Refresh Yourself: Five Best Unisex Classic and Niche Colognes

What are colognes? Let’s begin with some history. The first Eau de Cologne was created by Italian Jean-Maria Farina as a tribute to his birthplace in Cologne Germany. Often colognes have a lower strength than perfumes, and are meant to apply often. The Fragrance Industry standard is under ten percent. But over the past decade that has changed, as niche brands added up to twenty five percent strength… colognes with the longevity and scent trails of eau de parfums (15 to 20 percent). Many people think that colognes are men’s fragrances or just simple citrus scents. They are perfectly unisex and worn by both men and women. gives you a refresher course on colognes.

best 4711 colognes

The original and most famous colognes are from 4711, which has been the standard since 1772. For a new twist on this tried and true classic we recommend 4711 Acqua Colonia Blood Orange & Basil by 4711 Blood Orange and basil are a wonderful pairing… the juicy fruitiness is balanced by the aromatic and herbal basil. Spray and spray often.

Best Hermes colognes

Try a more elegant cologne style with Hermès Eau D’Orange Vert composed by Françoise Caron (1979). With the zest of the orange, lemon, and mandarin, this is a cologne to wear when you want to stay fresh but still make a great impression. A well-known Fragrance expert who tests dozens of perfumes a day wears this as it never overpowers.

Annick Goutal 1981 Eau d'Hadrien

Annick Goutal is credited for being one of the first niche perfume brands, and her first fragrances was Hadrien Eau de Cologne in 1981. Bright notes of lemon, grapefruit and citrus are at the top and the addition of Cypress adds a sophisticated green woody facet.  So revered, it won a Fragrance Foundation Hall of Fame Award in 2008.

Best Jo Malone colognes

Jo Malone is famous for their long lasting and unusual colognes. Tobacco and Madarin is one of the companies limited edition colognes and is hard to find. With a dazzling and bright opening of fresh peeled mandarin oranges and bouquets of green, the surprise is the distinctive smoky aroma of pipe tobacco and beeswax at the drydown. The longevity is  exceptional lasting up to 12 hours.

colognes that last long

Sandalwood is not usually associated with colognes. That changed when Atelier Cologne introduced Santal Carmin with nearly 20 percent perfume concentration. Is at Cologne or an eau de parfum? It is both, a “cologne absolue” and  blends the woody aspects of sandalwood with sassy limette in the opening to opening on the skin with a bright fanfare. Soon after, the woods take over and run the show. There are no rough edges to these woods; they have been sanded and polished to be as smooth as silk. Vanilla adds a touch of sweetness in the dry down.


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