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BPAL Madness!


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About astarinel

  • Rank
    obsessive precious hoarder
  • Birthday 09/28/1981


  • Location
    New York
  • Country
    United States

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  • eBay
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  • BPAL of the Day
    Antique Lace
  • Favorite Scents
    Notes that I love: vanilla, amber, white musk, honey, berry, apple, peach, cake. Current scent obsessions: CD023, Lady Una, Dorian, and Arcana's Estella.

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  1. astarinel

    Two Frames

    I'm surprised this one doesn't have more reviews! It's probably my favorite of the Liliths I tried this year. The cake in this one is a yellow cake, the same kind of cupcake from Pink Lovebird. Instead of the cardamom in that one, this one is topped with clouds of lavender buttercream. I agree with the other reviews that said this was a stronger lavender than you might expect! A lot of "lavender" baked goods have the merest hint of lavender, and that's absolutely not the case here. This is a strong, bright lavender mixed into sweet rich vanilla buttercream. The lavender keeps this from being one of the Lab's excellent "this is basically just cupcakes" scents and makes it more interesting and wearable. It's like TKO + Cupcakes and I didn't realize I'd be so into that but apparently I am!
  2. astarinel

    Perfectly Normal Childhood

    On wet, this is a vanilla marshmallow cupcake. Unlike the slightly richer "yellow cake" note in some of the cake scents, this is definitely a white cake, light and fluffy. I'm surprised to see so many reviews noting the cardamom is strong! I found it very light on the spice, and I like cardamom so that was a little disappointing. This reminds me of both Pink Lovebird and My Little Grotesque, but I liked both of those scents better! The cardamom was more present and the scents felt a bit richer and more complex. This is a nice foodie scent, and if you want fluffy vanilla marshmallow cupcakes it definitely delivers, but it's a little paler than I would like.
  3. astarinel

    Velut Luna Statu Variabilis

    This is very pretty! This was my "risky pick" of the Lilith scents, I wasn't sure how the notes would combine, but it's quite nice. On wet, the carnation is soft and more gentle than it can sometimes be, with a darker background from the oakmoss in the chypre. This gives me a very classic perfume vibe, a silvery-pink scent with soft warm florals and gentle spices. I personally like ylang ylang, but I find very little of that here, it's really about the carnation chypre with a little bit of the benzoin and vanilla floating around the edges giving some sweetness and softness.
  4. astarinel

    Rattlecans and Sliders

    Melted strawberry ice cream. I don't get any cake or cake batter here, and I'm not sure what fog machine juice smells like but I'm not really getting any of that either. This reminds me a bit of Rope Pulley from the Lupers, it's a strawberries and cream scent, but where that one leaned hard candy this one is straight into ice cream. It's nice, and if what you're looking for is strawberry ice cream it gets that job done (with plenty of throw and longevity, too!) but it's a little straightforward. I have more complex strawberry-heavy blends that I prefer, and Strawberry Sufganiyot is my go-to for strawberry foodie scents.
  5. astarinel

    2020 Aesthetic

    This goes on strongly raspberry, and the review that noted that this was the same kind of raspberry as Raspberry Kobalt is dead on; I actually tested them side-by-side after I was also struck by that similarity. As it dries it stays tart raspberry candy. I love this raspberry note, but I think I prefer it with the vanilla from Raspberry Kobalt. This is a very pure raspberry hard candy scent, which is nice but lacks a little bit of depth. I wish more of the cherry showed up but it was never more than a bit of a whisper while the scent was wet.
  6. astarinel

    Civil Twilight

    Honeysuckle + peach, a lovely fruity-floral. The peach is very sweet and juicy, soft ripe peach flesh scent rather than a more tart fuzzy peach skin scent. I get very little lemon blossom, and the amber is around the base somewhere giving it a golden feel but otherwise pretty subtle. This is definitely an orange-golden type of scent, very appropriate for the concept. Bright, sweet, and a little smooth.
  7. astarinel

    Lemon Peel, Marshmallow & Orange Blossom

    I love all three of these notes, so let's see what happens! I actually find it pretty well-balanced while wet, it's not as strongly lemony as I expected, the lemon is subtler and more pith-y, while the orange blossom adds a bit of floral. The marshmallow is sweet but not sugared. This is both less tart and less sweet than I was expecting, the citrus is bright but not juicy and the marshmallow isn't the strong sweet vanilla marshmallow of scents like Stekkjarstaur. As it dries, the lemon fades pretty quickly, leaving a soft orange blossom + marshmallow scent.
  8. astarinel

