Continuing the celebration of Fabienne’s life – which will culminate tomorrow the 15th of October which will be a grand celebration – I chose The Great Psychiatrist of Babylon. Honestly, it gives me the giggles whenever I read the name and thing about what that would have been like. Could you imagine?
The Great Psychiatrist of Babylon – Back in the day, before a formal id, ego, and super-ego early psychiatrists roamed the land looking for loonies upon whom they could practice their trade. Babylon was a veritable hot bed of psychiatric investigation, and practiced by the female inhabitants of the city. The hypnotic base of the finest Bourbon vanilla shot through with incense smoke and the auxiliary smoke from “punk” fire, caramel, incense, and a small shot of whiskey on the side (for medicinal purposes only). There, now don’t you feel better?
Just imagine all the juicy gossip they were privy to! Gossip is my guilty pleasure – not spreading, starting, or repeating – but I’ll admit I like hearing it second or third hand.
I had a lot of running around to do this morning (new glasses yay!) so I swiped this on and got ready. Then, upon sniffing it on my skin, immediately slathered in it before I walked out the door. It was so good! Instantly I regretted never getting a bottle.
You get the vanilla and a gooey, smooth, and buttery caramel scent, but it’s juxtaposed with this incense. It’s not like burning incense, though the notes state “smoke” I didn’t get any of that. More it seemed like the scent was residual of years of burning incense so just the scent of it permeated everything around it. This is really just a sweet incense when you get right down to it and one of my favorites.
I’ll be honest, I didn’t get much whiskey, if any, from this blend, which is just fine. Whiskey haven’t got along since my 21st birthday. So … I have bad scent memories with it, needless to say.
About 4 hours later and I get just a sweet incense type scent, though it’s all but gone from my skin. I wish this lasted longer as I just love it! Though I suppose I should be happy that I get a nice wafting scent every now and then from my pulse points.
Those samples I reviewed earlier were not the only things to make their way to me from the lovely ladies over at Siberie Perfumes. They were also kind enough to send me a few 5ml’s (their regular bottle sizes are 15ml!).
Cordelia – Blended with the aroma of crisp cucumbers, juicy honeydew melon, marine notes of ocean air & fresh green tea.
In the bottle I get a nice crisp green scent with a hint of something watery and a little musky. On my skin the ocean air is strong, as though it is the morning after a storm. The cucumbers are lending a nice green scent while the honeydew is juicy and sweet. I’m finding that the tea is there, but not prominent.
I swear I’m getting something musky and I’m wondering if there’s not something of an ambergris-type note – or grey amber being used for the ocean scent. There’s also something almost cottony in here, soft and fuzzy.
After about 20 minutes this has become soft and flowing, yet still freshly green and slightly watery. It has a decent throw to it in that I can smell it if I move my wrist around. This blend leans unisex with an undercurrent of a masculine feel. I’m about 2 hours in and I still get wafts and it still smells wonderful on my skin.
Sang Des Dragons – Deeply seductive notes of pure aged dragon’s blood resin, sandalwood, gardenia & orris ( violet note) with teases of cassia ( light warm cinnamon note), woodsmoke, bourbon vanilla & earthy patchouli. A dark fragrance that is hauntingly beautiful.
In the bottle I get the loveliest deepest dragon’s blood note with this softly spicy underground. This is deep, red, and resinous.
On my skin this only deepens. I’m stuck huffing at my wrist and I get an almost hippy-shop type smell. Not in a bad way either, this is beautiful and deep. The dragon’s blood is the spicier version, not the more floral, which is just perfect for this blend.
I love how resinous this is! The sandalwood is fresh and just harvested while the gardenia is doing it’s heady gardenia thing. The cassia is not as light as the note list says, at least not on me, but it is by no means overwhelming (so maybe that is light!). You can definitely smell the woodsmoke in this but it’s off in the distance and not at all in your face. There’s a touch of vanilla – just a touch and that earthy patchouli is deep and brown and grounding.
