New month, new perfumes!
August 1: ....starting tomorrow, hopefully. This month starts with a migraine, which is very not awesome. Hopefully it'll be gone by tomorrow. v_v;
August 2: Arrival at the Sabbath and Homage to the Devil -- Feeling better (heck yeah, sumatriptan), jumping back in with a couple more Salons before heading back to bats. ^-^! On me, this one is a moderately sweet but mostly sandalwood and patchouli with a bit of lightly powdery iris that gets stronger as it dries. It starts pretty sticky, but that dials wayyyy back after a relatively short amount of time, letting the woodier notes come through. I'm pretty sure there are a few batch variations for this one, since I had a decant of it that was much sweeter and more caramel-heavy. I bought this right after the discontinuation announcement came through along with most of the rest of my Salons, so it's about nine years old or so. I'm pretty satisfied with how it's aged!
August 3: Itasô Kansei Nenkan Jorô No Fûzoku -- Soft, lightly fruity in the way that osmanthus & hibiscus can be, a little (but not too) sweet, a little tart, curiously not especially distinct on my skin. It's not exactly a skin scent, but it's not far from it. Like, I can tell I'm wearing perfume, but it almost slides past my attention. Very odd. No throw to speak of, lasts ??? amount of time because I wore it to work and it wore off sometime during the day. I think I'd end up describing it as a slightly bitter floral, which doesn't sound all that appealing but is somehow nice. I think this is a 'my skin' thing, because I put it on my SO and it was much more noticeable! On him, the osmanthus is much peachier and the whole thing is sweeter. ...It's not very him, but it's nicer than it is on me.
August 4: Cupid Complaining to Venus -- I honestly thought I'd worn this one already, but I went all the way back, and I hadn't written it up. This doesn't actually mean I haven't worn it, since I do pretty frequently wear multiple scents in a day, but still, what an oversight. 😂 This is one of my favorite Salons, despite containing multiple notes that have turned other blends into sadness on me. The notes are: apple blossom, fig, white peach, honey absolute, red sandalwood, and wild thyme. On my skin it is a faintly herbal-tinged and slightly sandalwoody peach, very ripe and sweet. Drydown brings the sandalwood and fig out more. I can see, through the weartime, comparisons that have been made to both Les Bijoux and Eden (though Eden has a strong coconut note that makes it very different, the fig notes are similar). Blessedly, the apple blossom is only really noticeable for a brief period of time, since that's a note I don't like much, and the peach never turns sweaty, which is a problem I've had with a few other peachy scents. I really like the way the thyme affects the scent as a whole -- it makes me want to eat some kind of pastry with peaches and a little thyme in it. Fruity and savory is a combo I like pretty well on occasion. This perfume lasts all day on me, but after it dries fully the throw is very mild. I wore it to work and no one commented in particular, but while I was checking my mail before work, I could definitely smell it as I typed.
The other distinction this bottle has is that it is one of maybe two or three Lab bottles that has leaked on me. Based on observations of the others, I'm pretty sure that the problem lies in a faulty cap. Oil gets in underneath the seal when I roll or tilt it prior to application and can then potentially slowly leak out through the threads. Luckily every bottle I've observed this on is a permanent resident of my collection, and it's an easy fix. All I need to do is buy new caps! I wouldn't say I've ever lost more than a few drops from any bottle like this. Wandcaps on the other hand. =_=; I've received very messy bottles in swaps because of wandcaps. Don't ship with wandcaps. This has been a psa? ^^;
August 5: Sunrise with Sea-Monsters -- (yes, there are two links, one to a larger picture of the painting, and one to the wiki page where they talk about it) Last Salon for now. I like this. I like the name, I like the painting, I like the scent ...but I don't love it. I like the salt and ocean mist and general experience of wearing it, but I'd like it so much more without the freesia. 😅 The pear is very light, more like what gets described as pear (and may actually be pear) in scents like Empyreal Mist, and the amber is barely there, just giving the scent a hint of almost-resin and sweetness. Then there's the freesia and osmanthus. The clean floral notes do their level best to murder this scent into something very fresh and bright and commercial on my skin. After a while they leave, and it's back to salt and kelp, and, eventually, just ambergris. Every time I wear it, my feelings go like this: mmm, GYERK, mmmmm. I really do enjoy ocean scents, but sticking a wreath of spring florals on a sea monster results in a slightly peculiar experience for me.
