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You could make the argument that no outfit, no matter how stylish, is complete without a crucial finishing touch. That could mean one of the best overcoats or a minimal yet stylish watch, but in matters of grooming, that means a few things. For us here at The Guy’s List, that means finishing things off with a signature scent, one that fits in with the season and adds some of your own flair and personality. It doesn’t mean spending an arm and a leg, though. The best affordable cologne for men can still get the job done, adding your own personal signature to a look without breaking the bank. Here are our Guy’s List picks for the best cheap cologne for men.

What Makes a Great Cologne?

A great cologne is all about balance. One of the best colognes should have a scent that’s neither too overpowering nor too faint, a scent that fits in with the season itself – different seasons bring with them different weather and even a different aesthetic vibe. For instance, fall brings with it warm tones, fall foliage and warm scents on the breeze, like woodsmoke or leather – your cologne should follow suit. The best affordable colognes accomplish this same goal while saving you some hard-earned cash in the meantime. Most of our picks hover under $50 or lower, while designer colognes frequently run more than $100, so keep an eye on your wallet with the best cheap cologne picks.

Our Favorite Colognes for Men

Salvatore Ferragamo F by Ferragamo

Ferragamo Black

  • High-End Brand
  • Sophisticated scent
  • Great Year Round
Duke Cannon Cologne - Midway Scent

Duke Cannon Midway

  • Only $25
  • Perfect for summer vibes
  • Subtle, not overpowering
Geoffrey Beene Grey Flannel Cologne

Geoffrey Beene Grey Flannel

  • Dark Winter Scent
  • Lemon and Woodsy Notes
  • Great for Day and Night Wear

Jump to Your Section

Best Affordable Summer Colognes for Men

Duke Cannon Cologne - Midway Scent

Duke Cannon Proper Cologne – Midway Scent

When it comes to finding the perfect summer cologne, Duke Cannon’s Midway stands out for all the right reasons. This cologne captures the essence of summer with its invigorating blend of fresh citrus and warm sandalwood, evoking the feel of a cool breeze through Pacific palm trees. The citrus notes provide a refreshing burst of energy, while the sandalwood adds a layer of depth and sophistication, making it versatile enough for any occasion. Housed in a sleek, apothecary-style bottle, Midway is subtle yet unforgettable, making it an essential addition to your summer fragrance lineup.

Nautica Eau de Voyage

Nautica Eau de Voyage Cologne

What exactly makes a cheap cologne one of the best colognes for men? It’s got to start by hitting the right scent notes in terms of the season. The oceanic, clean, light notes of this Nautica cologne are perfectly timed for a sunny beach vacation. Cedarwood and musk provide depth and balance, but the real key is the clean “ocean spray” vibe that this fairly priced cologne gives off. Plus, you can wear it as you pair up other summer-style staples from the famed prep sportswear brand.

Oars _ Alps Venture Cologne

Oars + Alps Venture Cologne

It’s no surprise that the best cheap summer cologne for men plays off the distinct scents of the season, like nautical themes. Notes of marine and citrus make this cologne an excellent addition to your rotation of seasonal summer scents, while coastal lime also adds a refreshing touch. The best part is, that you can find this cologne at a discount on Amazon, and that’s never a bad thing to add to your shopping cart. It’s also made with sustainably sourced materials, something we here at The Guy’s List appreciate.

Dolce _ Gabbana Light Blue

Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue for Men

A great rule of thumb when shopping for the best cheap cologne for men is to not be afraid to really swing for the fences. In this case, don’t let a major brand name scare you away, as this classic Dolce & Gabbana cologne is surprisingly affordable. It smells exactly as its name indicates – it’s truly light and radiant, with a crisp and elegant scent that elevates any summer outdoor occasion. The brand even says that the scent “top” notes (the first scents you take in) are made up of energetic notes like “sun-drenched Sicilian mandarin,” which is about as summer-friendly as can be.

