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BPAL Madness!


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About Alethia

  • Rank
    obsessive precious hoarder
  • Birthday 07/13/1986


  • BPAL of the Day
    Antique Lace
  • Favorite Scents
    Sweet clove Rose Magnolia Cream Skin musk Carnation Vanilla Honey Gardenia Sweet pea Sugar Sandalwood Saffron

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  • Interests
    Calligraphy, reading, French bulldogs, smelling nice, nail polish, yoga, tarot, cooking, living gluten free and low carb, monkeys, sci fi/fantasy, pygmy hippos, movies, weight lifting, and learning :)
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  1. Alethia

    Absurd Origin Story

    Thoughts before testing: I've been doing keto for almost two years now (and low carb for even longer before that) and Coke was by far the hardest thing for me to quit. So when I saw the description of this, I immediately tossed it in my cart. Marshmallow is one of my favorite perfume notes and I have high hopes that this will satisfy those damn sweet cravings that still linger even now. Wet: It smells like I smeared an ice cold Coke on my skin, all fizz and sweet Dry down: The marshmallow comes out a little more but mostly it's a fizzy Coke scent. I don't mind the lightness of the marshmallow here as I don't have anything in my perfume box that comes even close to a cola fragrance. Dry: That fizziness is just delightful and lasts forever. When I worked at the now-defunct Borders bookstore, our cafe would make a cola drink with vanilla whipped cream and raw sugar that tasted exactly like this smells. I'm shockingly into this. Final thoughts: I don't have anything in my perfume box like this and it's a definite keeper! Verdict: upgrading to a bottle!
  2. Alethia

    Roof Goblins

    Thoughts before testing: I generally steer clear of fruit scents but apple is an exception for me. Ever since the really beautiful Celestial Apples from the 2011 Weenies, I've been on the lookout for interesting apple scents. Apple and milk sounds just simple but intriguing enough for me to bite (pun intended ) Wet: Super duper realistic, crisp, juicy, sweet Honeycrisp apple with just a hint of milky goodness in the back. Dry down: After about fifteen minutes, the apple becomes creamy and the sweetness dials back just a little bit. Dry: The apple really mellows out and the creaminess becomes the star of the show. I definitely agree with those above saying it's sweetened like cereal milk (although without the fruitiness that was present in the Marshmallow Bunnies of Niflhel, thankfully). Final thoughts: Sweet creamy scents are my absolute favorite type of perfume and this is a stunner. The apple is to die for, the creamy sweetness lasts forever, and all throughout the day I kept getting wafts of this really amazing scent that I was continually delighted to realize was me. My husband is very into apple scents and went gaga over this as well. I have a lot of sweet/cream scents but nothing with apple so this is definitely a keeper. Verdict: upgrading to a bottle!
  3. Alethia

    Improv Zombie Scene

    Thoughts before testing: I've been on the hunt for a grapefruit perfume forever so this was a no-brainer. Wet: Wow! Bright sweet grapefruit with a little honey and crisp apple. LOVE at this stage. Dry down: Ooh this is super fun and almost sparkling. The apple isn't "shampoo apple" and is actually really pretty when it's blended with the grapefruit. I'm in agreement with other reviewers that there definitely smells like honeyed plumeria mixed in. Not a complaint at all as I think this note is what's making me not miss a heavier grapefruit. Dry: The grapefruit starts to come a little more to the forefront and the plumeria/apple cider is a little sparkly all the way through. Final thoughts: I really love that this isn't piercing or sharp. It's just pretty and sparkly and a little sweet and different from anything else I've got in my perfume box. Verdict: upgrading to a bottle!
  4. Alethia

    Euterpe’s Ukulele

    Thoughts before testing: I recently fell in love with the plum in Bathsheba so when I saw this, I immediately pounced. Wet: Slightly indolic but very pretty. Very well blended, I can't really pick out any individual notes except to go "ooh, pretty and fancy" Dry down: The indolic smell isn't going away which is weird because I usually only get this from jasmine. Beneath that, it's a sweetish resinous scent. Dry: The patch starts to really blossom after several hours on the skin. It's not gnarly or rooty but is really smooth and polished and warm. Final thoughts: That indolic tinge never went away despite a full day test this week. Maybe hormones? I don't know, but I also don't know if i liked this enough to try it again. Verdict: I'll hang onto the decant for aging purposes but definitely not a bottle purchase.
  5. Alethia

    The Misty Marshmallow Sugarbunnies of Niflhel

    Thoughts before testing: Stekk from the 2015 (or maybe 2016?) Yules is one of my all-time favorite perfumes and since I've only got one bottle of that I'm always on the look out for marshmallow replacements. I'm hoping that this will hit that same olfactory spot. Wet: Wowza, nothing but super sweet Fruity Pebbles. Dry down: After five or so minutes, the Fruity Pebbles fades and leaves just a sweet slightly fruity marshmallow. Dry: Pretty sugar with just a hint of fruitless. FInal thoughts: Normally I steer clear of fruity scents but the fruit is so light here that I don't mind. There isn't enough actual marshmallow in this for me to jump for joy and Stekk is a lot warmer and fluffier so I don't think this will fill my backup spot. But it is pretty in it's own right and I definitely like it enough to keep the decant. Verdict: keeping, but not a bottle purchase.
  6. Alethia

    Dignified. Elegant. Sophisticated.