August 6: Coconut Meat SN -- Thought I'd give my nose a little rest and pull out some scents that take simple to the apex -- single notes. I don't actually like SNs that much as I have a very strong preference for my scents to have a story behind them, but I do own a few mostly out of curiosity for what the Lab's versions of things smell like alone. I rarely layer my perfumes so that purpose is nil for me, but sometimes there is something calming in putting on something this base level. This one is extremely low-throw, with a weartime of usually less than an hour, and is just the odor of coconut meat, diluted in oil and bottled. Several of the reviews mention that it smells oily to them, but fresh coconut does have a bit of that aspect to it! It can be unctuous, almost buttery, depending on the freshness and the quality. (Whole Foods often has it in the cut fruit case in my area; I buy it now and then because I haven't got the energy to take a drill and hammer to a whole one myself anymore. XD). It's not a dried coconut flake scent, and it doesn't smell like a baked good to me. It's not that sweet and it's much milder. I don't wear it very often, but I do take it out and sniff it from time to time because it's such a nostalgic scent for me.
August 7: King Mandarin SN ('13) -- Smells like my fingers after peeling a satsuma/mandarin/clementine/etc. Poor longevity, but it's big, bright, and beautiful while it lasts. Fun fact: I have no idea where I got this, which means I probably got it via Will-Call (no email receipts if I bought it there), but if I did, it should be full, and it's not. Did it evaporate somehow? Did I decant a bunch out and forget about it? Did I buy a partial at some point and can't remember/don't have email records of it? Was it a partial frottle from someone? Who knows??
August 8: (Iranian) Galbanum SN -- Getting into the deeper stuff now. I adore this one beyond measure. It's so green and faintly musty and weird! There's a slight aspect of cut greenery, a little sap-like, but it's not bright, instead it's a bit dirty. It almost tickles the nose. As it wears, it starts smelling more dried, a little more grassy. There's something almost licorice root-like to it, not quite sweet, but adjacent and a little woody. Unlike the fruity SNs, this one sticks around for a long time. I definitely got this one at a Will-Call, and the reviews reflect my experience sniffing this there. It's a nose-wrinkler for a lot of people, but if you like it, there's a good chance that you really like it.
August 9: Golgothan Myrrh SN -- Smoooth not-quite spicy resinousness, sticks around forever, and you can smell it across the room. It's aged into something deep and fragrant, with hints of leather, floral, and citrus without actually being anything other than itself. I've seen it a number of times over the years, and I always find the comparison of myrrh to cola interesting, so this time I sniffed it with that specifically in mind, and I can kind of see it. It's not a connection I would make myself without prompting, but I can see the similarities to a cola syrup. Did I actually need a bottle of this, given how many myrrh scents I own? No, probably not. Do I ever wear it instead of one of those many, many scents? No, I rarely do. But I love it anyway and I sniff it on the regular.
August 10: TKO -- I'm so tired. It's time to toss on an old tried-and-true and pass directly out. If you've never tried TKO, it's a soft but powerful lavender & sweet vanilla or possibly marshmallow blend, it does what you'd expect it to, and it lasts a surprisingly long time while also having a moderate-to-monstrous throw, depending on temperature, where you apply it, and how much you use.
August 11: Frankincense & Ginger Root -- Got a bunch of decants in, so I'm going to sample a few of those while I'm still in simplicity mode. This one is has a lovely bitey ginger note backed up by a smooth golden frankincense. I really like both notes, and together they're quite pleasant. I get just a hint of snap in my nose if I sniff my wrist very deeply, but it's not so much that it feels overwhelming. After a while the scent becomes sweeter and sweeter, without ever losing the ginger completely. Eventually it reminds me of rooty candied ginger, even more than Balancing the Sake Cup, which has an actual candied ginger note listed. I like that one more, so I probably won't go for a bottle of this, but it's pretty nice.
August 12: Burnt Sugar & Blackberry -- Both of these notes fall into the category of 'notes I would love to love but rarely do.' They both reliably do weird things on my skin and, to no particular surprise, together they are a little funky. This turns very sour and smells like burning sugar, rather than burnt sugar and I do not love it. Late drydown is a little bit like cotton candy, but that doesn't really save the rest of the scent for me. Blackberries in general are awkward for me -- I've tried a lot of scents with that note and almost all of them go wrong, though interestingly, not all in the same way! Sometimes they're uber-tart, and sometimes they smell candy-like and artificial. The ones that have been better have mostly featured baked good notes (MB: Closet, for example) or the berry has been a very minor part of the scent. Curiously, I do love blackberry-scented bath goods! It's just my skin that turns the perfumes into ??? why this ???. 😂
August 13: 13 (8/10) -- I mean, why not! It's this bottle's birthday, after all! ^__^! ...And I'm the first review on it, even, pfft. It's got a bit more chocolate at the outset than it did when I reviewed it, but afterwards it goes pretty much the same. It's really nice! I love the way the bright peppery notes have aged with the honey. The champaca's calmed down a lot, though it definitely pops up in later drydown along with the tobacco. Still a very good Thirteen in my book. I do wonder a bit if there's not some lotus hidden in the thirteen notes (only eight are listed, after all) because of the way this hits a particular sweet note that I've started associating with lotus after trying a number of scents that contain it.
