keep smelling it for hours in a row.

The fragrance is considerably better than the original and the best flanker from YSL’s line. Get it and let it project for hours.

Why men love it

  • It attracts compliments
  • The cologne is not dominated by citruses
  • There’s a creaminess to it which is hard to ignore

Why men might not like it

  • Not the best choice for casual outfits

 

  1. Abercrombie & Fitch First Instinct

I feel this Phillippe Romano release is vastly underrated.

But I challenge you to name one better alternative at its price.

There’s melon, tonic water, and gin in it. What an amazing combination.

Spicy violet leaf dominates its drydown.

Dominated by mangoish melon notes in the opening, it’s a worthy cologne as a signature summer scent.

If you want to smell unique during the summer months, you’ll need to choose something a bit more different than the classic citruses. This is why this melon-inspired cologne works so well. Its prices make it a top blind buy as well.

Why men love it

  • Very affordable
  • Distinct melon-dominated cologne
  • Easy to wear daily

Why men might not like it

  • Not for men who don’t like fruity notes

 

  1. Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue Intense

Staying on the same summer vibes, Light Blue Intense is one of the top mentions for men’s colognes.

I’ve seen many men wearing this all year round. Simply put, who doesn’t want to smell fresh as if out of the shower all the time?

Juniper, seawater and a bit of mandarin impress in this cologne.

Yes, it’s lightweight and it may not be revolutionary either. But women consistently vote it among their favorites.

If you’re seeking to fish for compliments without caring about your cologne too much, Light Blue may still be one of the options to consider this year.

Why men love it

  • It gets a lot of compliments
  • Dominated by sea notes
  • The cologne has a good projection

Why men might not like it

  • It’s not very unique

 

  1. Jimmy Choo Man Intense

Many see this as too similar to Invictus Intense. But its sweet woody profile backed by affordability has made it popular among younger men.

Lavender, mandarin, and melon are present in its fruity opening.

Artemisia, geranium and black pepper are its floral dry-down accords.

Tonka bean, labdanum and patchouli are its base notes.

For many men, this is the cologne to choose for that well put together scent. It may not be unique, but how its notes work together seem similar only to luxury colognes.

Why men love it

  • The cologne works for young men 20+
  • It has a tempting price
  • Its DNA is impressive and underrated

Why men might not like it

  • Not the most original scent

 

  1. Nautica Voyage

I still have a Nautica Voyage bottle in my collection. When you’re sitting in front of multiple cologne options for minutes undecided, it is the saver of your time.

For me, both louts and mimosa offer a unique attractiveness to this blue cologne.

Someone even compared its freshness with diced cucumber. I’d also add a bit of fruitiness to this description.

A lightweight summertime cologne which it is. Men on a budget won’t feel any pressure with its price either.

Why men love it

  • Very affordable cologne
  • It lasts up to 2 days on clothes
  • 3-4 hours projection

Why men might not like it

  • A bit outdated already

 

  1. Carolina Herrera – CH Men Prive

This dark masculine cologne is very mature. It’s not trying to be overly friendly and I see it as an option for a gentleman.

Its whiskey booziness and tonka bean notes are strong and you’ll smell them through the day.

The cologne also has a strong sexual vibe.

Most men are not very attracted to it in the first place. I rarely get any compliments for guys while wearing it.

This changes dramatically with women around me. This is the type of dark cologne many women gravitate towards.

Why men love it

  • It has a dark boozy smell
  • Excellent cologne for a light leather vibe
  • Refreshing lavender notes

Why men might not like it

  • It only projects for 2 hours

 

  1. Gentleman Givenchy Eau de Toilette Spray

Some men expect this cologne to be very original. But this is not the case. Its success is based on how well its notes work together.

The iris-vanilla combination is one that stands out. Part of me believes Givenchy can do what others can but better.

It’s warm, spicy and balsamic. Yes, it’s not as oriental as some men expect. But I’ve been to 2 weddings where the groom wore it and I think those guys made a great choice.

However, I do think it has an elegance to it which might not be pulled out in sports clothes.

