Best affordable fragrance

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Best affordable fragrance

My first-ever fragrance was a holiday gift I got from my mom when I was 12. I had seen Ralph by Ralph Lauren in every teen magazine I read, but as an unemployed middle-schooler, I couldn’t afford it. That gift set off a tradition: I’d lust after a new scent all year, and ask for it come holiday time. I did this until I graduated collage and finally moved out.

But even now, as an adult — who more-or-less makes enough money to afford the expensive fragrances I fawn over after sniffing department store samples — I struggle to justify shelling out more than $100 on any of them. And in living by the law of fragrance frugality, I’ve learned that, like mascara and pizza, a fragrance doesn’t have to be expensive to be good.

Whether you’re a fan of spicy scents or sweet florals, there’s an affordable fragrance out there to match your vibe, and your budget. Ahead, the best under-$75 fragrances you won’t have to wait until the holidays to pick up. 

1 of 9 Philosophy Amazing Grace Eau de Toilette 

You know the moment when you step out of the shower and just smell clean? Philosophy’s bottled that feeling to create its soft, floral cult-favorite fragrance. It has notes of bergamont, muguet blossoms, and musk. 

2 of 9 Ouai North Bondi Eau de Parfum

Ouai’s haircare products are a hit because they actually work, but their scents have also achieved cult-status. Luckily, founder and celebrity hairstylist Jen Atkin bottled up the fragrances into eau de parfums. North Bondi is a fresh floral scent with notes of bergamot, rose de mai, Italian lemon, violet, and white musk. It can be found in the brand’s dry shampoo, leave-in conditioner, and wave spray, among other products. 

3 of 9 Ariana Grande Cloud Eau de Parfum

This Ariana Grande scent is like a breath of fresh air. The juice includes notes of lavender blossom, pear, Crème De Coconut, praline, vanilla orchid, sensual musks, and creamy blonde woods. Not to mention, the bottle is ridiculously cute. 

4 of 9 Clean Reserve Classic Warm Cotton 

Who would have thought that warm, cozy smell of fresh laundry would make for a great fragrance? Inspired by fresh-out-of-the-dryer clothes, Clean Reserve’s scent is a combination of bergamot, peony, and amber. 

5 of 9 By Rosie James Perfume

Hang on to those last warm summer days year round with a few spritzes of By Rosie Jane’s light, earthy fragrance. It has notes of fig, amber, and gardenia. 

6 of 9 Jennifer Lopez Promise Eau de Parfum

With notes of Italian tangerine, pink berries, nashi pear, honeysuckle, woods, and crystalized amber, J.Lo’s 25th fragrance is a floral woodsy scent that promises to become your new go-to. 

7 of 9 Nirvana Black 

While CK One has become synonymous with the decade’s grunge-chic aesthetic, the gender-neutral fragrance transcends the test of time, thanks to its light but sensual scent. 

8 of 9 Glossier You 

Heavy on base notes so that its scent doesn’t change as it dries down, Glossier’s You is designed to smell like well, you. The fragrance has a mix of ambrette, musk, and ambrox that melt with your skin’s natural smell. 

9 of 9 Maison Louis Marie Antridris Cassis Perfume Oil 

A classic fruity fragrance, Maison Louis Marie’s roll-on oil has notes of cassis, white rose, tonka, and a dash of black pepper. 

1. Paco Rabanne Pour Homme [Spring Fragrance]

Overview

  • Fragrance Family: Aromatic Fougère
  • Seasonality: Spring
  • Occasion: Office
  • Longevity: 5/5
  • Pricing
  • Amazon: From $46

Why Is It Worth The Price?

Although Pour Homme edges slightly over the $30 mark, it offers one of the best olfactory experiences available. With an enduring longevity and strong projection, you won’t need to use much in order for it to be effective, which only adds to the fantastic value for money.

Seasonality

Aroma Profile

  • Head: Rosemary, Sage, Rosewood
  • Heart: Lavender, Geranium, Tonka Bean
  • Base: Oak Moss, Honey, Labdanum

2. Old Spice Original [Winter Fragrance]

Overview

  • Fragrance Family: Spicy Oriental Amber
  • Seasonality: Fall & Winter
  • Occasion: Office
  • Longevity: 3/5
  • Pricing:

Why Is It Worth The Price?

An unforgettable classic, Old Spice is a multi-generational fragrance that is still very much relevant today. At a mere $15 for 150ml, this after shave performs remarkably well and will keep you going throughout the day. Furthermore, its blend may be reformulated compared to the original but it is far from dated.

Seasonality

Aroma Profile

  • Head: Blood Orange, Anise, Nutmeg
  • Heart: Carnation, Jasmine, Cinnamon
  • Base: Cedarwood, Vanilla, Amber Resin

3. Aramis By Estée Lauder [Fragrance Under $30]

Overview

  • Fragrance Family: Leather Chypre
  • Seasonality: Winter
  • Occasion: Romantic
  • Longevity: 4/5

Why Is It Worth The Price?

