Men's Fashion

Paco Rabanne 1 Million Review: Going for Gold in 2023

Editors Rating

No serious Paco Rabanne 1 Million review would be complete without first understanding the man behind the brand. The late Paco Rabanne rose to fashion world fame in the swinging sixties thanks to the use of plastic and metal in his avant-garde, space-age clothing.

“I defy anyone to design a hat, coat, or dress that hasn’t been done before…The only new frontier left in fashion is the finding of new materials,” said the late designer.

So, it’s little wonder that one of the brand’s best-selling fragrances comes in a sexy gold bar-shaped bottle. The process of making 1 Million began in 2006, says Johanna Monange, Founder and CEO of Maison 21G. The brief was to create the sultriest scent possible.

“The scent of Paco Rabanne is super masculine and sexy. It is really powerful, and the more often you wear it, the more you like it. This is what we call an addiction, but the process of making 1 Million took two years,” said Monange.

The luxurious packaging, together with its fun, flamboyant fragrance, makes it a great gift if you’re looking to please a partner or friend. 1 Million is one of the best Christmas fragrances for men with a hectic holiday social calendar.

I was looking forward to this 1 Million cologne review because it gave me a chance to rediscover one of my favorite fragrances. Paco Rabanne 1 Million is sweet, spicy, and timeless. Best of all, it invoked many happy memories. It was and still is, a feel-good fragrance and a solid buy.

Whether discovering this sensational scent for the first time or revisiting a forgotten fragrance, go for gold and keep reading my Paco Rabanne 1 Million review.

Key Takeaways 

If you’re hoping to bag the top prize in scent stakes, look no further. You can trust my comprehensive Paco Rabanne 1 Million review to break down all the key features of this classic cologne. From its notes, usability, and staying power to an honest account of its potential pitfalls, I’ll give you all the info you need to know before splashing the cash on this popular perfume.

paco rabbane fragrances served on a platter
pacorabanne / Instagram

Fragrance Notes & Scent 

Bottle of 1 Million by Paco Rabbane

Like the loud and unapologetic party boy Paco Rabanne 1 Million is designed for, the opening is bold and energetic. Sharp, bittersweet citrus notes of grapefruit and blood orange zing next to invigorating mint. Have you ever shot-gunned a Paloma cocktail then washed it down with a Mojito? Just me, then? Well, it smells like that.

Despite the dominant start, the transition from the top to base notes is surprisingly seamless. The frivolous opening blends into a sweeter, more luxurious heart. Rose-neroli florals mix with cinnamon and nutmeg, lending an oriental feel to this spicy, woody fragrance.

The base is where 1 Million finally gets to show its true depth and prove why it’s regarded as one of the best modern men’s fragrances. Amber, leather, wood, and patchouli are undeniably masculine notes. Together, they create a rich and earthy finish that’s both memorable and intoxicating.

Paco Rabanne 1 Million envelops its wearer in a heady haze of warm, sweet spices that grab attention and leave a lasting impression. The 1 Million guy is someone who doesn’t want to blur into the background but rather shine in the spotlight.

Usage & Occasion

Paco Rabanne 1 Million is a cold-weather scent thanks to its heavier notes and knockout projection. Ideal for fall and winter, possibly even cool early spring too. Regardless of the season, 1 Million is for the night owl. The ideal wingman for club nights, flirty dates, and drinks with the guys, 1 Million is best suited to fun and informal occasions. This youthful scent appeals most to the 20-30 crowd.

Packaging & Price

Most perfume bottles are glass, but for 1 Million, Paco Rabanne took things to a new level. As all good 1 Million cologne reviews tell you, the golden metal body is a real show-stopper. But for me, the number one selling point of its luxurious, metallic packaging is that it makes the bottle a lot more durable and safer to transport in your bag or case.

This fragrance also wins in the bang-for-buck stakes. The average price of Paco Rabanne 1 Million is $65-70 for a 3.4oz bottle. Although this doesn’t place 1 Million in the bargain basement, it’s a very reasonable price tag for a quality cologne in 2023. This spicy-wood scent is more of a night-time wonder than an everyday hero. Therefore, a small 1.7oz bottle will serve you well, making 1 Million an even more affordable option for budget-conscious bros.