Why men love it

  • A very refined cologne from Givenchy
  • The best iris-vanilla combination
  • It lasts for 7-8 hours

Why men might not like it

  • Men expect a bit more originality for the money

 

  1. Byredo Black Saffron

This oriental spicy cologne has come up time and time again.

When I purchased it I imagined it will have a smooth vibe to it and I was right. The cashmeran base ties it up nicely.

Soft, sweet and smooth, it is arguably among the top 20 fragrances ever made.

The attention-grabbing cologne has leather and black violet drydown.

Saffron and juniper are among strong projectors in it. However, it’s the sole fragrance friends compared to other substances I couldn’t know anything about.

Why men love it

  • 4-hours longevity
  • The cologne is a safe choice as a first oriental niche scent
  • Leather and black violet are superb

Why men might not like it

  • Still polarizing to some men

 

  1. Bvlgari Pour Homme Soir

It’s now time to consider a cologne for the businessman. This might be one of the most suitable fragrances for successful men. Together with Office for Men, it should be high on your priority list if your life is spent at the office.

With a strong musk, tobacco, bergamot vibe, it has that relaxing DNA which doesn’t offend when worn at the office.

For women, this cologne smells like a sexy successful man.

Why men love it

  • It’s a safe blind buy
  • Tea, amber, and papyrus are an original combination
  • Fresh and masculine for office wear

Why men might not like it

  • Floral powdery notes are not for all men

 

  1. Calvin Klein Eternity For Men Eau De Parfum

The green soapy cologne is a true testament for Eternity fans and cologne fans. Many men today got into the cologne world thanks to the original Eternity.

Launched again in 2019, the cologne has positive reviews and it’s widely available backed by a strong marketing campaign.

With fresh, green and woody notes, it certainly resembles one of my Bvlgari favorites, the Bvlgari Wood Essence.

Apple, sage, cypress, and geranium are there.

You shouldn’t expect the highest quality ingredients with it. The cologne remains affordable and its made for men who need a quick solution without a considerable investment.

Why men love it

  • It has a certain woodiness to it
  • The cologne’s green apple is refreshing
  • It’s available at a decent price

Why men might not like it

  • Similar but different from the original Eternity

 

  1. Azzaro Wanted For Men

The cologne is one of the complex Azzaro releases which has various interpretation depending on who smells it.

For me, this is not a considerable issue. I can train my nose to love a fragrance with the right application, clothes, and weather.

For most men, the cologne smells either like woody aromatic or spicy wood.

However, both groups of men find the sweet fruity notes in the cologne attractive and easy to live with for office wear.

Lemon, ginger, lavender, and mint are very strong in the opening.

Guatemalan cardamom, juniper, geranium, and apple are strong in the drydown.

Tonka bean, amber wood, and Haitian Vetiver are strong projectors as well.

Why men love it

  • 6+ hours on the skin
  • It attracts attention
  • The cologne is popular with young men

Why men might not like it

  • Some compare it to Invictus

 

  1. Nuit d’Issey Pulse Of The Night Issey Miyake

Incense, amber, patchouli and tonka bean make the 2019 cologne an excellent choice for men.

The perfume has been discussed in many reviews because the house of Issey Miyake is one of the crowd’s favorites.

The smoky woody cologne has a Middle Eastern vibe to it.

I can say the cologne is more refined than many other incense releases. It has that quality to it which makes it smell a bit more expensive than it is.

Why men love it

  • Warm, woody and spicy
  • Oriental incense style
  • Made with top-quality ingredients

Why men might not like it

  • Not for those who don’t like vanilla

 

  1. Chanel Egoiste Platinum

Time and time again I find men who tell me Egoiste Platinum is their favorite Chanel cologne. With an impressive lineup from the house, it is proof that even an older release has real value in today’s world.

It’s the type of masculine scent to play around with. The cologne has a refreshing vibe to it. Some even say its sophisticated.

It’s impressive how a man who were 18-20 and who are now nearing the age of 40 still wear the cologne every week. As a result, I think once you buy it, you will always purchase it again and keep it in your cologne collection. Its longevity ensures you won’t regret your decision.

