Why is a creation by Bath & Body Works a value proposition? Well, at the time of writing this, Mahogany Woods retails for $29.99, but could be had for roughly $15 out-the-door. I may be going out on a limb, but for $15, this is the best fragrance on the market that could be purchased for under $20. There, I said it. Even at its normal retail price, it’s one of the best in that “cheapie” bargain bin, $20-$30 region, we all know that bin – the one in aisle 2 of your favorite pharmacy, the bin that’s loaded with oft-forgotten brands like Escada, Stetson, Adidas.. Well, Mahogany Woods is a hell of a bargain, but far from bargain bin/cheapie territory. In fact, I think it rivals fragrances that cost 3 times, or even 5 times more from the designer and niche realm of perfumery. As cliche as it may sound, repackage and re-brand Mahogany Woods, throw it in a pretty bottle with all the sparkles and whistles, and slap a $300 price tag on it. It would still compete with the best of them. Why would you discontinue this, B&BW?
What value smells like
The mouthwatering opening is attributed to the blood orange that fades all too quickly. That delicious citrus, combined with the boozy vanilla and warm amber are apparent straight away. It’s a no-holds-barred affair to begin with and it doesn’t let up from the throttle at any point. The heart is surrounded by dark woods, namely; mahogany, which to my surprise, is smooth and unobtrusive. The mahogany meld with the sandalwood, but they are both flanked by the sweetened vanilla and amber. After the first wearing, I would’ve concluded the given name, “Mahogany Woods” as slightly misleading, as the first two wearing were vanilla bombs, albeit, some of the best vanilla that could be had in this price rage and in general, period. However, vanilla has never been my favorite note or anywhere near it, but luckily, as often as the vanilla is the star player, there are instances where the woods, amber, or the spices step in.
There’s a few reason why Mahogany doesn’t deserve the cheapie title, other than what’s reflected in the price. At no point does it smell like a cheap, synthetic mess – from top to bottom, it has quality written all over it. This smells less synthetic than anything YSL has released on the men’s side, this century, and by synthetic, I mean the astringent, screeching, chemical dry downs in a lot of designer offerings, with every note being pumped up and out by synthetics. Secondly, Mahogany Woods is a “cologne spray” for men that lasts at least 8 hours on my skin. I have scented lotion that sticks around longer than most bargain bin offerings.
Mahogany Woods is the best $15 one could spend on perfume, in their life. (Within a mall, of course.)