• Ron Maxson Jr.

Wearing Men’s Cologne Smell Your Best Explained in Fewer than 900 Words

For me, nothing quite compares to smelling great with a masculine scent. It is a sign of cleanliness for some men. It is often a sign that a man takes good care of himself. To some it is a sign that a man likes himself too much or is showy or wants to be noticed. Maybe all of those can be true at times. Who cares? It’s up to you. Be yourself. This is an area of a man’s life that I think is all about you.

I would venture to say--simply a guess, no science--that most men have at some point tried wearing cologne. Some love it; some prefer not to wear it. I began wearing men's fragrances as a young boy. Early on in my teenage years, I became more aware of different levels of men’s fragrances. I soon learned that some men’s fragrances smelled more fruity than others, some more musky, others sometimes smelled like a lingering fart mixed with a scent of old nursing home sheets. In reality, we each have our own preference. And unlike my guesses, there is some science behind fragrances and how they interact with men’s skin and biological make up.

In high school, I probably wore too much cologne sometimes. I really wanted to make sure that every young lady I encountered knew that I was classy enough to wear cologne and aware enough to care about my total appearance to spice it up. Yes, I know I overdid it at times. But, I learned.

By the time I was in my early to mid-twenties, I got into more expensive fragrances. I found that often a slightly more expensive cologne typically smelled more appealing to me and to those around me. I also learned that typically less is more when it comes to wearing men’s fragrances. I did not have the money then to buy the best of the best in quality, but I still did not go cheap. Let me be clear though, price is not always a factor in whether a men's fragrance smells good on you. I will say that I received many compliments once I got it right. I knew what smelled good on me. I heard from others. I had other men ask me what I was wearing so that they could go buy some for themselves.

At age 50-something, I still wear cologne. Typically, I don’t really care about the price tag. If it smells really, really great, I will buy it. I know what I like and what I don’t. If in doubt, my wife will quickly confirm whether my sniffer is in proper working order.

Beware, however, that sometimes cologne can be offensive to others around you. Use it sparingly at work. Some people are actually allergic to certain ingredients in cologne and perfume. I suggest that you be aware and respectful of such to the best of your abilities. The last thing any of us men wants to do is smell offensive to someone, anyone, right? Of course.

How to wear cologne matters. Some are sprays; others are dabs. How many squirts are necessary? How many dabs are too many? It depends. There are many articles online about men’s fragrances, how to find the right smell for you, how to apply it, how not to apply it, etc.

I recommend that you do some research before you purchase. Then, maybe try some in-store sampling if you’re not sure your preference of fruity, musky, etc. There are also sampling packages that you can order online. Figure out what you like. Have someone with you if possible to help you discern what smells best on you.

The elephant in the room: Is it ok to ask another man what he’s wearing if it smells good to you? Of course, it is. Now, let’s be reasonable. If it is someone you know well, it’s much easier to ask. If it is a complete stranger, you may need to be careful, tactful and humble in how you ask. But, yes, ask. It’s ok. In fact, I’ve had men ask me what I’m wearing, and it makes me feel really good about myself. I’m always willing to share. Sometimes, though, because I have a few on-hand that I use, changing it up on occasion, by season, how I’m feeling, evening vs. daytime, etc. I have to think about which fragrance I’m wearing. Maybe that’s an age thing. Don’t laugh--that’s not nice. Just kidding. Laugh away. Just do us all a favor and not act odd about asking another guy what he is wearing. It can make it awkward but it shouldn’t be. Use tactfulness and make it a friendly conversation. Again, I think it is very much ok to do so.

Below are a few resources that I found by simply doing an internet search to get you started with your own research:

  1. Tools of Men: The Best Smelling Men’s Cologne Compared & Reviewed

  2. Men’s Journal: We Asked 20 Women: Do you prefer when men wear cologne?

  3. A Man’s Guide to Fragrance: How to Choose and Wear Cologne


  5. How to Apply Cologne: A Man's Guide to Fragrance Usage

  6. Scentbird.com

Go big, men! It’s ok to show yourself some attention. It’s also ok to attract some attention. Get some compliments. To me, this is part of quality grooming. Feel and smell your best, always. Go get ‘em!

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Ron Maxson Jr.

Gaithersburg, Maryland USA 20878