Why men love it

  • Among the top-selling men’s cologne for years
  • Very elegant and sophisticated
  • The scent is suitable for all ages

Why men might not like it

  • Some men get a metallic vibe from it

 

  1. Parfums de Marly Layton

If you’re looking for a 50-50 match between a cologne you can love and a cologne women love, Layton is very hard to match.

Its green apple and its balanced profile make it a top choice for compliments from the house of Parfums de Marly.

The added cardamom and lavender make it very addictive. Its fresh profile works all year round. However, it is also sweet which means it is a very successful crowd-pleaser since its ingredients are arguably among the best on this men’s cologne list of best colognes for men.

If you only choose one from my fragrancespotter.com list, Layton might be it. Since the day I’ve tried it, there wasn’t anything even remotely close to it. The cologne is worth its higher price.

Why men love it

  • Excellent complement-getter
  • Lavender sweetness and green apple freshness
  • A good choice for date night

Why men might not like it

  • Not your typical office option

 

  1. Oud Wood Tom Ford

Characterized by soft oud with a soapy scent the cologne is a western interpretation of an oriental release.

While some men might considering it spicy and strongly inclined towards those oriental vibes, I find it soothing, comforting.

As a result, it is the type of oud you wear formal clothes. It can be considered for special occasions such as evenings at a cinema, dates, business events or parties.

However, even with a lighter profile, the cologne mainly suits winter wear or late nightwear during other seasons.

Why men love it

  • Smooth soft oud
  • A lighter interpretation of oriental notes
  • It has wintertime cozy woodiness

Why men might not like it

  • The cologne is not overly masculine

 

  1. Guerlain L’Homme Idéal Eau de Toilette

Cherry, spices vanilla and incense make it an interesting choice.

At some point, all men should try out these bold colognes with sweet fruit profiles.

The added vanilla and incense add a bit more sweetness to the cologne.

For sure, it is the type of cologne ladies ask about. They might compliment men wearing it but its unisex appeal is what’s going to interest women in purchasing the perfume for themselves.

As for the perfect occasion to wear it, I think it works for evening events. It’s not a signature scent to wear all day long. However, if you choose to add a bit of sweetness to your day with the fragrance, it’s going to last on your skin from morning to late evening.

Why men love it

  • Sweet, warm, and woody
  • Suitable for evening events
  • It has a unisex appeal

Why men might not like it

  • The Eau de Toilette version is the best

 

  1. Penhaligon’s Juniper Sling

Angelica, juniper, cinnamon, and orange are the distinct opening notes of this mesmerizing cologne.

Cardamom, orris root, pepper, and leather dominate it in the drydown.

Vetiver, amber, sugar, and cherries are its base notes.

It has an airy vibe and it’s the type of cologne centered on juniper, but with top quality notes.

The cologne also has an airy note and I’d see it on a man who’s not into heavy fragrances.

If you aren’t sure what to wear on special occasions, it might be the luxuriously relaxed niche cologne to rely on.

Why men love it

  • It has a changing nature in the drydown
  • An excellent mix of berries
  • A bit boozy in the opening

Why men might not like it

  • Not for those who don’t like gin tonic

 

  1. Maison Margiela ‘Replica’ By The Fireplace

Marie Salamagne sparked a serious debate with this cologne. Every reviewer likes it but I’ve yet to smell it on a guy in real life. Maybe it’s very popular. Maybe it’s a bit too expensive. Or maybe guys in my area simply don’t have where to buy it.

However, I find it a home run.

Pink pepper, cloves, chestnut, Guaiac wood, vanilla, and Peru balsam are just a few of its notes. For me, it has a bit of a burnt wood vibe which I think works like a charm on certain men.

During the colder months of the year, it adds value and it elevates nearly any outfit. If you’re passing a duty-free shop or if you find a good deal online you’ll always be tempted to get it.