Confession – after 15 minutes of having this on, I slathered. Flat out had to have more. The throw is beautiful, the longevity went for about 4 hours until I went on a long walk then it exploded and disappeared within 15 minutes of 100 degree weather. Which is fine, I didn’t want to have it blasting because it is a warm scent on its own.
Cake & Eat It – Dreamy notes of vanilla birthday cake frosted with rich buttercream icing, french coconut macaroons, a pinch of orchid & a soft warm base of white musk.
Who doesn’t want to have their cake and eat it too? In the bottle I get a very musky vanilla scent with just a hint of cake. On my skin it’s very much a single note white musk. It takes a few minutes, but finally the cake and frosting comes out with just a hint of coconut-y macaroons.
The scent wafting up to me is more orchid and musk with a hint of buttercream icing and it’s not nearly as gourmand as I thought it would be. I’m finding it to be quite soft and comforting with a dollop of sweetness.
Throw-wise, this is fairly decent – not strong, but I do get whiffs of it here and there. I’m really enjoying this one more than I’d expected to. I do love a good orchid.
Ma Contessa – Sultry, sweet and spicy this decadent elixir has notes of the most delicious aged bourbon vanilla, caramelized marshmallows with a piquant swirl of dark clove, cardamom & cinnamon. The soft dry down eludes femininity with a caress of golden amber & sensuous Australian sandalwood.
In the bottle I get a lot of caramelized marshmallow, a good helping of clove, and fragrant sandalwood. On my skin, however, most of the sweet notes are gone almost immediately and what is left is just a very slightly caramel sweetness that gives a nice undercurrent to the clove, cardamom, and sandalwood.
Admittedly, I’m not really a fan of cardamom, even in cooking. It’s not bad, just not really my thing. I also dislike cilantro. And olives. That being said this is somewhat spicy and has a very good throw to it and wafts up of its own accord – no hand-waving needed here!
I’d really love more vanilla and amber in this blend, personally, but with the cardamom it’s probably not something I would reach for anyway.
Candice – Blended with the sweet temptation of juicy dewberries, fluffy pink cotton candy, whipped marshmallows & pink sugar captured in a soft base of white musk & a tease of French vanilla.
Berries and cotton candy on a base of white and ethereal musk in the bottle. On my skin the berries become very juicy, almost fresh squeezed into a delightful drink.
You would think with the cotton candy, marshmallows, and pink sugar this would be tooth-achingly sweet but it’s not! Somehow that white musk tempers it and keeps it from becoming just too much to handle. I adore this sugar scent as well. It’s mixed with the cotton candy, as thought it was dusted in pink sugar.
As this dries I’m finding to to be more a lighter skin scent. It does not have much of a throw, though I do not need to press my nose to skin in order to get a sniff either.
The french vanilla is a tad boozy, making the berries seem to lean to an almost wine-like scent but without the bitterness you can sometimes get with wine. This perfume is very feminine, slightly girly even, and just super sweet.
I really am becoming quite smitten with Siberie Perfumes!
Keep an eye out on my blog for a Siberie and Sweet Potion Perfume giveaway in the coming weeks! Click the Follow button on the side bar to get e-mail notifications of posts!
More goodies from Alkemia Perfumes! This is the last of the samples I currently have, though make no mistake, I’ll be getting more just as soon as I get over this small issue of moving states. Always something hindering the perfume buying.
De La Forêt contains notes of dry amber, golden musk, orris root, tonka, bergamot, rosewood, oud, sandalwood, paper, oakmoss, birch tar, and vetivert. Oooh a paper note! In the vial I get a nice amber and musk scent rounded out with lots of beautiful and fragrant woods. On my skin this is so golden and soft. The tonka is that beautiful brown fuzzy scent with a hint of the floral bergamot. Some people have issues with orris root and/or vetiver … I am so happy I’m not one of those people (though it did take a few years for me to fully appreciate vetiver). The birch tar gives this an almost sticky like feeling … you know when you get tree sap on your hand and it just never. goes. away. In this case this is a good thing. Oh wow, I get the paper too. It’s soft, freshly pressed and almost papyrus like. It’s homemade paper which was lovingly made by hand, not the college ruled paper from the store. The oakmoss is soft and slightly green. Overall I’m in love with this blend. It’s perfect for a beautiful soft forest-like scent. I could totally see this representing someone in the middle of a forest of tall trees looking up and soaking up the filtered sunlight.