August 14: Buck Moon '21 -- So... peeping the reviews is a wild ride, considering the notes. 😂 I was pretty curious and glad I'd gotten a decant rather than just ordering a bottle. I love. Buck Moon '05, and this is not very much like it. That Buck Moon is musky and leafy and musky. This one starts out nutty, in some ways pretty similar to Blackbear Moon (which is one of my long-time forever loves) and then goes musky, woodsy, and furry, with none of the cooler notes that I would have expected to pop up. It isn't smoky, either. It ends up a pleasant, soft musky waft, vaguely forest-ish, but with no specific notes that jump out. It's fine, but between a mostly full bottle of '05 and two bottles of Blackbear, I think I'm good. This sits pretty much squarely between the two and they, respectively, beat it on all levels. Throw is soft but present and longevity is good.
August 15: Glass Eye (American Gods) -- This is perfect for days when you want to smell like a slightly sinister new age or gothic goods store, the kind that does sage smudges regularly and also has dried leaves all over the floor, where the owner is extremely sweet and kind but there's a semi-constant aura of smoke around the space. ... I realized while I was typing this up that this reminds me exactly of a shop precisely like that in my city. I was there not long ago and ...yep, that's Glass Eye. No wonder I like it so much! I mean, I'm partial to most of the notes anyway, but I hadn't recognized the nostalgia factor here until just now. Beautiful. Throw isn't strong, but it is aromatic, and it doesn't last more than a couple of hours before vanishing. I got this as part of a decant circle, but I also added a bottle to my most recent Lab order, if that says anything.
August 16: Media (American Gods) -- It's been a little bit of a struggle to pick a BPAL because I just got in some really wonderful things from other companies and I keep wanting to wear them. That said, this is absolutely a scrubber for me. It smells like you'd expect it to -- super-mainstream, almost hyper-mainstream, like something you'd spritz on at Sephora and idly sniff as you wander around the aisles and then just forget what you put on -- it could have been any one of a hundred different things. It lingers, but not in a distinctive way, in a pretty, kind of inoffensive way that makes my skin crawl. What's worst for me is that the vial leaks, so if I'm not very careful about keeping it upright, it gets all over my desk and it does have a pretty potent throw. I want to swap or sell it but I'll have to decant it into a different vial first. I have no idea how long it actually lasts because I've attempted it three times and washed it off after thirty-forty minutes every time. ....at least it doesn't give me a headache? 🤔 (Yet.) To be a little more concrete about how it smells: it's an aldehydes-and-floral bomb like thousands of others. It smells both indistinct and extremely fixed, with a hint of ozone and maybe calone? It's very fresh and bright and clean. To reiterate: I hate it. I respect it, but this is the opposite of what I want to wear on a daily basis.
August 16: Bonus scent -- For Strange Women Mint Tea Undersea -- (spearmint, matcha, mugwort, kombu [a type of seaweed], oceanic elements, yuzu -- this is an edt, not an oil) I don't like spearmint usually, but this is wonderful, very vegetal-minty and not at all toothpaste-minty, vivid and bright with a pleasantly salty undertone that grows over time until it's a salty, seaweed-y scent with a bright undertone. It's all-natural, so the lasting power isn't the greatest, maybe an hour, but I don't mind reapplying often. I love the slight earthy grassiness of the matcha and the way this scent shifts on my skin.
August 17: Self-Portrait -- Today I opened up a random drawer in my BPAL collection and pulled out an almost-random (the first one was something I've already posted about this year) perfume. And here we are. Once again, I'm the first review on the post, and I don't have a whole lot to add to it. It's remained pretty steady for eight years and change. Maybe a little more towards powdery, but I don't mind that. Still sweetly soft honey dust with light florals and some very fluffy orris. The throw has increased quite a bit over time, though, and it wears for a long time, so aging has produced a couple of improvements, at least.
August 18: The Crossed Keys -- Somehow this is sweeter than I expected it to be. 🤔 I don't get anything stony at all from this bottle (I am not a big fan of BPAL's stone accord, so I'm happy it isn't there). It smells like bright powdery not-quite-floral honey, soft, mellow resins, and a light undertone of barely-there sandalwood that gets stronger as it wears. It doesn't have a lot of throw, though it might get better with time, and late drydown is just light sandalwood and a bit of dust. I'm giving this bottle a few months of time to mellow to see if it becomes a bit more distinct, but this chappie might be destined for swaps.
