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Best woody fragrances for men 1

14 Best Woody Fragrances for Men

The best woody colognes for men add a touch of warmth when the days get shorter and the nights get cooler. It’s time to put away those fresh citrus fragrances and get to terms with these earthy and musky options, perfectly designed for cocktail dinners, date nights, and everything in between. Each scent on our list of the top woody fragrances for men offers a beautifully layered experience rife with timeless masculinity.

Best Woody Fragrances for Men at a Glance

Highlights from our list include the following:

Now we’ve had a look at our favourites, let’s check out the complete list.

RELATEDLooking for a great fragrance? These are our favourites, as chosen by our editors.

Terre dhermes parfum by hermes 1
Terre d’Hermes Parfum by Hermes | Image: Hermes

1. Terre d’Hermes Parfum by Hermes

Price: from AU$237

Great value for money and one of the best-smelling woody colognes for men that we’ve tested because of its addictive earthy and spicy accord. We’d recommend the Parfum option over the EDT as it has greater longevity. Initial projection is strong and potent so you have to be careful of how much you apply. We found 2-3 sprays plenty, too much and you’ll be overwhelmed by the sweetness of the grapefruit. Longevity is good at 4-6 hours, but not great.

Terre d’Hermes Parfum by Hermes has a cult-like following amongst fragrance collectors because of its addictive woody and spicy accord. In our testing, we loved the way the fragrance dried down on the skin with firm notes of vetiver, flint, and base notes of oak moss that helped it achieve 4-6 hours of longevity which is good, but not great when compared to niche brands like Maison Francis Kurkdjian and Comme Des Garcons.

Nevertheless, this is a more affordable option that smells great and can often be found at a discount. It affords some comparisons to Gentleman Only by Givenchy because of the earthiness, but we much prefer TdH Parfum because of the fruity grapefruit that’s balanced by dry herby woods like cedar. Some reviewers online call it “signature scent worthy” and we tend to agree after wearing this for a few weeks. If you’re looking for a woody, spicy, and earthy cologne this could be your next signature.

Top notes: Orange and Grapefruit
Middle notes: Flint
Base notes: Oak Moss and Benzoin

Masculin pluriel by maison francis kurkdjian
Masculin Pluriel by Maison Francis Kurkdjian | Image: Maison Francis Kurkdjian

2. Masculin Pluriel by Maison Francis Kurkdjian

Price: from AU$303

Fresh and woody is tough to combine and only truly achievable by one of the world’s great fragrance houses and MFK has knocked this one out of the park. Performance is equally difficult to achieve, and while soft, it’s long-lasting and potent with 4-6 sprays on the skin. Most importantly, it smells expensive. Some reviewers online say the projection is lacking as the lavender note is quite soft and may not be smelt by some people.

Long-time wearers of Baccarat Rouge 540 should check out this alternative from Maison Francis Kurkdjian. It often finds comparisons to CK One Eternity and Barbershop by Maison Margiela, but after testing this for ourselves we think that’s selling it a little short. The combination of lavender, patchouli, vetiver and wood doesn’t scream excitement, but they’re perfectly balanced in a way that only MFK can achieve. There’s a notable lack of spice, but that’s fine because it allows the woody nose to play with the lavender heart before leather and patchouli take over after drying down.

It smells expensive, because is it expensive. That being said, the price is matched by great performance with outstanding silage, projection of up to 3 metres, and longevity that seems to last all day on clothes and 6 hours on skin. We’d happily wear this in the office all day and it’s our favourite woody cologne to match with a crispy white t-shirt. Some would call it too ‘minimalistic’ but we think it’s perfectly aromatic.

Top notes: Lavender
Middle notes: Patchouli and Vetiver
Base notes: Cedar and leather

Gentleman society by givenchy
Gentleman Society by Givenchy | Image: Ben McKimm / Man of Many

3. Gentleman Society by Givenchy

Price: from AU$200

Creamy and vanilla-scented without being too sweet thanks to the mint and sage notes that emerge as the fragrance settles. The scent is enduring, the vanilla essence lasts throughout the entire wearing experience.The mixture of notes can be a bit confusing. The scent is not very unique and doesn’t come across as particularly masculine.

Once described by a friend as a cologne that “good-looking men wear,” Gentleman Society by Givenchy has become our go-to men’s fragrance. Woody and aromatic, the initial smell is that of cardamom and sage before two varieties of vetiver reach the heart notes from Haiti and Madagascar. After resting on the skin, the base becomes clearer with vanilla and balancing cedar. Similar to Givenchy Boisee and Gentleman with a twist of Givenchy Invictus, all we can think about is mature bubblegum.

