Conjure Oils – Starman + GC Reviews

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.

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photo by smellallthethings

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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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!

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.

Deconstructing Eden Samples – Part 2

Here we are back for more wonderful Deconstructing Eden sample reviews!  This is the batch that has some of the Valentine scents now discontinued for now.  If you missed the previous review thread – here is Part 1.

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photo by smellallthethings

Stung, from the Valentine release, boasted notes of three types of honey, beeswax absolute, sweet amber, green pepper, black pepper, cinnamon, nutmeg. Oh wow.  Amber is what presents itself first to me.  With all the pepper and cinnamon you’d be thinking SPICE, but it’s not overpowering at all.  The honey is sweet and the beeswax a little smoky.  As this dries the spiciness does amplify, but it never crosses the too much mark.  This is very well blended and I’m sorry I missed out on a bigger bottle of it.  Maybe next year!  I’d love to have a bottle of this!

Another from the Valentine release is Song of Solomon whose notes consist of Rich myrrh essential oil, tolu balsam, aged honey, incense, cedar wood, sandalwood, wine, vanilla, and coconut milk. I hate to say this … it starts out as a public bathroom scent.  A clean one, but … yeah.  It might be that I traveled recently and stopped in a lot of rest area’s along the highway and I just can’t shake that smell yet.  Other than that, like I said, it smells clean.  I can’t really pick one thing or another out unfortunately, so I may put this to the side and come back to it with a clearer nose.  I get honey and wine.  It’s a very beautiful scent, I just can’t shake the association I have with it.

Silver Moon is a general collection scent and its notes are listed as moonflower, white amber, musk, jasmine, white ginger, feral, silver moon.  Her listing says it was a custom blend for a dear friend who allowed Toni to sell it.  Huh, there’s almost a peach or apricot quality at first sniff.  Oh … that’s the ginger.  There is something animalic about this blend.  Brings to mind the phrase “pale moon light”.  It is soft and glittering white with a hint of a bite to it.  That ginger is very prominent in the blend.  Different and intriguing, I like it.

Little lost Alice in Wonderland whose notes are candied lemon peel that mellows into violet and rose with vanilla rounding out the entire blend will bring this scent adventure to a close … for now.  Mmm … violet candies!  The lemon isn’t strong at all, like I feared it would be.  Instead it is soft and understated but gives a nice brightness to the blend.  Vanilla, violet, and a touch of rose are the stars in this blend.  So sweet it’s making my teeth ache though!  This leans on the foodie side to me, oddly enough and unfortunately it makes my stomach queasy.  Think this might be one for the lovers of all things gourmand.  Annnnnd it’s making me sneeze so much. =(  Can’t have ’em all I suppose.

Deconstructing Eden Samples – Part 1

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.

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photo by smellallthethings

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!

 

Alkemia Perfume Sample Set

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photo by smellallthethings

I purchased a set of 6 samples from Alkemia Perfume about a week ago.  They shipped quickly and I’ve let them sit for a day to rest after their journey.  This is my first time purchasing from this perfumery and I’m excited to try something completely new to me!

First up is Midnight Garden whose notes consist of: A lunar intoxication of night-flowering white flowers – tuberose (flower of dangerous pleasures), lily (flower of majestic beauty), honeysuckle (flower of binding love), gardenia (flower of secret passions) and moonflower (flower that inspires dreams of love).  This opens with a lovely lush blast of soft and sweet flowers.  However, this isn’t an “in your face” blast, this is a gentle breeze bringing you the scent with a hint of fresh and clean dew.  You can smell each flower individually if you go “hunting” for them, yet they meld seamlessly together at times as well.  I can totally see myself sitting on a concrete bench in a beautiful garden at night and letting the warm summer breeze flit around me while inhaling the intoxicating scent around me.  I’m not normally a floral person, but this has most of my favorite floral notes all in one … and it works!  The longer it sits, the more you can smell the greenery around the flowers to.  It’s a very true-to-life scent in my opinion.

Now, for something completely different … Autumn.  (Notes include: Sun warmed fallen leaves, golden amber, light wool warmed with skin musk.) You can smell the sun as it beats down on the Earth in this blend!  How neat!  The wool has a freshly cleaned scent as though you are hanging your laundry out to dry on one of the last warm nights of the year.  The leaves are golden, dew covered and newly fallen.  This is a skin scent as it stays close.  It is clean smelling, warm, and reminds me very much of that first warm but breezy day when you decide it might just be time to bring out your winter clothes and get them ready.

I ordered Deadly Nightshade because it has most of my favorite notes in it, such as: deep purple violets, dark leather, patchouli, black amber, and a narcotic swirl of opium.  In the vial it’s all leather and violets which makes for a rather unique scent.  The leather is black and sleek.  Once on my skin, it does this weird meld that isn’t gelling totally.  It’s like walking into the leather store at the mall – slapped in the face with leather, and not in the good way.  This may need a bit more time to itself to figure out what it wants to do.  I will set this aside for a week and check on it again later then update this if anything has changed.

Madam X is up next and she touts a note list of: An homage to unsettling, eccentric, irresistable beauty – bergamot, mandarin, dark violet, Italian iris, black orchid, Japanese incense, orris root, sueded musk, white sandalwood, Tahitian vanilla, and pale patchouli. In the vial I get a pleasant Oriental vibe from the oil.  On my skin it goes on close and I’m finding it hard to pick up anything, but what I do get is soft, purple in color, and sweet.  This is a scent that stays close to the skin.  The bergamot and mandarin seem to burn off quite quickly and the patchouli is so, so soft.  Mostly I get violet, orchid and a touch of vanilla.  Almost everything else gets lost.  This might be another blend that needs a bit of time and age to come into its own.

Sol Invictus is a specially aged blend of fine frankincenses drenched with a slightly woody, luminously golden trio of ambers. I adore resins and sometimes they are done best when done simply.  And this is one of those times.  This starts off with a glorious whiff of golden amber. The frankincense comes up and gives it a beautiful resinous boost.  This is simple, beautiful, golden, and perfect.

Finally I have a vial of Vamp whose notes include: a darkly erotic blend of opium, labdanum, Tonka, balsam, sueded leather, and black musk.  This is a dusky scent, shadowed yet soft.  The opium and labdanum give it a gossamer feel while the tonka, leather and musk keep it grounded.  It’s that scent that hides in the shadows and comes out when you least expect it.  I find I’m drawn to sniffing the spot I put it more than I thought I would be.  The scent has snuck up and laid it’s spell on me in the best possible way!