Forgive me for being slack in updating! I got busy, then got sick, then got busy again. Then I worry it has been so long does it matter anymore? And the answer is of course it matters!
So today, as I go through my stash, I pulled out Arcana’sLast Judgement (which is unfortunately not longer available) and will spout the wonderfulness of this blend that I’ve not worn since I bought it last year.
Last Judgement – Holy resins of frankincense and myrrh with smudgy, tobacco-laced vanilla, amber, and labdanum absolute.
In the bottle I get the most heady waft of frank and myrrh with a healthy dose of labdanum. Now you might be thinking this is similar to Holy Terror (an unsettling, austere blend of burning frankincense, sandalwood, deep myrrh, and dusty beeswax candles) and it is … but not really. It’s got the same resinous frankincense and myrrh, but that’s really where the similarities end.
With Last Judgement you get this narcotic feeling that makes me want to roll my eyes in the back of my head and just sniff this all day long. I honestly cannot express just how much I love this scent. You get that golden bit of amber, slightly powdery and slightly sweet. And then the touch of the tobacco with the vanilla which adds another layer of sweetness on it.
However, with all this seeming sweetness, it is still extremely resinous and quite flowing. The throw on this is decent – not too much, not too little – and I get the loveliest wafts of incense around me as I wear it.
This blend is one where a little goes a long way. I’m typically a slatherer, but not with this blend. This one I can dab on pulse points and be done for most of the day. The longevity is also wonderful and I typically get anywhere from 6 to 8 hours or more depending on other factors.
For a few months I’d been watching Spectral Spirits prepare to open shop and the moment Daisy announced it on the Indie Perfume Lovers Facebook Page, I had to place an order. The shipping was super fast and packaging was adorable. I love the cracked porcelain doll face and the stripes used in the logo. It all adds to the atmosphere of the company.
Today Soothsayer was pulled from the sample bucket to get a run. I will say, the one thing I dislike is the wax seal. These were easier to remove than Conjure Oils’ seal, but still a mess to clean up.
Soothsayer – Ritual Smoke, Aromatic Spices, Nag Champa, Dragon’s Blood, Frankincense, Labdanum, Black Patchouli, Black Amber, Musk
In the vial is this soft and almost fizzy frankincense scent with just a touch of labdanum. It smells soft and floating – yet it truly blossoms on the skin. Wet on my skin and I’m already in love with this scent.
This is dark, smoky (but not in your face about it), incense heavy, and almost a touch sweet. Totally, completely, and utterly up my alley. It’s like this was made for me (it wasn’t, but man it feels like ME so much). You get a touch of everything and it’s all so lovely together. At first it’s all about this incensy smoky scent with a touch of something peppery or spicy. Under that you get this incredibly smooth nag champa, the likes of which I’ve only smelled once before. Nag Champa can sometimes be too hippy for me -but this is quite lovley. The dragon’s blood is softly sweet with a touch of spice to it. It’s not the floral dragon’s blood that you sometimes get, this is resinous and almost has a carnation-like spice to it. And that frankincense and labdanum is to die for. They are almost narcotic in their scent and make me swoon just sniffing them. The patchouli, amber, and musk seem to be melded together in that you get like a rubbing of a sooty dark amber along your skin. It’s deep and slightly woody with a rounded softness to it.
If you can’t tell, I’m slightly in love with this scent. I’m a bit bummed the smoke and spices don’t last longer. They burn off it seems as the scent dries on my skin.
The throw on this is wonderful. I get soft sweet incense wafts as I move around. The longevity is okay at about 3 hours before I need to reapply.
Today is the 1st Annual Celebration of Life for Fabienne Christianson of Possets. Already so many mourn her passing, but let us not be sad, but instead be joyous that she was able to share her vision, humor, kindness, and creations with us for but a seemingly brief period.
I chose for today’s scent – The Arrival of the Queen of Sheba. It was the first bottle purchase I ever made from Possets and it is what made me want to seek out more and explore the various aspects and scents that Fabienne had created.
Surely I’m not the only one who procrastinated, who said “next order” or what have you … and while we may regret that procrastination now, don’t dwell on the lost, but seek out what you have and enjoy it. Enjoy every last drop of it and know that it was created with joy and with love and meant to be loved by you.
The Arrival of the Queen of Sheba – Mysore sandalwood, suede, frankincense, patchouli, 4 vanillas. This blend is tough and tender at the same time, like the queen herself. This one makes vanilla turn tricks as an oriental ingredient and all of the fabulous elements get along so well. It’s an instant sex classic.
Please keep in mind, the scent I’m describing is from my aged bottle that was purchased back in July of 2015 and so it does not reflect a newer (or even older perhaps) blend.
