Last news about Ukraine and a new war being just a few steps away bring to mind a perfume associated with Russia – Slava Zaitsev Maroussia.
Fragrantica promised a strong cool scent with an atmosphere close to the great Samsara. Unfortunately, there is nothing similar to Samsara – Maroussia is somehow closer to Chergui.
Ridiculously cheap Maroussia is a weird and always recognizable beast which is so deadly and tasteless that it becomes an idea. It’s so crowded and loaded that it denies itself and becomes a great perfume. It’s so bad it’s good.
Maroussia slaps with strong aldehydes, musk and powdery notes. A little bit of fresh bergamot and peach, and… the scent grows and gets more intense, revealing a massive bouquet of carnation, jasmine, rose, tuberose and iris, floating in an immense still lake of aldehydes and santalwood.
The first impression somehow made me think about Jean Paul Gaultier Classique. However, contrary to Classique, Maroussia isn’t flat. It seems that it gets warmer and colder at the same time; that it doesn’t want to open its heart yet it’s so extravagant you must look inside. Patience.
I smell clear soapy musk, banana-like ylang-ylang and loads of agressive animalistic synthetic civet. Cold vanilla and a frozen incense smoke are not sour but rather balsamic, buoyant and drifting.
On one hand, Maroussia appears like cheap Soviet aluminum bowls for child bathing. Cheap and screaming like an always angry and rude Russian or other Eastern European lady who never greets noone and stares at people. Vulgar like blue eyeshadows and unnatural lipstick; like thick flesh tone tights, Polish deodorants, sticky fringe, synthetic blouses with flowers and sweat under them, like a plastic tablecloth and drinking tea with a teaspoon in the cup. Like a strange life when your husband is an alcoholic but you still take off his shoes and his coat, then you sigh and don’t say anything.
Maroussia scares with its weight and aggression, however sharp angles start to slowly melt in the heart notes. You imagine an elegant lady in a long purple velvet dress in Bolshoi Theatre. You smell dust and heavy theatre curtains, white hands and red cheeks. The smell is so beautiful and noble that you want to stick to her neck and hair. It’s smooth, buttery and a little almondy yet always a little gloomy – like sad eyes she cannot hide with heavy makeup and light chatters about weather.
Maroussia is huge and large and it hides thousands of fairytales inside. Nonetheless, it’s always suspicious and ready to defend itself. Kitschy, concentrated and forgetting good manners. An unconfident and hospitable lady; and when she gives – she shows everything she has.
That everything is Maroussia: a misunderstood and tragic being of a woman.
*Best when it is freezing outside.