Tools of Men is reader supported. We may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site.

How to Apply Cologne

Wearing cologne is a great way to boost your confidence, demonstrate your style, and make a lasting impression. But if you don’t know how to apply it properly, you could end up with an overwhelming scent that everyone will be able to smell from a mile away.

Remember, a cologne should be discovered, not announced.

Whether you have a woody, musk, citrus, or floral scent, here are the best tips on applying cologne to make a subtle yet memorable impact.

Related: Best Smelling Colognes for Men

1. Start with Clean Skin

Before applying cologne, make sure your skin is clean. Cologne will last longer on clean skin and you’ll avoid any potential skin reactions.

We recommend using a gentle cleanser on your body and face before applying cologne.

2. Find your Pulse Points

Pulse points are areas of your body where blood vessels are close to the surface of your skin. These areas are going to be the warmest, so the cologne will evaporate quicker and be more potent.

Common pulse points for cologne include:

  • Behind your ears
  • On your wrists
  • In the crook of your elbow
  • Base of your throat

Here’s a list of all the pulse points on your body.

3. Spray Cologne on Your Pulse Points

Hold the bottle of cologne about 6 inches away from your skin and spray it on your pulse points. Start with one or two sprays and see how long the scent lasts throughout the day. You can always add more if necessary.

Related: How to Discover Your Signature Scent

4. Don’t Rub Your Wrists Together

Once you’ve sprayed cologne on your wrists, resist the urge to rub them together. This will actually break down the fragrance molecules and make the scent weaker. Just let your wrists dry naturally.

5. Give the Cologne Time to Settle

After you’ve applied cologne to your pulse points, step away from the fragrance and let it settle for a few minutes. This will allow the top notes to evaporate and the middle and base notes to come through.

Common Questions About Applying Cologne

How many sprays of cologne should you apply?

The number of sprays you use will depend on the strength of the fragrance and how long you want it to last. A good rule of thumb is to start with one or two sprays and see how long the scent lasts. You can always add more if necessary.

What time should you apply cologne?

You can apply cologne at any time of day. However, many people prefer to apply it in the morning after the shower so that the scent lasts all day.

Can you apply cologne to your clothing?

We advise against this as cologne can stain your clothing. It’s best to stick to applying it to your skin.

Should you apply cologne to your genitals?

No. We do not recommend applying cologne to your genitals as it can cause irritation. Additionally, should you have intercourse, the chemicals could cause irritation.

Can you spray cologne on your armpits?

You can, but it’s not recommended. The fragrance will likely be more potent in this area and could cause irritation. If you do choose to spray cologne in your armpits, start with one spray and see how you react.

What if the cologne is too strong?

If your cologne is too strong, try washing the area with soap and water. You can also try using a cotton ball to soak up any excess cologne.

Does cologne expire?

Yes, cologne does expire. The average lifespan of cologne is 3-5 years. However, this will vary depending on the quality of the fragrance and how it’s stored. When in doubt, take a whiff of your cologne. If it smells off or has changed color, it’s time to toss it out.

About Adam

As the lead editor of Tools of Men, Adam is an expert in all things men's grooming and style. When you don't find him reading up on the latest style trends, he likes to go jogging, attempt to distinguish the differences between IPAs, and play sports with his kids.

How useful was this post?

Click on a star to rate it!

We are sorry that this post was not useful for you!

Let us improve this post!

Tell us how we can improve this post?

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.