30 Scents in 30 Days – Hyde + Alchemy – Day 24 – 019

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photo by smellallthethings

I had to try more of Hyde + Alchemy.  Their formula is so strong – stronger than EDP’s, and a little is going so far.

This time I grabbed a vial labeled 019.  It has notes of lavender, iris, vanilla, saffron, musk mallow seed, amber, and Brazilian vetiver.

In the vial this is that familiar herbal lavender that so many people love and for some reason my body (namely my head) hates.  Unfortunately this lavender is no different in that it gives me a headache, slowly but surely.  With that lovely herbal lavender, however, is a beautiful sweetness – maybe from the iris and vanilla.

Wet on my skin the iris just blooms into this super pretty and soft floral note that is supported by the lavender sitting softly and almost green in the back while a sweet musk scent and golden amber float around.

Dry on my skin it is heavily floral, but not overwhelmingly so.  There is only a hint of the lavender and the headache that was previously threatening is easing up.  The musk from that mallow seed is gorgeous and soft, almost fluffy, almost like tonka.  The vetiver isn’t strong, nor overpowering, but it gives a beautiful brown earthiness to the whole blend.

Overall this blend is extremely comforting, soft, and cozy.  The throw on this is really good – I get a soft vanilla floral with a hint of musk and that glowing amber.  I’m really starting to fall for this company and their scents.

30 Scents in 30 Days – Day 23 – Hyde+Alchemy 012

Life, illnesses (running rampant through the whole family), and holiday’s kept me away.  Also going through my whole stash to get rid of things (check Indie Perfume Lovers FB group in a few days) and just slim stuff down because I quite literally ran out of room.

But, I’m here!  I’m back!  I smell good!  And hopefully you do too.

New company I was turned on to over at bpal.org forum.  Those ladies/gentlemen/lizard-people are hell on wallets – more so than any place else.  But it’s okay, because I love them.

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photo by smellallthethings

Hyde + Alchemy!  Slick, sleek, modern, and minimalistic are all great descriptors for their website – but not for their scents as I am finding out.  Well the modern part fits.  This is more of a niche brand?  I don’t know, don’t care really.  The people there are awesome, the discovery kit is cool, and I’m looking forward to exploring!

From the bag I grabbed 012 – lavender, saffron, coffee blossom, tonka bean, vanilla, and amber.

Coffee blossom?  Like, who knew that was a thing?!  But I don’t like coffee.  So … we’ll see how this goes eh?

In the vial I get something that’s coffee but not, but coffee with a floral twist and a touch of sharp lavender.  It’s interesting, different yet a little off-putting because flower coffee isn’t something you really think of.

Wet on my skin though I get that familiar bitter coffee scent I dislike so much.  (Blasphemy yadda yadda I know, I know.)  Then around that I get that lovely fuzzy tonka scent that’s warm and comforting.  Under that is a warm and golden amber.

The drydown keeps it bitter, a touch sharp, but it has this undercurrent of sweetness that’s likely the vanilla and amber.  I don’t really get any saffron that I can tell.  Usually saffron goes weird on me and totally kills a blend for me, but so far I’m not getting that.

The throw on this scent is better than the skin scent.  That doesn’t happen very often.  Usually it’s kind of a what you smell is what you get – only rarely have I had this happen where the skin scent is enough to make me cringe but the throw has me searching it out.  Such a juxtaposition!  The throw isn’t powerful though, it’s very soft and flowing.  This blend is so different from anything I would ever chose for myself and it’s piqued my curiosity for sure.

Deep Midnight Perfumes – General Catalog Samples

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!

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photo by smellallthethings

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).

Deep Midnight Perfumes – Game of Thrones Inspired Samples

Another review for the lovely shop Deep Midnight Perfumes!  This time I am reviewing the Game of Thrones Inspired set of samples.  I have to preface this by saying I’ve only read 2 of the books and watched the first episode of the show.  In my defense, I have small children and some things are not appropriate for their eyes to see and their ears to hear.  I do, however, hear regular updates from my husband who has both read the books and watched the show, so I have some idea of these concepts.