This is the perfect choice for men who are looking to wear something every day, and while some fragrance critics might point their finger at the general lack of complexity, we strongly disagree. We think it’s unique enough to stand out, while not pushing the boundaries into the daring and strange areas of perfumery, Gentleman Society by Givenchy nails the brief in creating one of the best woody fragrances for men.

Top notes: Cardamom and Sage
Middle notes
: French Narcissus, Haitian Vetiver and Madagascar Vetiver
Base notes
: Vanilla, Palo Santo and Cedar

Endymion by penhaligons
Endymion by Penhaligon’s | Image: Penhaligon’s

4. Endymion by Penhaligon’s

Price: from AU$250

Projection and silage are great during the dry-down stage and with longevity marked at 4 hours on the skin it’s a strong performer. The smell is ‘fresh’ but not in the citrusy-sense, more the play between lavender and coffee that balances the woody base notes to perfection. You’ll have to experiment with the number of sprays. While the initial projection is strong, it fades to a skin smell only after a few hours and you’ll struggle to get more than 6 hours on the skin. There’s little to no citrus so it’s best suited for an older man.

If you’re a slightly older gentleman and the smell of Masculin Pluriel by Maison Francis Kurkdjian doesn’t appeal, check out Endymion by Penhaligon’s. It seems a little counterintuitive because Endymion was the handsome son of Zeus, but this scent achieves an undeniable allure that’s based around lavender and wood with a sweet and refreshing dry down. It’s ‘clean’, but not in the traditional sense of a citrusy scent, more the interplay between coffee and lavender that screams ‘high-end department store’.

We’ve always found the performance of Penhaligon’s commendable and this is no different with longevity around 4-6 hours on the skin and a little more on clothes. Like Masculin Pluriel we’d wear this to work with a clean drycleaned white shirt and probably avoid it on weekends or in the summer when fresher, zestier, citrus-led fragrances are preferred.

Top notes: Lavender, Bergamot, Sage and Mandarin Orange
Middle notes: Coffee and Geranium
Base notes: Sandalwood, Leather, Nutmeg and Musk

Philosykos by diptyque
Philosykos by Diptyque | Image: Diptyque

5. Philosykos by Diptyque

Price: from AU$187

Lovely, luxurious fig accord that’s balanced by coconut in the middle and woody cedar at the base. Projection is good for the price, as is longevity at around 4 hours on the skin.You better like the smell of figs because this is hyper-realistic. Some reviewers online found it a little feminine for their liking, but if you want to blind buy there’s nothing stopping you from layering this with a spicier scent.

This woody fragrance for men is in simple terms, a hyper-realistic recreation of a juicy ripe fig in its most luxurious form. Despite all this, it’s one of the more affordable options and stands out for its heart of coconut and woody cedar that balance the unique fruit scent. Some reviewers online note its similarity to Matiere Premiere Parisian Musc, however, we found the profile a little lighter and more masculine leaning because of the green middle. We love throwing this one on before heading out to run errands on a lazy Sunday in the colder months.

Top notes: Fig Leaf and Fig
Middle notes: Green Notes and Coconut
Base notes: Fig Tree and Cedar

Les roches noires by moncler

6. Les Roches Noires by Moncler

Price: from AU$295

Great value for money and unique enough to fit in anyone’s collection with a leather, woody base. Longevity is as expected for this price point at around 4-6 hours on the skin and more on clothes. Projection is also perfectly balanced with 4 sprays being the sweet spot in our testing.Some find the leathery boozy notes too harsh and strong, but we think it’s best reserved for special occasions. Not something we’d recommend wearing every day because of the musk and leather accord. Changes dramatically on the skin so not the best blind buy.

We’re suckers for a nice bottle so we had to get our hands on Les Roches Noires by Moncler. The scent keeps things smart and simple with leathery wood and a rum-like smell. The Indonesian Patchouli is to blame with a lovely strong masculine bite that we could easily see on someone wearing a neat Western-inspired outfit. Like an elevated classic, this Eau de Parfum offers warm and sensual amber notes of labdanum blend with the woody patchouli for a peppery base after settling on the skin. We’d reserve this one for Fridays in the colder months where dinner parties are held indoors with plenty of whisky and wine.

