How to Choose Perfumes or Colognes for the Minimalist Man

Perfumes and colognes are scents that men and women use to enhance their natural beauty and attract mates. Our sense of smell is directly tied with our memories, more so than any other sense, so using the right fragrance can make you memorable. More men than ever are choosing to wear different kinds of cologne and perfume that suits their own personal style.

Fragrance Notes: How Scents Interact With Eachother

A fragrance “note” describes a cologne’s overall scent, and each combines with the other to create different undertones. Men’s scents often consist of pine, leather, and musk, as they are more masculine and relate more with male chemistry. Let’s look at each note in detail.

  1. Top Notes: The initial impression of the scent. Described as fresh, assertive, or sharp.
  2. Middle Notes: The heart of the scent. Appears two minutes to an hour after application.
  3. Bottom Notes: The depth of the scent. Men’s cologne often uses musk as a base.

Comme des Garcons Parfum Blue Santal has a top note of sandalwood, a middle note of pine, and a bottom note of juniper berries. These scents work together to make a woodsy smell that gives off a sexy, rugged vibe, perfect for minimalistic men and outdoorsy types.

Scent and Attraction: What Fragrance Notes Appeal?

Not everyone is attracted to masculine fragrances, and there are plenty of men who prefer other natural scents. Scent and sexual arousal are tied together, but you also need to consider how a particular smell relates to your personality, preferences, and who you want to attract.

  • Fruits: Men who eat a diet high in fruits have a more attractive body odor than those who eat mostly meat, making them more appealing. Foods with oranges, mangoes, and grapefruits are highly effective, so search for colognes with citrusy middle notes.
  • Musk: Men who wear a musky cologne are more attractive to both men and women, as it’s a scent derived from animal glands. It reminds others of physically being together.
  • Mint: The clean smell of mint is incredibly attractive to others, as it’s associated with cleanliness. It’s why most of us brush our teeth or bathe with mint-scented body-wash.
  • Vanilla: The vast majority of humans find the smell of vanilla pleasant, so you can’t go wrong with this scent. Vanilla also decreases stress and anxiety when inhaled. 
  • Leather (and Wood): Although we mentioned wood, leather produces the same sexy, rugged vibes of wood, unless you’re planning to date someone who doesn’t eat meat.

It’s still undetermined how much our pheromones attract other human beings or how aware we are of the effects when looking for a mate. It doesn’t seem to matter if a cologne mixes well with our pheromones, so pay more attention to what you like and what a potential partner may enjoy.

Scent Concentration: Comparing 4 Levels

Contrary to popular belief, the term “cologne” isn’t a gender signifier. It’s a term created to tell customers how concentrated the essential oils in the product are in comparison to others. A more contracted product will be pricer, while watered-down scents are a fraction of the cost.

  • Perfume/Parfum: Perfume concentration varies between 15-40%, but 25% is the industry average. They can last for 7 hours, and you don’t need to apply as much.
  • Eau de Parfum: Eau de Parfum concentration stays around 10-15%. Their scent stays dominant for 15 minutes to an hour but lasts for 6 hours once it becomes mild.
  • Eau de Toilette: Affordable and easy to find, their concentration rests between 5-10%. You’ll need to apply eau de toilette multiple times throughout the day.
  • Cologne: Has the lowest concentration of 2-5% and has a base of mostly alcohol. Colognes are the cheapest of the 4 concentrations and last for 1-2 hours.

Minimalist men may prefer colognes, but they may also want to use eau de parfum, so they can spray once and forget about reapplying. Test each concentration before wearing it out.