Vanilla is one of the most popular notes used in the perfume world, providing a sweet and playful kick that we simply can’t get enough of.
Despite its dominance in the fragrance industry, vanilla is often associated more with perfumes, than colognes, because of it’s naturally sweet vibe.
Vanilla comes from the dried pods of an orchid-like plant grown mainly in Madagascar and is the second most expensive spice in the world behind saffron. Better still, vanilla is a powerful aphrodisiac which makes it a natural choice for fragrances, guaranteed to drive your loved one crazy.
Although vanilla features prominently in many women’s perfumes, it’s so versatile that the scent can also be incredibly masculine.
In the following guide, we’ll be taking a look at the top 10 men’s vanilla colognes which in our opinion, really stand out from the rest.
Let’s get started.
Think of a black, studded leather jacket with a crisp white tee and you envision precisely what Valentino Uomo Intense smells like.
The original Valentino Uomo drew inspiration from white leather. In contrast, Intense is obviously focused on rich, dark and manly black leather.
Featuring top notes of sage oil and fresh mandarin, the base features an intoxicating iris and tonka bean. The base is where it blooms into a wonderful, sweet, creamy leather and vanilla scent.
The intense certainly lives up to its name, as longevity and projection perform incredibly well.
The eye-catching studded black glass of the bottle looks great on any shelf or vanity cabinet.
If you’re looking for inspiration, we see this more for a formal occasion, paired with a sharp suit.
Tobacco Vanille is straight from Tom Ford’s Private Blend Collection, a unique and exclusive fragrance line from the house of Tom Ford, each honing in on a single note.
Tobacco Vanille is definitely one of the most popular fragrances from Ford, centred around the fantastic vanilla-tobacco combination.
Now we have to make it clear that Tobacco Vanille is mighty powerful, especially after the first spray. It’s essential to give it time to develop, especially if you have a sensitive nose. The fragrance soon transforms into a deep and sultry fragrance which is incredibly intoxicating.
One thing for sure, when buying a fragrance from Tom Ford, you can be confident you are getting something of quality, and Tobacco Vanille is no exception.
The quality of the ingredients really shines in the fragrances projection, making this an incredibly long-lasting vanilla perfume.
No Tom Ford fragrances lend themselves to casual occasions, so save this for the most special of events.
Jo Malone, the British fragrance house, first released Vanilla & Anise in 2009 to much praise in the fragrance industry.
By using a vanilla/anise combo, Jo Malone has toned down the overly sugary effect of the vanilla, leaving a wonderfully creamy and warm unisex fragrance.
Longevity on Vanilla & Anise is relatively moderate, but it does require a generous application to prevent it from dying too early in the day.
The fresh and natural combination of vanilla and anise creates a wonderfully summery scent, but we find the fragrance is pretty versatile, suited for year-long use.
Best used in casual settings.
Paco Rabanne Pure XS is an incredibly easy to wear, fresh and uncomplicated cologne with vanilla notes.
Both sweet and aromatic, the most notable stage of Pure XS is the vanilla base, featuring cinnamon with a dash of ginger and thyme
Fresh spicy, leathery, and fruity aromas form a beautiful combination that is perfect for cooler summer evenings. But it’s incredibly versatile, and equally suits the fall months when the days are creeping in.
Paco Rabanne Pure XS is a clean and fresh smelling fragrance, but rather subtle, making it a perfect choice for wearing to the office, or carrying out everyday errands.
If you thought the original Spicebomb was intense, meet Spicebomb extreme, the uber-sexy and sensual bigger brother of Viktor & Rolf’s original fragrance.
The bottle of Spicebomb Extreme is shaped like a grenade, which tells you all you need to know about this absolutely explosive cologne.
Spicebomb Extreme is the ultimate spicy mix of lavender, caraway, black pepper, tobacco and of course, vanilla which creates the ultimate hypnotising concoction.
Now that makes for a very long-lasting and powerful fragrance in terms of projection, so definitely avoid using at formal occasions. This is best saved for a special date night with your loved one. Wearing this, who knows where things will lead.
