Saturday, May 23, 2015



‘SCENTS FOR NOT A LOT OF CENTS’: The fragrance store is the perfect place for those interested in perfumes, soaps and exotic oils, says owner Shaib.

photo by Jennifer Bihm


The fragrance store is the perfect place for those interested in perfumes, soaps and exotic oils.

Zam Zam Perfumes is tightly nestled in between an optician and a nail salon inside the Crenshaw Square. You could miss it if you weren’t looking for it… you could, if it weren’t for the delightful fragrances wafting from the doorway. Inside, it’s a warehouse where merchants and consumers alike can find health and beauty products like natural soaps, body oils, incense and lotions, their motto: “scents for not a lot of cents.”

“Do you guys sell candles,” asks one of the few customers who have wandered in about 10:00 am, an hour after the store has opened.

“Of course,” is Zam Zam co owner Shaib’s enthusiastic response.

“We make all of our products ourselves, with materials that come from Africa and India,” he explains.

“All of our products are natural with no alcohol or animal fat, etc…”

Shaib came to Crenshaw in 1999 from Bangladesh armed with a business Visa, seven years after the civil unrest there. Things were slow at first for him and his partner Mohammed Rahman. The community was wary.

“People didn’t really know [who we were] but once we started telling them about our products and how they are from Africa and India, they became interested. More and more people liked the products,” he said.

The customers agree.

Wrote one customer for an online review, “Besides GREAT customer service, the best thing about this place is the selection. They carry hundreds of oils, dozens upon dozens of incense, oil burners, charcoal, fragrant resin stones for burning on charcoal, sage, dozens of exotic soaps and toiletries, raw shea butter, and even different kinds of henna…”

Wrote another, “Me, being curious I stepped inside and found a treasure of oils, soaps, and incense.  The staff [is] quick to assist and answer questions.  I have been back to this store many times since then. I am glad I stumbled upon this place.”

Zam Zam is open Monday through Saturday from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm. For more information call 323-299-9030 or toll free 866-588-5512.

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Category: Crenshaw & Around

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Mon May 25 11:00AM -
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Black Mother: Standing in the Gap
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