Why men love it

  • Chestnut and Guaiac wood-heavy
  • The cologne oozes masculinity
  • It projects for at least 4 hours

Why men might not like it

  • Not found in most perfume shops

 

  1. Jermyn Street Taylor of Old Bond Street Cologne

If you’re a mature guy you certainly fancy Taylor of Old Bond Street. Jermyn Street is my favorite cologne of the British house.

It almost smells like shaving cream and it certainly delivers that barbershop vibe. Today, the cologne is also affordable.

Why men love it

  • Lavender and neroli heavy
  • Affordable it the 100ml version
  • Perfect for men 40+

Why men might not like it

  • Not for those who don’t like barbershop colognes

 

  1. Terre d’Hermès Hermès Cologne

This men’s colognes list cannot be complete without Hermès Cologne. I think it is very versatile and it works for both elegant attire and the lumberjack look.

While it can be interpreted as organgy, the cologne is still a bit mysterious. It adds quality to a guy who might already have a life going for him.

Pepper and pelargonium make it come to life. It’s where this cologne enriches its citrusy vibe. However, given the top notes linger on more, it is mainly worn on hot summer days.

Why men love it

  • A top citrus release for any collection
  • It uplifts your spirit with summer energy
  • It lasts up to 8 hours

Why men might not like it

  • A bit similar to Montale Red Vetiver

 

  1. Maison Francis Kurkdjian Aqua Universalis

Clean and easy to wear, Aqua Universalis is available in 75ml and 200ml bottles.

For my taste, I use it when traveling as I smell like fresh laundry. But its lightweight profile is also suitable for the gym or any other daytime occasion.

However, if you’re the type of man particularly looking for distinct cologne, it is the type of higher-end niche scent to consider as a signature scent.

Why men love it

  • Excellent profile for niche fans
  • It smells like fresh laundry
  • Distinct even among niche colognes

Why men might not like it

  • Too expensive for some dudes

 

  1. Jean Paul Gaultier Le Male Aviator

The 2020 cologne comes with mint, violet leaf, and woody notes.

Bergamot, geranium, sandalwood and tonka bean are also there.

Le Male Aviator is trying to upgrade the original with the times. It represents a mass-appealing version which certainly draws the attention of others. But this cologne is also closer to other designer scents.

Its simple composition also means it works well for anyone who doesn’t like too much experimentation.

Why men love it

  • New and better than the original
  • It uses a simplistic composition
  • The cologne feels fresh

Why men might not like it

  • Not for Le Male purists

 

  1. Salvatore Ferragamo F by Ferragamo Black (EDT)

Along the same lines of the simplicity of Le Male’s Aviator, F by Ferragamo Black also works for multiple occasions.

The men’s cologne is not as modern as the Aviator, but it’s still fresh and highly affordable.

Lavender, green apple, pepper, coriander, tonka bean, and labdanum are its accords.

If you’re the type of guy who loves polo shirts it compliments your look. If you’re off to grab a summer drink at the beach, it also compliments your laid back style for relaxation.

Why men love it

  • It keeps things simple
  • The cologne is affordable
  • It has timeless appeal

Why men might not like it

  • Hard to remember to some guys

 

  1. Versace Pour Homme – Versace (Eau De Toilette)

The citrus cologne with aquatic notes is well-balanced. Among all blue releases, it is one that easily transitions to a signature scent.

Launched in 2008, it comes with floral, woody, aquatic and green notes.

But I’d see it as a very good light wear option for nearly every occasion. Yes, you’ll barely leave an impression after 3 hours with its reduced projection. It’s the sole reason why I can’t necessarily see it as the best cologne for office wear.

Why men love it

  • Very easy to love
  • Sold at a fair price
  • The cologne shows its strengths in the summer

Why men might not like it

  • 3-hours projection

 

  1. Caron Yatagan

Masculine and mature, Yatagan is an anachronic cologne that sends you back in time. Given it was formulated decades ago, it still represents a very popular scent many men resonate with.

I don’t think it’s fair to be into colognes and not try it out at least once.

Lavander, galbanum, basil, watercress, pine, Artemisia and patchouli are among its notes.

It won’t get you any compliments but who cares about those when your imagination runs places while wearing it?