Caveau des Innocents is all about the underground Parisian nightlife with notes of Tabac, dark coffee, piquant cloves, rum soaked pears, candied citron, dark caramel, and star anise bathed in intoxicating swirls of opoponax, labdanum, hashish, benzoin resinoid, vanilla incense, and guaiac wood. In the vial this was mostly candied citron and a touch of vanilla incense. Very soft and subdued – not at all what I was expecting. On my skin this is still soft, but it’s got that slinky feel, as though softly traveling just above the skin. There is almost a masculine quality about the blend, but it’s unisex too in a way. No one note is really jumping out. It’s all so very well blended and very intoxicating. As this dries and warms on my skin it becomes almost overtly sexy – there’s no come hither finger wave but more of a grab them by their shirt and yank them to you. Carnal is a good word to describe this scent.
Fumé Oud à la Vanille boasts notes of crushed tonka beans, woodsmoked amber, and bourbon vanilla aged with oud wood. The woodsmoke is prominent both in the vial and on my skin. There’s that wonderfully fuzzy tonka again and the oud is very fragrant. Overall this isn’t heavy vanilla, but it’s not a bad woodsmoke scent either. I would love it if the vanilla had come out more. This is very masculine in my opinion, woody, a little smoky (not enough to overwhelm) and slightly resinous.
Aphrodesia will round out this set with notes of deep eastern spices warmed with creamy vanilla and a few drops of golden frankincense. I have to confess I put this on yesterday when I was craving vanilla scents and fell completely and utterly in love with this. In the vial there are these beautiful warm spices from an eastern market. On my skin the frankincense comes out and you can smell those fragrant large resins being slowly and expertly burned in an incense burner. Their fragrant cloud wafts up to caress your skin and that vanilla with those spices just makes for this intoxicating scent. Sweet, a little spicy, and that lovely incense wafting in and out. This is a very unisex blend – not overtly one scent or another, but all the scents melding in together. It stays close to the skin and makes it a very personal scent. Oh man, I still can’t stop huffing. This is what I wanted another scent from another brand to smell like but it just never did for me. Beautiful!
I’m kicking this off with one of the scents that soooo many have raved about on the facebook page – Oak, Ash & Thorne. Its notes include barrel aged Bourbon Vanilla, embodied by ancient cedarwood resin and dark Indonesian patchouli, softened by rich, warm amber and a touch of exotic sandalwood. Warm, golden, and resinous describes this perfectly. The patchouli isn’t overwhelming as it sits in the back giving some support. Amber and the barrel aged bourbon vanilla are the stars of this blend with the sandalwood and cedarwood rounding it out nicely. This almost has an ancient feel to it, as though this scent has weathered the ages and stood the test of time. There is the barest hint of sweetness but this is all about the amber and woods. After a while, this is still very true to the initial impressions I had. This has very little morphing as it dries.
Pendragon’s Passion has some passionate followers and its notes comprise of deep, sultry and fiery notes of dragon’s blood slither around warm amber and sweet blood orange while resting on an earthen floor of dark patchouli. This magical blend opens with a sweet blast of blood orange, freshly peeled and just being squeezed as you inhale. Dragon’s blood is a note that some people love or hate or even love to hate. Personally, I enjoy the floral version, but not so much the spicy version. This blend uses the more floral version – but it’s that deeply red floral that almost feels resinous along with that amber. The patchouli is the same from Hedonistic – the non-hippy slightly orange feeling patchouli and by far my favorite patchouli I’ve had the pleasure of smelling. The longer this sits on my skin the more it warms up into this slinky and almost seductive scent. Blood orange is still apparent, but it’s more the after effects and less the super fresh and juicy bit like it was in the beginning.