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photo by smellallthethings

Raven Boy was inspired by Bran Stark and has notes of Oakmoss, earthy musk, tobacco leaf, sage, dark vanilla sugar, amber, aged oak and background florals notes of iris and damask rose.  Ooh, this is deep and dark, beautifully done.  On my skin the dark vanilla sugar and the aged oak have melded into one.  The sage is not very noticeable – I only get a hint here and there.  Tobacco leaf and oakmoss and that beautiful earthy musk is giving this a greenish-brown feel.  The iris and damask rose are not prominent and only serve to lift a little and give a hint of sweetness that’s been rounded out.  This is dark, like a dream where the edges are fuzzy and the only thing in sharp relief is what you have your inner eye turned upon.  This blend is unisex, but with a slight masculine lean.  Overall the scent stays close to the skin, like a dream fog.

Little Dove is a olfactory representation of Sansa Stark with notes of linden blossoms, lilac, and lily, are mixed with delicious arctic berries, and nuances of violet, apple, and soft, creamy musk then wrapped up in sweet green notes of willow and bamboo.  You don’t see bamboo too often in notes but it’s one I love and I am drawn to it when I find it.  Doesn’t always work out, but it’s fun in the mean time!  In the vial you get that wet and green bamboo, some of the apple, and a lot of floral.  On my skin this is softly sweet, slightly green, and a touch dewy.  There is something that keeps wanting to go a bit “sex” on my skin.  Ahh, it’s mellowed in the last 5 minutes.  The arctic berries have a touch of frost on them, but are otherwise red and juicy.  This is a beautiful fragile yet fragrant scent – soft, beguiling, sweet, and innocent.

Faceless Girl is inspired by Arya Stark with notes of cedarwood, black amber, lavender, cassis, olive leaf, cassia bark, and patchouli are softened up with notes of tonka bean, sandalwood, ylang ylang, rose otto and violet.  In the vial this is a deep dark lavender with some gorgeous patchouli.  On my skin the cedarwood and cassis/cassia bark come out with a touch of sandalwood and ylang ylang.  The rose otto is fighting for attention but that calms down after a bit thankfully.  There is a definite oriental vibe about this blend with a hint of something reminding me of a darker fougère.  The notes are so well blended now that I’m having a hard time picking them out.  Overall I get a very shadowed vibe, strong yet feminine, only slightly floral and this is reminding more of early Arya when she was still being forced into being proper and feminine and her life hadn’t been touched by so much death.

Snow Wolf is meant as a representation of Jon Snow with notes of Cedarwood, leather, rosemary, dark woods, black amber, and a touch of cool, frosty mint.  In the vial this is leather and mint.  On my skin I still get some of that cool and crisp peppermint, but it isn’t strong or overpowering.  It takes a little bit but the woods come out with a hint of leather.  I’m not really getting any rosemary.  This is masculine and almost gritty in feel.  I know there’s no steel or metal in the blend, but the combination of the mint and the leather is giving off that feeling.  You can almost feel the heavy leather on your back keeping you warm in the bitter cold.

Stormborn has the pleasure of being inspired by Daenerys Targaryen (yes I copy/pasted because I would’ve butchered the spelling) whose notes include Dragons blood, oud wood, patchouli, jasmine, desert earth, cardamom, and moss.  The dragon’s blood is very strong and is unlike any dragon’s blood from any company I’ve ever tried before.  Instead of being either floral, or super spicy floral, this is a soft and gentle floral with just a touch of spice, which could actually be coming from the cardamom.  You get the jasmine and the oudh.  The patchouli is mixing with the desert earth to give a golden yet dry feel to the blend.  Overall this is powerful and comanding – more unisex than feminine, and keeps trying to tip to something kind of boozy.

