Cologne

8 Best Acqua Di Gio Dupes and Clones in 2023

I’ve been a fan of Acqua di Gio for years now. This summer cologne captures the essence of the Mediterranean, of energizing citruses carried by the salty oceanic breeze. 

But unlike some of the brighter warm weather fragrances, it still retains a streak of masculinity through a woodsy base and interesting herbal nuances.

It’s a perfect marriage of carefree breeziness with an undercurrent of confidence and maturity.

The best Acqua di Gio clones capture this same sense – and can even improve on the original.

If there’s one area that Acqua di Gio lets itself down, it’s longevity. The original only lasts 3 – 4 hours, while some of the dupes I’ve discovered can hang in there all day.

Smells Expensive
Best Overall
Best Cheap Clone
4.6
4.7
4.2
$30.00$25.27 ($7.43 / Fl Oz)
$12.95$8.08 ($2.38 / Fl Oz)
$36.96 ($10.87 / Ounce)
Pros:
  • Clean and fresh, led by citrus, neroli, and bergamot on a woodsy base.
  • Perfect for casual outings in warmer weather.
Pros:
  • The closest Acqua di Gio imitation on the market, with twice the longevity of the original.
  • A no-brainer for the price, whether you've never tried Acqua di Gio before or if you're a true aficionado.
Pros:
  • A very successful dupe for just $20.
  • Does a great job of imitating the delicate florals of the Armani original, with an added hint of blueberry.
Smells Expensive
4.6
$30.00$25.27 ($7.43 / Fl Oz)
Pros:
  • Clean and fresh, led by citrus, neroli, and bergamot on a woodsy base.
  • Perfect for casual outings in warmer weather.
Best Overall
4.7
$12.95$8.08 ($2.38 / Fl Oz)
Pros:
  • The closest Acqua di Gio imitation on the market, with twice the longevity of the original.
  • A no-brainer for the price, whether you've never tried Acqua di Gio before or if you're a true aficionado.
Best Cheap Clone
4.2
$36.96 ($10.87 / Ounce)
Pros:
  • A very successful dupe for just $20.
  • Does a great job of imitating the delicate florals of the Armani original, with an added hint of blueberry.
01/28/2023 06:58 am GMT

G Eau by Parfums Balcam, for example, lasts about 8 – 9 hours on me, despite only costing 15% of the Armani price. It projects a little more subtlety, but to be honest that’s what I tend to look for in a fresh cologne anyway.

It’s a similar story for 360° Red by Perry Ellis. It’s a little more expensive than G Eau, but lasts even longer. It’s got a slightly rougher spiced edge, but has the Acqua di Gio DNA at its core.

I also found a surprisingly impressive scent from Paris Hilton for just $20. How she does it, I do not know. But don’t just hear the name and dismiss it like I was tempted to.

I’ll step you through the 5 Acqua di Gio Clones that I’ve enjoyed the most (as well as 2 alternatives), and let you know when and where to deploy them, based on:

  • Note profile (what does it smell like)
  • Longevity (how long does it last)
  • Projection (how subtle/strong is it)
  • Value for money
  • Occasion (season, time of day, setting)

But as always, the choice is ultimately yours.

TOP PICKS

Best Acqua di Gio Clones for Men in 2023

And a few alternative scents…


The Best Acqua di Gio Clones for Men in 2023

Parfums Belcam G Eau Eau De Toilette – Best Acqua di Gio Clone Overall

G Eau by Parfums Belcam smells identical to Acqua De Gio –  at an 85% discount.

Parfums Belcam G Eau Parfums Belcam G Eau
$12.95 $8.08 ($2.38 / Fl Oz)

The closest Acqua di Gio imitation on the market, with twice the longevity of the original.

A no-brainer for the price, whether you've never tried Acqua di Gio before or if you're a true aficionado.