In the bottle it is vanillas. As the description says, there are four of them, though I’m not sure I can pick them all apart. I definitely get a buttery vanilla and I get a dry vanilla and I’m sure the other two are somewhere in between.
On my skin this is still those vanillas, but more melded together so they are less able to be distinguished. The suede is fantastic in this blend as it brings this soft and almost fuzzy appeal to it making it cozy like a favorite blanket. The patchouli isn’t overwhelming, in fact I have a hard time picking it out when it’s wet at all. Though as it dries it comes out as a brown and woody patchouli. The sandalwood adds this softly golden wooden scent to the blend and the frankincense just a touch of resin to kind of glue it all together.
There is not a lot of morphing from this scent from wet > drydown >dry phase – it stays fairly true to itself and only gets deeper, more refined, and more cozy as it dries. The throw is decent – not overwhelming and just enough to get lovely hints of it as you move.
I remember when this scent was fresh it was just a tad too sharp, just a bit too rough around the edges. Then, as I let it sit, let it age away in a cool dark place, it became so much more. And then I promptly ordered another one to set back. I find I like to wear this blend to bed as it comforts me as I sleep and is still there to greet me in the morning. My pillow has taken on this sort of vanilla/suede scent along with another vanilla/leather scent I wear to bed so that I am in olfactory heaven when I sleep.
The wear time on this is impressive lasting as I said above well through the night and into the next day.
This feels like Possets to me, Queen of Sheba, soft and comforting in its embrace.
If you are anything like me, looking at Conjure Oils‘ website makes your head spin (and maybe strains the eyes a bit). But I powered through (and even got a few decants of Starman from Ajevie), and found a set of samples I wanted to try. I’ve always heard great things about Conjure Oils so I’ve been quite curious for a while.
My only complaint, so far, is the wax. I’ve already broken a nail trying to get enough off to be able to open the vial. Rocking the top seems to help, but then I noticed there’s oil under the wax so I’m worried that it will leak now that the wax is off.
Starting with the Starman scents, which were a tribute to the late and beautiful David Bowie, I have Anisocoria. That is the medical term for the condition of his eye which was permanently dilated. It’s notes are listed as Dried tobacco, willow, Parma violet, Egyptian Sandalwood, aged oak, blood cedar, marionberry and persimmon.
In the vial I get a lovely soft violet with a hint of oak and something watery. On my skin the tobacco comes out and is brown yet slightly brittle. The sandalwood is freshly harvested and still alive, yet fragrant enough to give off scent. I get a bit of sweetness from the marionberry and persimmon, but nothing overwhelming and it does well to enhance the blend rather than detract.
This dries into a very soft floral scent with a touch of berry-like sweetness. The oak, cedar, and sandalwood give a fragrant base for the sweet florals to rest upon. I get a very feminine feel from this blend, but not old-lady type feminine, more a modern feminine with an edge of something … different. I really like it much more than I thought I would when I first put it on. It’s developed into a beautiful fragrance and while the throw isn’t huge, I do get the occasional hint waft up to me.
Longevity wise, this particular blend is wonderful. I’m going on about 3 hours now and it’s showing no signs of fading.
The other Starman scent I chose is China Girl with notes of: Obsessions and moodiness are balanced by night blooming jasmine tea, China musk, notes of rain beating loud as thunder, yuzu, hinoki, rose geranium, clary sage, osmanthus and tender bamboo leaves with Neptune influenced gem and flower essences of Labradorite and Grass Widow.
I may or may not have China Girl and Major Tom memorized. And shame on you if you don’t! (Kidding)
Jasmine is a loved note of mine, and somehow with the tea it’s just beautiful. I also get a touch of bamboo and rain from the vial. On my skin the China musk is very apparent, though soft and slightly powdery. There is no mistaking this for anything other than a deeply Oriental perfume, soft, floral, and flowing. While still slightly wet the throw on this blend is crazy. It is not a shy blend for sure.
Unfortunately, as this has dried it has become something of a soapy scent. Not a bad one, rather a very nice Oriental floral type soap scent that I wouldn’t mind having in my guest bathroom (or even my own). But it’s not particularly something I like wearing on my skin. Also, the throw is massive and it’s a tad overwhelming.
Samia is part of the Conjure Caravan and contains notes of: playful and flirty lilac and sassy dianthus bask in the sensual glow of golden sandalwood, white opium and amber.
This is the vial that began leaking as soon as I removed some of the wax and honestly, the scent that transferred to my fingers is awesome and I want to put some on. The vials for the general collection (I guess that’s what it is, hard to tell) are about 1.5 ml’s but only filled about 1ml.
Sniffing the vial I get this intoxicating scent of opium, amber, and sandalwood. No wonder I was drawn to this blend! I love opium. On my skin I get those gorgeous florals as they float and flutter around the base. This isn’t a dark blend, far from it. It’s light and gossamer.