Arcana Soaps – Flowers & Stars Samples

So excited for more Arcana scents!  Julia’s been doing some wonderful things over there lately, so if you’re curious, check out the Arcana Addicts facebook page to get sneak peeks at some exciting things!  Once again, these decants were courtesy of the wonderful Ajevie!  Now, on to the real reason you’re here …

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photo by smellallthethings

Adhara has notes that include, Vanilla cream, tangerine, clementine, Nagami peel, black coconut, and a touch of sweet violet.  In the vial this is super citus-y and almost creamsicle-like!  On my skin this is a lot of citrus peel with a dark coconut meat.  The violet and vanilla cream add some much needed sweetness to the blend.  I’m trying to wrap my head around this scent as it’s so completely different from anything I normally go for (that was actually on purpose for this group) that I can’t seem to pull together the right words to describe this.  Eventually the sharp acidic peel-like scent smooths out and I get more of the creaminess from the coconut and vanilla with a touch of that purple violet.  The citrus takes a chill pill and calms down and starts playing nicely with everyone.  This is a bright and sweet scent, yellow-ish orange in feel and scent (and apparently oil now that I look at it).  Unfortunately this is fading rather fast on my skin, though that could be an issue of the heat today rather than the blend itself.

Oh man, 10 minutes later and that faded feeling goes away and I get the full force of the beautiful creamy citrusy scent!  It’s like an orange dreamsicle, but only if it took on a more tropical vibe.  The coconut has come out more, but not overwhelmingly so.  This has turned out absolutely beautiful and this girl who used to be iffy on citrus notes before has been converted to a citrus lover!

Belatrix is up next touting notes of Sweet, jammy fir absolute with 3 honeys, honeysuckle, tiny strawberries, and blood orange.  Jammy fir sounds like my kind of jam!  Oh man this smells like heaven in the vial!  On my skin that jammy fir certainly is sweet with those honeys and bright honeysuckle.  The strawberries are tart and the blood orange is deep and red.  Man, I kind of thought I would like this – I did not expect to love it!  This does lean a tad masculine but can teeter on that unisex border.  And if you amp anything other than the fir, then it would likely be leaning feminine.  But, lucky me, I amp conifer scents!  Oh wow, I just keep huffing!  This is just full of sweet woods, beautifully fragrant and unmistakably addicting.  I need this in my life.

Betelgeuse boasts notes of Atlas cedarwood and blood cedar with smoldering oudh, osmanthus, brown musk, bacon, and vetiver.  Bacon?  Yes, bacon.  Crispy fried bacon.  No, it’s not super prominent, but it’s in there mixing with the brown musk and the vetiver.  You bet it’s odd too.  I think my chemistry is amping the brown musk as it’s almost overwhelming right now.  Ya’ll, I want to keep this on and review it but I can’t.  I just … I can’t.  I do hope someone finds this and loves it.  It’s unique and different, salty and brown to the extreme, but just too much for this girl to handle.

Electra is up next to relieve my palate of the aforementioned bacon with its notes of Pink carnation petal ice cream, Mexican bakery vanilla, eggnog, sweet cinnamon, and nutmeg.  In the vial this is all vanilla, cinnamon, and nutmeg – almost holiday-like.  On my skin it’s much of the same, except now I get that pink carnation petal ice cream (who knew?!) coming out and it’s delicious!  There’s even a hint of “coolness” to it to really give it that ice cream feel.  This is soft, pink, and frilly.  The holiday-likeness goes away after a while and instead everything seems to be in support of that unique pink carnation petal ice cream (I may need to find some).  For some reason this is just bringing memories of Jem and the Holograms to mind.  Rockin’!

