10 Best Sandalwood Colognes for Men

Updated June 2021

Premium

Bond No. 9 New York Sandalwood

Editor's Pick

Drakkar Noir By Guy Laroche

Classic

Prada L'Homme

How We Found the Best Sandalwood Colognes

5 Experts Interviewed

23 Fragrances Tested

Top 10 Picks

Liam Carson

Liam Carson

Sandalwood is a fundamental ingredient for cologne, creating a warm and woody aroma that radiates masculinity.

Not only that, but it has natural longevity that makes it ultra desirable as the top ingredient for a fragrance.

It’s no surprise then that there are a myriad of high-end Sandalwood colognes out there, from Prada to Valentino to Tom Ford. But, which is the best sandalwood perfume, and what’s the difference? Do they all offer that classic sandalwood fragrance that men and women alike can’t resist?

Well, you can rest assured we’ve done our research to save you the hassle!  The following showcase the best sandalwood cologne for men in 2021.

Summary List

Sandalwood Colognes Ranked by Cologne Critic

Editor's Pick

Best Overall Sandalwood Cologne - Drakkar Noir By Guy Laroche

Why we chose it

Hailing from 1982, this is one of the best sandalwood perfumes out there.

In a minimalist and ominous black bottle, Drakkar Noir is reserved for the suavest and most stylish men. Perfumer Pierre Wargnye packed in a plethora of mighty scents to create this bold, vintage fragrance; the final product is deeply aromatic.

Top notes of lavender, mint, lemon, bergamot and basil combine to exude a fresh yet bold and masculine aroma. Base notes of oakmoss, leather, fir, pine tree needles and of course, sandalwood evoke an earthy, manly statement scent that can’t be ignored. It’s a timeless classic.

Let’s just say people wore their perfume stronger in the ’80s. It’s very long-lasting with a substantial projection, so save it for special occasions.

Main Accords

  • Woody
  • Aromatic
  • Fresh Spicy

Premium

Premium Cologne - Bond No. 9 New York Sandalwood

Our Take

Besides its awesome star-shaped bottle, this sandalwood fragrance stands out among the bunch.

Centred around musky sandalwood, other notes like oud, musk, amber and patchouli create an elegant, earthy blend. A unique top note of carrot piques curiosity and interest, while the velvety, powdery presence of orris invites sensuality.

A hint of fragrant fig meets sandalwood in the middle, adding a fruity element to an otherwise woody and spicy mix.

With moderate longevity and projection, it’s perfect for work and the gym without offending anyone! If you like to be a little different to everyone else, this scent will help you stand out without being obnoxious.

Main Accords

  • Earthy
  • Woody
  • Powdery

Best Value

Best Value for Money - Prada L'Homme

Our Take

Released in 2016, Prada L-Homme is a modern offering of the classic sandalwood fragrance. Launched alongside La Femme Prada, it’s designed to fuse with your lover’s scent. 

The description reads: ‘She is an absolute woman. He is an absolute man. Both have multiple identities.’ Breaking the boundaries of the laws of attraction, this perfume duo is created to build intrigue and chemistry. Like love potions!  If you’re looking for a fragrance that can work with what your partner is wearing, consider L’Homme.

Prada creates something new in combining its household florals amber and iris with a mesmerising base of sandalwood. Powdery, woody and flowery, this cologne blends a combination of unlikely scents into an empowering finished product.

It’ll stay on you throughout the day, and with moderate projection, it’s safe for work and everyday use.

Main Accords

  • Floral
  • Woody
  • Powdery

Tom Ford Santal Blush Eau De Parfum

Our Take

This mysterious fragrance really might make those around you blush, and is one of the most popular sandalwood perfumes on the market.

A layered aroma of warming sandalwood and tantalising Indian spices, it has the power to ignite passion. Top notes of spices, cinnamon, caraway and fenugreek add an exuberant kick to the central scent of creamy sandalwood. Floral middle notes of jasmine, ylang-ylang and rose calm the senses and balance out the spicy body of the fragrance.

And Tom Ford needs no introduction.  As one of the top fragrance houses in the world, any cologne from this collection is going to leave you smelling amazing.  Tom Ford colognes always test well in our reviews, so if you’re looking for a new signature scent, you can’t go far wrong.  Yes, Tom Ford colognes are expensive, but they are worth it.

This perfume is super long-lasting, thanks to the natural strength of sandalwood, and it has a moderate projection. It’s perfect for work or everyday purposes, but it’d equally equip you for a long and wild night out.

Main Accords

  • Woody
  • Powdery
  • Warm Spicy

Diptyque Tam Dao Eau De Parfum

Our Take

If anyone knows how to craft the perfect fragrance, it’s Diptyque. Known for making luxury candles, Diptyque has also jumped on the perfume boat, and we are thankful they did!

