How often should you switch colognes?

colonge bottles
There's no rule that says you can't wear the same cologne for the rest of your life. But there are definitely advantages to changing up your signature scent.

Cologne is a great tool for polishing your look and making you smell fresh, clean and totally irresistible. So if you find one that works and smells great, why would you want to give it up for something else? There's no rule that says you can't wear the same cologne day-in and day-out for the rest of your life. But there are definitely some advantages to changing up your signature scent from time to time.

Take a cue from Mother Nature and consider changing your cologne when the seasons change. When you reach for those wool sweaters in the back of your closet you might also want to reach for a different bottle of cologne than you wore all summer. That's because heat (body heat and environmental heat) intensifies the scent of cologne, while cool weather tends to make it fade. That means you should stick to lighter scents in the summer and seek out stronger scents in the winter. Plus, some scents just smell like a particular season -- a woody, wintry smell isn't quite suited to hanging out at a Fourth of July picnic, so you should exchange your cologne accordingly.


If changing smells a few times a year isn't enough, you might also want to consider wearing more than one type of cologne every day. Think about it -- that musky aroma that gets you attention when you go out late at night might not be the best smell for office status meetings or the morning shift at the restaurant. What we're saying is this: Wear a cologne that suits the occasion, even if that means you have to change it up during the day. The simple rule to follow is that daytime scents should be light (especially if you work around other people) while stronger, bolder scents can be tried out after hours.

Colognes have a very distinct, very singular smell and it's all in how they're formulated. In fact, that's the main difference between colognes and perfumes: perfumes are typically a blend of three layers of scents, while colognes just have one. This means they're less complex, and a change in how they're formulated can be really noticeable. Reformulated? That's right. Sometimes the cologne maker will substitute some of the ingredients in your favorite fragrance for other ingredients, and it can make the amazing scent you love not so amazing anymore. When that happens, it might be time to find a new smell.

Are the people around you so used to your "signature scent" that they don't notice how incredible it smells anymore? Even though cologne should be applied lightly, it's still meant to be noticed. If you (and others) don't find your usual cologne as interesting as you used to, maybe it's time to try something new.

For more scent-sational information about smelling great, take a look at the links on the next page.


Lots More Information

Related Articles

  • Now Smell This. "Perfumista tip: on reformulations, or why your favorite perfume doesn't smell like it used to." Sept. 29, 2009. (Aug. 20, 2012).
  • The Fragrance Foundation. "Fragrance Info/FAQs." (Aug. 14, 2012).
  • Turin, Luca, and Tania Sanchez. "Perfumes: The A-Z Guide." Profile Books, 2010.