The 9 Best New Colognes of the Year (So Far) to Wear All Summer

Citrus, aquatic and green notes are the major warm-weather players in 2024

June 13, 2024 6:18 am
These are 9 of the best colognes this year
These are nine of the best colognes this year.
Hermes, Hugo Boss, Acqua di Parma, Trudon, Loewe

Summer colognes are known for being lighter, brighter and an olfactory reflection of the longer summer days. Warm-weather compositions typically use top notes like citruses, florals, aquatics or lush greenery (vetiver, for example, although that is in a category all its own). These vibrant, refreshing notes form the foundation of our favorite iconic colognes and new releases alike, and many master perfumers will incorporate them into new summer creations to create timeless and seasonally appropriate fragrances. 

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But it needn’t be all sunshine and rainbows. Increasingly, perfumers combine these classic brighter notes with aromas that might not be as typically known for their summer leanings. Take, for instance, the renowned Italian house Profumum Roma, whose cult classic Aqua di Sale redefined marine aquatic scents with an addictive blend of myrtle, sea rocks, seaweed and salt spray, conjuring the smell of the ocean from an ancient coastal town. Similarly, Arquiste’s award-winning L’or de Louis has become a staple in my daily scent rotation, showcasing how citrus fragrances, when intertwined with unexpected notes like smoke, can forge new, interesting territory. Great colognes are artistic compositions, and while heavy woods or ouds as the lead role might be better suited for colder climates, notes like patchouli, musk or amber, when conjured appropriately, can add depth to summer fragrances.  

This year has seen launches from well-known mass brands and niche houses, and this list exclusively features new fragrances released in 2024 that are perfectly suited for summer and smell fantastic. Most exude aquatic, citrus and fresh herbaceous vibes, often harmoniously blending unexpected elements from each category into complex compositions or having a stripped-down mentality with just a few notes. These nine colognes epitomize warm-weather sophistication, and we recommend trying one or a few to find the right scent for you for the months ahead and, for many, even into early fall.

You can’t go wrong with any of Arquiste’s luxe fragrances, but their new release, A Grove by the Sea, is truly an outstanding artisanal warm-weather aromatic green composition. It evokes the island of Lopud in the Adriatic Sea with its scent of fig and crushed olives, where the sea breeze meets the forests of Mediterranean pine and cypress, and ancient chapels are overgrown with wild thyme and rosemary. The fragrance features top notes of fig leaves, black olive, fleur de sel and clementine; heart notes of extra virgin olive oil, ripe fig fruit, thyme and rosemary essence; and base notes of pine needle, fir balsam, cypress and red clay. This one is truly transportive but will fit anywhere; wear it generously for all your upcoming summer travels.

Let’s Dive is the latest from indie fragrance connoisseurs D.S. & Durga, an addictive summer scent that evokes the charm of seafaring and marine life. This cologne features top notes of marine waters and seaweed extract, middle notes of rock rose and a base of synthesized ambergris, a scent for those who find the olfactory idea of marine-rich waters and seaweed forests appealing (raises hand). Launched on June 8, World Oceans Day, this fragrance is a collaboration with Project CETI, a nonprofit organization that uses advanced robotics to translate the communication of sperm whales. Let’s Dive gets its name from a “common ground” phrase shared between whale and human communication, adding a meaningful layer to this captivating scent.

What can be said about Tom Ford’s iconic luxe summer scent that hasn’t been already? However, this newly released Neroli Portofino Parfum offers a fresh take on the classic. This citrus fragrance captures the essence of the Italian Riviera with a blend of bergamot, lemon, blood orange, neroli, jasmine sambac, clary sage and amber musk. It truly smells like walking in a lush, luxurious (and expensive) citrus grove. The notable addition to this iteration is the Neroli bud essential oil, obtained through an advanced process that distills the barely opened flower buds at the earliest blooming season. The result is a fresh, orange flower-like facet that further enhances the immersive sensation of a citrus garden.

Solo Vulcan by Loewe is a new aromatic fougere fragrance inspired by a volcano’s powerful, fiery eruption and the potency of the Rockrose’s fragrant blooms. An aromatic fougere typically evokes a fresh, herbaceous and woody scent profile, but what makes this composition unique is the inclusion of LOEWE Accord — a new and exclusive olfactory note inspired by the scent of the Spanish rockrose wildflower. Solo Vulcan combines said accord’s rich, warm aroma with notes of thyme, lavender, orange flower absolute and vetiver. The result is green, woody, herbal, fresh and herbaceous juice with an artisanal quality. It will stick to your skin with a solid projection that lasts most of the day.

The Italian house Acqua di Parma is known for having many of its fragrances riff on a citrus note, and they do it with exceptional elegance, finesse and heritage. New for 2024, Blu Mediterraneo Mandarino di Sicilia captures the essence of Sicily’s sun-drenched landscapes. This bright, refreshing fragrance opens with green mandarin, bergamot, lemon and blood orange. The heart adds petitgrain and spearmint, enhancing the scent’s longevity and giving it a fresh feel, while a cedarwood base grounds the composition. An unexpected musk adds a clean, sophisticated depth. The result is a vibrant, multifaceted citrus fragrance that will transport you to Sicily, at least in your mind’s (or nose’s) eye.

Anyone familiar with high-end candles knows Parisian house Trudon. Since they launched their personal fragrance line, they have become as revered for their colognes as they are for their candles. New for 2024 is Isla Eau de Parfum, a bright and fresh fragrance centered around bergamot, one of the most emblematic citrus fruits of the Mediterranean region. Top notes of bergamot, grapefruit, cardamom, petitgrain and lemon tree interplay with heart notes of rosemary and crisp mint, while the base rounds out with vetiver, amber and musk. Designed to represent the crisp summer light, the bottle is equally gorgeous as the scent, with a yellow gradient illuminating from the bottom up, topped with a matte satin white cap. This fragrance is a masterclass in a complex citrus composition and complements any formal summer evening affair.

BOSS introduced the limited-edition Bottled Triumph Elixir, a highly concentrated ambery-green cologne, this year. This fragrance retains the BOSS DNA but with an added intensity, demonstrating how notes like amber can evoke warm-weather vibes, and an outlier like patchouli can be thoughtfully refined and elegant. It opens with top notes of violet leaf, transitions to a woody heart of vetiver and concludes with an earthy base of patchouli essence, creating a seemingly simple yet rich summer scent. This highly concentrated, rich, yet bright powerhouse is ideal for date nights and summer soirees.

Herbes Vives, the latest addition to the H24 line by Hermès, embodies the essence of urban nature after rainfall. The fragrance revolves around three notes — revitalizing fresh herbs, the crispness of pear granita and the vibrancy of the proprietary high-tech molecule Physcool®. H24 is multifaceted symbolism — “H” for Hermès, homme (man) and hours, along with “24” representing a connection to time and the house’s flagship address at 24 rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré. Crafted in France, this fragrance evokes the simplicity of summer freshness and greenery, making it an excellent choice for daytime wear.

New for 2024, Perseus by Parfum de Marley is sophisticated citrus sunshine in a bottle. Top notes of bergamot, grapefruit and blackcurrant combine with heart notes of vetiver, green mandarin and geranium for earthy freshness. Base notes of dry and cashmere wood provide warmth and sensuality, and a unique ambergris accord gives a slight marine note. This fragrance is a beautifully crafted citrus solar composition equally earthy, green and aquatic — a delightful contradiction of brightness and depth. Spritz this on in the morning and wear all summer and into early fall for compliments all day long.

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