Cologne

The 10 Best Summer Colognes for the Bargain Hunter

The summer evokes visions of sunny days with trips to the beach, shorts and sandals, and vacation getaways.

You want to smell your best during the summer, whether it’s day or night, no matter the occasion. For example: What is the best summer casual fragrance? Or what is the best summer cologne for evenings, whether you’re hanging out with friends or with that special lady?

As someone interested in expanding his collection of summer fragrances, I’ve put together this list of the best summer colognes for those looking for the best scents and bargain prices. 

I’ll also provide a little guide for you, telling you what you should look for when purchasing the best summer cologne, no matter if you are a novice or someone already familiar with summer colognes. 


Best Summer Colognes 2022 – Reviewed

Let’s start with a classic fragrance:

1. Versace Blue Jeans – Best Summer Cologne for Young Men

Versace cologne

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This fragrance has been around since 1994, albeit reformulated (i.e. the formula has changed over the years), but it still turns up in ‘Best Of’ cologne lists.

Blue jeans and summer go hand in hand, denoting a laid-back environment and enjoying the sunny day. Or even the thought of unraveling wearing those new pair of jeans, taking in that fresh jean smell.

A citrusy and vanilla aroma works in warm weather, spring or summer. While older men can enjoy this cologne, some also note a cola/candy scent, suggesting that this particular fragrance is for young men. 

With moderate longevity and sillage, the price is another factor for young men starting their summer cologne collection or buying their first fragrance.

Top NotesCitruses, Bergamot, Juniper, Anise, Brazilian Rosewood, Basil
Heart NotesLavender, Rose, Carnation, Heliotrope, Jasmine, Geranium, Fir, Sage, Lily-of-the-Valley
Base NotesVanilla, Tonka Bean, Sandalwood, Iris, Musk, Amber, Vetiver, Cedar, Patchouli 

Price range:

$23 for 2.5 fl. oz.


2. Versace Man Eau Fraiche – Best Summer Cologne for a Starting Fragrance

Versace Man Eau Fraiche – Best summer colognes

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This cologne is another classic, although a reformulated version from the Versace brand, introduced in 2006, with moderate longevity and sillage.

It’s a bit pricier than Blue Jeans above but can serve as a starter summer fragrance.

If you’re looking for a brand cologne, one that has a history as a popular fragrance, and don’t mind paying a bit more money, this particular product will give you a start.

Warm weather (and warm environments) will enhance this cologne’s performance. It has notes of citrus and some grassy notes; inspiration to enjoy this cologne during a picnic or after a nice jog.

Top NotesLemon, Bergamot, Carambola (Star Fruit), Cardamom, Rosewood
Heart NotesCedar, Tarragon, Pepper, Sage
Base NotesMusk, Woodsy notes, Saffron, Amber, Sycamore

Price ranges

  • $57 for 3.4 fl. oz.
  • $67 for 6.7 fl. oz. 

3. Nautica Voyage – Best Summer Cologne for Casual Usage 

Nautica Voyage

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The vibes of walks near the ocean and beautifully warm, sunny days continue with Nautica Voyage. The marketing choice of the name and the cool blue liquid supports the summer/spring aqua theme.

Some reports about this cologne say there isn’t longevity after application. Others say Nautica Voyage lasts around 6 hours. 

The sillage is a moderate one.

You check it out. 

Top NotesApple, Green Leaves, Lotus
Heart NotesWater Lotus, Mimosa
Base NotesMusk, Cedarwood, Oakmoss, Amber, Marine Notes

Price ranges:

  • $27 for 1.6 fl. oz. 
  • $25 for 3.38 fl. oz. 
  • $37 for 6.7 fl. oz.

4. Cool Water by Davidoff – Best Summer Cologne for the Evening

Davidoff cool water

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We’ve covered a few fragrances suggested for the summer daytime, now let’s recommend one for the summer evening. 

Cool Water by Davidoff, initially released in 1988, still gives you that aqua vibe with the name. 

Notes of seawater, mint, and tobacco evoke nighttime walks in the city or near the ocean as you take in the passerby, talk with friends after an excellent dinner, or spend time with that significant other. Or you’re going solo and don’t mind receiving compliments from the opposite sex.

There are mixed reports on longevity: Some say it doesn’t last very long, others say it’s a day-long fragrance. 

Top NotesSeawater, Lavender, Mint, Green Notes, Rosemary, Calone, Coriander
Heart NotesSandalwood, Neroli, Geranium, Jasmine 
Base NotesMusk, Tobacco, Oakmoss, Cedar, Amber
Cool Water Davidoff Fragrance Notes

Price range:

$30 for 6.7 fl. oz. 


5. Bentley Azure for Men – Best Summer Cologne for Business Occasions

Bentley cologne

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This cologne has longevity, and sillage is a bit above average, inspired by the sea and a ride along the coast. 

Some report the smell as unpleasant, not meshing well with warm weather. Others feel it’s classy, just like the car. 

Top NotesLemon, Pineapple, Bergamot, Tangerine, Violet Leaves 
Heart NotesPimento, Tea Accord, Lavender, Clary Sage
Base NotesCashmere Wood, Tonka Bean, Orcanox
Bentley Azure Fragrance Notes

Price range:

$34 for 3.4 fl. oz.


6. Curve Wave for Men – Best Summer Cologne for Young Men 

Curve Wave for Men

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With average sillage and longevity and a scent that some have said is not masculine enough (women have also used this fragrance!) Curve Wave for Men might be suited for those young men in grade school or entering college.

