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BPAL Madness!


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Everything posted by kjirstiben

  1. kjirstiben

    Orange Pumpkin Floss

    Oh my goodness. I'm glad I tried a decant of this because based on the notes, I would NEVER have tried it. (My skin hates pumpkin--it kills anything else in a scent--and neroli is mostly just screamingly bad.) But... wow. This goes on with a burst of citrusy baked goods scent, which gradually morphs throughout the day to what I think of as "spice cake", like that gingerbread cake with the white cream cheese frosting. A few hours in, sniffing up close, I get a teensy touch of the "burnt" quality that often kills foody scents for me (and particularly pumpkin ones), but it backs right off again and never actually reaches the throw of the perfume. I wore this yesterday and my dad said he sat for an hour with his stomach growling because of the smell of "apples and cinnamon" that I was wearing. (OK, apples/oranges, whatever...) This is really good, and it was an unexpected winner. I will definitely be getting a bottle of it. Edited for clarity's sake
  2. kjirstiben

    Bonfire Night

    Hmmm. This is a skin chemistry fail for me. I expect that the treacle, possibly the tar is to blame. All I'm getting is a sort of musty, bitter, semi-smoky smell. Like mud and wet leaves and some plastic trampled into bonfire coals. I think I'd better leave this to the people whose skin likes these notes!
  3. kjirstiben

    The Apparition

    When I first put this on I was reminded of The Unicorn, sort of a wispy floral scent. Since it's dried down, however, it's definitely a dry sandalwood + light greenish wet floral. The wet/dry feel of it is interesting. It's quite well-behaved, almost faint. It feels, to me, like a morning in early spring... with mist and the burgeoning tips of new grass emerging everywhere. I'm not sure if it's "me", exactly, but it's a nice scent.
  4. kjirstiben

    Punkie Night

    This is great! Upon first application, it's a blast of fruitiness... to my nose it read "berry", but I didn't have the note list in front of me and in retrospect, apple was well-represented, too. As it dried down, it transitioned to much more of a light, clean-smelling scent to me. There's some apple and a little bit of spice, but it's a fresh, lightweight cidery scent, not at all heavy. (I applied this with a light hand, FWIW.)
  5. kjirstiben

    Mango-Infused Pumpkin Chai Latte

    Pumpkin-spiced gunpowder tea with mango peel, red ginger, green cardamom, smoky clove buds, fennel, allspice, saffron, coconut sugar, and foamy milk. When I originally put this on, it blossomed into an almost too-foody warm, spiced baked-goods scent; very much the Fall/Thanksgiving Yankee Candle sort of thing that some people have been referencing. Very nice, in fact, though you'd want to be careful about the application (a light touch is probably a good thing unless you want to knock people over). Later, after it's dried, I can tell it would be very nice... there's a light tropical fruit scent mingling with the wonderful chai spices... except that pumpkin (or possibly one of the sugary notes?) has gone and turned burnt-rubber on me. The throw is still pretty nice, I think, but up close this is burnt rubber overlaying what would otherwise be a very nice scent. I approached this scent with a spirit of exploration... my beginnings with BPAL and pumpkin (Weenies '08 were my first holiday season) were disappointing and I've stayed away from it ever since. Lately, however, I've been returning to notes that I originally learned to avoid. Pumpkin, however, appears to still be one of them. Sigh.
  6. kjirstiben

    Butterfly Nectar Bath Oil

    I had a tester of this that I just used up, and it is absolutely wonderful! Light floral sweetened by honey... with none of the sharpness that you can get from florals sometimes or the cloyingness of honey when it's overpowering. I used it as an in-shower oil (mixed with an unscented carrier oil) and also to scent my natural, unscented conditioner, and in both applications it is a lightweight, sweet scent that does not linger until you're sick of it but is just enough to make you feel fresh and sweet-smelling! (I'm definitely rooting for this to be brought back next summer... and in the interim might try to locate more of it for sale...)
  7. kjirstiben

    The Chilling Cellar

    I had to try this twice in order to get a handle on what I thought of it... First on, it's a rich, round wine note mixed with something spicy and maybe a little bit mineral-esque. (Which is really great.) However, over the course of the day, it fades into a rather weird perfumey, possibly plasticky scent. I can't tell if this is a skin chemistry fail or just a "nose chemistry" fail... but without the roundness of the wine note from the beginning, this is dull, flat, and a little dry. Sad, when it began with such promise!
  8. kjirstiben

