When you think “Michael Jordan in the mid-nineties”, you probably jump to the cult movie Space Jam, an undeniable cinematic tour de force.
But that movie wasn’t his only culture-molding release that year. He also dropped a cologne range, which would tear through middle schools and colleges nationwide over the next year.
Jordan was fresh off his fourth NBA championship, and the hype train was rolling FAST. The cologne range was backed by designer house Bijan with a $20 million ad campaign, and for a few months, Jordan’s silhouette was on every billboard and TV screen.
Unsurprisingly, the range sold like crazy, selling $40 million in the first 7 weeks and becoming the best-selling new fragrance of 1996.
And yet here we are, two years later, and many people don’t even know Michael Jordan colognes exist.
- Best Michael Jordan Cologne Overall – Michael Jordan Legend
- Best for Michael Jordan Cologne for 90’s Nostalgia – Michael Jordan
- Best Aquatic Michael Jordan Cologne – Michael Jordan 23
- Best Michael Jordan Cologne for the Office – Michael Jordan Flight
- Best Michael Jordan Cologne for Keeping it Simple – Jordan
- FAQ – What You Should Know About Michael Jordan Cologne
- MJ Deserves it’s Place on the Court
Best Michael Jordan Cologne Overall – Michael Jordan Legend
First things first: Michael Jordan Legend is packed full of energizing coffee. This is a cologne that wakes up, smashes the alarm clock and screams “time to get it done!’.
As a caffeine addict, I’m very much in favor. I drink heart-stopping amounts of espresso, so it’s always a treat for me to find a cologne that emphasizes my vice as its primary accord.
What I love about Legend is its versatility. You can dress it up or down, and it still fits. You’re as comfortable wearing it on a crisp morning walk with the dog as you would be in the office- it’s more about energy and zip than decadence or brute force masculinity.
Out of all the Micheal Jordan colognes I’ve tried, Michael Jordan Legend did the best in terms of longevity. While most of them could only manage 2 or 3 hours of arm’s-length projection, Legend was still collecting compliments after 6 hours. For a budget cologne, that’s seriously impressive.
Stunning value for money. Intoxicatingly energizing. A truly legendary cologne.
P.S I find Legend is one of those colognes that matures, so to speak. A fortnight after my first spritz, I was able to notice that it had blossomed into a deeper, full-bodied experience- almost like the difference between filter coffee and rich espresso.
|Top Notes:||Bergamot, Lavender and Green Tea|
|Middle Notes:||Green Moss, White Patchouli and Black Coffee|
|Base Notes:||Cedar, Musk and Amber|
Best for Michael Jordan Cologne for 90’s Nostalgia – Michael Jordan
This brings back memories of high school. If you played basketball back then, you had this cologne. Nostalgia central.
Michael Jordan is light, pleasant, and inoffensive, combining a fresh citrus opening with a classic woodsy base.
It’s similar to classic sandalwood fragrances like Drakkar Noir, with that musky, fresh, sporty vibe- but MJ is a little lighter and more accessible. If Drakkar is the cool uncle, MJ is the energetic, fresh-faced nephew.
For the price, you really can’t go wrong. I’d recommend Michale Jordan to anyone who likes the sound of John Varvatos’ Artisan Acqua but has a slightly tighter budget. Lounge Lizards rejoice.
|Top Notes:||Cypress, Grapefruit, Lemon, Cedar, Rosewood and Cognac|
|Middle Notes:||Juniper Berries, Fir, Incense, Sage, Clovers and Green Tea|
|Base Notes:||Musk, Patchouli and Sandalwood|
Best Aquatic Michael Jordan Cologne – Michael Jordan 23
Jordan 23 was probably the 5th or 6th fragrance I owned.
It set me on the track to more bespoke aquatic representations like Giorgio Armani’s Acqua Di Gio, and reminds me of a lower resolution version – 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 can you expect much more for under $20? 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|
Best Michael Jordan Cologne for the Office – Michael Jordan Flight
Michael Jordan colognes catch a fair bit of flack from the snobs, but Michael Jordan Flight is truly underrated.
It’s a bright and fruity slam dunk, with a dash of black pepper to keep things slightly aggressive and masculine.
Flight is more office-ready than the other, sportier Michale Jordan colognes. It’s the most professional smelling flanker in the range, in my opinion
It’s no exaggeration to say Michael Jordan Flight is very similar to Yves Saint Laurent’s L’Homme – which is five times the price. It’s not quite as delicately balanced, but the only hint that it’s a budget cologne is an alcoholic opening note. Like in Michael Jordan 23, this sense only sticks around for 10 minutes or so.
The bottle is a little divisive, but I think it’s dope. The removable rubber sides represent Jordan’s Air Jordan sneakers, which are as iconic today as they were back then.
The shape of the bottle itself is supposed to interpret Jordan’s square shoulders. That’s a bit of a stretch, but whatever. It was nominated for the best “green packaging” by Five Star Fragrance back in the day, so I guess people liked it.
|Top Notes:||Orange Flower and Bergamot|
|Middle Notes:||Sage, Pepper and Virginia Cedar|
|Base Notes:||Amber, Seaweed and Vetiver|
Best Michael Jordan Cologne for Keeping it Simple – Jordan
Jordan is an exercise in keeping things simple. This comfortable, easy-to-wear cologne teases light spice on a bed of masculine, white musk, and is the closest thing to a “safe bet” in the Michael Jordan range.
It’s perfect for those days when you just want to strip everything back with a linear, clean scent.
The first thing you’ll notice is a bright and breezy citrus zing in the opening, which mellows out into a heart of creamy and lightly spiced sandalwood.
If you’re looking for a casual office fragrance for delicate situations, you’ve found it. There’s not a hint of pretentiousness or showboating here – just clean-cut minimalism.
|Top Notes:||Orange, Bergamot, Ivy and Sage|
|Middle Notes:||Jasmine, Nutmeg, Pepper and Cardamom|
|Base Notes:||Sandalwood, Musk and Oakmoss|
FAQ – What You Should Know About Michael Jordan Cologne
MJ Deserves it’s Place on the Court
I love introducing people to under-appreciated gems, particularly if there’s a compelling brand story.
If you’re a basketball nut AND a fan of fragrance, you owe it to yourself to give Michael Jordan cologne a try at least once.
At this price they’re basically risk free, and certainly punch above their weight. For me they’re worth having as part of your arsenal.
I‘m particularly fond of using Michael Jordan Legend as a signature fragrance for casual gym wear – and even more fond of the look on peoples faces when I tel them it only costs $15.
It’s a lay-up of a fragrance – now it’s up to you to slam dunk.