I could really see myself using this as a sleep blend. It has that drowsy quality to it and almost smells like something out of a dream. I’m kind of sad though, that the longevity on this one is somewhat lacking. Though, for a sleep blend I suppose having it only last a few hours is okay.
Venomenon, which is fun to say, contains notes of: Sugared Victorian tea rose, candied violet petals and sweet pink strawberry tea with cream obscure a dark heart of subtle red peppercorn and blackest amber.
It appears I bought these while I was on a violet kick. In the vial I get creamy violets with a hint of something darker, likely the black amber.
The violets are soft, powdery, and not really candied to me. I’m not getting any strawberry really, but a bit of a sweet cream with tea. The peppercorn is adding just a touch of spiciness while the amber gives a sense of a darker tea and has a hint of resin in it.
This blend doesn’t particularly call to me as I seem to be over my violet stage, but I can’t deny it’s beautiful and soft. Definately Victorian in feel and extremely feminine. It almost feels … chaste, if that feeling can be brought out in a scent. The throw on this is very good and wafts up around me nicely.
Guardian Angel proves I have some foresight! It’s notes are: Thirteen vanillas, butter cream, angel food cake and layers of heavenly coconut cream– and that is what I’ve been craving lately (though minus coconut but we’ll see how that goes).
CAKE! Glorious, sweet, and slightly spongy cake! You CAN have your cake with 0 calories! This is a gorgeous spongy angel food cake heavy on vanilla with a dollop of sugary cream that in no way gives me that coconut I so dislike (and so dislikes me). There’s nothing here to detract – no spices, no berries, no flowers. This is straight up midnight feasting guiltily on as much cake as you can grab before someone wakes up and hears you. Only there’s no real need to worry see. They can search that kitchen top to bottom and not find that cake they swear you had because it’s perfume!
I only have one real complaint … I wish there was more throw to this. I know, it’s vanilla and cake and making that have a throw can be hard, but a girl can wish, right? Luckily the longevity is nice. I got about 4 hours before I felt the need to slather on some more.
The Dark Mother sounds perfectly dashing with notes of: white narcissus, black orchid, aged neroli, Indian patchouli, red roses, the darkest of sandalwoods and the blood of the heart of an innocent, er, I mean bloodroot.
In the vial I get the most glorious of dark woods, likely the patchouli, sandalwood, and perhaps bloodroot. I love narcissus for the almost narcotic quality it adds. The orchid is dark and lovely, soft and velvety while adding it’s beautiful fragrance. I get roses, and they are heady and full in bloom, but they don’t overwhelm the other florals in the blend like they sometimes can do. Neroli is hugged against that narcissus and giving it a little bit of a kick.
This isn’t quite that dirty and gritty patchouli, but it sure isn’t a softie either. This patch is dark, yet smooth, sleek, and refined. It does a lot to enhance and add to the dark sandalwood. There’s almost a smoky quality to the blend, but it’s not smoky at all.
You get a true sense of something dark yet beautiful with this blend. The throw is fairly good, but isn’t overwhelming – it floats like a feather on the wind to tickle your nose instead of punching you in it like some roses can do to me.
Every now and then I find a blend that draws my wrist to my nose and I find myself almost unconsciously huffing. This blend has done that. I can’t stop smelling it!
The longevity on this blend is to die for as well. Working on about 3 hours now and it’s still softly wafting about. It’s smoothed out a lot but not lost any of what I love about it.
Wolf Moon (February) is said to be A fragrance fit for the young love of Lupercalia – Ethiopian frankincense, violet, bay laurel and a soft heart of Indian sandalwood.
Wolf Moon in the vial is, to put it bluntly, simply overwhelming and hit me with a blast of violet and bay laurel. Enough so that I jerked back and almost dropped the vial! Oops! Maybe that’ll teach me not to take a smaller test sniff first.
On my skin this is mostly violets with a touch of bay laurel. I’m not getting any sandalwood or frankincense. Unfortunately it seems this blend is not going to give anything other than violets and bay laurel. I would’ve loved some resins or smokiness from the frankincense and that smooth wood from sandalwood and I think it would’ve helped the blend, but it’s just not working on my skin for some reason.
Win some, lose some.
The Shadowy Shawl has some intriguing notes: sweet patchouli, amber incense, ginger musk, moonflowers and black sandalwood.
In the vial I was greeted with the soft gossamer sweetness of moonflowers with a backdrop of dusky sandalwood. On my skin the patchouli comes out and combines with the resinous amber. There’s a definite ginger undertone, but nothing strong, just enough to give it a bit of oomph.
