winter perfume
Winter fragrances are richer and more intense than summer options, since they don't evaporate as quickly, or project as far, in cooler weather. Image Credit: Shutterstock

On cool winter evenings, the fragrances that appeal most aren’t minty or lemon-fresh. In fact, it may be best to put away your summer scents for next year. It’s time for winter colognes –they envelop you like a cashmere sweater, and linger with warm, sweet or woody notes.

Does colder weather affect a perfume’s efficacy?

We spoke with Dan Terry, creative director of Oo La Lab, a perfume making fragrance lab based in Dubai and Singapore, who has 20 years of experience in the industry. He said weather has an immediate impact on the scents you wear: “In colder weather, fragrance molecules tend to evaporate slower and project less, meaning you will probably need to wear more fragrance in colder weather.”

Likewise, hot weather intensifies fragrance notes, making them ‘bloom’ on the skin more quickly, which is why citrus and floral notes work so well in the summer.

Which fragrances work best in UAE winter?

Our expert advises identifying the exact ingredient that appeals most to you in fragrances, and then exploring colognes that feature this particular note. Image Credit: Shutterstock

The way we perceive perfume, and how it performs on the skin, are impacted by the climate. Terry said: “Warmer and richer fragrances are often more popular in the winter months, including woody, spicy, oriental, and gourmand notes. Winter fragrances tend to be more intense, with heavier and more complex compositions that can withstand the cool [temperature].”

Ingredients that he constantly returns to, include tonka bean, cardamom, leather and vanilla.

But what kind of fragrances suit UAE’s winter weather, which can often be more temperate than other regions? Terry said: “Luxurious scents that evoke warmth and sophistication seem perfectly suited to a desert winter.”

He advises doing your own research into finding out exactly what appeals most to you in a fragrance you love, or keeping returning to: “Personalise your selection by going deeper into the ingredients you favour. For instance, if you like spicy notes, which ones? Track them down.”

Editor’s tip
Luxury perfumes are up to 60 per cent off on Amazon right now, so pick up your favourites for yourself or loved ones while they're on sale.

We did our own research, and curated a list of the best rated winter colognes for men this year, with both classics and trending perfumes that evoke comfort, sophistication and warmth this season. Pick up your favourite, while it's on sale, with Amazon Prime and get it as early as tomorrow:

1. Best Overall: Dior Sauvage Eau de Parfum 

Dior’s classic Sauvage is considered one of the best winter fragrances for men, no matter who you ask, and for good reason. This popular fragrance is versatile and appeals to most tastes, with a long-lasting scent and strong sillage. The eau de parfum opens with a heady ambroxan scent that’s smoothed out with a spicy, pepper kick and a touch of Calabrian bergamot for freshness. Its heart notes of geranium, lavender and elemi blend perfectly with a base of intense cedar, labdanum and Papa New Guinean vanilla. Overall, the distinctively masculine fragrance is inviting, smoky and sensual, making it an ideal contender for your signature winter scent.

Bonus: Redeem 10 per cent extra discount with Citibank MasterCard by entering the code ‘CB10DEC’ at checkout.

2. Best Woody Perfume: Azzaro The Most Wanted Eau de Parfum 

The Most Wanted looks as great as it smells. In an iconic barrel-shaped bottle, this masculine scent features fresh, woody notes that are enhanced with its toffee accord and bourbon vanilla. Reviewers say they instantly pick up earthy, spicy notes of dried bark and cardamom seeds, which blend into addictively sweet notes, thanks to ingredients like caramel and vetiver. Evoking refinement and sophistication, it’s a scent that’s crafted as an ode to masculine charisma. Complex, seductive and chic, this Amazon bestseller is the perfect woody scent for the season.

Bonus: Redeem 10 per cent extra discount with Citibank MasterCard by entering the code ‘CB10DEC’ at checkout.

3. Best Spicy Perfume: Carolina Herrera Bad Boy Extreme Eau de Parfum 

Colognes with spicy notes truly shine in winter, so here’s your chance to snatch up Bad Boy Extreme – the quintessential layered fragrance for the season. With hits of fresh ginger and the warmth of vetiver des sables, the unexpected use of ingredients makes this fragrance at once both rebellious and tender. The perfume features cacao, Indonesian patchouli, vetiver, tonka bean, bergamot, clary sage and incense. Reviewers love its fiery appeal, and say its memorable scent has people coming up to them and asking about their cologne, at evening soirees.

4. Best Leather Perfume: Tom Ford Ombre Leather Eau de Parfum 

Picture a buttery black leather jacket – Tom Ford’s Ombre Leather may be the perfume equivalent of it. Blanketing the wearer in vetiver, amber, violet leaf and cedar, it’s a dark and smoky scent that’s both mysterious and alluring without being overpowering. Happy reviewers say the scent has a long sillage, and easily lasts up to five hours – perfect for nights out in the city.

5. Best Gourmand Perfume: Swiss Arabian Shaghaf Oud 

A captivating perfume that evokes a blend of French elegance and dreamy Arabian nights, Shaghaf Oud opens with strands of saffron, which seamlessly blend into agarwood, to lead into the perfume’s sweet accords: rose, praline and vanilla. The effect is rich, smoky, sweet and warm, and well suited to both men and women. Ideal for evening wear, reviewers love that the fragrance is long lasting, and projects beautifully, with many claiming to smell its lingering scent on their clothes the next day.

6. Best Unisex Perfume: Diptyque Tempo Eau de Parfum 

In the 1960s, a new scent gripped the world: patchouli. Diptyque’s Tempo pays tribute to this stirring ingredient by using three extracts from a single essence. Reviewers rave about its appeal, since it has an earthy, woody and warm fragrance that’s well-suited to both men and women. Luxurious and sophisticated, Tempo features bergamot, pink pepper, violet leaf, and clary sage, to create a scent to remember.

Bonus: Buy with zero per cent installments and pay Dh76.30 for 12 months with select banks.

7. Best Budget Perfume: Hugo Boss Bottled Eau de Toilette 

A well-loved classic, Boss Bottled boasts over 24,000 4-star reviews on Amazon for good reason. It has universal appeal, with its sharp, fresh notes and woody base, and an accessible price point. The eau de toilette blends crisp apple, warm cinnamon, mahogany, vetiver, cedar and sandalwood with vanilla to create a fragrance that you can wear all year round. Pick it up for yourself or wrap it up as a gift – it’s sure to be a hit!

Our recommendations are independently chosen by Gulf News editors. If you decide to shop through links on our website, we may earn an affiliate commission, as we are part of Amazon Services LLC Associates Program.