    Thoughts before testing: Snake Oil is one of my favorite love-muffins and I have high hopes for this one! Wet: Fresh Snake Oil and bright pink bubblegum for sure. The bubblegum is a sweet and a little dusty, like the bubblegum tape you could get in the 90s. Dry down: The Snake Oil starts to overpower the bubblegum and it's all I can smell at this point. Dry: And now it's just play-do This is extra weird for me because I greatly prefer fresh Snake Oil over the aged stuff. I've never gotten play-do out of Snake Oil so I think this is going to be a pass for me. Final thoughts: I like bubblegum and I love Snake Oil so I'm sad that the combination didn't work for me. Verdict: passing the decant along to someone who can appreciate it better.
  7. Alethia

    Aeval - Resurrected

    Thoughts before testing: I first tried a frimp of Aeval in 2013 (you can find my original review of Aeval here) To date, I've drained that bottle and two imps and when it was discontinued I was so sad. My excitement when it was re-released this summer was enough to get me to order 3 bottles immediately. I don't have the original to compare against so I'll try to review this on it's own merit. Wet: YES. This is it! It smells exactly like I remember the original Aeval smelling. It's really pretty, clean, and sweetly floral. Dry down: The sage is crisp and clean and slightly green; the sweet pea is vintage and sweet. Dry: The musk finally comes out to play and blends beautifully with the sage and sweet pea. Final thoughts: This winds up being a really lovely softly sweet floral musk with a generous helping of beautiful clean sage. The throw is pretty much nonexistent and it doesn't last for very long at all (3 hours on well moisturized skin in humid Ohio) but neither did the original. Aeval was my go-to perfume for work due to it's close throw and inoffensive prettiness and I'm so very happy this was brought back. Verdict: Hoarding, with a potential fourth bottle on the horizon.
  8. Alethia

    Like a Girl

    Thoughts before testing: I can't get enough of blends with skin musk, and vanilla + sandalwood is always a win in my book, so my hopes were high for Like a Girl to smell pretty dang good. Wet: Ugh so pretty. This is heavy on the skin musk wet and it smells clean and warm and just slightly sweet. Dry down: The sandalwood and vanilla come to the forefront and it definitely starts to smell like a sheered out Morocco. Still clean and warm but more sweet from the vanilla. Dry: The vanilla and skin musk intensify just slightly and this winds up being a vanilla'd skin musk with just a breath of resin to ground it. It's warm and clean and just barely sweet and I love it. This has moderate throw and good wear time (7 hours before I really had to try and notice it). Final thoughts: It's been a minute since I tried a perfume that made me think "Man, I smell PRETTY." Very feminine, very pretty, and basically what I want my own natural skin to smell like. Morocco has long been my favorite perfume, but the lighter and more natural feel of Like a Girl might be enough to claim the top spot. Verdict: Backup bottle needed stat.
  9. Alethia

    The Eternal Queen

    Thoughts before testing: Despite my recent BPAL hiatus I had to come out of hiding for this one. I've been searching for a gardenia/tuberose perfume to round out my collection a little more and I'm hopeful that this one will be it! Wet: Big, white, waxy, tropical gardenia and tuberose. Very big and loud but not screechy at all. Definitely not for the faint of heart. Dry down: The ambergris and vanilla become more prominent and start wrapping up the florals in a sexy, salty gauze that turns everything from Classic Lady Perfume to a really interesting and beautiful scent. Dry: Hello lover This is a creamy, slightly salty, vanilla'd white floral with just a hint of powdery amber on the very back end. Final thoughts: Love, love, love. This is such a pretty and interesting take on the classic gardenia/tuberose combination. Really lovely, really classy, really womanly. I can see the comparison dementia_divine makes to Butterflies, Flowers, and Jewels Attending and Ava and I agree that this is in the same family but different enough to warrant owning all three. I might be biased here though as BFJA and Ava are in my top ten already; at this rate, The Eternal Queen is rapidly approaching that list as well. Editing to add that the throw on this is moderate and it lasted for right around 6 hours on my (well-moisturized) skin here in humid Ohio. Verdict: Hoarding
  10. Alethia

    The Eternal Virgin

    Thoughts before testing: I haven't made a BPAL order since last year's Anniversary scents as I've found my small stable of perfumes that work perfectly on me every time. But when I saw the notes for this, I had to try it. Carnation, honey, milk, and cardamom are all part of my top ten love muffin notes list and so I had to give it a whirl. Wet: Yowza, the honey and cardamom are mixing to create this almost raisin-y, chewy sweet scent. I'm not sure I'm feeling this wet stage at all. Dry down: Thankfully after 30-ish minutes the chewiness dies down and the whole thing morphs into a sweetened spicy carnation. Dry: The carnation is sweet and spicy and lovely. This is really pretty, really feminine, really me. Verdict: Keeping! Edited to add: the throw on this is mild but lasted for roughly 7 hours before I had to really try to smell it. My husband says he likes it but prefers Stekk or Paper Phoenix to this.
  11. Alethia

