Sense of smell is one of the strongest human natural senses that can evoke powerful emotions almost instantaneously and transport you into the world of deep hidden memories; such as your mom’s cooking from childhood or the smell of baked cookies from your kitchen. Make sure that you select the right kind of fragrance for your daily needs, as it will make a lasting impression, good or bad, on you and your acquaintances.
You are a stylish, sophisticated person that cares about creating the right first impression. You want to be perceived the right way; you want to smell great, even at the end of a hard working day. You are not sure what cologne to use – no worries – we have put together a comprehensive resource, a one stop-shop to help you find the right cologne that suits your needs.
Choosing the best cologne for men in UK
There are a lot of things to look for when it comes to choosing the best cologne for men – each and every man (not to mention each and every cologne offering) has a unique personality and emotional reaction, and what works for some might not work nearly as well for others.
A distinctly personal choice, choosing the right cologne for you or the man in your life can quickly become a bit of hassle and headache if you haven’t done your research.
Sure, you could just head to any reputable department store and begin sniffing all the offerings, but did you know that after exposing yourself to a specific amount of strong odors that your sense of smell becomes weakened and it becomes difficult to differentiate between scents?
Not only that but you’ll often be able to find incredible and significant savings if you do your cologne shopping online where you’re unable to smell and sample. Hopefully this quick primer will give you the kind of information and insight necessary (as well as a couple of solid “starter” brands to check out) so that you are able to painlessly and easily choose the best cologne for men.
What are the various types of fragrances?
All fragrances are made up of essential oils (natural or synthetic oils), aromatic compounds, water and alcohol. The ratio of concentration of essential oils and alcohol varies based on the type of category. Accordingly, the potency / longevity and cost of the fragrance will also vary. See the cost curve below.
Based on the concentration of essential oils / aromatic compounds, fragrances are divided into 5 major categories:
- Extrait or Perfume Extract: These contain about 15% to 40% of essential oils, one of the strongest and highest levels of concentration. Use it sparingly, it can be overwhelming if applied in excess quantities. For a typical extrait or perfume extract, expect to pay about £120 to £150 per 1 oz bottle. Ex: Tiziana Terenzi Tiz Ecstasy Extr de PARF
- Eau de Parfum (EdP): Also referred to as simply perfume or Parfum de Toilette (PdT) or Eau de Millesime (EdM), these contain about 15% to 30% of essential oil concentration. They are the next strongest in concentration to perfume extracts. Depending on the brand these types of fragrances can have a wider range of prices. Ex: Tom Ford Noir Eau de Parfum.
- Eau de Toilette (EdT): These have a concentration level of 10% to 15%, generally available in most departmental stores. A sales person might try to undersell these as inferior to Eau de Parfum (or perfumes), as these are less expensive than perfumes, but don’t fall for this. Typical price range is below £100, depending on the size. Ex: Polo Blue by Ralph Lauren.
- Eau de Cologne (EdC): Also referred to as simply “Cologne”. Generally based on citrus family of scents, they have lesser concentration than Eau de Toilette, typically between 3% – 8%. They wear off relatively quickly as compared to above three. Ex: Fierce by Abercrombie & Fitch Cologne Spray for Men.
- Aftershave and Splash: These have even lower concentration than colognes, typically less than 3%. Due to lower essential oil concentration, they evaporate even faster than colognes. Ex: Eternity for Men by Calvin Klein.
Key considerations when you shop for cologne:
There are so many different options available to the modern man when it comes to selecting the best cologne that it’s almost amazing. These little bottles of scented water and alcohol sell at incredible margins, and the fragrance industry alone is a multi billion dollar market. Just about every popular celebrity (and some less than famous people as well) have their own signature brands, and almost every single brand and type has a totally unique and sometimes complex scent.
To make the best decision, you’re going to need to go into it with a bit of a game plan.
General idea of what you’re looking for
This can be pretty difficult for first timer to the cologne marketplace, but you should at least try to strive for at least a basic idea of what smells and scents you’re looking for. We’re talking about the most basic components – light and airy, strong and powerful, woody, fruity, etc. These general guidelines (no matter how basic and simple) will be a gigantic boost when it comes time to selecting the best cologne.
How To Find The Best Cologne For Men
You’ll be able to completely eliminate some scents and basics that you wouldn’t want to have on your body for any reason and can focus on the types of smells you’d love to incorporate. Different brands often focus on different styles of smell (Stetson very woody and manly, Armani lighter and more friendly) so you can often times write off whole houses of cologne producers with this simple information.
Draw on past experiences
It’s likely that you’ve bumped into someone that you know that has had a smell you’d love to incorporate into your own personal style. And while you may not feel totally comfortable walking up to someone and saying “Dude, you smell nice, what is it?” some indirect questions or hints can often be probe enough to have your friend tell you what they think is the best cologne for men.
You may also have a relative that has a distinct and unique smell about them, and these are often more approachable situations. Be aware though if you’re digging your Grandfather’s particular brand of cologne – while these older school scents can be some of the best, they can also be somewhat difficult to pull off without the proper personality and experience that years of life bring.
Remember to match your personality to your scent
The best cologne for men is always the best cologne for you, and what works for others (even an incredibly popular scent like Armani’s Aqua di Gio) make not be the best decision you could make. Your scent should be uniquely you in its personality and embodiment – it will probably be one of the first things people pick up on when they meet you. A persons scent and smell can cause triggers to react in other’s brains so you should always be conscious of what kind of message you’re projecting with your new scent.
All in all selecting the best cologne for men is a pretty easy process, and you shouldn’t treat it as serious as something like brain surgery. Know ahead of time that it will probably take a couple of purchases and trying different things to really lock into your new smell, and don’t be afraid of experimenting and looking outside the box.