Norseman has notes that include Balsam Fir, Juniper, Cedar, Clove and Blood Orange. From my first order I’d received a small soap sample and my kids and I all enjoyed the scent and the soap so I had to get the oil too! First sniff I get lots of fir and juniper with a touch of cedar. The fir has a huge throw and I can smell it just typing this out. As it dries I get a touch of the clove with its signature spice scent and just a hint of blood orange, but it seems it’s more of a dried orange scent than fresh. The juniper gives that antique scent I associate with it. Overall this is a very masculine coniferous forest – strong and lasting. In the soap I got more of the cedar, clove, and blood orange whereas the oil has more fir and juniper.
Rain Dance (also known as Ice Giant) lists notes of an earthy all natural blend of citrus and mint. Peppermint comes to the fore front of the blend – but not the sharp kind – that good peppermint that is equal parts melty vanilla and minty peppermint. This blend is cool and it really does have an hint of something earthy in it. Unfortunately I’m not a fan of mints in general unless they are not the star of a blend, but that doesn’t mean this isn’t an awesome blend in its own right.
7 Sins From Sunday is another (there’s a lot) fan favorite over at Valhalla with notes of jasmine and lavender tangled around exotic amber,vanilla and sandalwood with a whisper of earthy patchouli. Finishing with sweet lingering notes of dark cocoa bean. Not sure if I’m having a bad skin chemistry day or what, but in the vial I got some nice jasmine and lavender with a touch of vanilla but on my skin … dryer sheets. And it’s not strong or anything, more of a used dryer sheet where there’s barely any smell left. And now it’s gone. Either I have a blind spot or my skin eats it. So weird. I’m sure it’s quite lovely though from the hint I got from the vial! I think I need to see about getting this in a wax melt or soap or something.
Okay, so that was weird. It took about 15 minutes (and me walking outside in the warm sun) for any real scent to show up. But now … wow! 7 Sins is soft, snuggly, and warm. It’s close to the skin and the florals aren’t overwhelming at all, but are rather like their scent is floating in the window on a warm breeze. The sandalwood and vanilla are soft and sweet and I wouldn’t have guessed there was patchouli in there either. I’m not getting any cocoa, thankfully, as I’m not a chocolate scent lover.
Battle Kry is comprised of sea spray, the familiar smell of leather breast guards and polished steel. In the vial this is soft and worn leather while on my skin that salty sea spray takes over. It is a briny scent, oceanic to the extreme, with hints of leather and that metallic tang of steel. All the notes ebb and flow so that not one takes the lead for long, just like the waves of an ocean. Eventually the super saltiness melts away and you’re left with the memory of the sea clinging to your blade and clothes.
Sandalwood has no notes listed, but it’s been in a lot of blends I’ve loved from Valhalla so I’m excited to have this to use alone or layer. I love how simple yet complex this scent is. It is golden and warm, woody yet it has a sweet undertone to it that is unique. This is raw and untouched sandalwood, freshly harvested, still a little moist, but it dries as the oil dries on your skin so that you’re left with the beautiful fragrant wood. Definitely a must and one I could wear all by itself or it would layer very well with other blends.
Shieldmaiden has notes of citrus and florals on a woody background. Top notes of orange, and watery greens with a middle of jasmine and rose on a bed of juniper, patchouli and vanilla. This is a very fresh and clean scent in the vial however my skin chemistry is turning this into fabric softener (and actually the exact scent of the brand I use … so that’s good? at least I like it?) and I’m not sure what is doing it. It might be the rose. Rose and I have had quite a few years to work with each other and only a few types of rose work on my skin and if a company changes where they source their rose EO I can usually tell because my skin will react different. Yeah I think the rose is doing it – it’s screaming at me and it’s only getting louder the longer I wear it. Oh well, can’t have them all I suppose.
I have a huge pile of Possets samples that I’ve purchased straight from Possets, or from Ajevie, and some I acquired via freebies from purchases or swaps from other members of the Indie Perfume community. It is their time to shine!
