Photography By CHICHI UBIÑA
Olga Litvinenko was born in Kiev, Ukraine and moved to the U.S. with her family when she was three years old. Raised in Greenwich, Connecticut and an athlete in high school, Olga was no longer able to participate in sports after an injury and decided to compete in a pageant. At 17 years old, she won the Miss Connecticut Teen USA 2007 title. Her love for the beauty, fragrance and the fashion industry flourished as she prepared for the Miss Teen USA competition on live telecast. After obtaining her B.S. in Finance & Marketing from Syracuse University in 2012, she started to compete in pageantry again and was crowned Miss CT USA 2017. Towards the end of her reign, Olga dedicated herself fully to Lola & Leone and feels it is a privilege to be able to share this fresh, clean and sophisticated scent with the rest of the world.
Tell us about your inspiration to start a perfume company.
The inspiration to start a perfume company stemmed from a tragedy. I had survived an accident where my friend had drowned. It was at this time that I realized how valuable life was and the importance of making the best of every moment. With that, I continuously told myself that I should love who I am (and every imperfection that exists), be true to who I am, passionate about what I do, embrace creativity and help others. Furthermore, I attended a black-tie gala at Grand Central Station where various guests came up to me and asked about the perfume brand that I was wearing because it smelled so good and was ‘lingering in the ballroom.” From this, I realized that I should make Lola & Leone public and would be able to have a positive impact on people through scent. It’s why I like to say that we’re “making a difference, one scent at a time.”
It’s a beautiful delicate scent and we enjoy your branding. Tell our readers about your process. Your original visit to the perfumery and how you created the scent.
Prior to my study abroad in Madrid, Spain, I participated in a two-week tour of western Europe with a small group of business students from Syracuse University. As part of this tour we got to visit world-renowned companies such as LVMH, Mercedes, Heineken, the United Nations and some of the largest manufacturers and producers of fragrances in the South of France. It was there that I took to a room full of oils and ingredients, made a careful evaluation and developed my scent. It was my first-ever Eau de Parfum. After I completed my study abroad trip, I brought my fragrance back to the U.S. with me and started manufacturing and producing it in the U.S.
Who are Lola and Leone?
I am Lola – it’s my Spanish nickname. My Spanish professor asked that we only speak Spanish from the moment we walked into her classroom, beginning with our names, and Lola was the closest name to Olga. Leone is the name derived from my friend who tragically passed and who inspired me to promote positivity.
What are your plans for the brand?
My plans for the brand are to make a global impact and international expansion simultaneously. I look forward to sharing Lola & Leone on multiple levels.
To purchase Lola and Leone, please visit: www.lolaleone.com
Hair & Makeup by PAULO LANFREDI SALON