Deodorant is too light, cologne can come on too strong, but the best body spray for men tends to offer a midpoint that helps you smell fresh without overpowering everyone else in the room.
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Especially as cologne’s not always appropriate for the workplace, body sprays have been taking off among men as a way to smell good and give themselves a distinctive scent.
Best Affordable Men’s Body Sprays
Best Bath & Body Works Scents for Men
Although Bath & Body Works has a reputation as a women’s scent brand, its smaller, more targeted selection of men’s products continues to attract a dedicated audience.
Among its more popular options are:
- Noir: Deep cardamom and intriguing vanilla are punctuated with musky notes.
- Graphite: This distinctively masculine body spray blends smoky sage and spicy bergamot with a leather, woodsy base.
- Teakwood: As the name aptly describes, this body spray is a wood-based fragrance combining mahogany and teakwood with notes of lavender.
- Bourbon: It sounds like your favorite drink, and leaves just as strong of an impression through a combination of white pepper, Kentucky oak, and amber.
- Atlantic: A blend of citrus, sea breeze, and wood notes takes you right to a rugged, oceanside East Coast locale.
Mascolino Body Spray
Designer-inspired products, including scents, have gotten a bad rap for decades as a poor man’s imposter. Yet, Mascolino presents an affordable and worthy alterative to higher-dollar men’s body sprays like Acqua di Gio.
A complex scent, Mascolino begins with a citrus top, with bergamot, mandarin orange, and lemon emerging first. This combination gives way toward an herb-based middle, with spicy clove, nutmeg, coriander, and lavender following. Its finish leaves a stronger impression through vanilla, vetiver, amber, and incense.
BOD Man Body Spray
BOD Man is a series of affordable fragrances that have seen their popularity soar in recent years. Products feature simple, straightforward ingredients and have a fresh scent that lingers – as long as 12 hours, reportedly – without overpowering everyone else in the room.
Scents vary from Fresh Guy’s green apple complemented by notes of sandalwood and musk to BOD Man Black, with verbena accented by bergamot, sage, tonka bean, and sandalwood.
Best Higher-Dollar Men’s Body Sprays
The brands dominating the men’s cologne market have also released several successful body sprays, which offer a hint of familiarity at a lesser, more subtle concentration:
Calvin Klein Obsession Body Spray
Considering its longevity, Obsession may be the Millennial generation’s Brut, albeit subtler and with a distinct and familiar air of freshness.
Tommy Bahama St. Barts
Head straight to the ocean right as you get out of the shower in this sea breeze-inflected body spray.
Kenneth Cole Reaction
For upgrading to a higher-dollar citrus-based scent, Reaction sets the bar for everyone else.
Tom Ford Oud Wood
Just as memorable as Tom Ford’s suits, Oud Wood stands out with a blend of oud, rosewood, and sandalwood with notes of tonka bean and amber.
Dior Sauvage starts out with citrus top notes of Reggio di Calabria bergamot, before it’s quickly followed by spicy Sichuan pepper and ambergris.
Ralph Lauren Big Pony #1
The packaging positions Big Pony as a series of athletic fragrances and each blend keeps the wearer fresh following workouts and showers without ever overcompensating. #1 goes for a sharp citrus combination, with top notes of lime and grapefruit.
The new generation of Armani scents – picking up from Acqua di Gio – aims for complex yet subtle. Armani Code stands out with citrus top notes of lemon and bergamot, before it progresses to pepper, olive flower, tonka bean, and wood.
Understanding Men’s Body Spray
On a general level, body sprays offer a light, subtle scent. Whether natural or synthetic, the oils represent a smaller percentage of the fragrance as a whole – and we’ll cover that in more detail shortly. Day to day, it can cover up body odor – especially after a workout when you don’t have time to take a shower. As well, it can “freshen” you up more than deodorant in the scent department, yet won’t be too piquant in an office atmosphere.
Within your men’s fragrances collection, body spray tends to be the most versatile, followed by aftershave. Cologne, meanwhile, is best reserved for evening usage.
Men’s Body Spray vs. Cologne
As one factor that’s confusing to guys first exploring fragrances, colognes, body sprays, and aftershaves tend to use the same scent. “Why do I need all three?” you might think to yourself. “Aren’t they all identical?”
The fact is, while the scent itself may come from the same source, percentages of it in the solution vary. This effect results in a stronger impact, as is the case with cologne, to barely there for aftershaves and deodorant. This aspect, too, is reflected in the price. Among men’s scents, colognes have the highest concentration of fragrance oils, followed by body spray, aftershave, and deodorant.
This aspect also indicates how long the scent will last. Higher-concentration solutions tend to stick around for a couple of hours before they taper off. Lower concentrations often provide an initial “burst” before the scent starts to decline.
Speaking about this mathematically – and considering the full spectrum of men’s and women’s fragrances – eau de parfum solutions contain 20- to as much as 30-percent fragrance oils. The price is higher, but the wearer tends to use less with each application.
Next down, eau de toilette contains anywhere from 10- to 18-percent fragrance oil. Eau de cologne follows with a three- to eight-percent concentration. Body spray, as the lightest possible fragrance product, has two- to three-percent fragrance oil.
Beyond this, aftershaves and deodorants contain an even smaller percentage of fragrance oil and, for this reason, aren’t classified as proper scent solutions.
Also due to the lower concentration, body spray can be applied more liberally – all over, rather than in one area or misted in the air. Understand that due to the lower concentration, body spray’s specific scent may only last an hour before it starts to disappear. This quality makes them ideal for daytime wear, as they won’t overpower the senses. If, however, you wish to carry the scent to evening use or freshen up after a workout, bring it along for reapplication.
As the key point, before applying men’s body spray or cologne, read the manufacturer’s description about application to ensure you’re not going overboard.
Secondly, while you can pair a body spray with deodorant and aftershave – but not with cologne – consider the combination of scents you wear together. Although you don’t always have to buy from the same brand or use the exact same scent, coordinate the notes, so they coexist in harmony: fruity or green notes, for instance, tend to clash with musky fragrances.