Why men love it

  • Timeless appeal
  • Sold at a decent price
  • One of the classic colognes for mature men

Why men might not like it

  • Not a compliment-getter

 

  1. John Varvatos Artisan

John Varvatos is growing on me with every release. I was a bit disappointed with how the company handled the last release back in 2018. But Artisan is one of those staple colognes which every man should try.

I wear it on hot summer days where it has a unique DNA. Almost immediately, a man could tell I’m wearing John Varvatos.

With its citrusy clementine and tangerine, the scent is brought to life by ginger on a musk base.

It has youthfulness to it and I just wish it would last longer.

Why men love it

  • Made for the summer day
  • The first of many in the JW lineup for most men
  • Made for men with personality

Why men might not like it

  • It could project longer

 

  1. Boss The Scent

The Scent is yet another one of those colognes guys are not impressed with and girls love. But I’m one of the exceptions and even if it smells like a designer cologne, there’s nothing wrong it that in my humble opinion.

You would be looking long and hard to find better colognes at such a good price with so much masculinity.

Orange, bergamot, and ginger are in the opening.

Lavender and Maninka are there in the drydown, together with leather and wood.

Now, some say it only works for the fall. But I say wear it with attention in all seasons and see how it reacts. For the price, it has good performance for up to 4 hours.

Why men love it

  • Strong masculine vibe
  • The cologne is a compliment-getter
  • A signature scent for all ages

Why men might not like it

  • Not overly popular among men

 

  1. Versace Versace Man Eau Fraiche

If you want to start with Versace colognes, this can be one of the options with little risk as it has a very low price. Made for fun in the sun, the fragrance is not the tailored suit you went to try 3-4 times before purchasing. It’s the summer loose casual button-up shirt which you put on quickly before heading to the beach.

It gives you that fresh skin scent you’re proud of when getting out of the shower. Unlike a few others from its class, it represents a pleasant citrusy-summer scent that may not even be too overpowering for gym wear.

Why men love it

  • A fun star fruit and lemon cologne
  • Widely available in stores
  • There’s a hint of tarragon in it

Why men might not like it

  • Not best for longevity past 3 hours

 

  1. Kenzo Kenzo Homme Sport

With its mint and ginger combination, the Sports release works for all ages. There’s a sweetness to it which may either make you love it or hate it. If you love Armani Code, you’ll also love this cologne. However, it has its DNA and you may end up owning both.

Spices and ginger bring it to life and they offer a bit better projection for the summer days.

I’d say you can wear it from March to late October and even beyond if you plan to rely on it for indoor use such as at the office or university.

Why men love it

  • Ginger mint combination for extra freshness
  • Added spices to improve projection
  • Certainly underrated

Why men might not like it

  • A bit heavy in the dropdown

 

  1. Prada Luna Rossa

Released in 2012, this Daniela (Roche) Andrier creation turns heads.

I was debating it with friends when I got a sample from one of my favorite fragrance retailers. However, it seems our opinions were mixed.

The lavender and mint combination is something most women have reacted positively towards when I wore it. Men mainly appreciate the clary sage and the ambrette darker side of this cologne.

I think there’s a bit of ambroxan in the drydown and it might be the note which triggers positive remarks and plenty of compliments.

Why men love it

  • Excellent original scent
  • Women love it the most
  • It has a darker masculine side

Why men might not like it

  • Projection is medium

 

  1. Thierry Mugler Mugler Cologne

I’ve covered this cologne before on fragrancespotter.com. I won’t go back into its notes and performance.

But I will add a few information on its reactions and who I see as the perfect gentleman to wear it.

The Alberto Morillas creation has a heavy bergamot performance which gives you positive vibes.

If you like petitgrain, look no further.

Why men love it

  • Young, flowery with a strong bergamot
  • Petitgrain lovers’ choice
  • Truly unisex cologne to share with the partner

Why men might not like it

  • It now has a declining popularity

 

  1. Lanvin L`Homme Sport

Citruses, ambroxand, lavender, and pepper notes are dominant here.

However, the pepper becomes more subtle and easier to live with about 30 minutes after application.

