In the 1990’s and through today, “Blue Fragrances” have been a popular style of cologne for men. While there is no formal definition in perfumery on what exactly a blue scent is, most of the fragrance community understands which fragrances fall in this category.
We will cover what it takes to make a cologne a blue fragrance and how they generally smell.
What Is A Blue Fragrance?
A blue fragrance is typically a marine, fresh, aromatic, or aquatic scent. The color represents water or the ocean. Blue fragrances are supposed to represent fresh and clean shower-gel scents and marine scents.
The name of the fragrance will often have the words “Blue, “Bleu,” “Blu” or something similar.
Think of Polo Blue and Bleu de Chanel.
What Was The First Blue Fragrance?
Davidoff’s Cool Water, launched in 1988, is often credited as the pioneer of blue or aquatic fragrances. This ground-breaking fragrance, created by the master perfumer Pierre Bourdon, introduced an entirely new category of scents that would go on to transform the perfume industry.
Cool Water is characterized by its fresh, aquatic, and masculine scent profile. The composition starts with a wave of mint and green nuances, lavender, coriander, and rosemary. The heart notes include geranium, neroli, jasmine, and sandalwood, and the base reveals cedarwood, musk, amber, and tobacco.
Its immense popularity set the trend for blue fragrances, inspiring many other perfume houses to launch their own versions of fresh, aquatic, and ocean-inspired scents.
Common Notes In A Blue Fragrance
Blue fragrances, also known as aquatic or oceanic fragrances, often incorporate a range of notes to evoke the freshness of open waters, sea breezes, or the feeling of being outdoors. Here are some common notes that you’ll find in these types of scents:
- Aquatic Accords: This is a general term that refers to notes that evoke the scent of water. They are synthetic compounds that create the impression of sea air, fresh rain, or waterfalls.
- Sea Salt: Sea salt adds a fresh, briny note that can give a fragrance an evocative marine character, like a beach breeze.
- Citrus Notes: Commonly used citrus notes in blue fragrances include bergamot, lemon, grapefruit, and mandarin. These add a bright, uplifting quality to the scent.
- Ozone: Ozonic notes give the fragrance a sense of airiness and the crisp freshness that you might associate with clean air after a storm. They often have a slightly metallic or mineral-like quality.
- Green Notes: These notes can include grass, leaves, stems, or even green fruits. They contribute to the fresh and natural aspect of blue fragrances.
- Marine Notes: Marine notes like seaweed, algae, or driftwood provide a deeper, more mysterious aquatic scent that’s often associated with the deep sea.
- Cool Spices: Notes such as mint, anise, and fennel are used to add an invigorating, cool edge to the scent.
- Light Florals: Light floral notes, such as lily of the valley, cyclamen, and freesia, are often used to add a subtle, soft balance to the fragrance.
- Woods and Moss: Base notes of woods like cedar, sandalwood, or moss can add a grounding, earthy layer to blue fragrances.
- Musk: A clean musk can also be found in the base to give a sense of smoothness and longevity to the fragrance.
Examples Of Blue Fragrances
- Dior Sauvage: Introduced in 2015, Dior Sauvage has become a staple in men’s fragrances. It blends notes of bergamot, Sichuan pepper, lavender, and ambroxan, creating a fresh, spicy, and woody scent that’s perfect for any occasion.
- Bleu de Chanel: Launched in 2010, Bleu de Chanel is a sophisticated fragrance that combines grapefruit, incense, and cedar notes. It’s a versatile scent that strikes a balance between freshness and sensuality.
- Davidoff Cool Water: A classic in the blue fragrance category, Davidoff Cool Water was introduced in 1988. It’s an aromatic aquatic scent featuring top notes of sea water, mint, green notes, lavender, coriander, and rosemary, with a warm, woody base.
- Acqua Di Gio by Giorgio Armani: Since its launch in 1996, Acqua Di Gio has remained a popular choice among men. It’s an aquatic, aromatic fragrance that combines marine notes with fruits, herbs, and woods, evoking the essence of a Mediterranean island.