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BPAL Madness!


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About absalem

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  • Gender
  • Interests
    Hrrm. Trivia? Environment, ocean, swimming, sailing, hiking, reading, writing, cooking, perfume (obviously).


  • Favorite Scents
    All of them? I love: honey/bee-pollen/wax, florals (literally ALL of them. But, I adore Jasmine, Gardenia, Violets, Marigolds, warmer flowers, and Lilies), fruit, lighter musks, greens, herbs, woods, incense, spices, amber, resin-y smells, Dragon's Blood, aquatics, and the notes that I guess you would call "novelty" like soil, cabbage, salt, dust, etc. I'm not big on heavy musks, too-bread-y (they amp and turn into musk), wine, cough-syrup cherry, or dead leaves. But I do have favourite scents with those notes, so it really depends.


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    United States


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  1. absalem


    Okay, so this is gonna be really weird, but the first thing I thought when I smelled the frimp the lab sent me was "This reminds me of the rotting hold of a tallship, in the best way possible." It doesn't ACTUALLY smell like that, per say. . . But, the way the sweetness of the lotus combines with the musky-bright-aquatic of the juniper reminds me of damp-wood smell. It really reminds me of my youthful summers when I went on tallship cruises as crew. The sillage is medium, and the lasting strength isn't amazing. But, this is a minty-aquatic scent with depth. Although I will admit, at some points during the month I get the bubble-gum lotus that others talk about. Still, I definitely have a bottle of this for when I reminisce.
  2. absalem

    We Need Your Lupercalia 2012 Recs! BPAL and BPTP

    I haven't tried a whole lot yet, as I've decided to cut down on decants and just go for whole bottles, but the two I've liked best so far are: The First Encounter, and Snowy Mountains and Kingfisher. Both seem really unique to me. The first being a really sassy/sexy fruity blend, and the second an almost-spicy/sweet/exotic/snow scent with a lot of class.
  3. absalem


    I really thought I'd love this one. I adore fruit, and have never had a problem with patchouli. However, this was mostly a really dirty/damp patchouli, with a kind of rotten-decay-sweet from the apricot. I rarely have bad reactions with scents, so I had brought it to school to test. Luckily I was I tried it during my long break. I put it on, and within ten minutes had to run back to the bathroom to smother it with another perfume. I smelled like...something really rotten. Like the person sitting next to you on the bus that hasn't bathed in a few monthes. I usually amp the lighter/spicy aspect of patchouli, so I just think it's the combo what did me in. Either way, as another reviewer put it: ugh.
  4. absalem

    Snowy Mountains and Kingfisher

    Crisp ozone-tinged snow, muguet, white moss, sandalwood musk, white amber, honeysuckle, and white pear. Alrighty, so: I will admit that a large part of me getting a bottle of this untested/unreviewed was that I adored the art. I do love all of the notes listed, but I had no idea what I actually wanted this to smell like. This review is mainly of my second test, done after roughly a week of bottle-settling. Wet this is ozone, and a lot of it. But, the florals, and amber make it sweeter and warmer. The sandalwood makes it a little spicy/musky. It's fresh smelling, but not in-your-face bright. After a bit of drying, the ozone fades a lot, although it is still present. It adds a "fizzy" quality to the blend. The scent is definitely cool, but it's not frosty in the way that I associate with "snow" scents. More like a brisk wind than a snow storm. I can smell the sweetness and floral aspect, but the musk and the amber keep it from being too ephemeral. It has a depth. I don't think any note really stands out once it's dry. I've tried this a couple times now and my general impression is a very fresh, feminine scent with a hint of sophisticated sexiness. On my skin, it gets warmer/skin-musky after a while. In my hair, it has a very green tinge, like fresh-cut stems. It lasts about average, which is more than I can say for most ozone-scents. If you're afraid of the florals: I don't find them to be a huge component, but they are present. If you like the lab's ozone perfumes and are looking for an unusual take on that - or even one with more lasting power - I really suggest this blend. As far as it being a spring scent, it's very evocative of the beginning of spring when the ground isn't quite thawed yet, but the plants are starting to revive. Because of the sandalwood and amber, I think this will age into something really regal and sexy. I wouldn't have sought this scent out on my own based on its notes, but I am very glad to have it. One of the reasons I love the Lab is that their descriptions/imagery for their perfumes get me to try things I never would have otherwise. 4/5 in for my tastes, and 5/5 for being exactly what it should be. (Update: Feb 2015: Still adore this. One of my go-to scents when I wanna smell sweet, but not like a little girl. Probably like it even more now than I did then, heh.)
  5. absalem