Trend and Popularity

Over time, Paco Rabanne 1 Million became stereotyped as an obnoxious scent. When 1 Million was first released in 2008, its flashy, sexy marketing was an instant hit with young guys. These over-enthusiastic adolescents doused themselves in 1 Million as if it were an AXE body spray before heading out for the day. There wasn’t anywhere you could go to escape getting a blast up the nostrils of this trendy fragrance. Hence, the bad rep.

In my opinion, it’s not fair to relegate a scent to the sin bin based on user error. Even Tom Ford Tobacco Vanille would hit a bum note if oversprayed on a hot summer day. Paco Rabanne 1 Million, worn correctly, has the potential to be the perfect cold-weather signature scent and is set to become a future classic fragrance.

There’s no question that the luxurious packaging and scent are as relevant today as during its 2008 launch. It’s a powerful fragrance with enduring silage and longevity that will take you from dawn thru to dusk.

Paco rabanne 1 million with a tree trunk as background
bright_avra / Instagram

Sillage and Longevity

Sillage and longevity is the most important section of any Paco Rabanne 1 Million review. After all, it’s the scent’s sensational staying power and projection that makes it so iconic.

Over the years, as with all mainstream colognes, 1 Million underwent various reformulations. But, impressively, modern batches still deliver stellar sillage. This fact is pretty rare. Even premium fragrance houses, such as Creed, often come under scrutiny for lacking consistency when it comes to longevity in recent releases of their fragrances.

I find three spritzes are the ideal amount for a night out and provide a decent dose of scent without becoming overpowering. In terms of wear time, I can still smell 1 Million on my skin after 8-10 hours without any need for a re-spray.

This impressive staying power means that 1 Million wins the gold medal for bang-for-buck. The fewer top-ups you need, the less juice you’ll use, and the longer your bottle will last you. Unless you’re a perpetual party animal heading out on the town every night, a 1.7oz bottle should be the ideal size. Mine is still going strong after a year.

What we like


I know it’s popular to rock niche fragrances right now, but there is one major benefit to embracing a more mainstream cologne. Paco Rabanne 1 Million is widely available and shows no signs of being discontinued. This signature scent is super easy to find from Amazon to your local department store.

It’s all very well discovering an unheard-of brand in an independent boutique on your vacation to Costa Rica until you need a refill. Trust me, I would know. I discovered one of my all-time favorite men’s fragrances at the Blue Lagoon spa in Iceland. The fact I knew I’d likely never get to re-purchase it almost spoilt the scent for me. I relegated it to special occasion status and held onto the bottle for so long that the juice turned sour.

Value for Money

In terms of price, 1 Million is a mid-range scent. It’s not necessarily a budget buy, but it won’t break the bank. But what makes Paco Rabanne 1 Million good value is that the formula has excellent longevity. Just 3-4 sprays have the power to leave you smelling sexy and sweet for 8-10+ hours. Why is this important? Because the more long-lasting a scent is, the less likely you’ll rip through your bottle by applying frequent top-ups.


The fact that this Paco Rabanne 1 Million review is still relevant today is a testament to the timelessness of this men’s cologne. Launched in 2008, even 15 years later, this fan-favorite fragrance isn’t showing its age. The woody scent profile with sweet spices and zesty citrus still appeals to young, fun-loving fragrance junkies. Fast-forward five years, and I can still see 1 Million being a hit.

Flaws But Not Deal Breakers

The only way to write a fair Paco Rabanne 1 Million review is to include the good with the bad. One of the biggest gripes about 1 Million is its popularity and the fact it’s so easily recognizable. It’s a valid point, but I try to avoid being so narrow-minded when it comes to embracing certain scents. After all, if we can shake off the urge to immediately discount something just because it’s mainstream, we stand to rediscover some amazing colognes.

a pile of paco rabanne 1 million
pacorabanne / Instagram

What Are Customers Saying about Paco Rabanne 1 Million

Out of almost 30,000 Amazon reviewers, 80% rated 1 Million 5 stars, followed by another 10% who awarded it 4 stars. Of course, stats like these speak for themselves, but they’re backed up with glowing comments.