GUESS Homme Blue

GUESS Homme Blue Fragrance

Believe it or not, the best cheap colognes actually have as much depth and scent quality as much more expensive scents, if you know where to look. Here, GUESS delivers a designer-level fragrance at a price tag below $30. What we really love about one of the best cheap summer colognes for men is the vibrant fragrance, though. In this case, that means this Homme Blue scent gives you clean, light, and airy seasonal notes of coral and sandy beaches.

Best Affordable Spring Colognes for Men

Every Man Jack Sea Salt Cologne

Every Man Jack Sea Salt Cologne

Just as with the summer months, the best cheap spring cologne for men should feature breezy and light notes that welcome a new season after a long winter. While winter colognes are going to lean more heavy and smoky at times, this Every Man Jack cologne once again leans on oceanic and marine notes. Ring in spring with sea salt and a refreshing aura overall, at an affordable price from an excellent grooming brand.

Hawthorne Desert Runway Cologne

Hawthorne Desert Runway Cologne

Now, not every one of the best spring colognes has to take on oceanic or nautical notes. Here, Hawthorne opts for refreshing tones that call to mind the open desert after getting away from the city. Cucumber notes in the middle give this scent an extremely refreshing feel. Floral musk is also a nice change of pace that should work well for spring-wearing occasions both more formal and more casually elegant.

Huron Original Citrus Cologne

Huron Eau de Parfum Original Citrus Cologne

The quest for finding the best cheap cologne for men often takes you to designer brands and fashion labels, but don’t forget that many of the best grooming brands on the market are also uplifting the category quite nicely. Huron is one of our favorite men’s grooming brands here at The Guy’s List, from face wash to deodorant. This cologne is a mighty nice addition to that lineup. We appreciate the bright citrus notes, and although this is pricier than other picks on our list, it’s worth spending just a bit more (without overdoing it).

Davidoff Cool Water Cologne

Davidoff Cool Water Cologne

Here’s an interesting hack as you shop for the best cheap cologne for men. If you don’t wear cologne that often or would like to try a scent without picking up a full bottle, do yourself a favor and opt for a smaller cologne size. At the same time, you can keep your seasonal scents top of mind by choosing something like this Cool Water fragrance from the scent maestros at Davidoff. Then, if you like what you’ve tried, you can re-up in a smaller size or else splurge on a larger bottle. When finding the best cheap cologne for men, it’s all about the proper shopping hacks, after all.

Best Affordable Fall Colognes for Men

Malin + Goetz Dark Rum Perfume

Malin + Goetz Dark Rum Perfume Oil

When shopping for a scent that fits right in with the fall season, search for something darker and richer in fragrance. In that case, sweet yet somewhat savory notes of dark rum are a solid option. And although Malin + Goetz is a premium grooming and fragrance brand, this particular option is highly affordable, all things considered. The company also says this fragrance has lasting “warm undertones,” another nice note for the fall season.

Every Man Jack Sandalwood Cologne

Every Man Jack Sandalwood Cologne

Among the grooming brands we love here at The Guy’s List, Every Man Jack never fails to impress. Its deodorant and beard care products are outstanding for the price point, and the same holds true with this Sandalwood cologne. For the fall season in particular, that fragrance hits all the right notes, literally. It’s described by the brand as “earthy and woodsy with a complex, masculine finish,” the kind of cologne to be paired with rugged fall style staples like a henley and a shawl cardigan. Plus, you’re saving some cash compared to other fragrances, so you can re-up your supply of Every Man Jack grooming staples.

Dumont Nitro Por Homme

Dumont Nitro Pour Homme

We certainly appreciate woodsy and warm fragrances for the fall season, but don’t forget that spice and citrus notes can also work well as part of a rotation of the best cheap fall colognes for men. End notes of musk and cedarwood also drive home the versatile nature of this scent. As a nice bonus, it’s delivered in a handsome presentation that looks much more expensive than the price tag. Consider using this varied, deep scent to add color to casual outfits and refined looks aplenty.