    I can't believe I haven't written a review for this yet! Wet, it is pretty much tangerine, currant and honey combining to make the smell of...wow, this is gonna sound bad. Edible lady-bits? Like if they used female genitalia to scent honey. It dries into this gorgeous honey with a hint of citrus/musk sexy bee-pollen (from the floral aspect) smell... Mostly honey on me, but I amp sweet smells. It has low-average throw and AMAZING wear length. I can smell this the next day if I don't accidentally rub it off. I can definitely see why people might be put off as it's very, ah, organic. If I think about lady-bits I can definitely smell them in it, no matter how dry. Still, since I doubt most people go around thinking about vaginas and sniffing people, I should be safe. I've gotten lots of compliments on it, but no "eww!". This is one of my absolute favourites, and a very unique smell. Glad I went against the majority of the reviews and gave it a try.
  6. absalem

    Snow White

    Okay. Uhhhh. How to put this.... When I first sniffed my decant I thought to myself "So this is Snow White. Smells pretty good, I'll give it a go." I put it on. Well, that's an under-exaggeration. I'd just taken a shower, so I slathered it on my neck, ears, wrists, and combed it through my hair. Within a minute, great wafts of plastic were coming up from everywhere. Disheartened, and hoping it would be better dry, I skulked downstairs to watch television with my family. My mother - who is notoriously critical of my perfumes - immediately says "what's that?" Expecting a negative comment I replied something along the lines of: "It's my perfume, it's kinda nasty, I know." Unexpectedly, my mother began raving about how beautiful I smelled, and demanded to huff me. She made my sister smell me when she came home, and my sister also said I smelled great. Now, a month later, it still smells like plastic to me, but my family loves it. I kept the decant because it gets a good reaction, but it makes my nose crumple everytime I wear it. Kinda like how only certain people can taste that bitter chemical in brussel-sprouts, I guess. I think it may be coconut? I also smelled something plastic-y in Goblin (which my mother also adored ) and vanilla and florals have never gone off on me before. Still, it gets good reactions, has great throw, and lasts fairly well... I guess if your nose likes it, it's a good scent. Just be aware that some people will wanna plug their noses.
  7. absalem

    What are good scents for diffusers?

    Reviving this to request some recommendations for my diffuser... I get migraines a lot and use scents (perfumes, candles, etc) to try to relax myself. I recently got a tea light oil burner and have been having great fun with my perfume and essential oils. However, I find that when I've got a headache some things just make it worse. I love a stronger scent, but anything heavy on the sugar makes me super nauseous. Pumpkin Masala Rooibos nearly did me in. I really like using perfume oils because it seems like the scent lasts longer than my essential oils for some weird reason, and also because if I use water I can pour it into a jar with vitamin e oil when I'm done and use it for hair scenting purposes later. Still, I know some perfumes don't work well in a diffuser. I'd like some input on scents that worked well in your diffuser! Preferably nothing as cloying as Pumpkin Masala Rooibos, but if you have a sugary blend in mind that you ADORE... then go ahead and suggest away. Some scents that I've tried: Lavender Essential oil (yay, but short lived) "Detox" blend of essential oils (eucalyptus, mint, rosemary, lavender....I can't remember the rest. Very minty.) (also awesome, but short lived) Bewitched (mmmmm, lasted fairly well with only a few droplets.) Undertow (nummy!) Pumpkin Masala Rooibos (Guh! Too much!) Copper Phoenix (meh, nice but not amazing. Made my room smell nice, though.) Any suggestions?
  8. absalem