Not to say that older men can’t enjoy this cologne, as this could be a starter fragrance for both young and older men. Or a scent that could add to one’s current cologne rotation.

Remember: Colognes are relative. What works for one may not work for another.

Notes:Citruses, Mint, Juniper, Anise
Curve Wave Fragrance Notes

Price range:

$20 for 4.2 fl. oz.


7. Hollister Wave – Best Summer Cologne Starter Alternative for the Young and Older Man

Best summer colognes

Hollister doesn’t have longevity, and the sillage is ‘intimate,’ meaning there isn’t much projection from this cologne, but that also means it’s not so intense it would put off people you may pass by on the street.

The scent may be too feminine for some men, but many men have found it pleasingly masculine and have the compliments from women to back it up. 

This fragrance might be a good one for that man, young or older, starting with his first cologne, and could be an alternative to Versace Man Eau Fraiche above as you’ll pay a bit less. 

Top NotesYuzu, Bamboo Leaf, Grapefruit
Heart NotesLavender, Cypress, Neroli
Base NotesSalt, Driftwood, Musk, Tonka Bean 
Hollister Wave Fragrance Notes

Price range:

$32 at 3.4. fl. oz.


8. Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue – Best Summer Cologne for Those Romantic Encounters 

Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue

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Italy, like France, has a reputation of being a romantic country. 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.

With a moderate sillage, this fragrance may be intriguing for that man who wants to impress that special lady. Or the man who wants to attract the opposite sex or welcome compliments during a night on the town. 

Reports say the smell doesn’t last long, albeit the smell is a pleasant one. Others say the cologne works well in warm temperatures. 

Top NotesGrapefruit, Bergamot, Sicilian Mandarin, Frozen Grapefruit Peel, Juniper
Heart NotesSichuan Pepper, Rosemary, Rosewood
Base NotesOakmoss, Musk, Incense
Dolce and Gabbana Light Blue Fragrance Notes

Price range:

$50 for 2.3 fl. oz. 


9. Prada L’Homme Water Splash – Best Summer Cologne for Casual and Business Occasions 

Prada L'Homme Water Splash

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Prada’s L’Homme Water Splash is a recent fragrance with moderate longevity released in 2019. A fragrance that one could wear at the office and in casual outings. 

Some may get more extended longevity and an insane sillage, but that may depend on skin type or preference.

Others have even thought this cologne had a feminine vibe, with some women using it. However, L’Homme Water Splash still has enough masculine scent to attract male fans. 

Top NotesNeroli, Mandarin Leaf, Cardamom 
Heart NotesGinger, Iris 
Base NotesAmber, Sandalwood, Cedar
Prada L’Homme Fragrance Notes

Price range:

$61 for 5.1 fl. oz. 


10. Acqua di Parma Blu Mediterraneo Fico di Amalfi – Best Summer Cologne for Men That Happens to Be Unisex

Acqua di Parma Blu Mediterraneo Fico di Amalfi – Best summer colognes

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Like Dolce & Gabbana’s Light Blue, Acqua di Parma Blu Mediterraneo Fico di Amalfi takes inspiration from Italy. 

As part of their Acqua di Parma Blu Mediterraneo line of colognes, Fico di Amalfi gives you the vibe of taking a dip in a beautiful Italian beach and then relaxing with a juicy mandarin orange as you take in the sun.

The smell is excellent, light, with a prominent fig note, but the longevity may not be adequate for some. 

As it says in the title for this cologne, this is a unisex fragrance, but that shouldn’t put off men looking for a summer-inspired scent that works well in hotter weather. 

Top NotesGrapefruit, Bergamot, Citron, Lemon
Heart NotesFig Nectar, Jasmine, Pink Pepper
Base NotesFig Tree, Cedarwood, Benzoin
Acqua Di Parma Fragrance Notes

Price range:

$65 for 2.5 fl. oz.

$83 for four fl. oz. 

$75 – 120 for five fl. oz. 


F.A.Q – What You Should Know About Summer Colognes

What to Look For in Summer Colognes- Understanding Fragrances

Notes & Sillage 

Colognes listed above have different levels of notes or scents that come together. 

The top notes are what you smell after the initial application. The middle or heart notes are what you smell after those top notes have evaporated. 

And the base notes are what you smell after those middle or heart notes have evaporated. As your cologne enters the ‘dry down’ stage, this is the smell. 

When looking for a cologne, you want to find consistently pleasant notes as each level evaporates over the day.

Now, What is Sillage?

Sillage (pronounced ‘see-yazh’) is how the scent broadcasts widely or narrowly. As you smell the levels of these notes, the sillage of the cologne is how others will experience the smell outside your range or the ‘intimate’ range. 

Longevity

There are a few factors that affect the longevity of your cologne:

One is that different skin types affect this longevity. For example, a person with oily skin will have the fragrance last longer than a person with dry skin. 

Another factor is the placement of your cologne. The initial thought of applying your fragrance is spraying on your neck, left and right. However, the recommended application is on what we call pulse points: The wrists, back of the earlobes, and the base of the back of your neck. 

Since we are talking about summer colognes, the weather will also be effective in longevity. For example, warmer temperatures may bring out the scent and make it last longer.

Now It’s Up to You Now

The colognes in this article will get you started in the cologne world as you freshen up for the summer. Or, it’ll give you ideas on which colognes are summer-themed to add to your current cologne collection. 

Picking the right cologne is a personal thing. A particular scent or a specific moment may inspire which cologne you will always come back to or settle on.

Which one or which group will it be?

Interested in more men’s tips? Check out these guides:

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