Miaplacidus may be hard to say, but it’s notes of Sea air, spring water, cucumber, juniper, hyacinth, lavender, China musk, and 1 drop of hyssop aren’t.  In the vial this is very watery and lavendery (that’s totally a word, okay?).  On my skin the sea air thankfully isn’t coming across as super salty (like the bacon was … wtf bacon … yes I’m still hung up on it), and the cucumber is giving a nice refreshing and clean aspect.  The juniper is soft, but the lavender isn’t, at least not on me.  On me it is almost screaming along with the china musk.  Very odd.  It’s almost as though everything in the blend is vying for attention at once.  Okay, it took a few minutes but the screaming and fighting stopped (listens better than my kids) and now it’s soft and watery and flowing.  This blend becomes gentle and beautiful despite the beginning oddness.  Very pretty, clear blue in color and feel.

Mira is taking me out of my comfort zone again with notes of Tiare blossoms dipped in milk chocolate with coconut, sugared rum, French cocoa absolute, marshmallows, and white chocolate.  So rum and I don’t get a long every since my husband decided that while I was pregnant with my first to get me to eat Häagen Dazs Rum Raisin Ice Cream and that begun my decent into morning sickness – or every time I smelled rum sickness.  There are definite bits of cocoa in the vial so if you do get this, remember to shake gently or roll gently before applying to get it to mix in with the rest of the blend.  This is pure chocolate in the vial.  That creamy and rich milk chocolate that the rest of the world swears isn’t actually chocolate but us American’s just don’t care – we’re addicted to it.  (Unless you’re not, in which case … SHAME ON YOU!  Kidding.)  On my skin it’s chocolate and rum and chocolate and some cocoa.  And it’s way too overwhelming.  I can’t – it’s too much for me.  Some chocolate wearing lover is going to go gaga for this blend, I know it, but that person is not me.

Sirius rounds these scents out with its notes of Bright white grapefruit, golden amber, linden flowers, tart red currant, cassis, and pomegranate.  Lots of favorite notes in here!  I almost bought Sirius blindly without testing, but I wanted to try them all so here we are. In the vial this is bright grapefruit, tart and tangy and super juicy.  On my skin that stays very true but now the linden flowers come out with a touch of cassis.  The pomegranate is red as are the currants, but the grapefruit is making them really work to be smelled.  I think I amp citrus notes in the beginning so I’ll stop sniffing it for a few minutes and see what it does when it settles.  Hmm, even after a few minutes the grapefruit is still super strong and almost over powering the blend.  It takes about 30 minutes but eventually the grapefruit stops overwhelming the blend and the rest gets to showcase themselves.  I enjoy the bit of spiciness cassis brings to the group.  This is only slightly sweet, completely juicy and tart, and a hint of spice.

And thus concludes the Arcana Flowers & Stars collection reviews.  Hope it was helpful!

Valhalla Soap Co. – Sample Sets

With my last order, I nabbed two more pixie packs full of more wonderful scents!  Valhalla Soap Co. has also recently released their Spring scents and a new cocoa body butter lotion that can be shipping during those pesky summer months, and Sif’s leave-in conditioner and de-tangling spray.

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photo by smellallthethings

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.

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photo by smellallthethings

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.

Deconstructing Eden – Spring 2016 Collection

Yipee my Deconstructing Eden Spring scents are here!  I just love the beautiful blue of Jardin Botanique and I’m so excited to try all the scents.

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photo by smellallthethings

Sun in Splendor describes today perfectly!  Beautiful and sunny.  This has notes of dark amber, agarwood CO2, calendula blooms, a drop of honey, clover, rich wood and bergamot.  Oh wow this is a beautiful and bright scent!  The agarwood and amber are deep and fragrant giving the most golden of glows to the blend.  Honey keeps it sweet nad the clover gives it a nice greenness.  There’s a touch of floral in the blend that doesn’t overwhelm but gives it that lovely out door feeling.  It’s crisp, clean, golden and gleaming – just a perfect blend for that perfect Spring day.