    Kubla Khan

    Okay, so my experiences with Kubla Khan have been kinda varied. I'll tell you why first of all, then I'll dissect the scent as best as I am able. Kubla Khan was one of the first imps I ever bought from the lab. When I first tried it on I was recovering from a cold, so I could barely smell as it was. . . it was kind of a bright, ozone-y, citrus-y, sweet incense. It disappeared fairly fast (my skin absorbs perfume, but it was even faster then usual) and I remember thinking it was pretty - but not the amazing show stopper I'd expected. A month or two later, someone frimped me an (presumably) aged imp in a swap. DEAR LORD. I had rediscovered Kubla Khan, and it was AMAZING. Aged Kubla Khan is a richer scent, with the vanilla, opium, and incense more prominent. The lasting power was also astounding. It was everything I wanted and more. I'd also like to mention that by the time I realized I LOOOVED aged Kubla Khan, my comparatively fresher imp had aged enough to last longer. Kubla Khan of all ages is now one of my top ten scents. Wet: It smells....strange. I agree with everyone who says this is a very well-blended scent. I detect a kind of fizziness - almost like soda - that I suspect is coming from the mandarin, ginger, tea, and maybe even opium and the woods coming together. The smell is almost ozone-ish at the beginning, which could be because of the icy-caves, or I could be mistaking something else for ozone. Sweet. Maybe a spot of the incense and leather? Somehow warm despite the fizzy-ozone. Dry-down: It seems to slowly start to introduce vanilla and the incense strengthens. The bright fizzy ozone aspect softens, but remains present. With my fresh imp, I noticed the scent pretty much disappear at this point, although if I huffed at my skin there was still the lingering fizzy-incense. With my aged imp, the scent seemed to pick up speed around this point and gain some throw. Dry: There was now something deeper (the woods?), rounding out the scent. It tends to warm up further around this point, although it never truly loses it's gingery fizz. I never really get any floral from this. If I smell any floral, they are so well blended I can't pick them out. Sweet incense, vanilla, leather, mandarin, ginger, and guh. This scent is so good. Good throw, good longevity. It seems too sweet for a guy on me, but I also turn things sugary, so I agree that this would be a great unisex scent. Classy, unique, hinting at wild insanity beneath a shell of opulence. But, er, that could just be my interpretation. If you find yourself not liking Kubla Khan, give it a couple monthes. It may surprise you. 5/5 for aged, 4/5 for fresh.
  9. absalem

    Old Moon

    The scent of things drifting just on the edge of memory, hiding in shadowed corners. Old, yellowing books, dust-covered toys pushed to the back of the attic, windows obscured by thick, thorny vines, letters discarded, and photographs of people long-forgotten. It's exactly what I hoped it would be: the delicious smell of antiques and used-book stores. In the bottle it was sassy and herbal with a musky base. Wet it was musky dust, which faded into a delicious dry, dusty, herbal musk within five-ten minutes. It started to remind me so much of The Phantom Wooer that I had to dab a bit from my imp onto an inconspicuous part of my upper arm to compare. Old Moon is less sweet, floral, and liquid than Phantom Wooer, but I am convinced that their dust note are both the same and amping on me nicely. Heh, never thought I'd use liquid to describe Phantom Wooer, but there is something to Old Moon that is much drier. As Old Moon dries, it becomes less musky, drier, and sweeter. There is a hint of Vanilla that fully realizes around the hour mark and continues to grow stronger. The blend remains old books, dust, and that bit of vanilla from here out. I'd say the wear length is long as it's still here three hours later after a sweaty cleaning frenzy, and scents die on me fast. The throw is variable. I feel like it lost strength immediately after application, then steadily built up sillage for the next couple hours. It is pretty decent but not overpowering at the moment, and doesn't seem to be losing steam. (Edited to add: I finally figured out what other scent this reminds me of, aside from Phantom Wooer! Kubla Khan, randomly enough. No clue what note is setting off this feeling of similarity, but I love it.) Exactly what I wanted, with the unexpected perks of longevity and perfect throw? Me thinks this is a 5/5.
  10. absalem

    The Cold Hour of Dawn

    But in the corner, at the cold hour of dawn, sat the poor girl, with rosy cheeks and with a smiling mouth, leaning against the wall–frozen to death on the last evening of the old year. Esprit de eucalyptus, blue musk, davana, frosty iris, and tagetes. A beautiful soft floral that lasts for hours. Bright florals and powder burst forth when freshly wet, a combination of the iris, tagetes, and blue musk at the fore. The scent barely changes as it dries, remaining neither warm or cold. The only change I detected was a softening and sweetening of the scent. It lasted forever on me, considering it seems like a light floral scent, and my skin absorbs perfume like a sponge. It lasted from about 930 to 4, and that's with me putting my robe on and off, thus rubbing it off my arms. The throw is decent as well, I could smell it wafting about me as I moved. It seemed feminine and clean. Definitely has a powder aspect, so if you're not into that, you may be disappointed. Although, I was expecting eucalyptus and I couldn't detect it, so that could be good or bad depending on who you are. There was almost nothing icy or minty about this scent on me. I can definitely see something bright but cold about this, like seeing the bright dawn on a chilly day. It smells a bit like being out in the cold, but not in the way "winter" scents classically do. The following is going to sound incomprehensible: the way your nose closes a bit when it's chilly and makes everything smell rounder. Over all, I adored this scent. I'm going to see how it smells in a month when it's settled, and hopefully I'll feel the same. 5/5, at the moment, though. Edited to add: Every time I wear this, I fall a little more in love. The first few times I put it on, I couldn't smell much that was eucalyptus-y. Now, it starts with a little chilly minty/eucalyptus kick combined with that beautiful soft floral goodness. Still, mint haters need not be afraid, it's not overpowering.
  11. absalem