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01/28/2023 05:46 am GMT
Projection:Light/Moderate
Longevity:6 – 8 Hours
Value for Money:5/5
Parfums Belcam G Eau: Need to Know

This refreshing and woody fragrance blends citrus and spices with an underlying cedar that keeps it on the masculine side of the tracks. 

It’s the perfect pick for a value-conscious Gent who wants a budget version of the classic Armani “pretty boy” fragrance. 

It smells like the sexy man who turns everyone’s head when he enters the room. All of a sudden, you become the point of intrigue.

I’ve been using the real Acqua di Gio for years, but always begrudged paying 60 – 70 dollars for a cologne that never seemed to last longer than 3 – 4 hours.

Quite amazingly, G Eau lasts about twice as long. I get a full day of beautiful fragrance indistinguishable from the original Acqua, which makes it one of the best dupe scents I’ve ever had.

And despite the excellent longevity, this isn’t a clone that’s going to blow anyone’s head off. It’s not an aggressive projector that floods every room you walk into, but people will get the idea when you’re standing by them. 

It is one of the few clone colognes I’d be confident recommending on a blind buy. Don’t hesitate and stock up on this excellent dupe.

Top Notes:Lime, Lemon, Bergamot, Jasmine, Mandarin and Neroli
Middle Notes:Sea Notes, Jasmine, Rosemary, Violet, Nutmeg and Rose
Base Notes:White Musk, Cedar, Oakmoss, Patchouli and Amber
G Eau Fragrance Notes

Armaf Blue Homme – Armaf’s Satisfyingly High-quality Acqua di Gio Dupe

Armaf Blue smells fresh, clean, and expensive despite the $30 price tag. For the money, it feels like theft.

Armaf Blue Homme Armaf Blue Homme
$30.00 $25.27 ($7.43 / Fl Oz)

Clean and fresh, led by citrus, neroli, and bergamot on a woodsy base.

Perfect for casual outings in warmer weather.

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01/28/2023 06:58 am GMT
Projection:Moderate
Longevity:5 – 6 Hours
Value for Money:5/5
Armaf Blue Homme: Need to Know

It opens up with the neroli and citrus notes we’re looking for, rounded out by a woodsy, amberish base straight out of the Acqua di Gio playbook.

The heart does lack some of the aquatic quality of the original, but the fougère of fruits, lavender, and bergamot has enough compliment-collecting potential to compensate.

Overall, I’d say Blue Homme is 85 – 90% similar to the original Acqua di Gio fragrance and is slightly better at reproducing the sense of quality ingredients than cheaper options like Just Me for Men by Paris Hilton.

Like the other Armaf clones I’ve tested, performance here is excellent at 5 – 6 hours of scent. It doesn’t last as long as beasts like G Eau, but it surpasses the original Armani fragrance, which is my benchmark for success here.

There’s a slightly spiced sense here, too, adding some vitality to the background. Nothing too noticeable – it’s more herbal than warming – but it’s there.

It’s a solid pick-up for a fresh, daytime fragrance that’s best for a confident Gent in the city on spring/summer days. 

Top Notes:Grapefruit, Mandarin Orange, Bergamot and Neroli
Middle Notes:Nutmeg, Rosemary, Lavender and Jasmine
Base Notes:Vanilla, Amber, Cedar, Vetiver, Patchouli and Musk
Blue Homme Fragrance Notes

Just Me by Paris Hilton for Men Eau de Toilette – Cheapest Acqua di Gio Clone (That Still Smells Legit)

If you’re turning your nose up at the celebrity connection here, just hear me out. Or continue to be embarrassed, while I collect all the compliments.

Just Me by Paris Hilton Just Me by Paris Hilton
$36.96 ($10.87 / Ounce)

A very successful dupe for just $20.

Does a great job of imitating the delicate florals of the Armani original, with an added hint of blueberry.

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01/28/2023 05:41 am GMT
Projection:Moderate
Longevity:5 – 6 Hours
Value for Money:5/5
Just Me for Men: Need to Know

Just Me for Men by Paris Hilton smells seriously good for the $20 price tag. It’s very similar to Acqua di Gio, and it’s really successful in replicating the florals in the base in a way that still feels masculine at its core. 