This blend is quite enjoyable, almost cozy, and makes me smile to myself. There is a definite sweetness about it without there being anything sugary or vanilla-like. I love how smooth the patchouli is. Shadowy Shawl is an apt name for this blend.
There is not much of a throw to this as it stays fairly close to the skin. It’s very dusky and comforting and the longer it wears the more I sniff it and find another aspect I enjoy.
I think this blend is all about that unique ginger musk! It’s very different. The longevity is on par with most of the other blends so far, though it has a very low throw.
Rounding out this set of reviews I have The Befuddling Fan with notes of: white opium, ginger lily, Eastern temple sandalwood and a gentle haze of violet fog.
Just looking at the notes I wonder how this will relate to Samia. Another blend that is heavy violets in the vial.
Wet on my skin it is still heavily violets and I’m not getting any of that beautiful opium, lily, or sandalwood. Even after this has dried on my skin I’m not getting anything other than the violets.
Even as this dried down and I wore it for a few hours I, sadly, did not get anything other than those violets. Mind you, they were nice violets – soft, velvety, and slightly powdery – but it was not the full spectrum of the perfume.
Overall I’m enjoying Conjure Oils and I look forward to exploring more of the catalog in the future! I definitely plan on getting at least a bottle of The Dark Mother, if not Guardian Angel and Samia as well. And of course, no order is complete without a few samples to ride along!
I ran across mention of Love Potion Perfumes in a forum for another company and even there, they seemed to have some die-hard fans. So, of course, I had to try it out! I have to confess I’ve been sitting on these samples for a few months now, though I had tested one shortly after it had arrived and loved it. With perfume, I seem to have a problem keeping attention on something and end up chasing shiny things instead of focusing on what I have. Shame on me!
As you can see, these come in the 2ml sizes and I was given two 1ml’s free with my order! They appear to be like single notes, so that’s cool.
And if you want, for added oomph to your magical blend, you can add pheromones to, I believe, any blend.
Cocked & Loaded – A manly-man earthy sexy violet heart crafted of violet fragrance oil and violet leaf absolute then rounded out with balsamic amber, powdery oakmoss and two types of smooth golden sandalwood.
Love Potions not only lists the notes, but lists any magical, healing, or historical meanings for the notes used. Which is kind of cool. In the vial this smells like violets, but a version that has a soapy quality to it. On my skin most of the soapiness goes away and I’m left with just … violets. I’m really not getting anything else out of it at the moment. Even after letting it dry down the violets are strong but I do get a hint of something like sandalwood and a touch of amber. No oakmoss, no earthiness, just mostly florals. Nearly a half hour later I finally get some greenness from the oakmoss. This is a close to the skin scent with very little throw.
Love Potion: RED – Vanilla, Amber, Patchouli, Cinnamon, Dark Sugars, Woods, Resins.
In the vial I get a nice bit of resin and wood. On my skin I get a hint of cinnamon, but nothing overwhelming and it seems to be sitting close to the patchouli. I get a little bit of a tingly sensation on my skin where I applied, but no burning or anything harsh like that. This reminds me of walking into those kitschy country stores, but more refined. I kind of like that smell, a mixture of cinnamon, wood, and vanilla. The sugar has an almost molasses feel to it, which is comforting. This to me isn’t an overtly sexy blend, but more of a comforting kitchen blend. It smells like home, and love, and baking. Again, this is a scent that stays very close to the skin. I would love to have this in an oil warmer in my home (and that may be exactly what I do).
Always a Lady – A soft bouquet featuring five types of roses, scattered with dewy droplets of sweet strawberry, mango, raspberry and tangerine, all resting upon a base of oak and chypre.
In the vial this is super fruity! Lots of mango and tangerine with a hint of strawberry. On my skin that fruit is vying with the roses and it’s causing quite the ruckus on my skin. Eventually they work it out and it becomes a huge bouquet of roses. You can smell the dew and greenness with a hint of the oak. The only prominent fruit now is tangerine and strawberry, the rest sort of hang and add either sweetness or depth to the blend. The chypre comes and goes as you sniff. The throw on this blend is much more than the others, but still nothing that would overwhelm. It’s strong against the skin than it is when it wafts up to you.
Feed the Flowers – The beautiful melancholy of a funereal mood…a hint of smoke in the air, dried dusty flowers and the freshly-turned earth of an open grave…a bouquet of deep dark roses, geranium and stargazer lily mingled with earth, dry leaves and a drop of hay and dusted with mysterious resinous notes of myrrh, sandalwood, storax and benzoin. Finished with woodsmoke, powdery musk and a final kiss of white and powdered sugars.
This was the blend I had tried when they’d first arrived and I remember it being beautiful, earthy, and reminded me a lot of Samhain and all things Autumn.