    I received this as a frimp from the lab, and I'm so happy that I gave it a chance. The first couple times I tried Faustus my impression was that the frankincense made it waaay too masculine for me. Maybe letting it sit for a month has cooled it off or something, because when I put it on today it was magnificent. The frankincense and cinnamon combine with the dark violet to make it a rich, spicy floral. Absolutely beautiful, and I'm glad I tried it again before foisting it off on a guy friend. Wear length is somewhat long, which is nice. As for wet to dry, the only difference was that the violet backed off a teensy bit - which was fine, since the frankincense stopped being so sharp as well. Just enough to make it a comfortable scent that makes me happy to turn my head and catch a whiff.
  12. absalem

    Sudha Segara

    I got an imp of this because I love honey and ginger. So, I guess I was expecting a more creamy, milky, honey, gingery fragrance. I was surprised by the final outcome, but ended up loving it way more than I would have figured. After all, I already have Dana O'Shee for creamy/honey/milky. In the bottle, it was a citrus/fresh ginger blend. I cook with fresh ginger, and I knew ginger didn't quite smell like this. Confused, I put it on expecting the citral smell to blossom into ginger... Wet on my skin, it was a sugary, LIGHTLY creamy smell with heavy notes of citrus and a slice of ginger lying underneath. Five-fifteen minutes in I was still gloriously citrussy and gingery creamy. In confusion I looked up the notes for Sudha Segara: DUR. It has Ambrosia listed as a note. That's probably the sweet citrus I'm getting. All in all, this had great throw, decent wear length (my skin eats perfume since it is reeeaaaally dry - but this lasted a few hours at the least). It was mainly a fresh, sweet, citrus ginger scent, with a creamy undertone. Looking at other peoples reviews, I may have just amped the citrus, but I still think this is a great perfume for when you want longevity, throw, AND a lighter scent. ETA: Wow, okay, so I think maybe it was because I was sick and so my sniffer/chemistry was off, but a few weeks later I tried Sudha Segara and it was ALL sweet, fresh ginger with a hint of orange, instead of citrus with a hint of ginger. Although I loved it before, I LURVE it now.
  13. absalem


    Oh wow! I absolutely love this. I was definitely expecting more cinnamon and was kinda sad that it didn't have it in spades, but it ended up being so beautiful that I love it in spite of my expectations being reversed. In the bottle it was kind of a stanky patchouli-sandalwood mix. On my skin wet it was spicy sandalwood with dark undertones, with the cinnamon slowly picking up speed before almost completely vanishing. This steadily changed into a sweet and almost fruity, yet incredibly dry sandalwood as the day progressed. Although I was wearing a sweatshirt, and have incredibly dry skin, nearly five hours after applying I could still stretch the wrist of my sleeve and smell a delightfully soft, sweet sandalwood. This was the scent where I finally realized that my skin turns most notes very sweet. . .which I should have realized when my sister's musky perfumes often turned to fruit loops on me.
  14. absalem


    In the bottle it smelt really bitter and acrid, with a dusty chocolate cherry scent. After I'd put it on, it remained rather bitter and dusty - like pure cocoa powder - with the cherry deepening and moving to the fore. During dry-down it got less bitter with a very sweet fruity scent and a sweet, sharp tinge of what I presume was the orange blossom. I don't know the throw or lasting power, as I work at a movie theater with popcorn butter smells everywhere. I did put a smidge on a piece of gauze which I put in the knot of my tie though, and that smelt pretty nice all day. Very nice on my skin, but didn't work in my scent locket because it never stopped being bitter/acrid. I didn't like it enough to buy a 5ml bottle, but I definitely kept the imp.