Dans Le Jardin has notes of freshly turned earth, hyacinths, tulips, lily of the valley, tender green leaves, ivy, unripe strawberries and the very first buds of lavender not yet bloomed.  Oh nice – this is a fresh blast of beautiful moist earth with a lovely dew covered greenness surrounding it.  The florals are new and soft, just starting to release their scent.  This scent is the perfect scent for Spring and that week or two where you are planting your garden at the beginning of the season (which in Ohio is just after Mother’s Day) and you get the lovely scents of the earth and plants.  You can really feel the sun and the earth and the life flowing around you.

June Jardin  is next and it boasts notes of Gardenia, Orange blossoms, white wisteria, osmanthus, muguet and moonflower.  This blend opens with a blast of muget and orange blossoms.  There’s something almost spicy about this and the moonflower gives a beautiful sweet and dewy scent.  After it’s sat for a while the florals float and shift in the breeze.  It remains with a touch of spice and heady florals.

Le Verger has notes that include old growth trees, a field of clover, peaches, pears, nectarines, citrus blossoms, ripe apples, apple blossoms, unripe figs and fig leaves.  Oh wow this is fruity and juicy!  There’s just a hint of greenness to cut through the fruit so it isn’t too overwhelming.  I love the way this makes me think of picnics with fruit salads!  Also, there’s a touch of wood from those old growth trees.  Very pretty, sweet, and uplifting!

Jardin Botanique is the one with the pretty blue liquid!  It’s notes include Blue Cypress, blue yarrow, lavender maillette, juniper berries, petit grain, bergamot and clary sage, rosewood and just a bit of peppermint.  This is peppermint!  That fresh, sweet, and minty candy that is usually found during Christmas time!  After that initial blast of peppermint I get that nice blue cypress and some juniper with a touch of sage.  After the initial blast of peppermint it calms down and gives you the feeling of a deep conifer forest at the height of spring rains.

Legare has notes of mahogany, magnolias, spanish moss, gardenias, iced black tea, petit grain, and warm breezes from the ocean.  Oooh more mahogany!  I really enjoy it in Jaqueline.  I immediately get a blast of sea salt from the ocean.  The magnolia’s are heady and the spanish moss hangs from the trees like a soft and soothing blanket.  Black tea waits for you on the porch while the breeze flows.  This is deep and beautiful.

Deep Midnight Perfumes Samples

Found this gorgeous perfumer on Etsy and heard some great things about them from Indie Perfume Lovers facebook groupDeep 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!

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photo by smellallthethings

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.

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photo by smellallthethings

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.

Possets Perfumapalooza – Part 3

Here we are, back again for more Possets Perfume Perfection!  If you missed them, here are links to Part 1 and Part 2!

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photo by smellallthethings

To start us off with this round of scents we have Dance With Me whose notes consist of: coumarin-laced lavender combines with fizzy pink grapefruit, and it all rests on a bed of white musk.  So exciting a new note!  No idea what coumarin smells like!  (I worked in a doctor’s office, so all I know is the medicine – which has no smell.)  And lavender … let’s see if Possets works for me – I so want to be able to wear it!  In the vial it’s a pretty perfect pink grapefruit!  On my skin it’s much of the same, super happy and uplifting.  The white musk is under it giving it something to rest on.  As the grapefruit calms down into just a hint of that juicy sweet perfection the lavender comes out soft and gentle.  So far none of that sharp nose-hurting smell that I have gotten from other lavender’s.  There is something kind of green wafting around.  Maybe coumarin?  (Need to google!)  Well, that was interesting – and hard to describe but what I read from several sources was that it typically has a tonka-like smell (which for me tends to be brown and fuzzy).  However, it can also have a hay-like association.  Either way Dance With Me is a beautiful scent with lavender that I can wear!  It’s super bright and soft – perfect for summer and dancing with my girls.  The citrus never really goes away, which sometimes can happen.  This scent is so far from anything I would normally pick for myself that I am over the moon happy!  Usually you hear of citrus scents not having much lasting power, but this isn’t the case here.  It’s over an hour later and still going strong!