The main differences between Just Me and its inspiration are the inclusion of a juicy blueberry note in the opening (which I appreciate), and a smokier, incense-infused base that lends an air of mystery to this fresh cologne.

All while providing everything I love about the sexy and aromatic Acqua di Gio DNA for a fraction of the price.

The longevity here is even better than the original Acqua di Gio. From 3 – 4 sprays you’ll get 5 – 6 hours of meaningful projection, which is very impressive for the price tag.

An absolute bargain. If you come across Just Me for Men in the wild, do yourself a favor and just buy it – it’s one of the best cheap colognes out there.

Top Notes:Lime, Bergamot, Lemon, Blackcurrant, Tangerine and Green Grass
Middle Notes:Sea Notes, Sage, Lotus, Cloves and Nutmeg
Base Notes:Mahogany, Incense, Oakmoss, Patchouli and Crystal Amber
Just Me Fragrance Notes

Quality Fragrance Oils Impression of Acqua di Gio – The Cheapest Option (That’s Still Worth Buying)

Here’s a pick for anyone where budget is the primary concern. Fragrance oils are the cheapest way to achieve a strong representation of a fragrance without resorting to low-quality imitations.

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01/28/2023 10:49 am GMT
Projection:Subtle
Longevity:8 Hours
Value for Money:4.5/5
Quality Fragrance Oils: Need to Know

And it’s a very successful imitation, by the way. Almost exactly the same.

It really nails the zestiness of the original, full of freshness and energy in the salty lime top notes. This roll-on also captures the marine, ocean-breeze element that Armaf’s Blue Homme misses.

These essential oils are basically the same as regular colognes, but without the evaporating alcohol that dilutes and releases the fragrance in the air.

This means it lasts an impressive 8 hours – but only as an intimate scent that clings close to the skin. This makes it suited to indoor environments like the office, where you want to smell fresh without obnoxiously overpowering your colleagues.

Top Notes:Bergamot, Lime, and Watermelon
Middle Notes:Marine Notes, Jasmine, Rosemary
Base Notes:Cedarwood, Oakmoss, and Vetiver
Aquatic Lime Fragrance Notes

Zara Lisboa – Best Acqua di Gio Clone for Building Your Collection

Lisboa is another example of Zara dupe colognes punching well above their weight in terms of price.

Zara Lisboa Zara Lisboa
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Projection:Moderate
Longevity:3 – 4 Hours
Value for Money:4/5
Zara Lisboa: Need to Know

It reminds me of Acqua di Gio before it was reformulated a few years ago. It’s lighter than the current version, with a slightly sour element in the top notes that has been rounded out in subsequent iterations. 

It has the same airy, aquatic feel that I love in the Armani original, with clean citrus and florality leading a descent into woods with a hint of spice. 

I’d recommend this as a daily-use fragrance that you can spray without thinking, perfect for spring and summer.

Girls seem to love it too, by the way. If I wear Lisboa to the office, it’s only a matter of time before I receive compliments from female colleagues. 

Longevity is similar to the current Acqua di Gio at 3 – 4 hours, which might sound a little underwhelming – until you remember the Zara dupe is less than half the price.

The value for money gets even better if you buy it in the twin pack with Seoul, Zara’s equally impressive Invictus (Paco Rabanne) dupe fragrance. 

Top Notes:Lemon, Grapefruit and Orange
Middle Notes:Jasmine
Base Notes:Woodsy Notes
Lisboa Fragrance Notes

Best Acqua di Gio Alternatives

360° Red by Perry Ellis – Longest-lasting Acqua di Gio Dupe

If you’re a fan of Aqua Di Gio, Perry Ellis 360 Red is a twist with a slightly rougher, spiced edge.