    The Sinister Salon

    Upon first applying this, the stronger, sharper notes dominate, for a boozy opium impression. As it has faded, though, it has turned into a more subtle, slightly masculine, wood and tobacco scent. Very close to the skin; I wonder if it will fade away entirely by the end of the day. I like it but think my powder-note-inducing skin chemistry has beaten it into submission.
  9. kjirstiben

    The Heinous Hedge-Maze

    This is a wet, green, herbal scent. Unfortunately my skin hates those. I can tell it would be really great on the right person, but on me it went (as herbal scents are wont to do) to a burnt rubber/perfumed powder place, and it never came back. Sigh.
  10. kjirstiben

    The Wretched Rose Window

    It's funny... all I got out of this was soap. Not even rose soap... just soap. My skin smelled slighly clean, slightly soapy, or like freshly-shampooed hair. Not sure if this says something about the soaps I choose, or if my nose isn't subtle enough to pick the notes of of the Rose Window... sigh. I didn't get screaming florals out of this, however (my skin tends to make things smell sweet/powdery rather than amping the high-pitched notes). Just nice, clean soap.
  11. kjirstiben

    The Forbidding Foyer

    Oddly enough, I was testing this with another mahogany(ish) scent, The Bloody Banister. Both are strong on the polished mahogany. This, however, is boozy mahogany, boozy, slightly dusty (which normally smells like clove to me), mahogany. Over the course of the day it faded to a soft "BPAL box" sort of indistinguishable scent, to my nose at least. I suspect my less BPAL-fluent friends would say I smelled "like incense".
  12. kjirstiben

    The Bloody Banister

    I got a spiced-musky mahogany out of this. I liked the slightly spiced musk, but not so much the mahogany ("polished woods" don't seem to appeal to my nose). Stayed pretty consistent in scent throughout the day, just became more musky/powdery as the day wore on.
  13. kjirstiben


    When I first put this on it was a burst of strawberries, very girly and pink. (Which I like, though I wondered if it would seem unprofessional for work.) However, upon drydown, as I was driving to the train station, I swear it smelled awfully familiar to me -- like Gladdener of All Hearts... a lavender-soapy-clean, slightly powdery, slightly sweet baby skin scent. I keep sniffing for more of the strawberries, but it would seem that they're all gone, and I'm left with the clean-honeyed-lavender-powder scent. I think I may skin test this opposite Gladdener to see if there's a difference when I wear them side by side! It's very pretty and a great innocent pale pink/lavender scent, much as the description would let you think!
  14. kjirstiben

    Sentimental Initiation

    On me, this scent was smoky clove. Since that's par for the course with clove on my skin chemistry, I was not surprised. Interestingly, as I tested it yesterday, one of the bosses in a meeting said, "Does anyone smell incense? Or have you guys been smoking a hookah?" Since he was sitting next to me, I'm pretty sure it was Sentimental Initiation he was referring to. So: to the uninitiated, this smells like incense / scented tobacco.
  15. kjirstiben

    The Wiley Grasser

    Pine? Check. Flowers? Check. Candy? Checkcheckcheckcheck.... On me, this is a bright, sweet scent with a greenish undertone. Without the notes listed in front of me I might have thought grass instead of pine. Something about the combination of the green, floral and sweet notes comes across to my nose as fruit... maybe candied fruit. Pink candied fruit... those little liquid-in-the-center strawberry hard candies, to be precise. I like it and it stays remarkably true to form from wet to drydown... After a few hours, due to a quirk in my skin chemistry, I get a burnt-sugar note for a short while, but then it goes back to smelling nice again (this happens with a lot of candy scents).
  16. kjirstiben


    Very, very, very sweet... a pink-cupcake sweetness: mission accomplished! It's got a phenomenal throw: every single person I work with asked who smelled like a bakery, and I didn't even put that much on! I like it a lot, but it's probably something to use only in sparing doses, and perhaps not when you're trying to be professional... I'll agree that there's a red berry note to it. Probably strawberry; I'm reminded a bit of Hollywood Babylon.
  17. kjirstiben

    Berry Moon 2011

    On me, this is primarily musk, with a rounded sweetness that comes from the brandy and berries blending together... Like a glass of brandy that's had berries soaking in it. I'd been afraid that it would turn into a tooth-piercingly sweet pile of berry jam (which it did on a friend of mine), but this is delicious and fruity and much more understated than I had expected, just warm and soft and well-blended.
  18. kjirstiben


