Suppose you are still trying to figure out the scent that evokes the most positive reaction from those around you. In that case, cheaper colognes are an excellent gateway to discovering new fragrances and figuring out what works best for you.
However, when it comes to selecting one of the best yet affordable colognes – it can be a bit tricky. With all the different scents found, how can you be sure to pick up one that will compliment you the best?
In a Hurry? Our Top Picks
- 1. Best Woodsy Smelling Cologne: Cerruti 1881 By Nino Cerruti For Men
- 2. Best For Men Of All Ages: Guy Laroche Drakkar Noir
- 3. Best Daily Cologne: Nautica Voyage By Nautica For Men
- 4. Best Value Cologne: Quorum By Puig For Men
Here at Tools of Men, we identified some great value colognes on the market that should serve just about any scent that a man is looking for. Suppose you want a cologne that evokes your inner lumberjack. In that case, we recommend a fragrance like Cerruti 1881 By Nino Cerruti For Men as it has a profile of scents derived from herbs, patchouli along with other fragrant wooded smells.
Considerations When Buying a Budget Cologne
When buying cologne, you’ll want to keep in mind the following:
What is the price per ounce?
When buying an affordable cologne, it’s always important to look at the price and size of the product. This will help you determine if the cologne is truly affordable, or if it’s just being marketed as such. The price per ounce will also help you compare different brands and scents to find the best deal. When researching colognes, we only looked at those with a price per ounce of under $10.
What is the versatility of the fragrance?
When buying a cologne, you’ll want to make sure that it can be worn in a variety of different settings. Whether you’re looking for a daytime cologne or something to wear on special occasions, you’ll want a scent that won’t be too overpowering. You’ll also want to consider the seasonality of the fragrance. If you live in a warm climate, you might want a lighter cologne that won’t be too heavy in the heat. Conversely, if you live in a colder climate, you might want a heavier cologne that will last longer in the cold.
Overall bottle size impacts trave-friendliness
While the overall bottle size won’t necessarily impact the scent of the cologne, it will impact how travel-friendly it is. If you’re looking for a cologne to take with you on business trips or vacations, you’ll want something that comes in a bottle size equal to or less than 3.4oz. Any cologne that comes in a bigger bottle will likely not be able to be carried on an airplane.
What is the scent profile?
When selecting a cologne, you’ll want to make sure that it has a scent profile that you enjoy. The most important thing is to select a scent that you think smells good on you. However, you’ll also want to consider the longevity and sillage of the cologne. If you’re looking for a cologne that will last all day, you’ll want something with good longevity. If you’re looking for a cologne that will project well, you’ll want something with good sillage.
In this table, we will compare the best budget colognes against one another:
- Size: The size is in fluid ounces.
- Price Per Ounce: This allows you to compare the cost per ounce and see which cologne is more affordable.
- Scent: We will identify the predominant scents that each cologne provides.
|Size (in Ounces)
|Price Per Ounce
|Cerruti 1881 By Nino Cerruti For Men
|Guy Laroche Drakkar Noir
|Nautica Voyage By Nautica For Men
|Quorum by Antonio Puig for Men
|Leather & Musk
|Intimately Beckham By Beckham For Men
|Adidas Team Force
|Curve by Liz Claiborne for Men
|Earthy & Spicy
|David Beckham Instinct
|Citrus & Spice
|Perry Ellis 360 Red By Perry Ellis For Men
|Grey Flannel by Geoffrey Beene for Men
|Spicy & Woody
Below is our round-up of a few great colognes we think you’ll love:
The 10 Best Cheap Men’s Colognes
1. Cerruti 1881 By Nino Cerruti For Men
- Scent: Woody
- Size: 3.4oz
Cerruti 1881 is a long-time favorite that is likened to Drakkar Noir for its rich, lasting scent with a spicy base. Rather than spicy berries that Drakkar brings, Cerruti 1881 has a spicy herbal foundation that plays off the wood notes and Patchouli for a unique lasting scent.
Of the affordable colognes we’ve reviewed Cerruti 1881 is one of the greats for age differential as men of all ages will love it.
That being said, it is typically intended for evening use or your romantic settings because it is a full-bodied scent. The 3.4oz bottle is a steal on price and, frankly, the ladies love when you wear it.
- Mixture of herbs, patchouli, and woodsy scents
- Costs under $25
- Perfect for evening wear
- Only good for limited use
2. Guy Laroche Drakkar Noir
- Scent: Spicy
- Size: 3.4oz
Drakkar Noir is a time-tested favorite that any man’s man should be wearing. It is a deep, long-lasting scent that has classic hints like Sandalwood and Lavender, but is unique in offering quiet fruit notes through spicy berries.
Drakkar Noir has been around a long while though, even with their long-lasting popularity and great reviews, they still keep your wallet fat with affordable pricing.
Related: How to Smell Great
Spicy and sharp scented, people know when you are rocking Drakkar Noir and you’ll want them to. Additionally, Drakkar Noir is popular for men of all age groups so it will also make a fabulous gift that won’t break the bank.
- Versatile cologne that is preferred by many
- Lasts a really long time
- One of the highest-rated colognes
- May be too strong for some men
3. Nautica Voyage By Nautica For Men
- Scent: Fresh
- Size: 3.4oz
Nautica Voyage is a very affordable cologne that comes with great reviews not only for its wallet-friendly price, but its famous name and super fresh scent.
