Many men find themselves at a loss when it comes to finding the perfect scent for work.
After all, most of the time, we want something that smells good and makes us feel confident. A masculine scent should be assertive and bold, right?
Slow up there. There are rules you need to follow when it comes to finding colognes that will help you in your professional life. Get it wrong, and you could overwhelm the office and ruin people's opinions of you.
In this article, I'll outline the best cologne notes for professional men and which fragrances use these notes. We'll also look at which fragrance notes can help promote productivity and performance in the workplace.
- Can Scent Change The Way You're Perceived
- The Olfactory System And Scent Anchoring
- What Fragrance Notes Help Command Respect?
- Which Fragrance Notes Help Boost Productivity?
- Best Colognes For The Office
#1 Can Scent Change The Way You're Perceived?
Yes – scent has a significant impact on the way that people view you. Studies have shown that people who wear certain colognes and fragrances are perceived as more competent, attractive, and trustworthy.
If you want to make a good impression at work, then it's essential to choose a scent that will reflect well on you. After all, it's one of the first things someone will notice about you!
But what scents reflect well on a man? Smell is such a personal thing – what one person loves, another might hate… right?
While this is true to an extent, when it comes to how you're perceived, a person's opinions of a fragrance often have a lot to do with the strength of that fragrance rather than simply how it smells.
For example, a strong cologne might be overwhelming to some people, but it will also make you seem more confident and commanding.
On the other hand, a lighter scent might be more pleasant, but it might also make you seem weaker or less important.
In short: wearing a scent at the office is a minefield that you must navigate very carefully. The type of cologne you wear (and how people perceive you while wearing it) has a lot to do with your authority in the office, the kind of place you work, and the time of year you're working.
In the summer, for example, you might want to wear a lighter scent to not overwhelm your colleagues.
But in the winter, when people are huddled around the office heater, and there's less ventilation, a heavier scent will carry better and make you seem more important.
The same goes for the type of office you work in. If you're in a creative field, you might be able to get away with a more eccentric scent.
But if you're working in a more traditional office environment, it's best to stick to something classic and timeless.
#2 The Olfactory System And Scent Anchoring
The Olfactory system is what you use to pick up on the scents around you – without it, you wouldn't be able to smell. But did you know that your limbic and olfactory systems work together to create memories?
Don't know what the limbic system is? Then listen up.
In short, the limbic system is responsible for processing emotions and forming memories. Because of its proximity to the olfactory system, the scent directly impacts how we feel and what we remember.
To cut a long story short – you can use scent psychology to influence how people feel when they smell your cologne.
Using a process called scent anchoring (the process of leveraging a fragrance to promote an emotional response upon exposure to a scent), you have the power to influence how people perceive you when you wear that cologne.
Let me explain.
Let's say you're a middle manager at a big city law firm. People need to treat you with respect and authority, right?
Whenever you meet with your subordinates, ensure you wear a masculine cologne containing musk and vetiver. Make sure you wear this cologne every time you hold a meeting.
As the weeks go by, your workers' olfactory and limbic systems will begin to associate this scent with your authority and the feeling of respect they have for you.
What does this mean? Well, you've essentially got respect on demand! They'll know you mean business whenever they smell your meeting fragrance, and their brains will tell them that you are the authority in the room.
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#3 What Fragrance Notes Help Command Respect?
So which cologne should you wear if you want to command respect and authority in the office?
That's a tricky question – there are thousands of scents on the market, so pinning one down as THE scent for professional men is tough.
However, what I can do is explain the best fragrance notes to look for in an authority cologne. You'll find that many of the most potent colognes on the market share some of the same notes that make them authoritative and respectable.
If you're looking for a cologne to get you the respect you deserve, I'd suggest looking for fragrances that contain:
These notes have a natural virility and masculinity that will subconsciously make those around you see you as an authority figure.
Of course, it's important to remember that not everyone is the same – what works for one person might not work for another.
The best way to find an authoritative cologne is to experiment with different scents and see how people react to you when you wear them.
You might be surprised at just how much of a difference the right cologne can make!
#4 Which Fragrance Notes Help Boost Productivity?
It's no secret that different aromas have different effects on us – lavender is a very well-known example. When used in the right context, it can help relax and relieve anxiety's impact on the body.
But what about productivity? Being a professional man isn't just about commanding respect, after all. It's also about being productive and holding yourself to a high standard of peak performance.
With that in mind, you should also consider fragrance notes that help improve performance.
Colognes containing these notes should help you find your focus and outperform the rest:
- Rosemary – helps heighten memory and alertness
- Vetiver – boosts oxygenation within our cells, helping increase concentration
- Coffee – a great anchor scent to wake us up
- Lemon – boosts focus and helps us avoid making errors in our work
- Jasmine – promotes a positive outlook and helps to give us energy
- Ginger – fights fatigue and can even help to lessen pain
- Lemongrass – reduces stress and can alleviate the effects of anxiety
- Peppermint – helps us to become laser-focused on the task at hand
- Sweet Amber – improves cognitive performance, helping you keep productive and on-task right through to the end of your day.
- Pine Resin – invigorates the mind.
Find a cologne that mixes these notes with the above authority-commanding notes, and you're on to a winner!
#5 Best Colognes For The Office
With that said, let's explore some of the possible colognes that can both help you command respect and stay focused throughout your work day.
It's a big ask. After all, not many perfumers formulate their fragrances to meet this sort of specific requirement. However, that doesn't mean A1 office colognes don't exist.
Mission Fragrances' Commitment P.E.C
I'll be honest; you need to be careful with this fragrance. Is it going to suit the everyday office environment? Probably not.
However, will this fragrance be perfect for your scent anchoring fragrance when you need to command respect and make a statement at the office? Absolutely! I formulated Commitment with formality in mind – so when you need to appear authoritative and professional to the max, it's a perfect choice.
Notes like Sweet Amber, Tonka, and Oud give this fragrance a luxurious scent sure to impress in the right environment.
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Bleu De Chanel
It's a classic.
Bleu De Chanel is one of those fragrances that perfectly embodies what it means to be a professional man.
It projects well, lasts ages, and has an incredibly woody base that makes one heck of an impact when worn intentionally.
Back in 2010, everyone was wearing this fragrance. However, it's been a while since its release, and fewer men are sporting it at the office nowadays. As such, it could be an excellent fragrance for any man looking to make an impact and portray his authority in an office full of Dior Sauvage and Creed Aventus.
Tom Ford Ombre Leather
This is one of my favorite leather-based colognes.
Typically, leather fragrances make a man smell like a biker jacket. Sure, that's kind of what they aim to do; after all – they are formulated with leather as the main focus point.
However, Ombre Leather by Tom Ford breaks the mold a bit here and adds in a variety of other notes that help to broaden the experience of those who catch you wearing it.
It all comes from the base of amber, moss, and patchouli. This triplet helps to smooth out and take the edge off this fragrance's leather focus.
Not many men wear this fragrance – but you definitely should. If you aim to make a statement, ooze authority and create a memorable impact on those who work for you, this is the fragrance for you.
Colder weather's on its way – is your cologne wardrobe ready? Click here to discover my top picks for the best colognes a man can wear in the fall.