Dr. Squatch Woodland Pine Cologne

Dr. Squatch Woodland Pine Cologne

If you’ve read our Dr. Squatch review here at The Guy’s List, you’ll know we can’t get enough of this standout men’s grooming brand. Its rich scents make its bar soap a fan favorite, and many of those same scents are part of its rotation of the best fall colognes for men. The Woodland Pine scent is refreshing and vivid, like taking an alpine walk among the trees on a brisk day. The bottle design is handsome and old-school inspired, too. This is another cologne that’s slightly pricier than our other favorites among the best cheap cologne for men, but still quite accessible compared to other, much more expensive designer fragrances.

Best Affordable Winter Colognes for Men

Woody_s Cologne

Woody’s Grooming Woody’s Cologne for Men

Remember what we said about searching among the best grooming brands to find the best cheap cologne? It’s always a wise move, especially if you can find a cologne under $30 from a trusted brand like Woody’s. This scent, although fresh and clean rather than overly rich, is an energetic change of pace from other winter scents. Notes of everything from bergamot to cedarwood give it a refreshing character that works particularly well for refined occasions.

Cremo Bourbon and Oak Cologne

Cremo Bourbon and Oak Cologne

It’s easier than ever to embrace the scents of the season with one of the best cheap winter colognes for men. And it’s easier than ever to add a scent to your shopping cart from one of your favorite grooming brands. At The Guy’s List, we love the value and sleek appeal of Cremo grooming products, and that carries through to this handsome cologne. Rugged, winter-friendly notes of oak and bourbon separate this highly affordable fragrance from the pack.

Stetson Original Men_s Cologne

Stetson Original Men’s Cologne

Stetson is a brand legendary for its prowess and heritage on the Western frontier, but you might not have known that they make one of the best cheap colognes for men. It’s another one of our favorite masculine and woodsy fragrances, with rich scent notes that pair perfectly with a Stetson hat and Western shirt. You needn’t go full-on Western wear, though – other notes of citrus and patchouli make this a versatile scent for more formal occasions, too.

Geoffrey Beene Grey Flannel Cologne

Geoffrey Beene Grey Flannel Men’s Fragrance

What’s more appropriate for winter than a stylish flannel shirt? How about one of the best cheap colognes for men, one designed to evoke that very same feel? Woodsy notes pair with lemon for a touch of fruity spice, and it’s also a terrific fragrance for under $20. Cinnamon and rose also add winter-focused character. And although the company says it’s recommended for daytime wear, it should prove suitable no matter the occasion.

Best Smelling Affordable Colognes for Men

Salvatore Ferragamo F by Ferragamo

Salvatore Ferragamo F by Ferragamo Black Cologne

Is it possible to get a great-smelling cologne for under $30? In our book here at The Guy’s List, we certainly think it’s more than possible, and you needn’t look far when it comes to respected brands and designer houses. F by Ferragamo Black is meant to be bold and luxurious, with the packaging and bottle design to match. Beyond that, it’s a great cologne to wear for dressy occasions, with its clean, elegant finish and refined scent notes throughout.

Dossier Aquatic Lime Cologne

Dossier Aquatic Lime Cologne

The true greats in the fragrance world (and in the menswear world) are often imitated, never duplicated. But what if it was possible to get one of the best colognes for men – yet at a much lower price than its designer inspiration? Dossier uses some of the most famous men’s colognes on the market to inspire its own affordable scents, like this energetic cologne inspired by Armani’s famed Acqua di Gio. They have a fascinating range of other scents that draw inspiration from other iconic fragrances, and at prices like these, they’re very much worth another look.

Oakcha Amore Oudh

Oakcha Amour Oudh

Oakcha is another company paying homage to, and taking inspiration from, some of the best and coolest men’s fragrances on the market. Tom Ford is a designer worth emulating in every way, and his line of signature scents is as excellent as his designer menswear. In this case, Amour Oudh from Oakcha draws inspiration Oud Wood, with rich and spicy notes. Yet, it’s much more affordable than Tom Ford cologne – and we mean much, much more affordable.