Nautica Voyage is versatile because the scent is a simple, clean aroma that is wearable on just about any occasion.
The scent has manly musk with notes of Amber, Cedarwood, Moss, and Water Lotus, yet is polished off with cool hints like Green Leaf, Apple, and Drenched Mimosa.
Voyage is great for any budget, but don’t be fooled by “clean scent” which normally means subtle; Voyage is a manly, fresh, head-turner.
- Light and fresh scent
- Great for daily use
- One of the most popular (yet cheap) colognes
- Hard to find
4. Quorum By Puig For Men
- Scent: Leather & Musk
- Size: 3.4oz
Quorum is a bit different from the rest of the list as it is a Leather Musk that the classic, old-school man will love.
Quorum is recommended for casual use like any good musk as it is rich and heavy, departing from your modern clean fragrances. It is crafted with scents of leather, tobacco, and musk so it will make a statement, but not cost you much to turn some heads.
This musk has been around since the 80s and men of all ages have given Quorum very positive reviews on its fair price point and unique blend of scents.
- Incredibly affordable
- Carries a designer name
- Time tested
- It may be a bit too bold for some
5. Intimately Beckham By Beckham For Men
- Scent: Woody
- Size: 2.5oz
Intimately Beckham is another price-friendly gem that has a classic manly scent and, while it is intended for romantic wear like Instinct, has different notes upfront that makes it your top-notch evening scent.
Intimately Beckham is hearty with classy notes of Sandalwood, Patchouli, Nutmeg, Grapefruit, and Violet — fruity fragrance with manly spice and wood will raise your date’s eyebrows but not your budget.
In addition, the scent is a bit heavier and, as a result, lasts longer. Intimately Beckham is also a 2.5oz bottle that makes a great gift for the intellectual, romantic man.
- Pleasant sandalwood, patchouli, and nutmeg fragrance.
- Travel-friendly 2.5oz bottle
- Perhaps too youthful for some
6. Adidas Team Force
- Scent: Citrus & Masculine
- Size: 3.4oz
If you are new to cologne or don’t often wear it, Adidas Team Force is an economical way to start.
Adidas Team Force won’t overpower but does give that classic citrus scent started from Grapefruit and Mandarin, yet finished clean and musky with Tobacco, Cedar, and Musk.
As far as price goes this really the best cologne for the money and has converted many non-cologne users with its catchy, spice-based scent.
The 3.4 oz bottle makes a great stocking stuffer for men of any age whether you are buying for a high-school student or Grandpa.
- Under $10
- Available in other fragrances
- Perhaps too youthful fragrance
- Lacks complexity
7. Curve by Liz Claiborne for Men
- Scent: Earthy & Spicy
- Size: 4.2oz
Curve is an absolute classic that has been flying off the shelves for years. Don’t be fooled by the Liz Claiborne name (known for women’s products) this everyday use cologne is affordable and manly.
Curve has Green notes and hints of wood that couple with very smooth spices for a noticeable man’s man aroma that doesn’t overpower.
Age, status, and occupation won’t matter as Curve is popular and positively reviewed by all men, plus it is versatile and should be used in any setting. Besides its popularity, the 4.2oz bottle will last; with all of this, Curve ranks among the top cheap colognes.
- Not travel-friendly
- The masculine fragrance is versatile
- Might be not potent enough
8. David Beckham Instinct
- Scent: Citrus & Spice
- Size: 2.5oz
Mr. Beckham’s Instinct is aptly named as it is recommended for “romantic wear” for the simple fact that its spicy aroma cannot be missed.
Instinct is cheap and effective because it takes advantage of the classic scent tandem of spice and fruit. Orange, Mandarin, and Bergamot mix and pair with Cardamom, Pimento, and Star Anise that will have people saying “what are you wearing?”
Instinct is not only intended for your big date; it is a great everyday cologne that is professional and still manly. The 2.5oz bottle is affordable and backed by very favorable reviews.
- Complex fragrance
- Beautiful design
- A larger size would be nice
9. Perry Ellis 360 Red By Perry Ellis For Men
- Scent: Citrus
- Size: 3.4oz
Perry Ellis’ 360 Red is a neat citrus and wood scent that ranks among the best review affordable colognes for its versatility and likable fragrance. 360 Red can and has been used by men of all ages because the scent is not overpowering but noticeable and great for any situation, though primarily a daytime cologne.
Citrus and Spice lead the way and are backed by fragrant wood notes with musk (think autumn/winter aromas). The low-price point and great reviews tell us this is a great gift to spoil yourself with or give to a friend as this manly scent is a crowd-pleaser.
- Light and versatile
- Suitable for daily wear
- A bit pricey
10. Grey Flannel by Geoffrey Beene for Men
- Scent: Spicy & Woody
- Size: 4oz
Grey Flannel is another classic that has endured the test of time, passed the popularity test, and remains among the best cheap colognes. Grey Flannel is an absolute classic because it is the scent that you smell and think “now that’s manly.”
Oakmoss, Sandalwood, and Patchouli give Grey Flannel that spicy, wood-laden flavor that backs the best manly colognes, but citrus notes from Orange and Lemon polish it off with a clean zest.
Men of all ages use Grey Flannel because it is a noticeable, robust scent that lingers but does not overpower. Also, the 4oz bottle provides enough to last without reducing your billfold.
- Under $20
- A luxurious and complex scent
- Exceptional value
- Too heavy for the summer months