In the vial I get a scent that is reminiscent of decaying leaves. On my skin that scent is still there, but on top of it is smoke and crackling twigs under foot. The dried flowers are hauntingly beautiful and hay graces the floor. This scent reminds me of an old, forgotten house in the woods whose bouquet on the table is long forgotten and the lace drapes are moth eaten and molding. Perhaps it was the home of a maiden waiting for her love to return from a war – but he never did and so she waited until they could be together again. It’s a melancholic scent and I love it. Another close to the skin scent. Really wish this one had some throw to it. Maybe I should put this one in an oil burner too.
Autumn Rain – Dry leaves and wet woods form the heart of our forest, with dewy notes of fern and fresh cut stems, and autumnal accents of apple and hay blended with the ambiance of earth and smoky frankincense.
In the vial this is a deep aquatic with a hint of apple. On my skin it is much of the same with an added touch of greenness. Beautiful petrichor scent with the leaves and forest floor. The apples are green and slightly bitter, the hay which was warmed by the sun is getting wet and is super fragrant. Once dried the frankincense comes out and wafts around this blend and gives it another dimension. Somehow this blend is dark, as though the rain has come on the heels of dusk. Unlike Feed the Flowers, this blend has a bit of a throw to it and wafts beautifully around.
The two free samples are Sugared Geranium and Sugared Bonfire.
Sugared Geranium is a deep and heady floral in the vial but it relaxes on my skin and becomes soft and pink with just a hint of sweetness.
Sugared Bonfire has an almost cotton candy like scent in the vial, but on my skin the wood and smokiness comes out and mixes with the sugar and creates the oddest combination of sweet woodsmoke, or cotton candy flavored in woodsmoke. It’s not bad, and not off putting really, just very different.
I love that I can either select my free sample(s) or have it selected for me from Deep Midnight Perfumes. I, not being super familiar with the catalog, let Cat over there select my samples for me! So far I’ve been super impressed with this company!
Dome of Stars sounds fascinating as someone who loves looking up at the night sky. Its notes include Sandalwood, orris root, lavender, myrrh, amber, soft evergreen, and light nuances of cinnamon and citron. Bonus this was inspired by Elrond! In the vial this is softly green and fragrant woods with just a light hint of lavender. On my skin you can almost smell the moonlit night. The evergreens are not overpowering but they lend a grand stillness to the scent – things come and go, but evergreens seem eternal. The cinnamon and citron, like the notes describe, are not prominent, but I can smell where they are adding their little touches to the blend. The sandalwood, orris, and myrrh mix together to give this a lovely bed of wood for the scent to lay upon while the lavender and amber seem to float around. This is simply stunning, unisex leaning feminine, and would be a perfect (for me) scent to wear at night. There is a bit of a throw to this, not a big one mind you but enough of one that I can smell it coming up to greet me.
Black Wings – and now for something completely different –Black leather, decayed black roses, dark aged patchouli, guggal incense, dark woods, and musk. I’m very picky about my leather notes. As of right now there are only two companies that make a leather note I like and can wear. In the vial this is straight up dirty hippy patchouli (I mean that in the best possible way!). On my skin this is super dark yet almost floaty. I’m not actually getting that sharp almost acidic scent from the black leather (sometimes it comes across as that pleather – fake leather – grossness) so that’s a bonus. But this is very dark, very dirty, very hippy-like. So if you’re into that sort of thing, then this is right up your alley! There is no sweetness to this scent – it’s dark and it wants you to know.
Ishtar Gate has notes of deep rose, oud, myrrh, lotus blossoms, and frankincense combine with other sacred attars and subtle spices. In the vial this is a deeply red rose scent, full in bloom and heady. On my skin this rose then mixes with lotus to enhance the sweetness and add a touch of dewiness to the rose. The oud, myrrh, and frankincense give a nice woody base, as though you are smelling the plant as a whole and not just the flower itself. This has a really good through and is a strong feminine scent (not strong like overpowering, but strong as in a emotionally/personality strong). Overall this is a beautiful heady perfume that takes full advantage of the largest, deepest, reddest rose around and highlights everything about it that makes it a rose.
Aloysius will round out these scents with notes of decadent old wood, rum, rich dark leather, and soft touches of sugar, citrus and mint. Another leather blend! Just initial sniff from the vial and my mind was filled with visions of Captain Jack Sparrow and musings about why the rum is gone. My husband is a lover of spiced rum so I know the smell very well. It’s in here and this very much smells like barrels and barrels in a wooden storage barn attached to their holdings by leather straps, each one filled with rum (though the rum note itself isn’t prominent, but it’s there and noticeable). This is a super masculine blend and I’m on my way to wanting to sing sea shantys! The citrus and mint are in there and I can detect them and they do so much to uplift this blend and really make it stand out without allowing all the other notes to overpower one another. Yeah, this is totally what Jack Sparrow would smell like (after a bath, mind you).