Zombie is one of the blends I hear so much about! It’s always described as marshmallow oudh – what’s not to love about that?! The “official” notes are listed as: toasted marshmallow and oude, a bit of burnt stick, and the unmistakable fragrance of the crisp autumn air. (There are many different spellings for oudh, oud, oude, and I’m sure there’s more.) In the vial I get a bit of oudh and a touch of that crisp autumn air. On my skin it just … wow, it’s so unique! It’s marshmallow all right, that ooey gooey melted marshmallow that you only get from a stick and a fire. There’s no burning smell, just this lush woody scent topped with marshmallow. I get the hype! It’s very soft overall, however, the longer this sits the more the marshmallow fades to just a hint of sweetness and you’re left with this smooth and fragrant oudh.
I have to admit this next one I’ve tested already as I’ve been eyeing it fiercely for months and I’m happy it made the permanent collection! That scent is Min-Min (Ghost Lights) and it boasts notes of Sandalwoods, three of them, combined with the rich enticing scent of leather, a strong and classic patchouli. In the vial it’s almost all leather (it’s a cross between new shiny leather and that soft, well-worn leather I prefer). As it dries the sandalwood comes as does the patchouli. It’s a warm patchouli, almost golden in its scent. Despite the notes in this not typically being seen as ethereal, somehow it is just that – floating and ethereal, yet grounded. As this sits on my skin longer the leather goes from the forefront to somewhere in the back where it just gives hints as to its existence in the blend. Very beautiful and almost haunting blend.
Jeanne duVal is part of the Femme Fatales 2016 collection with notes of 5 ambers (two golden, one dry, one sweet, and one which is what I call Black Amber), add to that African Musk, a drop of aged sweet patchouli, a nice swath of labdanum, a large part of a very very dry and somewhat woody Bourbon vanilla, a bit of sandalwood, and just the right amount of Haitian vetiver. I get a nice sweet blast of bourbon vanilla in the vial and … chocolate? On my skin the vetiver takes over and for some reason there is something reminding me of chocolate. Or rather, more of a cocoa than a sweet milk chocolate. The ambers begin to make their appearance which pushes that weird cocoa note further away. I wonder if one of the ambers is a grey amber because I get just a hint of saltiness. The bourbon vanilla begins it’s ascent to the top with some of the sandalwood. I’m not getting a hint of labdanum which usually gives me a floaty feeling in a blend. This is a very grounded scent … but something is still giving me wafts of cocoa! So weird! If it weren’t for the cocoa I think I would really like it! Huh, it took a while, but the cocoa scent finally went away and now the labdanum has come out with it’s floaty essence.
The Mistress of Power will round out Part 1 of this review with notes of an incense and musk scent, a great oriental. Black, grey, and golden musks at the base, a good part of aged patchouli (which has gone from a thin light yellow to a thick dark brown over the years in the curing cabinet) there is absolutely nothing coy about this blend. Backdrop of a non foody and more brandy-like chocolate liquor, a small amount of clove, all finished off with an ambergris-like musk for a shadow-like staying power. The scent in the vial is boozy, but that goes away almost as soon as it touches my skin. Wow the patchouli is strong in this one with a good bit of a golden scent to it. The incense is strong, but not overwhelming. This is a resinous and incense blend, not for the faint of heart. It is commanding and powerful making itself known. There is a bit of subtle shifting between the notes as they vie for power and dominance. It takes a while, but eventually they settle into a golden resin and incense blend with just a hint of sweetness. This actually reminds me of the Lotus Spa I went to on the Outer Banks! Such a lovely and relaxing place. But that’s quite the dichotomy isn’t it?
I have been hording several Deconstructing Eden samples and I am finally able to do some testing! Opening them up, as they are wrapped in plastic, was wonderful as each new scent peeked its way out. A few are from the now gone Valentine’s Day release. I apologize for being late on those and will endeavor in the future to give reviews prior to the scents end date.