    Please Scream Inside Your Snake Oil

    Some of these reviews had me nervous, but actually this ended up smelling like I was expecting! I like Snake Oil both fresh and aged, although they smell different to me, and I've tried a bunch of SO variants. PSIYSO is definitely fresh Snake Oil, but with a sweet pastry note and stronger vanilla. I dabbed a little plain SO on my other hand to be able to make a more direct comparison, and PSIYSO is sweeter and creamier and its musk feels darker and a little sugared. As it dries, it's definitely more vanilla-forward than SO itself, and the spices are softer. Basically, if SO + funnel cake sounds appealing to you, this is it and you'll like it. I love many SO variants and gourmands, so it's pretty squarely up my alley (and I almost blind bottled it!).
  9. astarinel

    Green Lovebird

    Strong, sweet vanilla mint. While wet, this reminds me of some of the vanilla Lick It blends, just a blast of sweet cool mint candy. As it dries, a bit of the pistachio makes itself known, adding a bit of nuttiness to the blend. I've got one Lovebird on each hand, and they definitely complement each other, slathering a minty buttercream onto Pink Lovebird's pink cupcakes, with a sprinkle of pistachio and cardamom on top.
  10. astarinel

    Pink Lovebird

    Vanilla cupcakes dusted with cardamom. This is a very sugary, fluffy vanilla cake while wet, and the cake settles down and the scent becomes a little more about sugared spices as it dries. If you like cake scents (and I certainly do) it absolutely delivers! It's almost mouth-watering. It reminds me a lot of My Little Grotesque from the Lilith blends a couple years ago, and that's one of the few scents I regretted not getting, with a bit less cardamom and a bit more pink fluff.
  11. astarinel

    Alleviate the Frenzy

    2020 version. I picked up a decant of this because I love peach scents, so I was surprised to find this not terribly peachy! It's actually quite amber-forward to my nose, and very sugary! It definitely has an interesting sparkly/bright quality to it, and if I really reach for it I can smell a soft peach juice scent, but I don't think I'd pick it out without knowing it was there. This isn't what I suspected, but is lovely nevertheless! A really beautiful sugared golden amber musk, with a gentle peach note in the background. Somewhat low throw, good lasting power with the amber musk drydown hanging around for quite a while.
  12. astarinel


    Lovely soft green apple, with apple blossom and soft white musk. I'm surprised this hasn't gotten more buzz, it's a gorgeous spring apple scent. Actually, this makes me think of a spring version of Snow, Glass, Apples! It has a similar outdoorsy, tart green apple note in the front, but with soft florals and musk instead of the snow and touch of mint in SGA. It actually reminds me a whole lot of one of the SGA prototypes that had a stronger apple note. (This scent actually reminds me even more strongly of an older Arcana fave, Stretched on Your Grave: Cold green apples, alabaster musk, and a scattering of cheerless white blossoms: calla lily, gardenia, tuberose, moonflower, and heart-leaf milkweed.) Beautiful, very wearable, and not overly apple-y, especially in the long drydown. Good throw and wear length. I love this type of scent (obviously, as I apparently have three bottles that are very similar!), so the question is whether I need more than a decant of this precise version!
  13. astarinel

    Jovial Embrace

    Yeah, purple fruits. Having just tested Couple Reading an Erotic Scroll, this one is significantly less heavy on the pure blackberry. I think the primary note I can pick out is actually the plum, with some tart currant. Despite the riotous purple fruit notes, I don't find this one overly sweet -- the oakmoss keeps it edging on musky/woodsy. It's more of a juicy fresh scent, like a basket of sun-warmed fruits sitting outside. I get a slight soapy-powdery note here, but that may just be my skin chemistry messing things up. Good throw, average lasting power.
  14. astarinel

    Champagne & Maraschino Cherries

    I love the Lab's champagne blends, and this one is no exception. Strong, sweet maraschino cherry immediately when wet, over the dry fizz of the champagne note. I really enjoy this wet phase, where the cherry is strong and juicy and verges on that almond-cherry scent, but if you are not looking for something that absolutely screams "marachino cherry!!" for a while, you should skip this one. As it dries, the cherry backs off a bit and the scent becomes a softer cherry champagne, like a champagne cocktail with a couple maraschino cherries fizzing in the bottom. Good throw, and the scent lasts a long time in this softer phase. This was my only blind bottle buy from the Lupers, and I don't regret it. If you enjoy the Lab's champagne blends and want that sweet, sticky maraschino cherry scent, this delivers.
  15. astarinel

    Couple Reading Erotic Scroll

    Blackberry is definitely the strongest note wet, somehow it merges with the bergamot and smells sort of like blackberry lemonade, a berry-citrus refreshing drink. Hints of herbal astringency, which I'm guessing is the white tea. This wears pretty close to the skin, and the blackberry fades a little bit as it dries, coming into a bit more balance with the other notes. I'm not sure what rice paper or rice milk smell like, honestly, and I'm not sure I'm really getting either of them here, but there's something a little soft, maybe powdery? under the berry-citrus. Good lasting power, though, and if you've been waiting for a scent where blackberry is the star, it might be this one!