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BPAL Madness!


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About bibliophile

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    evil enabler


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  • BPAL of the Day
    The Emathides
  • Favorite Scents
    My top ten: The Emathides Cottonmouth L'Estate Corazon Snake Charmer Lovers in a Ricefield Tamamo-no-mae Womb Furie Lilith Victoria The Harp of Cnoc l'Chosgair Notes I like: Amber (especially Nepalese, golden, and black), red/pink/blue/Egyptian musks, opoponax, honey, beeswax, dragon's blood, rice/rice milk, lavender, blackcurrant, blackberry, plum, lime, peach, mango, ginger, nutmeg, cardamom, olive blossom, orange blossom, plum blossom, dandelion, chrysanthemum, tiare, linden, marigold/tagetes, sunflower, cotton/linen, Snake Oil as a note in blends (Snake Pits, CTs, LV, etc.), and "lunar oils." Notes that tend to be bad on me: Vetiver; patchouli leaf; pine; fir; most other conifers (although a touch of cedar is usually ok); rose or patchouli as a *dominant* note; jasmine; opium notes/poppy; champagne; "red"/candy-like (as opposed to "brown"/baking spice) cinnamon notes; strong brown sugar notes; leather. Wishlist is here: http://www.bpal.org/index.php?s=&showtopic=127&view=findpost&p=585741

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  1. bibliophile

    Osculum Inflame

    This is such an interesting scent! It's quite different from what I was expecting from this blend of notes. It actually strongly reminds me of an old favorite - Carnaval Noir's Freak Show - on my skin, despite the significant differences in the notes list (fig, pomegranate and cocoa bean with lemon, bergamot, vanilla, mellow honey musk, calamus and tonka for Freak Show); Osculum Inflame wraps its fruits in honeyed resins, rather than honeyed cocoa. The drydown process is a bit cacophonous as the notes jostle for a place in the blend, but they dry down into a soft, sweet, blended fruity resin scent. Black amber is generally a fantastic note on me that only gets better with age; I can't wait to see what happens to this blend over time.
  2. bibliophile

    Truth Will Prevail

    That man came to my city today. It was a good day to test Truth Will Prevail. Vanilla and milk notes can both be hit-or-miss on me; the former in particular tends to be either very lovely or very candle-y (even BPAL/BPTP's sophisticated vanillas, to my great chagrin) on my skin. I'm happy that this combination seems to be working for me so far. My impressions are similar to VioletChaos's thoughts above: I smell like a vanilla-heavy chai latte. It's a very cozy, low-throw scent at the moment; I'm hoping to get a bit more spice as my bottle settles, but it'll still be pleasant and comforting if that doesn't happen. Truth will eventually prevail... in the meantime, I'll be here in my olfactory blanket fort.
  3. bibliophile

    Your Salon Must-Haves!

    I really appreciate that the Lab gave us enough notice of the Salon discontinuation to procure bottles/backups. I picked up bottles of Sunrise with Sea-Monsters and Cleopatra Testing Poisons tonight. My bottle of SwSM isn't perceptibly different scent-wise than it was when I first got it over 5 years ago (!!), though there's much less of it now! I have been out of Cleopatra for a while and just never got around to reordering, but am glad to have the chance to do so before it goes. It's such an unusual, and oddly lovely, combination of poison + peaches. The balance among the honey, almond, fruit, and green notes is so unique; it's sweet and astringent at the same time. I used to wear Haloes very frequently back in the days of ECWC, and went through several bottles of it during that time. I haven't been able to make it to any of the other retail-only locations in the intervening years, so I haven't had any since then. None of the blends that other people describe as similar have been anywhere near as lovely on my skin as Haloes. I hope that it and the other retail-only Salons will make a reappearance somewhere/in some form someday; I have missed/will miss them! ...but now it looks like it's not going anywhere, so no worries!!
  4. bibliophile