Perry Ellis 360 Red Perry Ellis 360 Red
$29.99 ($8.82 / Fl Oz)

A masculine and lightly-spiced fragrance that works best in high heat.

A capable Armani Acqua di Gio alternative.

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01/28/2023 04:56 am GMT
Projection:Moderate/Strong
Longevity:10 Hours
Value for Money:4.5/5
Perry Ellis 360 Red: Need to Know

This vibrant and fresh cologne is perfect for high heat. You know, those days when it’s too hot.

Spicy, masculine, and energizing. Everything I value in a signature summer fragrance

There’s a citrus spice duality that runs throughout the core of this fragrance, with lime and mandarin orange meeting cloves and nutmeg embracing each other in a very friendly hug.

It’s got some heat, but it’s bright rather than warm and cozy. For the price, it’s wonderfully sparkling and versatile.

Performance is where this cologne really shines compared to the original Aqua di Gio. I get an average of 10 hours longevity, but I’ve had particularly hot days where I’ll detect 360 Red 12 hours in.

Top Notes:Lime, Bergamot, Cinnamon, Orange, Mandarin Orange, Cloves and Nutmeg
Middle Notes:Lavender and Coriander
Base Notes:Musk, Sandalwood, Patchouli, Red Cedar, Vetiver and Oakmoss
360° Red Fragrance Notes

Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue Pour Homme – Best Acqua di Gio Inspired Designer Fragrance

Dolce & Gabbana’s Light Blue gives you a vibe of a casual and breezy summer walk along the beach, with fruity and floral notes that remain masculine.

Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue Pour Homme Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue Pour Homme
$115.00 $64.99 ($9.85 / Fl Oz)

A breezy summer fragrance that will pick up compliments in the sun.

Zesty citrus on a bed of masculine oakmoss and musk - with a mysterious incense accord.

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01/27/2023 11:01 pm GMT
Projection:Light/Moderate
Longevity:5 – 6 Hours
Value for Money:4/5
Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue: Need to Know

The grapefruit opening is natural-smelling and energizing, with enough tartness to make me think of the rind rather than the flesh.

While a light cologne, Light Blue is not without a sense of masculinity. Oakmoss, musk, and incense all play a part in producing a slightly obscure, mysterious dry down that will leave those in your company eager to find out more. 

With a moderate sillage, this masculine fragrance may be intriguing for anyone who wants to impress that special lady or collect compliments during a night on the town. 

Top Notes:Grapefruit, Bergamot, Sicilian Mandarin, Frozen Grapefruit Peel, and Juniper
Middle Notes:Sichuan Pepper, Rosemary, and Rosewood
Base Notes:Oakmoss, Musk, and Incense
Light Blue Fragrance Notes

Michael Jordan 23 – Best Acqua di Gio Dupe for Beginners

Jordan 23 was probably the 5th or 6th fragrance I ever wore.

Michael Jordan 23 Michael Jordan 23
$45.00 $23.05 ($6.78 / Fl Oz)
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01/28/2023 06:37 am GMT
Projection:Moderate
Longevity:3 – 4 Hours
Value for Money:3.5/5
Michael Jordan 23: Need to Know

It reminds me of a lower-resolution version of Acqua Di Gio – with an added watermelon note thrown in for good measure.

On application, you get quite a strong “rubbing alcohol” sense, which mercifully fades after the first few minutes. Then you get sweet, floral soapiness from Magnolia and Fig leaf, before meeting the fresh, juicy watermelon.

There’s a lick of sourness from what I think is blackcurrant or grapefruit, but it’s a tricky one to place.

Overall it’s very pleasant. I’m a male in his twenties, and it suits me just fine as a fresh afternoon scent with a hint of masculinity when I’m working out or running errands. 

When I was younger I’d probably have given MJ 23 an 8/10, but now I’m a little more experienced I’d have to call it a 7. I was a real Michael Jordan fanboy back then and got a little carried away. 

