For some men, when it comes to applying and purchasing cologne it is like figuring out the purpose of Stonehenge–a mystery. And who could blame them, it is not easy trying to find the right scent–one that does not make you smell as if you just walked out of Willy Wonka’s factory or Yankee Candle. Nor is it easy to figure out how much cologne one should apply on themselves–Should I only spray it on my neck? Should I spray it in the air and walk through it? Should I spray it all over my outfit?–It is harder than one might think. However, there are a few important things to know when it comes to cologne:
1) Think small. The life span of a bottle of cologne is one year. Even if you haven’t gone through the whole thing, after twelve months buy a fresh one; you don’t want to wear a stale fragrance.
2) Test in increments. When shopping for a fragrance, try two at a time at the most, one on each arm. Sniff your shirtsleeve between tests to clear your palate.
3) Keep it simple. Leave spraying wrists and other pulse points to the ladies. One hit on each side of your neck will do.
4) Rotate scents. Like your wardrobe, your scent should change with the seasons. In the warmer months, wear a small amount of a lighter, fresher scent; in winter, heavier scents like musks in slightly larger doses are appropriate.
5) Spray yourself, not the air. I know a lot of men do this, hell I used to, but spraying your cologne in the air and walking through the mist is not only stupid, but a waste of cologne. By the time you walk through the mist, most of it is already on the floor and on top of that the cologne is not even touching your skin.
6) Spraying, no over spraying. You want people to remember your cologne (and you) for the right reasons, not because you almost suffocated them when they were around you. Keep the spraying to no more than 3.
Tips #’s 1 through 4 were taken from JP Mangalindan’s GQ article, How to Buy (and Apply) Fragrance, while tips 5 and 6 were written by me.