    Nepalese amber and I are BFFs, and I am a red/black musk lover, so I was thrilled to have the opportunity to snag Senelion from Etsy (thanks again, Lab!) and even more thrilled with how well it works on me. The amber + musk combo is as lovely as I hoped it would be on my skin. It reminds me of a winterized version of L'Estate - the lilies and sunflowers of that blend have withered, the golden light has faded, and the lovely Nepalese amber is now grounded by deeper musks and drier notes of orris and cedar. This doesn't have a lot of throw on me, which surprised me somewhat, since I tend to amp amber as well as red musk; it stays nice and close to the skin, so I could see myself wearing this in lots of different situations. There is no sharpness to any of the notes and they blend together seamlessly. I love it now, and imagine that it will only get better with age.
  5. bibliophile

    Follow Me Boy

    A houdoun recipe dating back almost 150 years. This blend is favored by prostitutes, exotic dancers and others in the sex industry for its power to attract, seduce, and enthrall. Ensures financial gain and increased profits. I can usually do a decent job of picking out the notes in Beth's lovely and complex blends, but either my nose is broken or my skin chemistry is, because Follow Me Boy is not giving me any of the lovely honey-vanilla-dragon's blood-spicy-musky notes that I am seeing in others' reviews. On me, it smells pretty much identical to the jasmine note in Lush's Silky Underwear dusting powder, which is disappointing, since I LOVE (and usually amp) honey-vanilla-dragon's blood-spicy-musky notes. I will have to give this another try at a different time of the month (and/or using a different imp) to see if I get anything more complex out of this one.
  6. bibliophile

    Paper Kite

    Hmm. Paper Kite makes me think of Spooky (the old version, anyway; I haven't tried Resurrected Spooky, and I swapped my bottle of Spooky away many years ago, so I can't test the two side-by-side). I get coconut that teeters on the edge of plasticky, with a bit of mintiness in the background. The pepper keeps Paper Kite on the right side of plasticky for me. A lovely, interesting, and cooling blend!
  7. bibliophile

    Common Jezebel

    Oh, vetiver. You never, ever work on me, and yet I still believe that somehow, someday, I will find a vetiver-containing blend that makes me smell divine. Today is not that day, and Common Jezebel is definitely not that oil. Just once, I would like to get the dry grasses to which vetiver aficionados sometimes refer in their reviews. Instead, I am getting something that might be similar to what Ondine describes above as a "shampoo" smell, but the vetiver/coconut combo is all burning plastic on me, as if someone held a match to the shampoo bottle and melted it to release the oddly sweet soapy scent inside. I can't distinguish among the apricot, red currant, and lemon sugar (all notes that should theoretically be fabulous on me) here; they are undoubtedly contributing to the sweetness I am getting from the blend, but it is an off-putting, cloying sweetness when contrasted with the vetiver. Great throw, though! And did I mention the plastic? And the burning? I can't complain too much - all of the other Metamorphosis blends have been just lovely with my skin chemistry - but this is an unfortunate exception. My CJ decant may have to flutter off to a new home.
  8. bibliophile


    I got this as a frimp from the Lab. Thanks, Lab! I would not have chosen this for myself, because vetiver and I are just not meant to be. I tried this on before bed, and it was mostly strong smoky patchouli with a vetiver edge through the drydown and until I fell asleep. The next morning, I awoke to find vetiver perched expectantly on my wrist. "WELL, HELLO THERE!" bellowed vetiver. "I've been waiting forever for you to wake up! Smoke and patchouli got bored and wandered off, but not me! Here I am, stronger than ever! Tonka? Spices? No, haven't seen 'em. A headache, you say? Oops. Sorry about that." So, yeah. Vetiver. If you love vetiver, you should definitely try Rumpelstilzchen.
  9. bibliophile