Longevity leaves a little to be desired at 3 or 4 hours, but it packs enough punch for a trip to the gym or kicking it for a court session. I’d consider that “mission accomplished” at this price point.

Top Notes:Watermelon and Grapefruit
Middle Notes:Geranium, Blackcurrant and Fig Leaf
Base Notes:Musk and Woodsy Notes
23 Fragrance Notes

What to Look for In a Good Acqua Di Gio Clone?

Acqua di Gio is one of the best summer fragrances for men out there, and as far as I can tell it’s successful for three main reasons:

What Does Acqua Di Gio Smell Like?

Acqua di Gio is made for summer – or at least a particularly bright spring/fall day. 

It’s a light, classy fragrance that exudes sophistication and pairs perfectly with the sunshine on your skin.

Acqua Di Gio by Armani Acqua Di Gio by Armani
$95.00 $64.98 ($19.11 / Fl Oz)

Balances zesty citrus and oceanic notes with a woodsy masculine base.

A top-tier summer fragrance that smells fresh and mature - a real confidence boost.

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01/27/2023 11:58 pm GMT

The zesty top notes combine with an aquatic, oceanic heart that conjures the sense of an afternoon by the Meditarean sea. A woodsy base keeps things masculine and confident, without veering into boastful alpha-male territory.

Any successful dupe needs to mirror these core notes, as well as the inflections of jasmine, rosemary, and bergamot that lend Acqua di Gio its sense of luxury. 

For the most faithful recreation of this iconic note profile, consider one of the more faithful clones like G Eau by Parfums Balcam or Just Me by Paris Hilton for Men.

High Compliment Factor

People – and particularly women – seem to love being around Acqua di Gio. Any successful clone needs to have similar head-turning qualities, otherwise what’s the fun?

Sure, Acqua di Gio is not one of the most niche fragrances in the world, and most people have probably smelt it once or twice before. 

But we have to remember that most people aren’t genuine frag-heads and spend a lot less time than you or I wondering about the subtleties of notes or batch variations.

Does it smell good? Because that’s more than enough for most strangers you’ll meet. They usually won’t care about your “famous perfumes”.

How Long Does Acqua di Gio Last?

Sometimes, a little less can be a little more. Acqua di Gio does not dominate space. It’s there to be discovered, rather than smack anyone in the nose. 

You should feel comfortable wearing an Acqua di Gio dupe to the office. The best Acqua di Gio clones will be noticed by standing near you, but not by everyone in the building. 

On that note, the longevity of Acqua di Gio can leave a little to be desired at 3 – 4 hours. So, I’m prioritizing the dupes in this list that right that particular wrong and can last at least 7 hours.

FragranceLongevity
Parfums Belcam G Eau6 – 8 Hours
Armaf Blue Homme5 – 6 Hours
Just Me by Paris Hilton for Men5 – 6 Hours
Quality Fragrance Oils8 Hours
Zara Lisboa3 – 4 Hours
360° Red by Perry Ellis10 Hours
Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue5 – 6 Hours
Michael Jordan 233 – 4 Hours
Acqua di Gio Clones Longevity Comparison

If performance is a priority for you, your best bet is G Eau by Parfums Balcam, which manages between 6 – 8 hours for a great price

If you’re happy to consider a spiced twist on the original Acqua di Gio, Perry Ellis Red 360 lasts between 10 – 12 hours per application.

Which Acqua di Gio Clone is the Best Value for Money?

The best value Acqua di Gio clone is Parfums Belcam. It lasts twice as long as the Armani original, and delivers a scent that is a 90% match.

Not bad for a cologne that you can grab for around $10 per bottle.

Another cheap choice is the roll-on dupe from Quality Fragrance Oils, which lasts an impressive 8 hours. Just be prepared to sacrifice some projection with this more intimate dupe.

