Men’s Guide to Fragrances

Handsome businessman man in businesslike suit presenting perfume
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In the U.S., popular culture depicts perfumes as “feminine,” but the truth is that anyone can enjoy fragrances. In fact, 39% of American men wear cologne daily, and many more are exploring the world of fragrance as they discover the benefits of spritzing. From the masculine offerings of Paco Rabanne to the unisex scents of Bond No. 9, there are thousands of options for newcomers.

Where’s the best place to start when looking for your signature cologne? Here are the basics every fragrance-curious man should know.

Why Men Should Wear Fragrances

You don’t need a reason to wear perfume — many people collect fragrances simply because it brings them joy. However, there are benefits to spritzing:

  • Smelling good contributes to a good first impression.
  • Certain scents are calming, putting you in a better mood.
  • Scent and memory are strongly tied, so wearing your signature fragrance can remind you of great experiences whenever you wear it.

Finally, trying new cologne can be fun. Once you discover your preferred scent notes, you can check out Dior, Paco Rabanne, Tom Ford and other popular brands for similar offerings.

How To Find the Right Scent

The first step to finding a cologne is understanding scent notes. Perfumes are complex beasts with three layers:

  • Top notes
  • Middle/heart notes
  • Base notes

Each group activates with body heat and fades over time, revealing the next layer. While base notes last the longest, the middle notes make the biggest impression. Perfumes get their smell from distilled oils; in most formulas, middle notes account for the majority of these oils, up to 70%.

Note layers also contain different types of scents. As you look over various perfumes, you’ll find certain patterns:

  • Top notes are aromatic or citrusy.
  • Florals, greens, spices and fruits fall into the heart note category.
  • Base notes always include balsamic and woody notes.

Invictus Victory from Paco Rabanne is an excellent example, as it contains vanilla in the base notes, incense in the middle notes and lemon in the top notes.

It’s important to point out that body chemistry plays a vital role in the final scent. The same cologne will smell different on you than on a friend. As a result, you should always try a fragrance before you commit. Ensure you wear it throughout the day to experience how each scent note layer manifests on your skin.

How To Apply Cologne

Since body heat activates fragrance, applying cologne directly to your skin is best. Don’t rub it in, as that can destroy the top notes, which are incredibly delicate. Instead, just dab on your pulse points:

  • Wrists
  • Neckline
  • Behind your ears

Your cologne will perform best on moisturized skin, so apply lotion before spritzing. It’s best to use a non-scented moisturizer to avoid mixing smells.

Finally, don’t go overboard. Just a few dabs should be enough to get the full effect.

Where To Find Top Brands at Affordable Prices

Who says luxury scents have to be expensive? You can find Paco Rabanne, Coach, Hermes and other popular colognes at LaBelle Perfumes for affordable prices. To start your search, check out the newest arrivals via the LaBelle Perfumes website.