August 19: Sumatran Red Patchouli SN -- Inspired by conversation on Discord, I pulled this guy out of hiding today. It's a dense, woody patchouli at first, but ...I gotta agree with a number of the reviews, there's something very rosy about it, though to me it doesn't actually smell like a rose or like there's rose in it, but it is rosy, especially once it's dried. It's a neat trick. It's definitely a strong patch, no confusing it for anything else, though brighter and a little tarter than the black patch. I'm not a massive fan of patchouli, but this is a lovely iteration of it, it lasts for a very long time, and has a strong but not overwhelming throw. It's very ...idk. I feel cozy when I wear it in a way I don't usually associate with this note. (ETA: 12 hours after application it was still going strong. Guaahhhhhh.....)
August 20: A Thought from Propertius (Luper '13) -- I needed something light after yesterday, so I poked around until I lit on this one. It's very simple, the notes are: Sweet honey, white apricot, and a touch of cayenne pepper. On me, it's mostly honey, with just a tiny kick of cayenne. The apricot is softer than many BPAL apricots, a little less tangy; it doesn't start to stand out until it's mostly dry, and vanishes extremely quickly, leaving only the vaguest hint of fruitiness to the honey and still-very-background spice. It kind of reminds me of somewhat old fruit-scented dolls in a way, though I don't think I ever had one that was apricot, but it has that fugitive quality that they got after a while. It sticks around for quite a long time, but it whispers instead of yelling. "Lightly spiced honey" is my three word review.
August 21: Pink Snowballs 2011 -- Let's Yule for a few days. I'm feeling it. This is such a cute perfume, all soft pink petals and delicate icy snow with a tiny hint of vanilla that pops up after it dries. It's a little bit more than Snow White + rose, but not a lot, and by-and-large does exactly what the notes would make you think it does. I have a very low partial of this, plus a decant lurking somewhere, and I will never need more than that. Mild throw, moderate longevity, great for when you want something mild, adorable, and a little frilly.
August 22: Yule Cookies -- Soft, mostly sweet, but with a big hit of caraway that makes me think more of loaves than of cookies. Something in this is playing up as smoky on my skin which is fascinating. I like it, but it's not very distinct to my nose; it feels very airy and that's not what I'm generally looking for in a gourmand perfume. It does develop a surprisingly powerful throw over time, though, mostly cream cheese frosting and a bit of orange and ginger. It's a little weird; I feel nearly anosmic to it when I sniff my wrist, but I'm also floating in a cloud of the memory of cookies (and one loaf of rye bread).
August 23: Yellow Snowballs -- A pop of mint followed immediately by creamy citrus. I'm not a huge fan of what lemon does on my skin a lot of the time, and this is not an exception. I feel like the citrus has faded some over the years as well; I remember it being a bit sharper when it was newer. At this point, this reminds me a bit of what you'd get if you took Lemon-Scented Sticky Bat and threw it in a snowdrift. As it dries, I definitely experience the dryer sheets effect, and weirdly, that makes it feel warmer and sort of cuddly for me, like, fresh from the dryer towels or, yes, sheets. I feel like I might really like this as a room spray? 🤔 It gets stronger for a couple of hours, peaking ~2.5 hours and then wanes fairly quickly.
August 24: Mrs. Grose — Spiced rose tea, very classic, simple, and elegant. Not too strong, but with better throw & longevity than Harlot.
August 25: Peter Quint -- Soft, worn leather, warm ambergris, and a big hit of peppery bay laurel, with a bit of balsam that hovers in the sappy gap between pine and vanilla. It gets a bit sweet and spicy as it goes, but after it's been on for a few hours it's almost entirely a mild ambergris, because that's what that note does on me. I've worn both of my Turn of the Screw scents from full to the neck down to the shoulder; I like them both immensely. Neither is overwhelming, and both are just barely more than skin scents and yet have excellent longevity which makes them more versatile for me than many of my other stronger leather or rose scents. Neither is weak, however -- they both feel like they've been made with the intention to feel ...idk, ghostly? They're both very much present! on! my! skin! but they're very chill and sit back and let me be the only person who can smell them. I didn't try any of the others from that series because the notes didn't appeal to me, but I do wonder if they had some of the same effect.