Top notes: Patchouli
Middle notes
: Labdanum
Base notes
: Pink Pepper

Wonderwood by comme des garcons
Wonderwood by Comme Des Garcons | Image: Supplied

7. Wonderwood by Comme Des Garcons

Price: from AU$200

If you’re looking for a woody scent, it doesn’t get much woodier than this. Distinctive scent that is great for everyday wear. Great performance and scent on the skin. For an expensive fragrance, it should last longer. For something quite subtle, it can often go unnoticed.

It’s hardly surprising that one of our favourite men’s fashion brands is delivering a sexy, masculine, woody fragrance for men. While we usually opt for the original scent, Wonderwood stands out with extreme spiciness (not to the level of Spicebomb) but also a level of creaminess to even out the playing field. Other notes of vetiver, sandalwood, Virginia cedar, and cypress are merely along for the ride, but that’s ok because the scent is balanced to perfection. Somehow this combination of potent notes isn’t overkill.

In terms of performance, it’s something to be desired as no matter how strong these notes are they don’t offer good longevity and this woody cologne turned into a skin scent after 2 hours. You’ll find yourself topping up regularly, but that’s ok because it’s great value for money and can often be found for under $200.

Top notes: Patchouli
Middle notes: Vetiver, Incense, Nutmeg and Bergamot
Base notes: Cedar, Sandalwood and Cyprus

Shop at Comme Des Garcons Shop at Selfridges Shop at Mecca

James by atkinsons
James by Atkinsons | Image: Ben McKimm / Man of Many

8. James by Atkinsons

Price: from AU$280

New and niche in its performance and heart, but old school and classic overall with base notes of violet leaves and white flowers. Perfectly balanced florals with soft spice on the top by way of pink peppercorn.Not particularly cheap. You’re paying for a classic scent that fits into a new niche. Longevity is good without being great, we’d like a little more performance at this price point.

We’d recommend James by Atkinsons to men who want to purvey a strong aurora of masculinity because of the irresistible patchouli, musky wood, and vetiver accord. There’s a strong character that comes through the top notes with bergamot and pink peppercorn offering soft spice before musk comes through the heart with white flowers and violets.

Performance is good with longevity marked at 4-6 hours in our testing. We’d like a little more considering the price point, but the silage and projection are perfect. Like the brand itself, this is a little bit of a throwback scent, a classic, and it demands the wearer to match. A great choice if you’re an older chap who wants a new and niche scent that throws it back to the 1960s at the same time.

Top notes: Bergamot oil, Finger Lime, Pink Peppercorn, Clary Sage Absolute
Middle notes: Vetiver oil, Patchouli oil, Musk, Akigalawood
Base notes: Elemi Oil, White Flowers Accord, Violet Leaves

Shop at Myer Shop at Selfridges Shop at Harrods

Wood essence by bvlgari man
Wood Essence by Bvlgari Man | Image: Bvlgari

9. Wood Essence by Bvlgari Man

Price: from AU$210

There’s a lovely play between wood resign and citrus here. It performs well for it’s price with 4 hours on skin and more on clothes. Great option for those who like vetiver. Some reviewers online noted that there’s nothing particularly unique about the notes and we tend to agree, however, that makes it great for gifting.

It’s in the name so it’s cliche to say, but we love the mixture of wood bark and resin in Wood Essence by Bvlgari Man. There’s an Italian citrus zest accord that balances these notes out and brings with it an aromatic freshness and spice. Unfortunately, being an EDT and not a Parfum, the performance isn’t great but the 4 hours on the skin we managed is considered good for the amount of money you pay. This woody fragrance would also make a great option for gifting as the smell is rather inoffensive and suits all occasions.

Top notes: Citrus, Lemon, Coriander Leaf
Middle notes: Cypress, Cedar and Vetiver
Base notes: Benzoin

Grey vetiver by tom ford
Grey Vetiver by Tom Ford | Image: Tom Ford

10. Grey Vetiver by Tom Ford

Price: from AU$250

Supremely masculine with a great performance of 6-8 hours. Three vetivers were used in the making of this scent, it’s luxurious. We’d recommend wearing this sparingly at night or for special meetings.Very hard to fault this woody cologne, we’d recommend only spraying two or three times on skin and clothes as it’s very potent.

