easy men's cologne recipe

How to Make DIY Cologne | Easy Men’s Recipe

Did you know that you can make your own men's cologne that smells just like your favorite designer brands? High-end brands can be incredibly expensive. Thankfully, it’s easier than you think to make your own great-smelling and body spray at home.

And the best part? DIY cologne is a fraction of the cost, and we bet no one will even be able to tell the difference! Follow along as we make this easy DIY recipe that you can customize with any fragrance you like.

Overview & Choosing a Fragrance

Making your own cologne is beyond easy. All you need is some of our Perfume & Cologne Base, a fragrance oil of your choice, spray bottles and a few tools. As an alternative, you can also use Body & Room Spray Base to make your own blends.

To make DIY cologne, you simply mix fragrance with the Perfume Base, then pour it into a spray bottle - that’s it!

The only difficult part of this project is choosing what fragrance oil to use. We have tons of great masculine fragrance oils to choose from, including duplications from your favorite brands.

Look at the top, middle, and base fragrance notes if you can't decide on a scent. You can find a list of notes on our product pages.

  • The top notes are what you smell first. They draw you into a fragrance, but are also the lightest and fade the fastest.
  • Middle notes are the heart of the fragrance and are often the most prominent.
  • And finally, base notes bring the fragrance together. These notes tend to linger the longest and you can smell them behind the other notes.

Learn more about fragrance notes in our blog.

how to make cologne

Supplies & Ingredients*

* We did not specify quantities in the ingredient list so that you can make as much or as little as you like. The instructions will explain how to add the correct ratio of fragrance oil to your formula.

Step-by-Step Instructions for Making DIY Cologne

Making this DIY spray is easy. However, there is a little math involved. These instructions explain how to calculate how much fragrance oil to use depending on the total amount of cologne you want to make.

Part 1: Calculating Your Fragrance Load

  1. Choose a fragrance oil and refer to its IFRA statement (provided on the product page).
  2. Look for the “Perfume” category to determine the maximum amount of fragrance oil you can safely use. You may find it's unnecessary to use the full amount of fragrance allowed for the Perfume category. In fact, true cologne uses just a 2-4% fragrance load.
  3. Decide how many total ounces you wish to make.
  4. Determine how many ounces of fragrance oil and Base you need. To calculate how much fragrance you need, multiply the total amount of cologne by the percent of fragrance you want to use. Next, figure out how many ounces of Base you need. Do this by subtracting the ounces of fragrance from the total ounces of cologne you want to make.
Example: For this tutorial, I want to make a 2.5 oz bottle of Drakkar Noir (type) cologne. According to the IFRA, you can use up to 15.44% in the Perfume category, and I’m choosing to use the maximum amount allowed. To make a 2.5 oz bottle, I’ll need 0.38 oz of fragrance and 2.12 oz of Perfume Base (2.5 oz x 0.1544 = 0.38 oz fragrance; 2.5 oz total cologne – 0.38 oz fragrance = 2.12 oz Base).
Simple Formula:
Total ounces of cologne X fragrance load percent = ounces of fragrance needed
Total ounces of cologne ounces of fragrance needed = ounces of Cologne Base needed

You can easily adjust your recipe to make as much or as little as you want. Simply determine the total ounces you wish to make and calculate the percentages accordingly. Remember that the Perfume Base can hold a maximum of 30% fragrance regardless of the IFRA limit.

You do not need to use the maximum amount of fragrance allowed in the Perfume category. Likewise, you do you need to use the maximum amount of fragrance that the Base can hold. We recommend making a small test batch to determine your ideal fragrance load. Make a tester bottle for each new fragrance you want to use, as every fragrance is different.

Never go over the amount recommended by the IFRA. Keep in mind that the Perfume Base can only hold up to 30% fragrance.

Note: This recipe uses "Cologne" as a general term to describe this men's body spray. True eau de cologne has a fragrance load of only 2-4%. Read our blog on the different types of perfume to learn more about what makes each one different.
Steps for Making DIY Cologne

Part 2: Mixing Your Cologne

After calculating the amount of Perfume Base and fragrance oil to use, follow these steps.

  1. Set your funnel pitcher on the digital scale and tare it to zero.
  2. Pour the Perfume Base into the funnel pitcher.
  3. Add the fragrance oil to the funnel pitcher. You may find it helps to use a plastic pipette to transfer the fragrance oil neatly.
  4. Stir the mixture with a whisk.
  5. Pour the mixture into your spray bottle(s) and put on the cap. Tip: If making multiple bottles, place the bottles on the scale to make sure you pour the same amount into each bottle. Tare the scale to zero before pouring so that you are able to fill each bottle to the same level.
  6. Label the bottle(s) accordingly. See Perfume & Cologne Base product page for applicable information.
  7. Your DIY cologne is now ready to use!
DIY men's cologne

We love this project because it’s so easy to do, while also helping you save money on designer brands. With this men's cologne recipe, you can make as many different types as you want! The cost of this project varies depending on the quantity you make and the fragrance you choose. However, it’s hands-down the most affordable cologne option out there.

NorthWood is not responsible for any products that you make with our supplies or recipes.

Did you try this tutorial? Tell us how your project turned out in the comments below, or share your project on social media! Use #MadeWithNorthWood so we can see your project. We’d love to see what you made! 

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