After years of looking, reading, and stalking the Villainess site, I have finally purchased a set of samples from them. I love their site, their theme, all of it – so I’m excited to delve into these samples. They’ve had plenty of time to relax from their travels and they got some rest if they needed a bit of aging.
Might as well start this off with a scent from their namesake, Villainess. Its notes are listed as: Our signature scent – all ball gowns and combat boots. Raw, smokey leather and sweet vanilla musk engulfed in a sheer haze of exotic florals – ylang, neroli, jasmine, lilac and tuberose. Sleek black leather jumps out from the vial as I take a sniff. Thankfully that backs off almost the moment it touches my skin. I get the smoky part of the leather along with a light touch of vanilla musk. The florals are soft and ylang, jasmine, and lilac seem to be the most prominent. This is strong, assertive, unisex almost verging on masculine. This kind of morphs between strong leather and soft florals. Finally it begins to settle down into this rough, raw leather scent with just a hint of those white florals. It’s strong and the throw is mighty.
Vale has notes of Musky warmed saddle leather, rich notes of espresso and clove, and a coconut-sweetened masala. Seems Villainess likes the leather. Who can blame them? This is espresso with a shot of chocolate – I think it’s a cocoa note I’m smelling. The coconut is more like a milk. Horchata I believe is the drink this is reminding me of, but with a hint of leather. This is certainly a blend all its own!
Decadence comes with notes of: an indulgent vanilla – alcoholic, buttery and bittersweet with delightful undertones of tonka and coconut. Our favourite vice. I’ve been dying for more vanilla scents so I’m super excited about this! In the vial I get the boozy vanilla with a hint of coconut. The coconut comes out more on my skin and it’s that juicy, watery coconut milk and not the flesh. The tonka also gives this a beautiful brown fuzzy feel and keeps the vanilla from going too boozy. This certainly is decadent and oh my goodness I want to bathe in this … and I can!!!
Jai Mahal is another vanilla blend (woot!) with notes of: 4 rich vanillas and tonka, Mysore sandalwood, bourbon and coconut. Expensive woods, incense and imported spices – cedar, amber, myrrh, cardamom and nutmeg. Woods, incense, nutmeg, and vanilla is wafting so deliciously around me. There isn’t as much vanilla in this one as there was in Decadence, and it’s different despite it sharing notes. This warms on the skin and gives a sun soaking, spicy feeling. It’s soft and beautiful and alluring.
Morpho contains notes of: Sheer blue musk and a breath of old books, delicate touches of blackberry and juniper, and a whisper of plumeria. In the vial I get the softest bluest musk that smells powdery. On my skin I get the blackberry and the plumeria is more than just a whisper. After a minute the juniper comes out with that worn and antique feeling it gives me. In the beginning this can be slightly overwhelming, after about 10 minutes this has a huge throw and is almost candy-like. Something along the lines of SweetTarts or that powdered candy. It’s making my jaw hurt (you know that sensation when you taste something sour) and my mouth water! It takes about 30 minutes or so before that sour sweettart like scent morphs into this blue, soft, and powdery scent. Very feminine and soft.
Byzantium will round this review series out with notes of: Precious woods and resins – cedar, pine and sandalwood, frankincense, amber and myrrh – at play against a sheer base of Egyptian musk, barely spiked with imported spices, and lightly veiled in smoke. This is very soft when it first goes on with soft, golden Egyptian musk and a soft smattering of spices. As this dries and warms on my skin the woods and resins come out and this is just so beautiful. Golden and warm, this is standing out in the sun, sand beneath your feet, and a lean-to for when you’re in need of some shade.
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!
Found this gorgeous perfumer on Etsy and heard some great things about them from Indie Perfume Lovers facebook group. Deep Midnight Perfumes has a ton of sample options either singly or by collection. I got sample packs of Steampunk Girls and Wicked Girls along with a free sample per collection set and one for being a new customer! You can either choose your own, or let them choose. I wanted to be surprised so I let them choose!
First up is Seven Veils whose notes include madagascar vanilla, velvety orchids, white florals, the softest musk, sweet golden amber, spices and exotic resins. In the vial I get orchids and a touch of those spices and resins! On my skin this is so smooth. The vanilla is beautiful and full, the musk is gentle, and the amber is glorious. There is something exotic (oh yeah, resins) about this blend – gentle and sweet, alluring and mysterious, and just almost purple in feel. I could see myself wearing this to bed, or on a sexy night out (yes, it works for both). Despite how soft this scent is it does have a really good throw on it. I keep getting beautiful whiffs of purple orchids and gentle musk with sweet vanilla. This has some excellent lasting power to it, really amazing.