One of the great clean, citrusy, and refreshing woody scents for men. There’s not one or two, but three different vetivers used in this cologne and you can instantly tell with epic luxury. Some reviewers online noted the fragrance is simply a bolder iteration of the original, and as such, it’s not for the faint-hearted with a potent but refined balance of orange blossom and saffron in the heart. Our testing shows that you should reserve this one for date night or evening cocktail events where you can fully appreciate the strong projection and eternal longevity.

Top notes: Orange Blossom
Middle notes: Saffron
Base notes: Haitian Vetiver

40 knots by xerjoff
40 Knots by Xerjoff | Image: Xerjoff

11. 40 Knots by Xerjoff

Price: from AU$299

Potent and rich, but in typical Xerjoff fashion it stays bright and fresh throughout the dry down. We’ll also make special mention of the beautiful design on the bottle that helps it feel extra special.Once again, you have to be careful with how much you spray and where you wear this woody cologne because it’s very strong and has great projection and silage. Not recommended to younger gentleman, very mature.

Capturing the essence of yacht clubs and Mediterranean beaches, 40 Knots by Xerjoff is a woody cologne for a man of extreme class. With a salty breeze on the first spray, it stands out on our list because of these aquatic undertones. The exact ingredients list is kept secret in typical Xerjoff fashion, but we found amber sweetness, dark rum, and baby powder. Some reviewers online say that it’s a little too ‘baby powder-like’ for their taste, but the warmth and coziness that come with the wood make it an obvious choice if you want a unique and niche wood cologne.

Top notes: Herbs
Middle notes: Salt and Sea Water
Base notes: Cedar

Bleu noir for him by narciso rodriguez
Bleu Noir for Him by Narciso Rodriguez | Image: Ben McKimm / Man of Many

12. Bleu Noir for Him Parfum by Narciso Rodriguez

Price: from AU$143

One word – sexy. The musk notes give a sensual scent that we can’t fault. It is also quite subtle, which makes it versatile. Pretty good for the price. Unsurprisingly, this fragrance is not known for its projection and longevity, given the lower price point. Over time, it is hard to smell any notes at all.

We’ve been loving Narciso Rodriguez Bleu Noir in EDT form for years so when the Parfum launched we had to get our hands on a bottle for review. It’s uncomplicated like a great blue fragrance should be, and while it draws constant comparison to greats like Dior Homme Intense and Valentino Uomo, it’s unique in its own right with softness and creaminess that stand out amongst the best woody fragrances for men. The scent is highlighted by Narciso Rodriguez’s musk signature, which is beautifully rounded off by vetiver, amber, and zest from the cardamon and citrus.

Performance is outstanding and we’ve managed to get more than 8 hours of arms reach projection and longevity out of 4-6 sprays.

Top notes: Ambery and Ebony
Middle notes: Musk
Base notes: Cedar and Vetiver

Givenchy gentlemen reserve privee
Gentleman Reserve Privée by Givenchy | Image: Supplied

13. Gentleman Reserve Privée by Givenchy

Price: from AU$194

You can never go wrong with this fragrance for a night out. It is potent and long-lasting with a very similar vibe to Dior Homme Parfum, or a less sweet version of Gentleman Boisée EDP.Despite its delicious scent, its permanence is quite poor. While the overall longevity is great, the whisky note disappears after only a few hours.

If we’re speaking about woody colognes for men that draw from the world of whisky, then you can’t go past Gentleman Reserve Privée by Givenchy. Of course, we love a good whisky here at Man of Many so many of the gents in the office are proud wearers of this particular fragrance. In terms of scent, you’ll find a complex array of woody, floral, and candied fruit notes just like your favourite dram. Longevity is substantial at more than 6 hours and projection is great after 3-4 sprays. Compared to crowd favourites like Valentino Uomo or Dior Homme Intense this is very dry and powdery with even a hint of chocolate.

Top notes: Bergamot
Middle notes
: Iris and Chestnut
Base notes
: Whiskey, Amber and Woodsy Notes

Bowmakers by d s durga
Bowmakers by D.S. & DURGA | Image: D.S. & DURGA

14. Bowmakers by D.S. & DURGA

Price: from AU$300

Perfect for autumn and winter and almost makes us want to cosy up with a cup of tea. The scent is very masculine and you can tell the ingredients used are high-quality.Upon opening, there is a super strong varnish smell that can be overpowering. We also find that woody notes are almost too much to handle during the dry down and it seems to lose a lot of its body after a few months of use.