I adore Deconstructing Eden. Their silage and longevity is beyond what you normally expect from an EDP. The scents are wonderful and you get only a bare hint of any alcohol – it’s all about the beauty in the bottle. Their Type O Negative inspired scents are what drew me to them, and Burnt Flowers Fallen is what kept me coming back.
Besotted is first in the line up and its notes are spun pink candy floss, vanilla, pink grapefruit, sweet amber, black and red currants, honey drenched figs, a trace of tuberose, apricot, guava and apples. This note list just sounds like preteen puppy love! The pink grapefruit is in the forefront at first with figs and a touch of sweet amber backs it up. This is pink to the max but isn’t overwhelmingly sweet. The apricot and apples are soft as are the currants, but they lend some much needed non-pinkness to the blend. This is that heart flutter when you lock eyes with that cute boy in the hall who you swear doesn’t know your name and you feel like you could at once fly and melt into the floor. It’s your first stolen kiss at once too short and not short enough. It’s all the things that you love, even briefly. As this dries, it’s almost like growing up and that puppy love phase becomes a sweet memory.
Next up is Halo with its notes of moonlight, sea water, lilacs, wisteria, honeysuckle and moonflower. This opens with a touch of salty sea water and moonflower. I adore moonflower for its slightly watery and white scent. It’s soft, inviting, and alluring all at once. As this dries the honeysuckle comes out and the lilacs join the party. It’s a soft moonlit floral bouquet with soft white and purple flowers with just a hint of the golden honeysuckle. Very pretty, genteel, and glowing. This one ended up being a hit with my two daughters!
Éros, much like the god, is fiery in color with notes of deep, dark amber, gardenia, lily of the valley, velvet red roses, cinnamon and Egyptian jasmine. Normally I shy away from blends with cinnamon in them because other companies tend to burn my nose with it. However, Toni’s Cinnamon Girl (which I got to complete my Type O Negative scent set) showed me that her cinnamon is not to be feared and even being the center of a blend doesn’t mean it has to overwhelm.
However, Éros starts out as … dill pickle?! That’s … well … different. Oh good, that only lasted 30 seconds. Second sniff gives some dark amber, almost black with gardenia and cinnamon coming up right behind it. This is an exotic blend. The Egyptian jasmine is soft and fleeting and the roses seem to be clinging to the cinnamon. It’s not bakers cinnamon either – it’s … this is like walking into a greenhouse that specializes in exotic and hard to grow flowers. I’ve been in a greenhouse that smells exactly like this, but for the life of me I can’t remember where. In those situations every scent seems amplified yet it meshes so well together. To me this leans slightly masculine but not so much that I wouldn’t/couldn’t wear it and pull it off – though I tend to enjoy more masculine leaning scents. I can’t get over this scent association I have with it – it’s so evocative.
In keeping with the love fest going on, next I have a sample of Adore with notes of violets, citrus, jasmine, ylang ylang, lily of the valley, magnolia, tuberose, lotus, iris, bourbon vanilla, white musk and rose. Hmm, this is super soft, almost too soft to detect. There is definitely some tuberose and bright citrus. Ooh there’s the jasmine and iris. The vanilla is almost non-existent – but bourbon vanilla is usually too soft for me to pick up. I’m getting something of a “soap” quality. Nice soap, mind you, but soap just the same. Overall this is a nice blend, but too soft for my tastes.
Jacqueline leaked a little into the cap but that allowed an early glimpse at her scent. The notes include base notes of a clean skin musk and mahogany, dry amber accord and heart and top notes of sambac jasmine and jasmine officianale. It isn’t often DE lists base, heart, and top notes for her blends. Not sure if this is a new thing or an old thing. I kind of like guessing myself. Oh man this was love at first sniff when opening and now that I’ve a spritz of it I love it even more. It’s soft and woody with lovely bursts of jasmine. Simple, sweet, and utterly perfect. Jacqueline will be a large bottle purchase for sure. I just want to wrap myself in it.
Stay tuned for Part 2 of my Deconstructing Eden reviews!