King Cake is described as: Based on the traditional and scrumptious Mardi Gras King Cake, which is made with a yeasty bread and Danish type dough, braided and filled with cinnamon and sometimes various fruits jams or nuts and then topped with sugary or cream cheese frosting. I am almost ashamed to admit that I have never had a King Cake – but I’m not big into Mardi Gras either, so it shouldn’t be too surprising. That being said this is CAKE and cream cheese frosting in the vial. There’s a touch of cinnamon, a bit of a nutty quality, and something almost bready. It’s this weird cake/bread mix. Like a dense cake. The more it sits the more the cinnamon comes out. Unfortunately this kicks my gourmand button and I can’t stomach much more. But cake lovers will definitely enjoy this!
Selene by Night has notes of black orchids, deep dark exotic woods, enigmatic cypress, dragon’s blood and the faintest kiss of spice. Cypress is prominent in the vial as well as on my skin. However as it touches my skin the woods and spice come out. The orchids give a hot-house feel to the blend. This is inky blackness, expansive and almost oppressive, yet stunning. The dragon’s blood is commanding and rich. This has a great throw, excellent longevity. This might need a touch of aging because the dragon’s blood tries to go to soap with my chemistry.
Vixen Venom entices with its notes of a blend of rich amber, sweet musk, the sweetest vanilla, and a dash of patchouli for that extra bite! This is a lovely patchouli vanilla in the vial. On my skin that amber and musk come out. Man I can’t believe the awesome. This is seductive, tantalizing, and down right sexy. The amber is darkly golden while the vanilla is sweet, but not foodie and with the barest touch of patchouli this blend just out does itself.
Next up is Ladies of London whose notes are sensual florals highlighted with lily of the Valley, spicy indulgent opium, a bowlful of the deepest sensual red berries, and caresses of frankincense and patchouli for added mystery. In the vial this is all red berries and opium. On my skin it is much of the same though it takes on a bit of a fizzy feeling, as though there is champagne in the blend. The flowers are strong, the opium wafting, and the berries mashed into a delightful drink. The frankincense and patchouli are more of the incense type instead of a resin and it’s like they are being burnt on opposite sides of the room and making their way towards you. These ladies of London may look innocent at first, however, they are anything but.
I decided to go on and combine these reviews instead of doing it in two parts. So this is Clockwork Cutie! YAY! Its notes are fresh wild berries, concord grapes on the vine, a whisper of dark flowers from a secret Victorian garden, and a soft vanilla accord. In the vial I get a beautiful juicy blast of berries and grapes, and that stays true on my skin, however there are now flowers wafting around. It’s a very sweet blend, very juicy and fun! The flowers are doing a good job at keeping the fruit from going too crazy and now as it dries the vanilla is coming out. Oh wow, once this dries completely it’s a beautiful floral and fruit blend – fun and fancy free, yet somehow there’s a sophistication to this perfume!
Flights of Fancy gives way to notes of mahogany wood, amber, lavender, brown sugar, oak, with faint and fresh background notes of peach and pear. In the vial this is wood and sugar – sweet and warm. There is a bit of lavender and it’s not making me cringe with pain! The peach and pear are juicy but they are under everything else. The woods are beautiful, golden, and fragrant. I really like how wonderful this is – it’s like floaty and flowing – beautifully constructed and makes me want to close my eyes and inhale deeply. Also, I’m so trilled to find another company whose lavender doesn’t make my sinus scream in pain! The brown sugar is only adding a hint of sweetness and that beautiful touch of darkness from molasses.
Agent of Chaos! Sounds like a good book eh? No book, but it has notes that include an exotic Chypre accord, rich leather, bergamot, lemon, sweet sugars, cardamon and clove, followed up with softer backgrounds notes of mahogany, oakmoss, and a faint touch of jasmine. In the vial it’s all sweet spices, like a good foodie fall scent. On my skin it still has that association, but the leather and chypre pull it back from that foodie edge. The clove is not overpowering at all, actually none of the spices are overpowering. This is really well blended, dark and mysterious! Perfect for an Agent of Chaos! I’m really digging this blend! It’s leaning a touch masculine but there’s enough jasmine to keep it on the feminine side. Actually this reminds me a lot of what I think Zoë from Firefly would smell like (which is who I named my youngest after). Oh man, any association Firefly means I need it!
