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BPAL Madness!


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About benthic

  • Rank
    a little too imp-ulsive
  • Birthday 06/13/1984


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    United States

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  • BPAL of the Day
    Asp Viper
  • Favorite Scents
    Asp Viper, Hod, Sachs, TKO, Pride, The Peacock Queen, Metal Phoenix, Velvet Unicorn, Rubedo v.4, Buck Moon, and more! My favorite notes are florals (especially rose, but NOT jasmine), creams, sugars, vanilla, light fruits, musks, light woods, frankincense, citrus, coconut, and so on.

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  • Interests
    reading, writing, cooking, manga, the intertubes, and so on.
  • Mood
    probably hungry


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  1. benthic

    Silk Road

    Eergh--this smells exactly like cheap cinnamon herbal tea stored in a musty wooden box. It's very evocative of that. I mean, I know I have smelled this somewhere before, and that's all I'm coming up with. It's definitely spicy herbal tea and dusty wood. Not my thing, not to mention the fact that I too developed a red rash where I'd swiped it. This isn't for me.
  2. benthic

    Mr. Qubit

    I was frimped this in a swap, and it was a blend that I never would have tried on my own; cologne blends are usually not my thing. But oh wow. This blend really is amazing. It's definitely masculine-leaning, very metallic and clean. It smells like a clean-cut, powerful man straight out of the shower. Perhaps even the Old Spice Guy. This is the cologne your man's cologne could smell like, ladies. It's not too masculine for me to want to wear, though. I usually pass on cologne blends for that very reason; I like masculine stuff, but not in this vein (and they all tend to smell the same on me as well). This is the best from BPAL I've smelled, though. It's so clean and sharp with just a hint of sweet citrus that makes it not 100% male, feminine enough for me to feel comfortable wearing on my more masculine-feeling days. I kind of want to go shower and then slather it all over myself. I think maybe I will.
  3. benthic

    Paduan Killer Swarm

    This blend is chock full o' death notes for me, so I had no plans on trying it, but it's gotten such good reviews, and then I was lucky enough to get frimped a bit of it! Finally I am testing the Swarm. On me, it's . . . coconut! And faint black licorice. I do really, really poorly with spicy blends, but to my amazement this isn't one at all. It's a creamy blend, which was not what I was expecting. The clove begins to peek out a bit more after a couple of minutes--which is right around the time this blend begins to irritate my skin. Whup. Well, I didn't want to fall in love with it anyway, and honestly, it's nice, but it's also slightly sour and cloying on me (the cream, I think), so I probably would not seek out more anyway. I have coconut blends I enjoy more!
  4. I have a few decants and one bottle! #126: Very frankincense, and cedar maybe? I'm getting wood out of this, but the frank is very strong, just how I like it. Cedar or redwood, I'd say, and as it settles on my skin, there's something sweet behind it; I can't identify it yet, but it's really nice and subtle, perfect for tempering the other notes. I love this one! The sweet note emerges more as time goes on, but I still can't pinpoint what it is, it's so quiet. Sugar? #71: Whoa sweet! I know this note, but I can't ID it. Man, I suck at this. Very little frankincense and some sort of sweet juicy fruit/floral. Definitely floral, as it settles. Finally the frank is beginning to come out, too. And there is some kind of fruit note in it as well, which starts out strong and begins to fade but is still present throughout. It's so familiar that it's driving me crazy that I can't think of it, ha ha. Overall I'm not wild about this one, because I'm not a big fruity fan. Yeah, I'm not liking this as it dries. #147: This is really nice, but I'm having an even harder time pinning it down than the other two. The frankincense is strong, and whatever else is in it is subtle. I'm really just getting frank, and whatever's underneath it is--nice, vaguely warm? Warm and dry and sweetish? But I have noooo clue what it is. It might be a super faint floral. Lilac? This is my favorite so far, even though it eludes me so! Yes, it's a powdery, light floral. I'm very fond of this. #130: CITRUS! Finally something that's easy to recognize. This is straight-up citrus and frank. Grapefruit, I'd say, and probably pink grapefruit, since white goes weird on my skin. The initial blast of grapefruit fades fast and goes to bubblegum on my skin. I don't think this is an actual bubblegum note, just the way grapefruit + frank works out. It's what my nose approximates it as. This one is fun! #113: My own bottle. And honestly, I can't identify a thing in it. It's the most bizarre thing. I don't really get any frank at all. It's a strange combination of sweet and medicinal, like a soft vanilla candy with an edge of herbal. Possibly a sharpish musk in the background. This blend is very light and strange. I like it quite a bit, actually, even though I seriously just can't describe it, and it's a close-to-the-skin blend, and it's very lacking in the frankincense department. It's sweet and creamy but then there's that hint of like, salve, some natural remedy going on. I could not tell you what any of these notes are.
  5. benthic