    All I got out of Belladonna was vetiver -- pure, unrelieved vetiver. It started out raw, smoky, and rough-edged, and smoothed out a little over several hours, but I never did smell anything else from it. (Perhaps I amp vetiver?) Anyhow, it was an interesting, mysterious, deep green scent, but as a coworker pointed out, it didn't smell like me at all. I think I'll pass on this one...
  19. kjirstiben


    I got this as a frimp with another order and was happy to get to try one of the tiki scents, finally (I'm ordinarily a bit wary of fruity scents as they can go very bad with my skin chemistry). On me, Pahoehoe was a slightly smoky-sweet rum scent. I sort of smelled banana/grenadine behind it if I tried, but it was not obvious. I tend to amp rum so this was not surprising. Over time, the scent turned a little acrid (an artifact of my skin chemistry), then settled into a slightly sweet, powdery end stage. I'm glad to have tried Pahoehoe but I don't think it's a good match for me. I do, however, want to try the rest of the tiki scents now!
  20. kjirstiben

    The Organ Grinder (2006)

    This was a very interesting scent on me. It went on vaguely fruity, sort of root beer in a non-sweet way (that would be the sarsaparilla, of course), with some of that almond milk and pine. I loved the sweet milky almond with the pine, especially as this was in its initial stages. Over time, the scent turned slightly sharp and medicinal, and I eventually ended up with a sort of sour-milk end stage. (skin chemistry issue) Pity, because this was so nice in its initial stages!
  21. kjirstiben

    Paduan Killer Swarm

    A really compelling scent. I had to try this on four separate times to get enough of a feel for it to write a review--it keeps changing on me! My initial reaction to this was an "ugh!" because it starts out smelling very plasticky on me, like sweet medicinal licorice band-aids, or maybe a vanilla version of a Strawberry Shortcake plastic doll. (If that makes sense.) Not very nice. However, if I wait that out, after a while, it starts to change. I get a sweet mineral-y scent (the tonka, maybe?), and then after another half hour or so, it turns into a sweet amber ginger cream with a bare hint of anise to it. This end stage sticks with me for hours, even overnight, as a barely more than skin scent, but it's so nice that I kept smelling for it all night long. For something with such an odd beginning, this scent turns into something wonderful! I hope that the other reviewers are right and that the note that's making it plastic to begin with will age out of this… because it's really a lovely scent as soon as that disappears!
  22. kjirstiben

    Lawn Gnome

    Oh dear. This was initially sweet dirt with a slight edge to it, which metamorphosed into rooty sweet dirt, then into sharp, sour dirt. My end impression was tangy, stale fruity dirt. However, I believe that this was just a combination of skin chemistry issues: the earthy patchouli being much too harsh early on and the candy-vanilla background going sour and acrid as it dried down, which it does on my skin. (I bought this LE before I'd accepted the fact that these sweet scents almost always refuse to work for me.)
  23. kjirstiben

    Plastic Pink Flamingo

    Vigilant day-glo guardians of lawn and patio, stalwart protectors of the home. Pink sugar-crusted marshmallow, dandelion, and sap. This starts out as sweet fruity-pink (berry candy) marshmallow scent, as pink as its namesake flamingo and with just the slightest plastic edge to the scent just at first. As it dries down it turns into a fluffy pink candy scent, very fun and bright… and then it goes sour on my candy-hating skin. (I just can't seem to wear certain sorts of sweet candy scents; it clashes with my own skin scent or something.) However, if you have chemistry that likes sugary and berry scents, this one will be all sorts of fun. It's a bright, berry-candy-marshmallow-poof of a scent.
  24. kjirstiben

    Dark Chocolate and Cherry

    Of the entire 2009 chocolate box, this is the scent that came closest to working on me. Actually, it did work for a few hours, where I got a gorgeous tart cherry pie filling on a dark background… just enough to be mouthwatering. The dark chocolate didn't read as chocolate, per se, mostly as depth. After a few hours, it turned into something else entirely, something a little powdery and dry, a little sour… it's probably a skin chemistry problem but not a terrible one. I'm torn--it might be worth keeping this scent for the initial juicy cherry filling stage; I just wouldn't be able to count on it as a long-termer.
  25. kjirstiben

    White Chocolate and Strawberry

    This was initially a sweet, buttery white chocolate with berry candy (as strawberry reads to me in its wet stage). Then my skin turned the chocolate acrid and stale and the berries acrid and sour, in less than an hour. Sigh. I think it'd be a great scent if you can wear the sweet ones; it's got a lovely strawberry note (for the short while that it actually smells like strawberries on me). Edited because I can't count.