    2003: Cotton Phoenix

    Thoughts before testing: I've got a pretty serious love affair with marshmallow going on and Snake Oil/Snow White are dependable and wonderful on my skin, so I figured I was pretty safe with Cotton Phoenix. Wet: Sweet, fresh Snake Oil with a really beautiful hit of creamy/sweet/floral Snow White. I would never have thought to mix these two, but they're really beautiful together. Dry down: The marshmallow comes out and makes everything a little sweeter and more fun. Dry: After several hours, the marshmallow is gone and I'm left with a almond-y Snake Oil. It lasted forever on my skin. Final thoughts: I'm not sure I'm super wowed by this. I wanted to really big heart eyes love it, but I just didn't. And since I'm paring down my collection in a major way, I don't think this is staying. Verdict: Lovely, but a pass from me.
  12. Alethia


    I can't even do a proper review for this because on my skin this is a dead ringer for Clinique Happy. Like seriously, I sprayed one on each arm and (once the alcohol burned away) they smell identical. I'm not even mad about this because Happy has been one of my favorite scents forever and I'm thrilled to have a BPAL dupe of it!
  13. Alethia

    2004: Paper Phoenix

    Thoughts before testing: Literally everything here is a win. Dorian is one of my all time favorites, Antique Lace is one of the best vanillas I've ever smelled, and pink pepper is true love. I don't see how this can go wrong! Wet: Hellloooooo Dorian! This is a huge hit of bright, sweetly musky, citrusy Dorian smacked in the face with the delicious fruity sharpness of the pink pepper. A little sharp, but not unpleasantly so. Dry down: Everything starts to mellow and I can start to smell a hint of the linens and vanilla of Antique Lace. Dry: By several hours in, Dorian and Antique Lace have melded to become this really outstanding scent. I don't even know if I can properly describe it except to say that it's creamy and sweet and slightly citrus/herbal and just really lovely. This one lasted forever on my skin. I put it on around 8 am and could still smell it 10 hours later. The husband loved it (no surprise as Dorian and Antique Lace are his favorites on me) and has already ordered me a backup bottle. Final thoughts: When I originally got into BPAL, I was thrilled at the idea of having dozens of perfumes to choose from each day and loved trying out new things and new personas with each scent. But now eight years later (where did the time go?!), I want a small stable of 3-5 perfumes, scents that I love and that make me feel the most authentically me. Paper Phoenix definitely fits that bill. Verdict: Hoarding.
  14. Alethia


    Saffron-infused bourbon vanilla, blackened honey, Kashmir wood, Atlas cedar, ambrette seed, hay, and Egyptian jasmine absolute. Thoughts before testing: I purchased this bottle back in 2015 and immediately put it away to age after the first sniff. It was nothing but loud, indolic jasmine and sharp screechy woods and I knew that it desperately needed aging before it would even have a chance of working on me. So here we are, almost exactly 2 years to the day later and I'm ready to take this baby for a test drive. Looking back at the note list, I'm not exactly sure why I bought this. It's practically a list of notes guaranteed to not work on my skin. But having said that I have noticed some pretty significant skin chemistry changes since I miscarried last winter, so maybe it'll turn out ok! Wet: Heady jasmine that's still pretty indolic. I get a little honey and a little bourbon vanilla, making it a really lovely sweetened floral with a hint of earthiness. Dry down: The woods start to come out more and the jasmine starts to recede. It's pretty hypnotic actually and feels like super slinky, super sexy, Serious Perfume. The honey and vanilla sweeten everything, This is shockingly lovely. Dry: Much heavier on the woods and honey now, but this one lasted forever on my skin (6 hours and still going strong). Final thoughts: This is so far out of my normal perfume range, but I'm shocked at how much I like it. Keeping! Edited for spelling.
  15. Alethia

    Sir Thomas Sharpe

    Thoughts before testing: I loooooove fougeres and I'm hoping that this is unisex enough to work on both Bear and myself. Wet: Sharply herbal amber. Nose-tingling, but not unpleasant. Dry down: The herbal tinge dissipates entirely and I'm left with a sweet, dark amber that's masculine enough that I smell like I've wrapped myself in one of Bear's big sweaters on a cold day. Hubba hubba Dry: This is just slaying me. It's sexy as all get out. That dark amber is masculine and sexy and dark and comforting and just incredible. Brava Beth, this is magic. Final thoughts: I absolutely cannot wait to slather it on Bear. It's also not too masculine for me to feel uncomfortable wearing it. I'm going to need to scour the sales page for another bottle so we can each have one. Verdict: Hoarding.