Friday, 16 March 2018

Persolaise Review: 50 ml D’Ambiguité from Marlou (2017)

I do love a perfume name that makes me laugh. In much the same way that Etat Libre D’Orange’s Rien always elicits a chuckle - because, in fact, it contains the very opposite of nothing - last year’s offering from Marlou brought several wry smiles to my face as I was getting to know it. The reason? Well, as you’re drawn deeper and deeper into its bed of sweat-soaked coupling, you realise there’s hardly anything ambiguous about it at all. From the very second it decides to aim its crosshairs on your virtue, the assault of leathery musks, smoky, bonfire woods and cumin-heavy spices makes it clear that it has no intention of leaving you without satisfying its appetite. And truth be told, you’re quite happy to let yourself be taken, because the rising temperature of the haze in which you find yourself is ample evidence that this seducer’s bedside manner is as impressive as its initial greeting. In other words, it can walk the walk as well as it can talk the talk... although perhaps ‘walk’ isn’t quite the right verb in this context.

Be warned: the chat up lines here aren’t entirely original. Think back to Lutens’ Muscs Koublaï Khän or even further to Kiehl’s Musk and you’ll remember that this form of olfactory attention-grabbing has been around for a while. But then, isn’t part of the deliciousness of giving in to lust the very fact that you know what you’re letting yourself in for? And if you must have originality, then you’ll find a hint of it in the clean, paper-like, almost talcum-inflected quality propping up the sin den.

By most accounts, the brand’s first offering, L'Animal Sauvage, is equally bestial. I haven’t yet had the pleasure of experiencing it, but if Ambiguité is anything to go by, I need to place it on my must-try list without delay, even if only to ascertain whether a somewhat underground fashion brand really has decided to turn over its entire perfumery output to the interior of a filthy barn. Mind you, if the subject of today’s review is deemed by Marlou to deserve the term ‘ambiguous’, then I’m almost too frightened to sniff their idea of a savage animal. But then, the scents that shock me into submission when I first encounter them often turn out to be my favourites... so I’m off to order a sample straight away.

[Review based on a sample of eau de parfum obtained by the author in 2017.]


PS Please don't forget that the next episode of Love At First Scent is live on my Facebook page today at 6 pm UK time (2 pm New York time).


  1. This one is definitely on my must-have list. I received a sample recently and quite loved it.❤️

    1. Ah, excellent! Thanks for letting me know.


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