According to Brennan, “I love the way this smells! I bought it for my man, and he smells amazing. It’s a warm scent with notes of vanilla, not overly musky.”

It’s not just the ladies who are avid fans of the fragrance. Just ask lucky reviewer Rob D, who says, “smells so good that my other half did some really naughty things… some of which were quite possibly illegal in certain countries. I’m going to buy a bathtub full of this stuff and simply sleep in it every night. Highly recommended!!!’

Any negative comments come down squarely on the shoulders of 1 Million’s over-popularity. No one puts this better than Fragrantica reviewer 2nuts1bag, “I don’t wear this often because it would become a little too much. I think a lot of negative reviews are because of this reason. Too many people have overdone it. A rich slice of chocolate cake tastes nice, but a second slice might give you a stomachache. Moderation is key. Don’t turn this fragrance into that second slice.”

Unlike many other fragrances, 1 Million has a loyal following. It ranks at a respectable No. 10 on the USA’s top-selling fragrances from June thru August 2022, says Fragrantica.

In any Paco Rabanne 1 Million review, customers should always have the final say. Their message is loud and clear, 1 Million deserves a place in the perfume hall of fame.

Final Verdict 

Every week dozens of fragrances are launched, but so many end up as one spritz wonders. For Paco Rabanne 1 Million, though, that’s not the case. Instead, this timeless cologne is as relevant today as it was in 2008. My unbiased Paco Rabanne 1 Million review should have you going for gold and re-adding this classic cologne to your aromatic arsenal.

Paco rabanne 1 million on top of a leather jacket
napiety_grafik_msdsgn / Instagram

Alternative Options

1. Dolce & Gabanna The One

Dolce & Gabanna The One is like the older, sophisticated brother of 1 Million. It’s more sultry, mature, and better suited to formal and special occasions. The One carries the same amber, wood, and grapefruit holy trinity but drops the sweet rose and flashy mint. In their place sit ginger, orange blossom, cardamom, and basil. It’s my go-to date night accessory.

2. Paco Rabanne 1 Million Lucky

Paco Rabanne 1 Million Lucky, released in 2018, is the modern reimagining of this all-star cologne. Bursting with juicy plum, citrus, honey, hazelnut, florals, patchouli, and wood notes, 1 Million Lucky is a more complex and unique offering. While the OG 1 Million is best for fall and winter, 1 Million Lucky is an awesome spring scent.

3. CK One Shock

Love 1 Million but looking for something that’s more daytime friendly? CK One Shock shares a lot of the 1 Million DNA. They both boast an amber, patchouli, and wood base with a citrusy opening and a touch of spice. Where CK One Shock differs is that it adds a clean hint of musk, refreshing cucumber and swaps leather for smokey tobacco. The result is a 1 Million-inspired scent that works well when the sun’s still out.


    • If you’re a cocktail lover, think the bitter, sweet, and citrus notes of an Old Fashioned with the fun of a minty Mojito. Paco Rabanne’s 1 Million is a powerful fragrance that opens with top notes of grapefruit, blood orange and sharp peppermint. Rose absolute and cinnamon are at its heart. The overall vibe is woody and spicy, making it a real crowd-pleaser for the Millennial man.

      • When it comes to 1 Million’s performance, it’s a beast, with the silage and longevity being an impressive 8-10 hours. The golden rule, though, as the scent can become too penetrating, is don’t be a repeat offender by spraying too many times. The aim is to smell sensational without overwhelming those around you.

        • If you’ve used the same fragrance for years and suddenly notice newer bottles smell a little warmer, more citrusy or sweeter, it’s probably down to the formula changing. Most fragrances that have stood the test of time have likely reformulated more than a few times. Sometimes, this is due to revised regulations or supplier changes. Paco Rabanne 1 Million is no exception, yet its original DNA remains true to the OG offering.