    Tiki Princess

    I wanted so badly for this to be awesome, because I loooove coconut. Sadly, something in it goes plastic on me. I don't know which note is doing that, but it ruins what is otherwise a lovely cold-tropical blend. It just has a fake and strange smell, and I am so disappointed!
  6. benthic


    I love almond notes a ton, so I had high hopes for this, and it's delicious in the imp and on my skin for like, two minutes. Then it settles into this weird plastic/fake smell, sadly. I don't know what note is doing that, because the only other blend I've had that problem with is Tiki Princess, and I don't see anything they have in common. It may be coincidence. I can't tell what's going weird on me, but I think it's the peach. So sad!
  7. benthic

    PS: Iron Parasol v1

    The tester I have is labeled "Iron Phoenix v.1," but since that blend doesn't exist and the impression I'm getting is much more like these reviews than the reviews for Iron Phoenix v.2, I'm assuming this is what I have! On me this smells like chrome, sweet fruit (nectarine is probably right on the money), and rose. It's the rose note that doesn't work on me, the one from Two, Five, Seven, the sweet one--or else that's the nectarine making things too sweet. The floral may not even be rose; it might be the nectarine tricking my nose, since it's so overwhelming. But to my nose it does smell like the 2 5 7 note. Sniffing my hand where I swiped it, I don't like this at all. The weird thing, though, is that I keep getting whiffs of it as I type from a couple feet away, and I like it a lot from a distance. At a distance it's a much more subtle floral (and smells more like daffodil to me than rose, oddly). Up close on my hand it's strong strong fruit, the kind I can't wear, but from far away it's actually rather nice. All in all, I wouldn't want to wear it because then I'd be surrounded by it, and it's enough to make me feel sick, but if I were around someone else who had it on, I'd think they smelled awesome.
  8. benthic

    Nepthys v3

    In the bottle and wet on my skin, this is cocoa, which struck fear into my heart because I hate the cocoa note. However, within seconds it morphs into a gorgeous dry fruity blend. The cocoa fades until it's no longer identifiable as "cocoa" and exists only to make the blend feel sandy and arid, in a really awesome way. On top of that is a beautiful coconut/fruit/floral/musk. I generally dislike fruit blends, but this one is the right combination of tropical and citrus without being too sweet (which is what usually kills me on fruity stuff). The fruit smell is very fresh and realistic, not at all cloying or fake. The reviewer who described it as eating fruit on a dry sandy beach was right on the money, with some sexiness thrown in there too. Amazing, and I'm so glad I managed to pick up plenty of this blend.
  9. benthic

    Amaterasu v2

    On me this starts out as a super generic "perfume" smell, something light and feminine and slightly chemical. I was thinking I disliked it, but then it settles down into something very nice; I'm getting mostly creamy vanilla and a light floral, not too much sandalwood, though that may be because I was just testing my Vanilla CT bottle which is pretty much this same blend with very heavy sandalwood. This seems very light in comparison! It's nice, and the throw is better than I expected for a blend this subtle and weak, but it's nothing I feel the desperate need for more of, thankfully. It's lovely but a bit generic still, even as it sinks into my skin and settles.
  10. benthic


    Starts off as pure lime sugar and fades really fast to musk, with a slight lime sweet tinge. It's a nice musk on me (I love musk), but it's also very faint, not really worth the price of admission.
  11. benthic

    Rosy Maple

    The strangest thing is happening to me with this blend: I can't smell it, but I can taste it. I've got some on my wrist, and when I huff it, I get no scent at all, but I get a blast of scent/flavor in the back of my throat. No matter how hard I sniff, I can't catch any of this in my nose. This hasn't ever happened to me with a blend before, and it's really disconcerting. (I'm also testing other blends, so I know it's not just my nose being off today. This is the only one that's giving me this trouble.) The smell/taste I get from this in my throat is--shampoo. It smells like shampoo on me. I think that's the acai berry amping up, or possibly the huckleberry; it's some sweet berry shampoo smell/taste. Not unpleasant (I really love the smell of washed hair), but not something I want to wear, especially since I can't exactly smell it in the first place. It's also beginning to irritate my skin slightly, which . . . doesn't ever happen to me. I have no idea what note in this could be causing that, because every single note in this is one I love, except for the huckleberry, which I've never tried--and that probably answers that. Clearly this blend is just not meant for me in any way at all, which is sad, because it was the one I was looking forward to most in this set. It just goes to show you that the sure bets are never sure bets. ETA that I see that someone on page 1 mentioned a shampoo called Strawberry Rain. Yes. That is it exactly. I used that shampoo too, and that is why this tastes like shampoo to me, because it's that shampoo.
  12. benthic