Ted Baker Au Gold

Ted Baker GOLDONE Eau de Toilette

Ted Baker menswear is carefully composed and designed, always elegant and never overdone. If you’re wearing Ted Baker, you’re going to look sharp and put-together, is what we’re saying. And you could say the same thing about this elegant cologne, a citrusy and woody fragrance. It’s an even greater deal when you consider that you can use it as a fragrance when wearing a stylish Ted Baker cardigan for an evening on the town, for instance.

Best Eau Cologne for Men

Calvin Klein Defy

Calvin Klein DEFY For Men

One of the foremost names in menswear and stylish basics covers all the bases with one of the best eau colognes for men. DEFY is arguably the company’s signature scent, with refined notes of vetiver for a bright, spicy and refined finish. It’s a dressy cologne that’s perfectly suited for occasions where you might be mixing and matching your style moves – say, pairing a soft cotton T-shirt with a soft-shouldered blazer. And it’s another option that’s a bit pricier than, say, a sub-$30 cologne, but still beats out other options from the biggest names on the market.

Old Spice Cologne Spray for Men

Old Spice Cologne Spray for Men

Old Spice is a classic in the world of men’s grooming, a trend that’s held true for decades and endured so long, the brand is no longer trendy. That is to say, the brand is just incredibly reliable high-quality, affordable and made with great quality in mind. This cologne isn’t the fanciest option on the market, but that’s not a bad thing. It’s a fine scent with iconic fragrance notes all its own. And when you can find it for under $20, well, that’s just a downright steal.

Nautica Blue Fragrance

Nautica BLUE Eau de Toilette

Nautica certainly deserves multiple spots on our list of the best cheap colognes for men. Its BLUE fragrance is another classic in the eau de toilette world, with notes of jasmine, lime and cypress for a seriously refreshing scent experience. The bottle also looks visually appealing in your bathroom or on your vanity. It’s the little things that count in the world of the best eau de toilette fragrances (at affordable prices), and Nautica knows this all too well.

Dossier Ambery Mint

Dossier Ambery Mint

Dossier again makes this list, this time among the best cheap eau de cologne for men, and for good reason. It’s like we said before: The brand draws inspiration in spades from iconic scents across the board, and its Ambery Mint is another standout eau de toilette. It’s inspired by Versace Eros, a fragrance that normally costs a pretty penny. Best described as “icy with sweetness at its core,” it’s a remarkable scent available for a remarkably low price.

Frequently Asked Questions About Men’s Affordable Cologne Boxes

Is 2 sprays of cologne too much?

Honestly, 2 sprays of cologne is not enough for me most of the time. If find that between 5-7, two on each wrist and 3 on the neck, works best for me. This will keep the cologne projecting for the longest time without being overpowering. 

Which cologne smells the best for men?

During winter months, woodsy warm colognes are typically what smell best. During warmer months blue colognes tend to be preferred. This is because warm smells tend to be stronger and during warm months you don’t want to have on such a strong scent.

What scent drives a woman crazy?

This is subjective from women to women but generally strong contrasting scents will get interest. Pick a cologne that has light fruit scents contrasted with some warmer scents like vanilla or cinnamon to get compliments and attention.

Want More from The Guy’s List

Figuring out what to wear, what scent to use or what grooming products to amp up your routine shouldn’t be difficult. The Guy’s List is your one-stop shop for everything a modern man needs to know, from the best overcoats to the best cologne and grooming brands. That’s not all: We round out your lifestyle with guides to the coolest cities, hottest bars and restaurants and every must-have you need in your life. Whether dressing for the office, suiting up for date night or putting on a spritz of the best cheap cologne, you’ll find your perfect guide for (nearly) every occasion at The Guy’s List.

Beau Hayhoe, the fashion guy, is our expert in all things men's fashion and grooming. Over the years Beau has written for some of the largest men's magazines and gained a deep understanding of the best brands, styles, and products for guys. You can catch Beau on his social media listed on his author page or by reading the rest of his catalog here on The Guy's List.

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