Another classic but this time from the ’60s, Aramis is a renowned powerhouse fragrance. Giving one of the most long-lasting and impressive performances, you’ll be very satisfied with its longevity. However, this is a fragrance very much an emblem of its time so be wary of its contents!

Seasonality

Aroma Profile

  • Head: Bergamot, Artemisia, Thyme, Pepper
  • Heart: Jasmine, Patcouli, Cloves, Sage
  • Base: Sandal, Guaiacwood, Labdanum

4. Cerruti 1881 Pour Homme [Office Fragrance]

Overview

Why Is It Worth The Price?

A complex citrus bouquet followed by a floral heart and freshly woody base makes this a wonderfully versatile fragrance. The added benefit of this cologne is that Cerruti 1881 Pour Homme can be worn all year-round. Therefore, for those really on a budget, it can keep you going for any occasion and any season.

Seasonality

Aroma Profile

  • Head: Bergamot, Juniper, Lavender, Cypress
  • Heart: Lily, Carnation, Vetiver, Ylang Ylang
  • Base: Cedar, Pine, Oak Moss, Patchouli

5. Davidoff Cool Water [Summer Fragrance]

Overview

  • Fragrance Family: Aromatic Fougère
  • Seasonality: Winter
  • Occasion: Romantic
  • Longevity: 4/5

Why Is It Worth The Price?

Although somewhat retro, Cool Water is a classic aquatic fragrance that offers one of the most refreshing summer experiences. Its overt calone head endures throughout the dry-down while offering lavender, pine, peppermint, jasmine and cedar notes on the way.

Seasonality

Aroma Profile

  • Head: Calone, Lavender, Pine, Rosemary
  • Heart: Jasmine, Mint, Sandal, Carnation
  • Base: Oak Moss, Cedar, Ambergris

6. Armaf Club de Nuit Intense Homme [Fragrance Under $30]

Overview

  • Fragrance Family: Woody Fruity Musk
  • Seasonality: Summer
  • Occasion: Casual
  • Longevity: 5/5

Why Is It Worth The Price?

Although it won’t offer you the same premium experience, CDNIM is a much more affordable alternative to Creed Aventus. Despite being essentially a clone, it offers a rich experience on of itself. Therefore, if you’re on a tighter budget, it’s a great option to consider!

Seasonality

Aroma Profile

  • Head: Cassic, Lime, Pineapple Leaf, Apple
  • Heart: Rose, Jasmine, Birch
  • Base: Ambergris, Patchouli, Vanilla

7. Mäurer & Wirtz 4711 [Released In 1792]

Overview

  • Fragrance Family: Aromatic Citrus
  • Seasonality: Spring
  • Occasion: Casual
  • Longevity: 1/5

Why Is It Worth The Money?

We absolutely love this historical fragrance and feel that it is systematically overlooked in favour of modern alternatives. Despite its age, it doesn’t feel dated. Furthermore, it’s an excellent unisex option that can be enjoyed as a standalone scent or event for layering.

Seasonality

Aroma Profile

  • Head: Bergamot, Basil, Lemon
  • Heart: Neroli, Jasmine, Lily, Rose
  • Base: Vetiver, Cedar, Patchouli

8. Tabac Original [Classic Fragrance]

Overview

  • Fragrance Family: Floral Aldehyde
  • Seasonality: Spring
  • Occasion: Casual
  • Longevity: 3/5

Why Is It Worth The Money?

A classic fragrance that’s well-loved particularly by shaving enthusiasts, Tabac Original has a rich floral heart that lingers throughout the base. The resulting skin scent is pleasant yet conservative, which offers a great casual or office choice.

Seasonality

Aroma Profile

  • Head: Bergamot, Lime, Jasmine, Petitgrain
  • Heart: Lavender, Chamomile, Carnation, Pepper
  • Base: Rose, Sandalwood, Vetiver, Amber

9. Scent Box Fragrance Subscription

Overview

  • Quantity: 0.27 Oz / 8 ml
  • Extra Frag Option: Yes
  • Pricing:
  • Standard: $14.95* / Month
    • Premium: $19.95* / Month

Is It Worth The Money?

If you’re on a small budget, there is an alternative approach. Rather than purchase a full bottle of fragrance, you could consider subscribing to a service. While you will indeed get less fragrance for your money, it’s an affordable way of trying new things!

Our preferred one is Scent Box, which delivers you a month’s worth of fragrance for as little as $14.95. You can also get 35% with the code listed above! There are also additional options such as an extra fragrance or a premium selection.

10. Scentbird Fragrance Subscription

Overview

  • Quantity: 0.27 Oz / 8 ml
  • Extra Frag Option: Yes
  • Pricing:
  • Standard: $15 / Month

Is It Worth The Money?

While we prefer Scent Box, Scentbird is probably the best known fragrance subscription service. Overall, Scent Box provides better value for money as well as a 35% discount.

However, Scentbird does give you a great selection and doesn’t distinguish between standard a premium fragrances so you have access to everything at the same price. They also offer you long-term discounts if you commit to several months at a time.

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