19 of the Best Colognes for Men to Try in 2021

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Searching for the best colognes for men is quite the daunting task. I would know—I’ve been on the hunt for weeks. Earlier this year, I decided I wanted a new spring scent. I’ve never been a big cologne person in general—I’ve met far too many people who overpower you with their scent the minute you meet them, their lavender or citrus notes punching you right in the face—but there’s something about this past year that’s made me want to invest in a new cologne. The idea of spritzing myself at home, with nobody around to smell it, seems like the ultimate act of self-care. Like it’s a part of my morning ritual that’s purely for me, myself, and I.

As I began my hunt, I found that the market is overflowing with simply far too many options: From fruity, sweet top notes to woody or musky base notes, there’s a million different combinations and possibilities. How am I to know what suits me best? Still, I went into the quest with an open mind, considering everything from light and fresh, to heavy and musky—and in the process, I managed to find a number of crowd-favorites that can appeal just about anybody’s tastes.

Below, I sniffed some enduring classics—like Calvin Klein’s Eternity, which has been around since 1988—and some new favorites, too, such as The Last Day of Summer from Gucci The Alchemist’s Garden (Gucci’s high perfumery line), which smells like what I can only describe as a warm summer hug. (The latter ended up being my new spring pick—with Tom Ford’s Oud Wood and Maison Margiela Replica’s Jazz Club as runner-ups.)

No matter what your sensory preferences are, though, just remember that the perfect fragrance simply does not exist—some simply won’t match your personality, and what you like could also depend on the season, vibe, and mood you’re feeling that day. That’s part of the fun of experimenting with different fragrances—don’t be afraid to try something new.

Below, the 19 best colognes for men in 2021.

Gucci The Alchemist’s Garden, The Last Day of Summer

—so you know it’s good. Top notes of peach, plum, peony, and violet add a sweet touch to an otherwise woody ground base of leather, patchouli, and vanilla.

Jo Malone London, Myyrh & Tonka Cologne Intense

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