Next up we have Dies Irae with notes of three BLACK musks, one fog-like musk to disburse the whole, bitter galbanum, smooth hawthorne, the scent of rotting leaves, a small amount of orris, and smoky oude, finally frankincense and black amber. Well talk about opposite end of the spectrum!  In the vial it’s all leaves and orris – and it’s that lovely wet, decomposing leaf smell you can only get from a forest floor.  On my skin that decomposing leaf smell stays (I actually love that smell – but I’m weird so …) but the orris does this cute thing where it plays peek-a-boo.  The musks are there but they aren’t assertive, just keeping things nice and dark so the leaves can rot in peace and the ground can be rejuvenated by the natural process.  To me this is just a big dense forest doing the things that forests do best – death, rebirth, and renewal.  This has a great throw to it and just a wonderful fall-like scent.

Evita Peron, part of the Femme Fatales collection, boasts notes of Egyptian musk, followed by a very unusual leather component which conjures up the scent of violets (!). This is accompanied by a dry white amber, and a kiss of ginger. In the vial this is white amber and … violets!  Fabienne is right about that leather, how cool!  On my skin this is soft, sweet violets with a touch of musk and just a hint of ginger.  It is soft, somewhat sweet, and just classic.  This isn’t a super complex scent, but I can’t stop sniffing the spot on my hand.  It’s just so sweet and comforting, yet it’s also elegant and almost commanding at the same time.

Salome is the last scent for this round and is also part of the Femme Fatales collection.  It’s notes are comprised of Black and African, myrrh, frankincense, cedar, ivory musk, green coffee pulp extract, and a very light light misting of black Mexican vanilla.  In the vial I get green coffee.  This may be seen as blasphemous to some – but I dislike coffee with a passion.  I don’t drink it, I don’t like to smell it, I’m just not a coffee person.  Please take my preferences with a grain of salt.  I will try to be objective, but sometimes you just can’t help what you can’t help.  On my skin, thankfully, the super prominent green coffee note is almost completely gone.  In its wake I am left with beautiful myrrh and resinous frankincense.  The cedar forms a beautiful base while the musk just gently presents itself.  The vanilla isn’t apparent, but I’m sure it’s in there.  This is dark, beguiling, and a little off base.

Arcana – Puppy Kisses and Moonflower’s Bliss

I received these two samples from my last Arcana order.  I’ve never tried Puppy Kisses, though I’ve seen some rave reviews, and it looks like The Moonflower’s Bliss is new!  YAY!  I love reviewing and testing things before they come out.  Thanks Julia!

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photo by smellallthethings

Puppy Kisses is up first with notes of a batter of rich cream, soft coconut milk, rice syrup, copaiba balsam, massoia bark and milky pearl musk is gently licked with sweet peppermint, sugared bayberry, and the tiniest smooches of Oregon lavender and Dalmatian sage.  In the vial it’s sweet peppermint – those one’s that melt in your mouth the moment they touch your tongue.  On my skin that peppermint is still prominent, but it is tempered by creamy coconut, a touch of lavender and a sprinkle of sage.  This is fresh, clean, soft, and playful.  Perfect representation of fun loving puppy kisses!

Next we have The Moonflower’s Bliss.  No notes are listed, yet, for this scent but I’m going to go out on a limb and guess there’s moonflower in it!  I love moonflower! Oh wow, this is a heady blend of florals in the vial.  On my skin I get the moonflower, beautifully soft and slightly sweet with just a hint of dew maybe.  There is a greenness around it as though you are smelling the whole plant, sky, and night instead of just the flower.  This is a perfect representation of the flower and plant in all its glory.  You can even get a sense of the night sky!  I can’t wait until this scent is available for purchase!  It’ll be wonderful for those warm summer nights.

After typing this up earlier this morning, Julia released The Moonflower’s Bliss on her ebay page.  The notes for this blend are moon vine, heartleaf milkweed, Calla lily, white tuberose, gardenia, and Madagascar bridal veil with creamy butter CO2 extract, pearl musk, white pepper, and a trace of incense.