August 26: Lines Written Among the Euganean Hills -- This was a favorite of mine from the first year of new Yules I experienced, 2008. Wearing this now, several years later (and I'm pretty sure I haven't worn this in multiple years, sheesh) is interesting because of how both my tastes and the scent has changed. In the bottle, it's got a very distinct whiff of pine, and I remember it being much more wintry and green, but now on my skin it's mostly berries and skin musk with a background of pale woods. There have been phases where the white amber was really too strong for me, but it's mellowed a lot. I can tell it's there, but it's light. The throw has diminished a bit, as well. As an experiment I dabbed a bit of this on a piece of paper, and the snowy woods were much stronger there, and much more like the bottle, so I think my skin is wrecking this a bit at the moment. :< It does do that at certain times of my hormonal cycle (see also: Ivanushka and the way it smells like pickles on me sometimes), and I usually stick to gourmand perfumes during that phase. I'm not in any danger of offloading this due to pleasant nostalgia, but I'm definitely digging it out again in a couple of weeks.
Relatedly, I'm starting to feel that migraine sensation in the right side of my head and neck, so the next two-three days may be a no perfume zone. >_<;;
August 27: Yep.
August 28: I slept all day except for getting up to eat something and take a sumatriptan. 🙃 It was no bueno. Buuuut I woke up really late feeling better, so here's a very brief after-midnight perfume snoof. -- Snow-Flakes '06 -- Almost exactly the same as Snow White initially, but it makes a divergence once it dries, taking it into the territory covered by Winter-Time. This lives an ephemeral life directly between those two scents. It's definitelyone of the Lab's mentholic winter snow scents, but it's cooler than SW and warmer than W-T. It doesn't have a lot of throw, but it lasts a surprisingly long time.
August 29: I grabbed a decant from the wrong company. ^^; I'm really enjoying it and I don't want to wash it off, so from Astrid Perfumes: Afterglow (Sage, amber, dry wood, vetiver, Argentine lemon, lavender, vanilla, and a whisper of velvety musk) -- This is from her Lemon Summer III collection. I'm not generally very big on lemon perfumes, but Astrid's sold me on them before, so I ordered a few decants from Ajevie. This is bright and warm, with a little bite from the lemon and a lot of softness from the rest of the notes. After the lemon mellows out, I'm left with a pleasantly dry, gently sweet (but not sugary-sweet, more amber-sweet) fragrance that melds into my skin. The sage drifts in and out, and the vetiver is very grassy rather than smoky and not harsh at all. After it dries fully, it does have just a hint of furniture polish (this is not unusual for me and lemon, especially when it's lemon + woods) but it isn't offensive. Overall a really pleasant, meditative scent. She's closed at the moment, but I'm contemplating ordering this when she's back, or possibly seeing if Ajevie has any leftovers when that time comes. ^-^;
August 30: A Little Piece of Eternity -- I had a moment looking at the list of notes on this decant where I wondered why I didn't pick it up, either from Ajevie or direct from the Lab. Then I dabbed it on and was glad that I hadn't. So there's an older Weenie called Halloween: New Orleans that is river water, sweet olive (osmanthus), and Spanish moss, and I have a bottle of that and also most of a bottle of the matching atmo spray. It's mostly a hefty olive blossom and murky aquatic scent, with some moss on the drydown. This is extremely similar for the first hour or so, minus a tiny blip of orris that pops up at the beginning, vanishing for most of the rest of the weartime and then reappearing at the very end. The oak bark is very faint. Longevity and throw are both average. So ... this is pretty much identical to something I have quite a bit of and am not remotely in danger of running out of. It's nice to know that there's something that might be a little easier to find than another bottle of Halloween: NOLA if I ever manage to use it up, but otherwise, easy pass.
August 31: Love and Sleep -- Ending the month with a random pull from my second Luper decant drawer. This is from 2014 and ... huh. It's actually beautiful. The notes are: Fig milk, vanilla, orchid, and ylang ylang. It's bright, gently floral scent with a warm milk vibe and very slight background figginess. Fig is a sometimes-note for me, in that sometimes it's a overly sweet, sticky mess and sometimes I really like it. This, I really like. It almost reminds me of a fig pudding I once had, if someone had decorated that pudding with an orchid and a ylang ylang blossom. After it dries, it becomes more distinctively tropical in feel, but it remains mellow and milky. I start to understand why I didn't buy a bottle about an hour in, when the fig starts taking over, and late-late drydown is a breath away from unpleasantly sweet, but by that point it's quite faint, so it hardly matters. It doesn't have a strong throw at any point, and fades quite quickly. It's very nice, but I'm pretty happy with just a decant. I might consider tossing it in some unscented lotion, actually. I think it would be a really lovely bath & body scent!
...Time to start September. 🐇🐇