When you need a cologne that lasts for hours with and which doesn’t sacrifice its sporty profile, it might be high on your list of priorities.

Its herbal opening turns into something soft which is not offensive at all, even when worn at the gym.

Why men love it

  • Herbs, citruses, and sweetness
  • One of the most popular men’s colognes
  • It can be worn at the gym or when playing a sport

Why men might not like it

  • It never projected more than 2 hours on my skin

 

  1. Kiehl’s Original Musk

The woody musk cologne is a true trendsetter in this category. Manly colognes can learn a few things about classic interpretation here.

I see the cologne as the choice for men over 40. It is a classic, but not in a bad way at all. I still wear it on occasion, especially when I’m taking out my leather jacket on parade after the summer days. But I wouldn’t be able to address the issue of seasonality with the musky cologne. You can wear it as you want. If this is the type of cologne for you, there’s no doubt you’ll know it from the start.

Why men love it

  • Suitable for ages 40-60+
  • A modern classic
  • White floral musky attractivity

Why men might not like it

  • It has a synthetic vibe

 

  1. Initio Blessed Baraka

Musk, sandalwood, and amber make this the cologne of choice if you’d like to get many questions. Men will ask you what’s that strong projection while women will be mesmerized by its oriental profile.

With its sweet and comforting opening, there are not too many ingredients disclosed here by Alberto Morillas.

However, I’d bet it has some fruitiness which takes the woody aspect of amber and turns it a bit towards a fruity profile.

Of course, you may end up paying a bit more for it at the moment. But given it lasts 9+ hours on your skin, it is a worthy investment which lasts more than other colognes.

Why men love it

  • Made by the famous Alberto Morillas
  • Very comforting given its unusual formulation
  • The longevity is going to seem a bit too long for short occasions as dates

Why men might not like it

  • Typically hard to wear in the summer

 

  1. Goldfield and Banks “Pacific Rock Moss

This aromatic cologne is fresh, aquatic and very clean. I can’t wait for summer to finally be here to wear it again. How many memories it comes with and just how much women appreciate and gravitate towards it is something you have to see for yourself.

This summery cologne has plenty of character. If you’ve shopped around in large department stores around the world, you cannot have missed it at all. Its simple turquoise color in a clear bottle with simple labeling makes it a stand out even from a design perspective.

Why men love it

  • It takes you away from classic designer colognes
  • Geranium, sage and moss smoothness
  • Highly aromatic

Why men might not like it

  • It doesn’t last too long on the skin

 

  1. Creed Royal Oud

An excellent underrated colognes in the Creed collection, even better than Aventus since there are already so many good citruses.

Fresh, warm and highly capable of lasting for hours, the cologne is going to mesmerize your senses for the whole day. The advantage of this scent is that it will put you in the spotlight as not many men go beyond Aventus or Irish Tweed in this amazing Creed House.

Why men love it

  • The smooth and relaxing effect
  • The quality of the ingredients is the best
  • A top cologne for those who don’t follow Creed crowds

Why men might not like it

  • It will cost a bit more than designer colognes

 

  1. Musc Ravangeur Frederic Malle

This is yet another cologne made nearly to perfection. It comes with citruses and lavender in the opening. But its appeal to me is just how well its notes are balanced between them.

Cloves, cinnamon, tonka bean, and vanilla are other popular accords used here. Its advantage is that it’s going to be very unique in comparison to its similar YSL alternatives.

Why men love it

  • Solid unique cologne option
  • Balanced ingredients
  • The cologne is very sexy

Why men might not like it

  • Only comes in 10ml version

 

  1. Trussardi Riflesso

This lavender cardamom scent works very well for that attractive profile. I wear it constantly on dates and since it’s a bit more affordable than other colognes, I like to keep it in stock as much as possible.

Violet, geranium, and spices make it very addictive. When you’ll spray it on your wrist, you will continue smelling it for hours.

Yes, it’s not the most popular cologne on the list. But who cares about popularity? Even its bottle is as colognesque as they get.

