Tag Archives: Masque Milano

Two from Masque to Indulge in This Winter

In 2020 due to growing pandemic situation across the world the activity of perfume brands was drastically reduced. I don’t know any numbers or statistics but I have a feeling that the drop could even reach 80%. The biggest loss and saddest thing to accept was the cancelation of Pitti and Esxence, two biggest niche perfume shows. The latter one was rescheduled to April 2021 only to be rescheduled again to June. If you were smart and tech-savvy, you’d move to online promotion. That’s what Masque Milano did and their 2 new perfumes were launched via Google Meet platform.

Ray-Flection begins with a moderately sweet yet delightfully juicy & mouth-watering scent of mandarin orange. Very shortly some aldehydic tones join and lift up the composition making it feel more airy and effervescent. You do feel a little bit of fattiness from these molecules, even a hint of something waxy & slippery but their aerial aspect is prevailing here. Cardamom introduces a bit of a crunchy, roasty spiciness to the backbone of the perfume. Heart of Ray-Flection reveals a floral bouquet in which a pollen sweetness of mimosa flowers whispers tenderly in your ear and gently caresses your face. It’s a pretty smell, a very happy & optimistic one. It is paired with violet leaf – its green color contrasts with the yellowness of the pom-poms. The smell it has is dewy, slightly ozonic and aromatic. Both are wrapped together, almost like a ribbon that ties a bouquet, with a solar accord. On my skin it feels a bit crystalline, lactonic and with a delicate impression of jasmine. While I don’t consider this new creation from Masque to be a challenging scent, the base is the hardest for me to bear. Beeswax becomes quite prominent on my skin and I am not very fond of it. It adds an impression of something too synthetic and artificial, at least to my nose. Then there’s some cedarwood and musk to help the perfume last longer on skin. I believe mimosa lovers should try Ray-Flection, even if only just out of curiosity. To me it stands few steps behind my favorite.

Last year Masque branched out of their main line by introducing Le Donne di Masque, a series of more feminine fragrances composed by female perfumers. I believe first two, Dolceacqua and Petra were already on preview in 2019. This line celebrate 10th anniversary of the brand and the aforementioned two are reinterpretations of Masque first releases. Late in 2020 a third persona was added. Maceleine is a gourmand perfume that goes straight to the point. The wearer is welcomed by a powerful accord of chestnut. The complex identity of the note hides in the fact that it captures the multiple facets of this Parisian delicacy. It’s nutty and at the same time caramelized. A little bit burnt on the outside but soft & perfectly cooked inside. Combined with a generous spoonfull of heavy cream that has been whipped to add some lightness to the concoction. Cumin… there’s not much of it but I get a bit of a specific stench in the background and I associate it with the smell of some of the streets in Paris. Then there’s a lactonic, creamy tuberose that doesn’t overwhelm but rather melts into nut-n-cream feeling. Cypress and geranium add a tad of crunchiness but their verdancy doesn’t stand out in this foody fragrance. Tonka bean amplifies the creamy vibe that Madeleine creates but at least now it’s got that aromatic, rich (yet mild) spiciness that feels like some sprinkles on top of this dessert. The sweetness of vanilla and fluffy clouds of musk complete the perfume. I know it’s got zero calories but how much sugar can your nose take? I think this perfume can be either love or hate, it smells polarizing if you ask me.

I like the idea of an online launch in times of covid. Where the brand founders along with respective perfumer explain the perfume to a selected group of attendees who were sent the samples prior to the event (mine didn’t make it on time so I didn’t attend) but in case of Ray-Flection and Madeleine as much as I have no doubts about quality of both fragrances, because in this field Masque always delivers, neither of them feels a special to me as L’Attesa or Kintsugi. However I am convinced that many fans of the brand will enjoy using one or both of these new scents. Fingers crossed!

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All the pieces, Masque Milano Kintsugi

In modern world we often forget about the value of our posessions… As soon as something breaks down we tend to throw it away & we buy a new thing instead of trying to repair it. It might be an easy way but it generates waste and makes us forget to have some respect and care for our belongings. Japanese people however believe that every item has a soul and even if it breaks it can be still put back together. Such are the teachings of Kintsugi, a Japanese art of mending broken ceramics with gold. “Don’t hide your scars, show them proudly” says Masque while introducing their new perfume.

Kintsugi opens in a very delicate & transparent way which is very appropriate for a perfume inspired by Japanese culture. At first the composition is translucent but minute by minute it gets more color thanks to the warmth of one’s skin. Pastel pink hue of magnolia flowers surround the wearer with a sheer veil of scent. At first this veil is calm & watery, like a still surface of a pond in Japanese style garden. After a few moments it becomes more floral in a way that it reminds me of mimosa and osmanthus woven into a bouquet of white flowers. It’s a very tranquil and harmonious opening.

Silky petals of magnolia eventually begin to exude more citrus, lemony aroma that is very much associated with this flower and with spring season. This scent, combined together with the essential oil of bergamot, Kintsugi becomes more brisk, tangy and charged with a solar energy. It has the uplifting and sparkling vibe when you smell the perfume with your nose close to the skin. Some time later the composition develops a warm and salty facet of a rather delicious, savoury amber. Honestly it’s like a perfume version of a salted caramel. It provides a nice twist to this beautiful scent. After the arrival of amber tones and onwards the structure of Kintsugi starts to be a little bit heavier.

kintsugi

From the salty amber the composition transitions seamlessly into a suede note. The latter one is nice and fuzzy, with a very soft and almost plushy texture. It feels luxurious as the softest gloves. When I smell this part of Masque Kintsugi it makes me think of a very light brown color with some golden and copper tones. Afterwards a violet leaf note arrives. It makes the perfume more aquatic again by effusing its characteristic scent that is simultaneously fresh, green, ozonic and crispy. If you looked at the notes pyramid for Kintsugi you’d notice Rosa Centifolia among its heart notes, however on my skin it remained somewhat hidden and didn’t mark its own presence in a noticeable way.

The brand wanted their new perfume to be a chypre but with more strict regulations for oakmoss it was a hard task to do. The perfumer worked with raspberry leaf absolute which recreates a dark, murky greenness of the lichen in a surprisingly good way. By marrying it with moist & earthy patchouli the impression of chypre was complete. Kintsugi additionally features benzoin which gives it a nice balsamic, resinous feeling with a hint of burnt caramel. Vanilla absolute is like a cherry on top here, introducing an oriental vibe with a tad of sweetness. It’s a darker and chewier kind than an average vanilla. It adds some density and structure to this multi-layered fragrance composition.

Kintsugi by Masque Milano is this kind of fragrance that feels simple in its construction but turns out to be a really intricate being when it comes to notes interacting with one another. I really like the Asian influences included in the formula but in general this scent has quite a European vibe to it. Kintsugi was one of the fragrances that gave me the best 1st impression while smelling stuff at Esxence couple of weeks ago. Perfumer Vanina Muracciole deserves a lot of praise for creating this scent. Kintsugi is an eau de parfum that will come in 35 ml bottles. Does it sound interesting to you?

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