Rounding this out is Chocolate Earth, one of the freebie’s, and it has notes of Dark Chocolate, Plump Fresh Raspberries, Dark Five Year Aged Patchouli, and a touch of Sweet Cream. So … I typically dislike chocolate and cocoa scents – they just don’t sit well with me and that is a personal preference and nothing against any perfumer that uses chocolate in their blends because there are plenty of other people who crave it. To each their own. In the vial it is dark chocolate and patchouli – a bit different to be sure. On my skin I … am not sure what I’m smelling. I know there’s a patchouli but that’s about all I can smell. It takes 5-10 minutes but eventually I get raspberries, soft and juicy, with a touch of cream. There’s no discernible chocolate to my nose. I double checked the vial to make sure there wasn’t any cocoa or something sitting and I needed to roll it and there’s nothing. Maybe the chocolate and patchouli are so well intertwined that I just can’t pull it apart. This is like leaning against a fragrant tree while eating raspberries and cream.
Sucreabeille is a new, to me, company that I’ve heard some wonderful things about so of course I just had to give them a try! Not only to they boast a rather prolific scent list themselves, they are also known for some really well done designer duplicates, so I’ve heard.
First up is Oud Wood – which oddly I can’t find in their Scent List – though a quick googling shows it’s a Tom Ford scent so this might be a dupe that was either discontinued or my searching skills are just horrible today (just as an aside – I’ve never smelled any Tom Ford scents). In the vial this is a soft, slightly sweet wood scent. On my skin I get something almost citrus-y, like a mix between a lemon or a not-quite-ripe orange. As it dries more of the smooth oudh scent comes out. It’s a light brown scent, not strong, not overwhelming, more serene and calming. It just is. This stays fairly light, even after a few hours wear and doesn’t have much throw to it. It’s a close skin scent but beautiful nonetheless.
Frankincense & Myrrh is a common theme in my preferred scents, if you haven’t noticed. Sucreabeille lists notes of frankincense & myrrh,deep, smoky, & rich, warmed with amber & vanilla. Hmm, another hint of citrus. I wonder if it’s something in their carrier oil. On my skin I get a strong sense of lemon peel. It takes a while but the lemon peel begins to fade away and I am left with a smoky frank and myrrh combo with just a hint of vanilla. This has a heavy feel to it but I can’t seem to shake the lemon peel. A quick google is telling me that frankincense can smell like lemon – huh I’ve never really gotten that association before. Could be because there isn’t a lot to the blend and so the frankincense is able to do it’s thing and not be hindered by anything else. It takes a few hours, but the lemon association goes away and I’m left with the hint of burning frank and myrrh with a touch of golden amber and just a bit of vanilla.
Champanilla sounds like a party animal eh? It’s notes are nag champa, softened with vanilla bean pods & musk. Nag Champa is like a roller coaster scent for me – it has it’s highs and lows depending on how prominent it is in the blend. I prefer my nag champa to be less of a key player and more of a supporting actor (because nag champa is totally a dude ya know). In the vial it’s all vanilla and musk, beautiful and almost foody with a touch of a crystalline aspect to it. On my skin the nag champa is soft, like a pillow that is supporting the vanilla and musk. Every now and then it gets something close to an animalic quality to it, but then it backs down and starts heading towards gourmand. See? Roller Coaster of emotions over here! I don’t know whether to drown myself in it or wash it off. Now I’m getting something akin to a freshly cleaned dog warming in the sun – that soft, warm, and almost golden feeling that you only get from a dog’s natural clean scent. It reminds me of the dog my Dad had when I was younger – a beautiful black chow, lab, and German shepherd mix. Abby was the best dog ever and so loyal and sweet. It reminds me of her. Eventually this looses that animal quality and settles into a very prominent vanilla with a hint of musk and nag champa. The throw on this is decent for how soft it is. It’s still wafting around me a few hours later.
Mourning Wood (again, I’m really a 12 year old boy *snicker*) with notes of Amber, Madagascar vanilla, rich musk, sandalwood, & oud wood. In the vial I get a nice golden amber with a touch of musk and some sandalwood. On my skin it almost disappears for a moment but as my skin warms it I can smell it more with each sniff. The vanilla is almost floral in nature and the musk seems golden and almost skin-like in nature. The oudh and sandalwood are a nice golden wood base to the scent. Overall this is a close skin scent that is golden and slightly sweet. It’s a delicious (not in a food way) blend that just brings to mind relaxing on a hammock with the sun shining and the birds chirping while the sun filters through the trees.
Last we have Corpse Bride with notes of black roses, white amber, damp earth, vanilla, tonka bean, & musk. Oh this one is beautiful. I love black roses! The amber and roses come together for a truly beautiful scent – it’s heady, slightly sweet, and just a touch powdery. I’m not getting much damp earth, which is a bummer, though I do get some vanilla and the fuzzy tonka. This is beautiful and almost haunting.
I purchased their dry-oil sample set – unfortunately, either due to my own lack of hydration or other skin chemistry related issues, or their formulations, none of the scents lasted longer than 2 hours – except for Champanilla which is still faintly discernible after about 4 hours. I cannot say how the longevity of their other products will compare.