Sorry for another "I am new to the world of cologne threads" that pops up every once in a while by novices who happen to find this forum and scour the pages to try and find a good first scent to purchase. As a poor college student, I only have a ~$45 cap, but am really looking to spend $20-$30. After trying out many colognes at an outing to Sephora before discovering this forum Fuel for Life really stood out to me. I tried L'eau D'issey pour homme, bleu de chanel, terre, lacoste essential, bvgari aqua, ysl gingembre/l'homme, and some other things that did not really stand out.
Amongst the ones I tried, I instantly gravitated towards Fuel for Life because of its younger, sweeter smell. Lacoste Essential was a close second but it didn't quite have the richness of FFL. Now that I have looked through the forum I see many colognes that are recommended as young, good smelling colognes for younger college kids which are quite affordable like Voyage, Rochas Man, PE 360 (AdG copy?), Chrome, Versace Pour Homme, Live Jazz, Kouros Body, Givenchy Play/Pi, Rive Gauche, Bvgari black, Burberry Touch, L'instant, Mugler Cologne, Le 3rd Caron, Azzaro, etc.
I like FFL but it is a little out of my price range. I want an everyday scent that is sweet and pleasant, and do find FFL a little too sweet and nauseating, but like the fruitiness (grapefruit) mixed with the lavender. It would be perfect if it the sweetness were toned down just a little and it were a little cheaper.
What do you guys think. Should I just get FFL or is there something along the same lines? I haven't smelt many colognes, and of the ones I have only FFL really have me a wow this smells good reaction. I'm tempted to just blind buy Rochas Man, but I don't know if I'll like the coffee undertones.
Another question is where can I find cheap samples? Ebay has some, but even those are not that cheap, ~7 each.
edit: adding Versace Eau Fraiche, La Nuit and Black XS to the mix of possible ones.