When I first bought it, the cologne proved a bit difficult to find. When I eventually found it online, it had no reviews and I wasn’t sure I was making the right purchase. But even today, it still has no reviews and I think it just flies under the radar, which is not the worst thing to say about colognes.

Why men love it

  • Very addictive
  • Lavender and spices work well here
  • It works for casual-dressy outfits

Why men might not like it

  • You won’t find it easily in stores
  • A bit similar to Trussardi Riflesso

 

  1. Swiss Arabian Shaghaf Oud Perfume

If you’ve already tried other oud colognes and you haven’t found your love, the Swiss Arabian’s softer version might be what you were looking for in the first place.

This cologne has a bit of rose in it and it fires it up completely as a romantic cologne. If you and your partner enjoy oud, it will add a bit of passion and spice in your romantic dates.

However, it’s not made for those who don’t like oud. Even its softer saffron is still there so it will take a bit of effort to like it if you haven’t tried oriental colognes before.

Why men love it

  • It has a romantic vibe
  • Probably the most commercial type of oud
  • It can be considered a unisex release

Why men might not like it

  • Not available in some countries

 

  1. Bentley Intense

Bentley Intense always gets mentions among the most surprising colognes with high affordability. But even without knowing its prices, I already knew I wanted to buy it.

There is not too much sweetness it the cologne but there are plenty of woody notes. With manliness Pure Malt may only dream about, the cologne also lasts for hours and hours.

I even tried telling friends I was wearing more expensive scents and they believed me. However, since there’s not too much sweetness in it, this cologne is mainly made for serious guys, anywhere beyond 25 with a career.

Why men love it

  • Leather and woods in the drydown
  • The scent works for serious guys
  • An excellent affordable choice for suits

Why men might not like it

  • Not made for the younger crowd

 

  1. Burberry Touch

Fresh, musk with shower scents, the cologne is worth its hype. I wasn’t that much into Burberry releases but it had the domino effect on me. After purchasing this cologne, I went on to purchase all men’s fragrances from the British house.

Similar to baby powder’s scents, this is one of the excellent choices as signature scents. It may be already out on the market for years, but it has a good price and a solid performance.

Why men love it

  • Affordable and proven in time
  • It lasts long
  • Fresh showery feel

Why men might not like it

  • Not the most original scent

 

  1. Montblanc Individuelle

22 notes are in this momentous cologne. It may seem simple, but it includes vanilla, musk, mint, and cinnamon.  However, even with all of these notes, it remains pleasant. It’s not offensive and it works for men looking for a summertime office scent.

While it is a bit synthetic in the opening, it settles smoothly after 20 minutes. It doesn’t attract compliments but the cologne lasts for 3 hours which is not bad, but it can’t allow it to be higher on my list either.

Why men love it

  • Affordable for most men
  • Signature day scent-capable
  • It works for an older gentleman

Why men might not like it

  • The cologne doesn’t attract compliments

 

  1. K by Dolce & Gabanna

With a crown on top, this cologne almost looks like an oriental scent. The cologne is fresh, as you’d expect from a blue release. It has a citrusy opening which enhances this high energy feel.

But the top notes are settled down by woody-earthy notes. This is why men already like it, even if it doesn’t come as that sweet release women gravitate towards. While it’s not made to be edgy, the cologne is ready to offer a steady day and day out workhorse but not with the best projection.

Why men love it

  • It looks great with an inspired bottle
  • There’s an earthiness in the drydown
  • The cologne is fairly priced

Why men might not like it

  • Projection is limited

Final considerations

Thanks for sticking by for my long list of colognes for men. I’m sure I forgot a few mentions and I could have included honorable mentions as well.

What is your cologne choice for that masculine spirit? Share your thoughts below.

 

 

As stated above, not all of these colognes are made to be worn for all occasions. For specific uses, I have other lists of recommendations as follows.

For a youthful twist, stay tuned for the best fragrances for teenage guys with 15 of my favorites.

Stay on fragrancespotter.com for my list of best clubbing fragrances

Have a look at Cuban-style roundup of the best tropical fragrances for men

If you want to cool it off a bit, check out the best summer fragrances for men recommendations