Saturday, January 06, 2007

Mazzolari: Lui & Lei

After the Alessandro disappointment, my expectations from Mazzolari went way down. Which was when I tried the other two samples of Lui and Lei. The result was the two full bottles that are now sitting on my dresser.

Did I spoil the end? But it's all about the journey. Right?

Lui is supposedly a masculine fragrance. The notes are sandalwood, cedar, patchouli, ambergris, vetiver and spices. It's strong and heavy on the patchouli. Not for the faint of heart, that's for sure. The impression from the very first note to the drydown is of a dark and earthy scent. The woods aren't dry. The sweetness is kept in check by the spices (cinnamon? clove? It depends. Nothing too obvious).

The earthiness has reminded my husband of JAR's very dank and oakmossy Shadow. I'm not sure if the two are comparable, but I sort of know what he's talking about. The darkness of the wood and the spicy depth of Lui do have something in common with Shadow, but it's sweeter which makes it more wearable for women. Or, at least, for me. I loved it on my husband as well as on myself. It has a lot of presence and gives an aura of confidence. The patchouli here is sexy, not a head shop scent. It's strong and would probably not appeal to those who only go for subtle.
The lasting power is as impressive as the strength, since it's an EdT. I wonder what would happen if they'd ever come up with a parfum version.

On the other side of the spectrum, there's the very feminine and cuddly Lei. It still got the patchouli which keeps it from becoming the scent equivalent of a teddy bear. The opening notes of cocoa and labandum captured my heart from very first moment. It's comforting and cozy, but in a very pretty way, not like a pair of flannel jammies.

Then comes the patchouli, more subtle than in Lui, followed by woods and vanilla. It becomes soft and powdery, without losing a certain amount of elegance. It's a gourmand scent, and the drydown is decidedly vanilla, but I don't think that I end up smelling like pudding. The lasting power is almost as good as Lui's.

The Mazzolari line comes in black velvety boxes that are shaped and open like books. Very cute and appealing to the book nerd (that would be me).


  1. Gourmand scent? Are you f*cking insane? Holy cow this is a horribly misleading review of Lui. Lui is easily one of the most offensive fragrance ever made. It smells like a dry, rancid, acidic and pungent BO that's had months to accumulate. The only reason to wear this is to be unique and to make your presence forcefully known to everyone within your vicinity, because this will never ever go mainstream.

  2. Thank you for the lovely comment, anon. I happen to adore Lui, on the husband and on myself. It's sweet, earthy and wonderfully unique. I certainly hope it doesn't become mainstream because I'd rather wear something special.

    Have a nice day.

  3. Wow! Not a fan of patchouli at all (or rudeness!) like the first poster's, but I will pass all the same because it tends to make me ill.

  4. Hopflower, patchouli can be a difficult note, I know. I dislike it when combined with heavy synthetic fruit like most of the popular mainstream fruitchoulis (CK Euphoria is a good example).

  5. I like patchouli. I buy pure essential oil and wear it alone in a carrier oil. Unless it's a bad synthetic, patchouli has a wonderful and exhilarating scent!

  6. Asuka, I agree. The quality of the patchouli oil makes all the difference. I wish some perfume makers would remember this.


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