Launched in 2013 and created by perfumer Daniel Moliere, this Tam Doa fragrance combines delicate Goa Sandalwood with woody, dry cedarwood. Other fragrances include fiery ginger and amber wood, a dash of fresh lime, a sprinkle of coriander and a drop of vanilla. Sounds tasty…

This delightful combination is designed to evoke imagery of the ancient trees of India. This one lasts throughout the day, and with a moderate projection, it won’t overpower those around you. It’s suitable for all purposes, a great all-rounder to take you from morning to night.

Main Accords

  • Woody
  • Powdery
  • Warm Spicy

L’Instant de Guerlain Pour Homme

Our Take

Released in 2016, this is another modern one for the books. Top notes of pepper, lemon and star anise will take you on a fragrant, oriental journey, while middle notes of tea and smoke (yes, you read that right) cater to the desire for familiarity. They add a musky layer that is heightened by the deep, rich base notes of sandalwood and cacao.

Gentle, floral scents of patchouli, jasmine and hibiscus embellish the perfume with hints of femininity, so the scent isn’t too heavy. It’s long-lasting with moderate projection, so suitable for a fancy dinner or a night on the town.

Main Accords

  • Citrus
  • Woody
  • Warm Spicy

Guerlain Santal Royal

Our Take

Encased in an iconic emerald green bottle designed in 1908, this scent is something special. It’s probably about as royal a perfume can get, sold at a luxury price of 650 euros, so is one for the most serious of fragrance collectors.

Forming part of ‘the Colour Collection’, this scent is exuberant and downright classy, definitely one for the gentleman who doesn’t mind spending on their fragrances.

On top of the central accord of woody oud, gentle top notes of jasmine and neroli exude a sweet, floral fragrance.

Luxurious middle notes of rose, cinnamon and peach evoke a rich, hedonistic aroma of delicate fruit and spices. Intense base notes of sandalwood, leather and oud steal the scene, creating a heavy fragrance that fills the room.

For the confident man that likes to show off, this one should be saved for special occasions. Think dinner parties and dates, or evenings with a loved one enjoying a glass of red wine.

You’ll soon forget about the price!

Main Accords

  • Oud
  • Woody
  • Powdery

Valentino Uomo Noir Absolu For Men

Our Take

In a black diamonte bottle designed for the dare-devil, this cologne is flamboyant yet elusive. 

Top notes of black pepper and cinnamon will captivate everyone around you, drawing them in with its warm and musky scent. The bold middle notes of incense and essential oils aren’t for the faint-hearted, but for the man who likes to be the centre of attention.

Sandalwood is the ultimate base note for this cologne, rounding out the spicy, fragrant blend with a seductive, woody fragrance.

There’ll be no need for a top-up with this long-lasting fragrance, and its heavy projection will undoubtedly make a statement. Reserve it for the evening, and let the allure of sandalwood intoxicate your date!

Main Accords

  • Woody
  • Balsamic
  • Warm Spicy

Taylor of Old Bond Street Sandalwood Cologne

Our Take

Taylor of Old Bond Street Sandalwood Cologne is an absolute classic sandalwood fragrance, encased in an elegant, vintage bottle.

A herbal, aromatic blend of lavender, rosemary and geranium encompasses the top notes. At the same time, a fiery kick of amber heightens the woody, spicy elements of the sandalwood, vetiver and cedar base notes. Carnation adds a clean and sweet fragrance as orange blossom brightens the rich, masculine overall body.

For the reserved yet confident gentleman that cares about style, this tasteful Taylor of Old Bond Street’s sandalwood perfume is ideal. It’s moderate in projection and longevity, so perfect for all occasions.

Main Accords

  • Woody
  • Powdery
  • Aromatic

Santal Majuscule by Serge Lutens Eau de Parfum​

Our Take

Known as the anti-perfume, L’Eau has fresh and citrusy main accords that don’t overwhelm the senses. Think of it as more of a natural fragrance, not an overpowering perfume with artificial scents. It elicits the imagery and aroma of nature and fresh mountain air. This is achieved with the gentle, floral powers of clary sage and magnolia, plus citrus and mint to top it off.

As a result, L’Eau has a soft projection, but don’t let that fool you. It’s very long-lasting, so you won’t need to top it up, and your scent will still appear natural. It’ll keep you fresh at the gym, at work and during everyday life.

Main Accords

  • Cacao
  • Woody
  • Warm Spicy

Expert Tips

Sandalwood is a legendary scent that’s very distinctive. It creates a soft, warm, creamy and woody aroma, and is a popular ingredient for perfumes and colognes, not least because of its natural long-lastingness.

Sandalwood is a class of woods from trees that are part of the Santalum genus. Santalum is a group of woody, flowering plants, best known for sandalwood. Sandalwood is put through a distillation process which produces sandalwood oil. The oil is what is used in perfumes.

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Researched by a team of fragrance experts.