Bowmakers by D.S. & DURGA effortlessly transports one into the woods with notes of moss, cedar and chestnut with a warm, cosy, and addicting scent. Traditionally masculine, the rich and forward nature of this woody cologne means it can be worn by anyone and all age groups. You’re paying a lot of money for a niche and unique fragrance here because the longevity is good, but not great at around 4-6 hours. On the other hand, sillage and projection are good at arm’s length.

Top notes: Mahogany and resin
Middle notes: Iris, Maplewood, cypress and chestnut
Base notes: Whiksy, moss, cedar

Alternatives to Woody Fragrances for Men

  • Encre Noire by Lalique (from AU$65): Launched in 2006, Encre Noir translates to “Black Ink” and the packaging sure takes that name to heart. Inside the bottle of this woody cologne for men is a trend-focused fragrance that excuses spice at first spray thanks to top notes of cypress. We found that it takes a little longer than most to find the heart of a vetiver, however, the base notes of cashmere wood and musk play beautifully for rich earthy notes. If you’re looking for a great masculine woody scent at an affordable price point, check out Encre Noire by Lalique.
  • Bourbon Amber by The Art of Shaving (from AU$50): If Gentlemen Givenchy is Scotch then you’ll need a sharper-edged Bourbon scent to follow and The Art of Shaving team responds. This woody cologne for men is directly inspired by cask-aged bourbon. Bourbon Amber from The Art of Shaving brings nature to the forefront by way of select raw ingredients, bursting with earthiness, from the laced herbal undertones to the rich woody base, it’s intense yet sophisticated. Best of all, it’s reasonably priced in comparison to most designer options on our list.
  • Intenso by Dolce&Gabbana (from AU$90): From renowned luxury brand Dolce & Gabbana comes Intenso, a bold men’s fragrance that touts a creamy texture and a crisp, aquatic opening. However, it’s ultimately a long-lasting dark chocolate and tobacco scent that dominates this earthy masculine cologne, courtesy of a newly discovered wood-based ingredient called Moepel accord.
  • Armani Eau d’Aromes by Giorgio Armani (from AU$150): Armani, you’ve done it again. A favourite amongst the team here at Man of Many, we love Eau d’Aromes for its warm aromas of patchouli, vetiver, and sage along with citrus notes like bergamot and mandarin. That said, you had us at Armani – a brand that has a history of great pheromones. If you’re looking for a great woody cologne for going out, this is our pick.
  • Guilty by Gucci (from AU$130): This woody perfume for him has committed the crime of creating an unabashedly masculine scent awash with bold, seductive allure. Here, Gucci stands guilty as charged with this wildly popular woody fragrance housed in a formidable bottle made from metal and glass. This Pour Homme blends floral and citrus top notes with a beefy base of cedar and patchouli.
  • Royal Oud by Creed (from AU$539): From one of the biggest names in perfumery comes Royal Oud by Creed. If we’re talking about rare ingredients, Regal Indian oud helps create this woody cologne for men. One can’t look past Creed when it comes to quality fragrances as they’re widely regarded as THE best brand on the market, although, you’ll pay for the luxury. Royal oud sits upon a woody foundation, joined by generous amounts of grass, smoke, citrus and spice for an overall profile that’s as profoundly versatile and masculine as it is earthy. Inspired by luxurious elements of a Persian palace – wood, leather, marble and gold – it is a woody perfume for him designed for all occasions.

Why You Should Trust Our List

When it comes to our list of the best woody perfumes and colognes for men, it goes without saying, that expertise is key. While the editorial team here at Man of Many has had the chance to test every fragrance on this list (often thanks to our friends in the industry), we’ve also turned to the wider public for their overall ratings.

This list has been written and curated by Ben McKimm who is a fragrance expert and has spent more time collecting and researching men’s colognes than he’s happy to admit. In compiling this list he took into account three major perspectives to determine the overall rating.

In addition to his own opinions, he took into account reviews via the perfume forum Fragrantica and the Australian retailers Myer and Chemist Warehouse. From there he collated that information together and measured the fragrances via overall scent profile, reader ratings and commercial availability.

Best Woody Fragrances for Men FAQs

What is a woody fragrance?

Woody fragrances often have citrus or aromatic headnotes with crisp woody notes in the heart and resin or wood in the base notes. These scents will usually contain pine, patchouli, or cedarwood.

What are the best woody colognes?

Some of the best woody colognes for men are Tom Ford Private Blend Oud Wood Eau De Parfum Spray, Yves Saint Laurent Splendid Wood and Lagerfeld By Karl Lagerfeld