How to Pick and Apply Cologne Properly

Last Updated on

The perfume industry has long been dominated by women in the United States. However, there is absolutely no reason why men should not learn how to wear cologne. 63% of adult men from age 18-64 report wearing cologne at least occasionally. In fact, for a more polished personal presentation, men probably should be wearing cologne more frequently than they do.

This post may have affiliate links, meaning we earn a small commission on purchases through the links (at no extra cost to you). This does not change our opinion but does help support the site. Thank you!

In addition, it is important for any man to realize that there is not a cologne on the market that smells the same on two distinctly different individuals. Therefore, it is necessary to gain a better understanding of cologne, especially when it comes to choosing the right product. Is equally important to learn how to wear it appropriately.

For any man that wants to feel more confident, cologne is an excellent way to accomplish that goal. The best part is that it can be applied quickly and easily and it can remain effective for several hours at a time.

Woman leaning over towards man

1. What effect do you want from your cologne?

The scent of a good men’s cologne always seems to signal an individual who is well put together, someone who was capable of being professional and masculine simultaneously, not to mention an individual that was confident in what he wanted and not afraid to go after it.

It could also be to set the mood for a romantic date or get you mental prepared for your workout. Scents affect our mood and connect with other people.

The right fragrance can easily put other people at ease and make the individual that is wearing it seem more relatable. Therefore, wearing cologne can help any individual in either a professional or personal environment. Deciding what you want your fragrance to express about you can go a long way in helping you decide on a scent.

How to Pick and Apply Cologne Properly

2. Accept No Cologne Smells the Same on Any Two People

All colognes smell slightly different on different individuals. This is part of the reason experimenting with different scents is so important. Cologne interacts with the natural scent that is produced by your body as well as your body temperature and the oils in your skin.

Therefore, the smell of the cologne is unique — even sometimes smelling slightly different on the same person for example at different times of year or after a shower. This is when it’s nice to have a fragrance collection to rotate through fragrances according to the seasons and activity rather than rely on one or two to fit all occasions.

How to Pick and Apply Cologne Properly

3. Gain A Deeper Appreciation of Fragrances

There a nearly endless variety of different types of fragrances available. In addition, each product has several different scents, or notes, mixed together in order to create the unique final product. These different elements, or notes, as well as the different products themselves, can last anywhere from less than an hour, up to 24 hours.

While higher quality products typically last longer and have more subtle complexity, taste is king. A high-end, expensive fragrance isn’t necessarily going to smell better to you than a budget, mass produced bottle.

How to Pick and Apply Cologne Properly

4. Choose a Cologne that Fits Your Personality, Chemistry and Needs

When it comes to choosing a fragrance, remember that this is an intensely personal experience. If you are really uncertain, many fragrance brands have coffrets which allow you to sample several of their best-sellers — these are typically small sample or travel size bottles which allow you a few tries to see how the fragrance smells on you.

In our reviews we try to give tips on if it’s for evening or daytime use. Casual and everyday or more striking for a special occasion. There are colognes that are barely there and colognes that make a big statement. Think about where you want to wear it and how you want to feel. For example, cologne for work in an office will need to be relatively subtle whereas for a night out it can be more expressive.

How to Pick and Apply Cologne Properly

5. Don’t Be Afraid To Wear It

Remember the stat that 63% of adult men from age 18-64 report wearing cologne at least occasionally? Well, 43% say they wear cologne on a regular basis. For some reason, we have this misconception that the only men wearing cologne are the sleazy salesmen who leave a trail of stench behind them. The truth is if you pick out a cologne that matches with your body chemistry, suits the occasion, and you apply it properly there’s nothing to fear.

How to Pick and Apply Cologne Properly

7. Apply the Cologne Properly

A lot of people douse on the cologne, thinking it will last longer.

It depends on the quality of the product and your body chemistry but typically, 1-2 sprays should do the trick. Concentrate on your pulse points such as wrist, neck or behind the knees. For a more subtle effect, try spraying overhead and then walk through the mist.

Overapplying doesn’t help make the cologne last longer — it will wear off at the same rate, but just be unbearably strong until it does. Better to take the bottle with you and reapply or try layering the fragrance with other types of fragrances from the same collection to extend the longevity. (For example, use the cologne’s deodorant and aftershave as well).

You can also try spraying on your cologne right after a shower when your pores are open or applying a thin layer of Vaseline on your wrist and spraying it on there. Some people also say spraying your clothes can make it last longer though I’m hesitant to recommend that since it can also damage clothing.


As you can see, learning how to wear cologne doesn’t have to be a daunting prospect. Fragrance is something you shouldn’t be afraid to experiment with. It’s a great way to connect with people and express your unique personality.

You Might Also Like

Leave a Comment