    Nonae Caprotina

    I am so pleased with Nonae Caprotina! On my skin, it is light and sweet and delicious from the start, with no initial wet-phase sourness or gamey smell. It's a lovely blend of milk and fig, with neither predominating. I don't really get much myrrh at all - maybe just a whisper in the background that tickles my nose when I huff my wrist too deeply. I swapped Milk Moon 2005 away a few years back because, though it was lovely in the bottle, it had a chokingly strong throw on me, no matter how little I put on. I'm really happy that this one has so much less throw; it's infinitely more wearable for me. I am planning to upgrade from my decant to a bottle ASAP (though to be honest, I may have done so even if NC had not been this good on me, because that adorable little goat makes this one of my favorite labels of all time).
  10. bibliophile

    Velvet Clown

    This one is interesting. I get what I assume must be the greasepaint - it does smell greasy on me, like some sort of industrial lubricant, almost - and a good strong dose of sugar, with a bit of booze. The sugar eventually fades, but the greasy, boozy quality lingers. I'm really glad I had the chance to try this very evocative scent, but definitely won't need more than my decant, if that... the Pink Kitty is shaping up to be my boozy, sugary Velvet of choice.
  11. bibliophile

    Eggnog Latte

    Cutting and pasting my thoughts from the East Coast Will Call thread: This doesn't have a lot of throw on me... it stays VERY close to the skin. I can't get over how authentic this smells!
  12. bibliophile


    I was both excited and apprehensive about the possibility of receiving this imp after seeing Bat's Day attendees mentioning honey in the Election Update thread, as very few honey blends in the BPALiverse work well on me. In the imp: The honey is the strongest note to my nose. Freshly applied: yes indeed, it's honey, with a bit of resin (maybe frankincense?) and spice in the background. But... what's this? It's not going stale or funky! It's still actually recognizable as honey! It stays true into the drydown! Drydown: Wow. This gets really faint on me as it dries, and I have to huff my arm to smell it, but the huffing yields a deliciously sweet honeyed skin scent. If only I could slather this! The honey here actually reminds me just a bit of the "honeyed milk" note in Gladdener of All Hearts, which also works on me. This is a really nice scent in its own right, and a great memento of this election (plus, the donkey label is adorable!) Definitely a keeper.
  13. bibliophile


    This is really, really nice. I generally enjoy Beth's lemony blends, and this one is unlike any other in my collection. I also get a fizzy citrus from this... mostly lemon, heavy on the rind, with what smells like a touch of lime. It doesn't have any of the sweetness that a citrus soda might; the fizziness reminds me more of a dry seltzer. Dry, it's astringent with an almost-herbal undertone. It reminds me a bit of Twenty-One minus the juniper, and is way more wearable for me. I will treasure this imp!
  14. bibliophile

    Frau Holle

    I know that I can't wear pine. It never, ever works on my skin. It steamrolls everything else. My skin chemistry + the Illustrated Woman = the Carnaval putting down stakes in a Christmas tree lot. But I am a BPAL masochist, and the other notes sounded lovely. They even smelled nice in the bottle! Wet on skin: Pine. Drydown: PINE PINE PINE. After shower: Dirty musky pine. And a headache. Oh well.
  15. bibliophile

    Chaos Theory IV: Edge of Chaos

    DXXXII (532) abejita's review abejita noted some similarities with Hungry Ghost Moon and Tamamo-no-Mae in her initial review; since both are on my "top 10" list, I jumped at the chance to take this bottle off her hands when it didn't work for her! Fortunately for me, I get the similarity as well. There's definitely grapefruit and ginger here, and I'm pretty sure that this blend has a white/"crystalline"/skin musk in it. I wouldn't be surprised if there were a bit of sandalwood in here as well. The major difference between this CT and those two blends is the blast of melon that I get when this is wet. For those of you who get a peachy feel from T-n-M: imagine it with honeydew instead, and you'll have a good idea what this blend is like. Dry, the melon is much less prevalent; it's blending really nicely with the grapefruit, and is very similar to a lighter Hungry Ghost Moon. I love it, and am ecstatic that this bottle made its way to me!