FragrancePriceSizePrice per Oz
Parfums Belcam G Eau$12.953.4 Oz$3.81
Armaf Blue Homme$30.003.4 Oz$8.82
Just Me by Paris Hilton for Men$37.393.4 Oz$11.00
Quality Fragrance Oils$7.9510 mlRoll On
Zara Lisboa$19.902.7 Oz$7.37
360° Red by Perry Ellis$30.503.4 Oz$8.97
Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue$64.006.7 Oz$9.55
Michael Jordan 23$45.003.4 Oz$13.24
Acqua di Gio Dupes Cost Comparison

All of the dupes on this list are a fraction of the cost of Acqua di Gio. Even though Dolce & Gabbana’s Light Blue seems expensive at $64, you have to remember it’s a huge bottle that works out very cheaply per spray.


What is a Clone Scent?

Clone scents, or “dupes”, are third-party copies of popular colognes designed to make popular fragrances cheaper and more accessible. They can be up to 90% cheaper than the original designer products, which makes them an attractive option for people on a tight budget looking to try a new scent profile before they commit to a purchase. 


Consider Picking up a Decant of the Real Deal From Microperfumes.com

If none of these dupes are jumping out at you, maybe consider getting a sample decant of the real deal instead.

Stores like Microperfumes will let you order 2ml vials of fragrances for just a few bucks so you can try out designer colognes without blowing the bank.

Microperfumes Microperfumes

The most affordable place to try genuine samples of designer colognes - starting at 99 cents.

A huge range of the most popular colognes, with quick and easy shipping options.

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Once you’ve tried Acqua di Gio, there’s a good chance you’ll fall in love and be able to justify splashing out on a full-sized bottle. At least, that’s what happened to me.


Smells Expensive
Best Overall
Best Cheap Clone
4.6
4.7
4.2
$30.00$25.27 ($7.43 / Fl Oz)
$12.95$8.08 ($2.38 / Fl Oz)
$36.96 ($10.87 / Ounce)
Pros:
  • Clean and fresh, led by citrus, neroli, and bergamot on a woodsy base.
  • Perfect for casual outings in warmer weather.
Pros:
  • The closest Acqua di Gio imitation on the market, with twice the longevity of the original.
  • A no-brainer for the price, whether you've never tried Acqua di Gio before or if you're a true aficionado.
Pros:
  • A very successful dupe for just $20.
  • Does a great job of imitating the delicate florals of the Armani original, with an added hint of blueberry.
Smells Expensive
4.6
$30.00$25.27 ($7.43 / Fl Oz)
Pros:
  • Clean and fresh, led by citrus, neroli, and bergamot on a woodsy base.
  • Perfect for casual outings in warmer weather.
Best Overall
4.7
$12.95$8.08 ($2.38 / Fl Oz)
Pros:
  • The closest Acqua di Gio imitation on the market, with twice the longevity of the original.
  • A no-brainer for the price, whether you've never tried Acqua di Gio before or if you're a true aficionado.
Best Cheap Clone
4.2
$36.96 ($10.87 / Ounce)
Pros:
  • A very successful dupe for just $20.
  • Does a great job of imitating the delicate florals of the Armani original, with an added hint of blueberry.
01/28/2023 06:58 am GMT

FAQ: What You Should Know About the Best Acqua di Gio Dupes

What is the Best Acqua di Gio Clone?

The best Acqua di Gio clone is either Parfums Belcam G Eau, or 360° Red by Perry Ellis for an Acqua di Gio Alternative.

G Eau is a like-for-like clone and a great budget pick, while Perry Ellis is a longer-lasting, premium choice with a hint of cinnamon spice. 

What is the Cheapest Acqua di Gio Clone?

The best cheap dupe of Acqua di Gio that’s still worth buying is – surprisingly – Just Me by Paris Hilton for Men.

I’ve picked it up for as little as $15 before, and it performs like something closer to the $50 mark.

Excellent value for money on this underrated scent from the same nose behind 360° Red by Perry Ellis, Jean-Louis Grauby.


If you enjoyed this guide to the best Armani Acqua di Gio dupes, check our other reviews of the best clones out there:

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