5 Best Tips For How To Make Cologne Last Longer in 2023


How often have you found yourself bewildered, asking the question, “How can I make my cologne last longer?” I feel you. It’s like we’re running a marathon against time, trying to get to that finish line before our beloved fragrances hit their expiry dates.

As someone who has tested their fair share of scents, I want to help shed light on this aromatic disappointment. No longer will you need to search endlessly, “How to make cologne last longer?” Instead, let me share some tried and tested tricks, a little bit of home DIY, and a whole lot of personal experience.

From the preservation power of the humble packaging (that’s right, folks, unlike keeping your old laptop boxes, this kind of hoarding is in) to the discovery of the coolest hiding spots, we’ll dive into the deets of ensuring your cologne is always ready to impress. We’ll also take a trip down to the science of oxidation (no lab coat necessary) and discover why a small refrigerator might just be your cologne’s new best friend.

Finally, in an unexpected plot twist, alcohol turns out to be our scent savior! Yes, you read it right. That ‘alcohol is evil’ beauty rules don’t apply here. So buckle up, it’s time to delve into the fragrant mysteries of how to make your cologne last longer. Trust me, your nose (and wallet) will thank you.

Key Takeaways

In a scent-illating nutshell, learning how to make cologne last longer involves a few simple yet crucial steps.

Retain the original packaging for storage, keep your fragrances away from direct sunlight and inconsistent temperatures, preferably in a cool, dark place like a drawer or fridge.

Avoid storing them in the bathroom due to temperature fluctuations and consider a small portable fridge if your kitchen one gets too much light. Use your cologne regularly to prevent oxidization from air exposure and opt for fragrances with high alcohol content as it helps preserve them longer. Simple steps to keep you smelling good – happy spritzing.

Top Tips and Product To Help

Bottle of Creed Adventus being sprayed
creedboutique / Instagram

How To Make Cologne Last Longer

Creed Aventus

I know it’s tempting. You just splashed out on a scent you had your eye on for a long time, and it’s finally in your hands. Resist the urge to test it out unless you’re ready to start wearing it regularly. Do this, and you can put off the end of your cologne’s life a while longer. I can hear you asking, “so, does perfume expire or not?” Yes, it does, but if you’re looking out for how to make your cologne last longer, you only risk expiration once the bottle is opened and exposed to the air.

When you do at last open that bad boy up, don’t trash the packaging. Avoid ripping or damaging the packaging, and you have a perfectly-sized, protective storage box good to go. The box also has useful information to refer to once you’ve open it, so not all is lost.

Cologne storage shelf

It’s natural to want to display your impressive cologne collection in pride of place. But windowsills, wall shelves, and dressers can be the worst spots to store scents. An article in the Journal of Chemistry outlines how light causes fragrance molecules to break down and makes the composition unstable and more prone to oxidation.

This fact applies to both natural and artificial light; just because your cologne isn’t sitting directly in front of a window doesn’t mean it’s out of harm’s way. To protect the juice, store the bottle inside the original packaging that I just reminded you not to throw away.

According to cult fragrance house Creed, the ultimate storage spot, “is a dark, cool space like a drawer, or on a shelf in a closet in a room with stable temperature.” But, whatever you do, “do not store your fragrance in a bathroom or car.”

Chefman Mini fridge

Heat can have the same effect as light when it comes to breaking down perfume molecules. If your looking to perfect the mission of how to make cologne last longer then knowing that the optimum temperature to store cologne is below 59°F (15°C) is essential. Not only is a low temperature important, but also a consistent temperature. The bathroom is by far the worst place in the house to store your scents due to the temperature fluctuations and steam.

The answer may seem simple, just store it in the refrigerator, right? Although a good option, there’s a caveat. If your refrigerator, like mine, is communal and you have family members or roommates opening the door and turning the light on inside continuously, you may do more damage than good.

If that’s the case, I have a solution. I keep my most treasured colognes in a small portable refrigerator. Not only does this store them at the optimum temperature, but it also ticks the previous box of keeping them away from sunlight; two birds with one stone.

various cologne samples

As we mentioned earlier, oxygen and oxidization are the enemies of cologne when it comes to shelf life. The more cologne you use, the more space there is for oxygen in the bottle and the faster the process of oxidization. To put it in a less science-class way, the expiry process speeds up as the bottle gets emptier.

If you made the mistake of buying a larger size than you needed (no judgment, we’ve all been there) and still have half a bottle of juice left a year later, I suggest you get spritzing. That isn’t an excuse to overspray and choke everyone at the office, but instead, to find creative ways to get the most from that juice before it expires.

I like to spritz small pieces of card with cologne and leave them in clothes and shoes in the closet. Does it feel wrong using Creed Aventus as an air freshener? Hell yes, but it sure does beat throwing an unfinished expired batch in the trash, plus my feet have never smelt better.

Azzaro The Most Wanted

Over the years, we’ve been conditioned by grooming experts to avoid alcohol in cosmetic products, but cologne is the exception. Learning how to make cologne last longer comes with the realization that alcohol is an essential preservative in fragrances. It actually makes up 70-95% of the juice. I recommend scents with 85% alcohol and above if shelf-life is a priority. Parfum or Extrait scents contain 90-95% alcohol, and Eau de Parfum contains approximately 85% alcohol.

Sharing is caring, so I won’t gatekeep my top finds. For beast-mode longevity and warm, woodsy vanilla vibes, check out Azzaro The Most Wanted Parfum. Azzaro offers this scent in various formulations, but the Parfum has the highest alcohol concentration.

Looking to invest in a luxury scent to add class to your cologne collection? Nasamotto Absinth Extrait de Parfum is a niche, premium cologne that will get you a ton of compliments. Maybe even a few numbers too. Notes include woody, earthy moss, and vetiver.

On the other end of the scale, proving that you don’t need to bust the bank to find a scent that stands the test of time, is ARMAF Club De Nuit Intense Pure Parfum. This scent is reminiscent of Creed Aventus with an apple, bergamot, and pineapple opening but packs more of a punch.

man pulling a bottle of perfume out of a large perfume fridge display
timo_turner / Instagram


    • The best advice I can give for storing your cologne is to keep it in its original box and away from any light source. Light breaks down the fragrance’s molecules, making it prone to oxidation and instability. Heat does the same thing, altering the product’s chemical makeup. The bathroom cabinet is a no-no, too, as humidity is not your favorite fragrance’s friend. So, as a rule of thumb, store the cologne at less than 59°F (15°C) in a dark, dry place such as a drawer or dresser.

      On the flip side, cologne likes to be cool, so the refrigerator is a good option, but not if you’re constantly opening the door, triggering the light. If this is the case, wrap your bottle in foil, and store it in the freezer. Finally, keep spritzing until it’s empty. If the perfume has a high alcohol content, almost-empty bottles will evaporate much quicker.

      • If unopened, does cologne expire? This question is tricky for me to give a set-in-stone answer, as it depends on the cologne’s quality, strength, and type. If you store your unopened cherished cologne in a cool, dark, and dry place, it could last up to 10 years, even longer than its sell-by date.

        I always keep my colognes in their original packaging and away from heat and light. Six or seven years ago, I received a bottle of Montale Oudmazing for Christmas. I already had a three-quarters-full bottle, so I left the new one unopened. I stored it in a drawer and forgot all about it.

        Recently I came across it, opened the new bottle, and guess what? It smelled as “full of beans” as ever, which proves cologne longevity is all about clever storage!

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