    Great Grey Witch

    Oddly, what this blend reminds me of most is Metal Phoenix, even though they have no notes in common. It has that light, sweet, ozone-citrus feel to it, but it's less metallic and more soft and sugary. It does also remind me of Staged Moon Landing without the chalky sandalwood (which I didn't like about that blend; something in it went strange on me even though I love sandalwood). There's a definite verbena/lemonness to this blend, too. Soft sweet sugary floral marshmallow lemons. It's gorgeous, and I can't stop huffing it, but it's similar enough to other blends I own that I'm not sure I'll go for more. I can't decide if it's worth having a blend that's so similar to another fave of mine. Honestly, I think I like this one better, but it's also a lot fainter. Edited for bizarre typos, ahhh I need sleep.
  13. benthic

    Pissed Off Skeeters v2

    After figuring out the conceit of this blend after asking some LJers about their impressions, I was expecting citronella/lemongrass, and that's what I get from it! I actually do not get heavy lavender; it may be that I'm amping everything else too much to pick up on it (I amp lemongrass a LOT). It's a very herbal citrusy sharp blend. It's the kind of blend that doesn't really smell like perfume, per se; I'm reminded very much of a lighter, prettier version of the all-natural organic insect repellent a friend of mine introduced me to one summer. In the bottle it's so unbearably strong that I was sure I'd hate it. On my skin it lightens up a lot into lemongrass and citronella, still astringent but much more like an actual perfume than a bug spray--though the bug spray feel of it is there. I'm surprised that I don't really dislike it. I think, though, that my fondness for it stems less from it smelling good to me and more from it being super evocative and nostalgic for me. It feels like hot summer nights around a bonfire or on a porch, drinking lemonade with friends. It made me sort of happy to wear, even though it's not exactly the most . . . "this smells good" kind of blend. In that way, it reminds me of Planting Moon (not in scent at all, but in the feel of "this is not my type of perfume oil but it smells so much like my childhood summers that I absolutely need an imp to hang on to"). Overall, it's a citronella/lemongrass blend with a strong herbal component which my untrained nose is poor at picking out, but I've seen reviewers on LJ consistently mention pennyroyal, lavender, and rose geranium, all of which are known as natural mosquito repellents. So that makes sense! As it dries it turns into more straight-up lemongrass. The big surprise of this blend was that it faded quickly on me. Considering how overwhelmingly strong it is in the bottle and how strong it starts off on the skin (and its resemblance to bug spray), I expected this to linger forever, but it's gone in an hour or two. I'd be curious to see how well it actually works at keeping the skeeters away.
  14. benthic


    Is this civet? I've never tried civet before; if that's what the strong musk in this is, I really like it. Someone upthread mentioned "masculine Snake Oil," and that's exactly what I get out of this too. My favorite blend is Asp Viper, and Satyr reminds me very much of that blend, only without vanilla and more musky, less foody. The first time I tested this blend, I couldn't keep my nose off my wrist; actually wearing it, it was just as nice, not at all overpowering (sometimes I'll like a blend in a skin test but then dislike actually being surrounded by it). Someone else mentioned it being "borderline too much," and I agree, but it happens to fall just on the side of not being too much, and it settles down some with wear too. It's a spicy blend I can actually wear; those are rare, as I tend to amp spices a whole lot. It reminds me of warm spicy baked goods and hot musk. Very sexual, not too masculine for a woman to wear (although it is a somewhat masculine blend, yes). Yet it's not "foody" to me at all; I guess the musk tempers that effect, which is good, because I am not a foody fan. This lasts very nicely on me, too. Decent throw and good longevity without ever being overpowering or in your face, as is fitting for a sexy musk blend. This is a keeper and possible bottle for sure.
  15. benthic

    Tiki Princess V3

    Opening the bottle and sniffing it, my immediate reaction was . . . Starburst! It smells like Starburst candies. On my skin, it doesn't morph much, but it starts out with a slightly fake/candy fruit smell before it soon calms down into a much more realistic, rich fruit smell. It starts off Starburst and then turns into the actual fruit. I'm really bad at picking out specific fruit notes, sadly. There is some green note in the back that comes more to the forefront as the blend dries, something that tempers the extreme sweetness it starts off with. Someone mentioned an alcohol note, and I wouldn't have thought "booze" smelling this one, but now that I see it mentioned, I can detect it. There is something more adult and sharp that emerges from this blend after it's on for a while. I was worried my skin would eat it up, but it didn't, this actually has decent throw and longevity on me. In fact, it starts off strong enough to be slightly offputting until it settles. This is very nice (better than I thought it'd be after sniffing the bottle), but I'm not sure it's for me.