Noir Extreme is from Tom Ford’s signature collection, making it a little more affordable than the offerings from his Private Blend.
Built on the success of its parent fragrance ‘Noir”, Noir Extreme hit the market in 2015, offering a deeper and intense take on the original cologne. Most famously, Tom Ford himself featured heavily in the marketing campaign.
Noir Extreme is warm and spicy with zesty notes of citrus, featuring mandarin, neroli, patchouli and nutmeg in the opening.
The delicious warmth of the vanilla base is paired with amber, cinnamon and vanilla to create a dense and heady aromatic.
Noir Extreme, as the name suggests, is incredibly long-lasting, so go easy when applying.
A solid choice for a formal occasion, Noir Extreme exudes masculinity, maturity and class.
Next up in our list is a fragrance which is extremely popular amongst party-goers, a classic ‘party’ fragrance.
From the house of Versace, Eros is a woody oriental featuring an opening blast of fresh mint, green apple and lemon. Where the true vanilla power comes out is in the dry down, as the sensual spice charms its way through.
Many compare Eros to Paco Rabanne’s 1 Million, so you’re guaranteed to like this if you’re a fan.
The downside of Eros’ popularity is that it’s a very common choice for men. If you’re looking for something a little unique, then Eros may not be for you.
We love Eros on a night out with friends (during the colder months), a feel-good fragrance perfect for memorable nights.
Givenchy claims that Pi embodies the seductiveness of a man, his intelligence, courage and contributions.
Pi is an oriental, woody cologne featuring basil, rosemary, tarragon and neroli which create a fresh yet warm combination. In the base, vanilla and tonka are swirled together to create a toasty, comforting fragrance.
Sweet and sensual, Pi is a must for all vanilla fans.
Pi is appropriate for the colder months, wear this on a morning walk before you take on the rest of the day.
Dolce & Gabbana The One is a legend in the fragrance community, and it’s rare we hear a bad word said about this cologne.
The woody, spicy fragrance was first released in 2008 and has been on many lists of top colognes since.
The aroma features basil, coriander and grapefruit in the opening. This develops into a warming ginger, orange blossom and cardamom centre, followed by classic wintery notes of cedar, tobacco and vanilla.
The scent itself is incredibly safe, sexy and uncomplicated. Best suited for more intimate occasions, a spray of this will leave your loved one creeping closer for a better sniff.
If you’re looking to create a winning first impression, Dior Homme Intense should be your go-to cologne.
Sexy, masculine and evoking curiosity, women in particular love this scent on a man, possibly as many said it almost reminded them of the scent of high-quality makeup.
We love the sweet and chocolatey aroma you get from wearing this, created from the powdery mix of vanilla, cocoa and iris.
The scent is extremely pleasant and guaranteed to get you many compliments. You never know, this could soon become your signature scent.
The elegant vibe of Dior Homme Intense should be matched with equally elegant attire, best shirt and shoes only.
If you’re looking for a signature vanilla scent, you can’t go wrong with any of the colognes on our top ten review.
If you’re looking for something for a particular occasion – check out our recommendations below.
Casual Afternoon Givenchy Pi. We absolutely adore Pi for its versatility. You can wear this at any time of day and smell your best while going about your daily business.
Evening Dinner Dior Homme Intense. Intense is one of the most widely recommended fragrances for a reason. The chocolatey, powdery aroma is to die for. Who knows where after dinner will lead.
Black Tie Event Tom Ford – Tobacco Vanille. This elegant and exclusive fragrance is suited to only the finest of occasions. One that is guaranteed to turn heads for sure.
It’s true that vanilla features heavily in perfumes and women’s cosmetics, but that doesn’t mean it cannot smell equally as great in men’s colognes.
A common misconception many have with vanilla is that it’s a feminine scent because of its sweetness. The wonderful thing with vanilla is that it can take so many paths once on your skin. Besides, a touch of sweetness is never a bad thing.
Many fragrance houses such as Jo Malone and Tom Ford are blurring the line between male and female-only fragrances. Labels are so 2019 anyway.
Our advice, if you like something, wear it.
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Researched by a team of fragrance experts.