BestReviews is reader-supported and may earn an affiliate commission. Details
Expert Shopper Beauty & Personal Care

Earthy colognes are an excellent choice for winter. Here are the 10 best

If you’re looking for a refreshing fragrance to wear in the winter, it’s crucial to understand what makes a fragrance suitable for wearing in the winter instead of summer. Then you can break winter fragrances into groups of scent families to narrow down your choices. You'll find that earthy colognes are among the most popular scent families and excellent for wearing during the winter.

In this article: Yves St. Lauren Y Live Intense, Dior Sauvage Eau de Toilette and Tom Ford Oud Wood.

What's a winter fragrance?

A winter cologne is different from a summer one because it’s meant to permeate several layers of clothing if needed. You can wear any fragrance at any point during the year, of course, but since body temperature is usually lower during the winter, a fragrance won’t evaporate as fast as in the summer. For that reason, winter fragrances are generally heavier and more potent, and they tend to linger much longer.

Earthy colognes

Earthy colognes are so named because they have a scent reminiscent of dirt and pine trees. They're more robust than citrus or floral fragrances, which are more suitable for summer, and often blended with woody notes to create a pleasant aroma that lasts for several hours. Earthy colognes are sometimes considered their own category of scent family but are often lumped together with woody fragrances.

Breaking down notes

A common descriptor of any fragrance is its notes, which give a cologne its signature scent and profile. Colognes are crafted from a blend of several notes, but it’s important to note which ones are the most prominent and which are more subtle.

  • Base notes are the ones you can detect immediately after spraying cologne.
  • Heart notes begin to reveal themselves approximately 5 to 10 minutes after applying cologne and can linger for an hour or two.
  • Base notes linger for several hours after spraying cologne and leave you with what you could consider the scent trail you leave behind as you move.

Which notes should I look for in an earthy cologne?

Many earthy colognes have a woody scent, so a diverse range of ingredients can be used in their composition. However, the most common notes found in earthy colognes are those derived from patchouli, moss, orris root, vetiver and essential oils.

Earthy fragrances with spicy tones may contain base notes of cinnamon, cloves, cumin and nutmeg for a warm touch. Some earthy tones are even supplemented with fruity or citrus notes, giving them a slightly lighter scent, which makes them more versatile.

Best earthy colognes

Yves St. Lauren Y Live Intense

The top notes of this earthy winter fragrance feature orange blossom intensified with spicy ginger and bright bergamot. Sage and juniper combine with geranium and lavender for the heart notes, and the base notes include a blend of cacao, sandalwood and balsam.

Sold by Amazon

Dior Sauvage Eau de Toilette

Those who want a subtle fragrance with earthy tones will love this eau de toilette spray. The primary top note is Calabrian bergamot, followed by heart notes of Szechuan pepper for a spicy, woody trail and ambergris for a sweet finish.

Sold by Amazon and Sephora

Tom Ford Oud Wood

This cologne comes in an elegant chess-piece-shaped spray bottle and offers a masculine scent bursting with woody and amber tones. It’s a classic woods fragrance with key notes of rare oud wood, sandalwood and Chinese pepper blended with exotic spices.

Sold by Amazon and Sephora

Prada Luna Rossa Carbon

For those who want a long-lasting fragrance, Prada Luna Rossa Carbon offers a captivating masculine aroma that keeps you feeling refreshed all day. This cologne contains steam-distilled botanicals blended with sensual notes of lavender, dry amber, Italian green bergamot and patchouli.

Sold by Amazon and Sephora

Chanel Bleu de Chanel

A woody fragrance, Bleu de Chanel is subtle enough to wear year-round, but it really shines during the winter. It contains notes of zesty citrus, aromatic mint and a hint of dry cedar for a woody scent and a sensual trail.

Sold by Amazon and Ulta Beauty

Hermes Terre d'Hermes Eau Givree Eau de Parfum

This earthy, woody cologne is made from an exquisite blend of spicy notes for a cool, refreshing fragrance. Its key notes include juniper, citron and timur pepper, and it comes in a bottle with a sophisticated look.

Sold by Sephora

Armani Beauty Armani Code Parfum

This earthy fragrance comes in a rounded rectangular bottle and offers an enthralling woody scent backed with citrus tones, making it one of the more subtle, pleasant winter aromas. Its key notes include tonka bean, mandarin essence, bergamot, rosemary essence, vanilla extract and cedarwood.

Sold by Sephora

Ralph Lauren Ralph's Club Parfum

This refreshing cologne lasts all day and comes in a bottle with a striking design featuring a matte-black glass construction and a gunmetal hinge cap. The fragrance offers a masculine scent cultivated by lavender, vetiver, cardamom and patchouli notes.

Sold by Amazon and Sephora

Every Man Jack Men’s Cologne

If you want an inexpensive cologne that’s great for everyday wear and smells fantastic, you won’t be disappointed by Every Man Jack’s sandalwood-scented cologne. It features prominent amber and vetiver notes and a hint of vanilla for a sweet trail.

Sold by Amazon

Boss Hugo Boss The Scent Le Parfum

This cologne is seductive and an excellent choice for wearing during the winter. Body warmth accentuates it and makes it stand out, and the key notes of ginger, iris and leather are expertly blended to create a refreshing scent.

Sold by Amazon

Want to shop the best products at the best prices? Check out Daily Deals from BestReviews.

Sign up here to receive the BestReviews weekly newsletter for useful advice on new products and noteworthy deals. 

Kevin Luna writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.

Share this post: