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BPAL Madness!


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About Elspethdixon

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    obsessive precious hoarder
  • Birthday August 6


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    United States

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  • Favorite Scents
    Honey, vanilla, wood, tobacco, cinnamon, coconut, amber, clove, vetiver, milk/cream, marshmallow, lavender, apricot, cedar, white sage, BPAL's cake note, anything gourmand.Current Faves:Mars UltorBeanman & Beanwoman Climb Genital MountainsThe Language of CrowsAntikythera MechanismLove's PhilosophyDark Chocolate, Black Tobacco & VetiverAdrasteaStekkAmicitiaCallistoCaramel Apple CookieDe Vos's Unicorn


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  1. Elspethdixon

    Pomegranate Vulva

    In the imp: Almost winter holidays-esque dark red fruits with fizzy/fuzzy/syrupy laudanum underneath. Wet/freshly applied: still pomegranate labdanum but now there’s a floral element, too, and it’s less fruity/syrupy and has a smooth, well rounded, almost polished aspect. Drydown: Tart red fruit and fizzy/fuzzy labdanum remain the stars of the show. I agree with s feral’s description of “juicy yet gauzy” - it’s like sophisticated cranberry soda (or maybe a cranberry martini without the vodka). I can see what wodness was getting at with the “high femme who wears a lot of expensive lipstick” vibe.
  2. Elspethdixon

    Fig Vulva

    In the imp: sweet tropical fruit plus almond cream (more guava then fig) Wet/freshly applied: fruity almond, with just a hint of something sour/musty that might be the patchouli. The throw from a few inches away is a slightly fruity sandalwood. On my hair (freshly applied): creamy, fruity sandalwood and almond with a hint of something sour/rancid (why does patchouli exist?) After about five minutes the off note vanishes from my skin and a sweet/warm hay note starts to come forward. The guava is stronger on my hair, where the overall scent after the initial drydown is fruity/tropical with a hint of sourness (the rancid hint from the patchouli sticks around longer after the initial drydown, alas, but eventually vanishes after about twenty minutes), while the hay/almond/sandalwood is stronger on my skin, where after the initial almond fruit smoothie blast it fades down into more of a soft, sweet “your skin but better” scent. Unusually, it actually has a much longer wear time as a skin scent then it does in my hair: the tropical sour-sweet guava scent lasted on my hair until about midday, but I could still get faint traces of Fig Vulva on my skin at bedtime if I put my nose to my wrist.
  3. Elspethdixon

    Implacable Beautiful Tyrant

    In the imp: Sharp, fresh, almost citrusy ginger and warm/sweet amber. maybe a hint of frankincense Wet/freshly applied: once on my skin, the soft amber becomes more dominant, with the ginger and frankincense as just the faintest whiffs. Everyone who said this was lighter than the HG was right - much lighter and not much throw. The oude does not become barnyardy and take over, though, which is what I was most worried about given Herb Girl’s review. Drydown: After a few minutes, everything smoothes out and it’s like a light, sheer haze of gold with a faint sharp, sophisticated edge. It’s recognizably the same scent I love in the HG form, just much fainter (I have a more recent bottle of the HG, bought around 2019). Sadly, it fades very quickly, and by an hour later it was entirely gone, even from my hair where I also applied it to check how the scent profile evolved without my skin chemistry in the mix (less amber, basically). However it’s worth noting that I live in the Mojave desert right now and a lot of oils have about half the wear time here that they did back on the East Coast.
  4. Elspethdixon

    Against Idleness and Mischief

    In the imp, this is a sweet, honied scent (but a warm, sticky/glowing sweetness, not a sugary vanilla one) with hints of something green and growing- it makes me think of a white daisy with a yellow center, growing in the sunshine. This is what I wanted Marc Jacob’s Daisy to smell like (sadly it was nothing like this). Once on my skin, it goes herbal and almost minty. There’s a brief minute or so of fustiness in the wet stage that’s probably the chamomile since floral scents often go musty on me when initially applied. The honey never comes back as strongly as it does in the imp, and overall this is a fresh, slightly sweet scent that’s not quite floral and not quite herbal. It’s soft and close to the skin and makes me think of the milky white sap that comes out when you snap dandelion stems.
  5. Elspethdixon

    Tunisian Amber, Beeswax, & Balsam

    I love this one. The amber and balsam (doomsday_disco is right, it does remind me of NAVA's wonderful limestone amber, except the addition of the balsam makes this a little sharper and tangier) blends beautifully with the beeswax. The whole effect reminds me a little of the beeswax/olive oil/candle smoke combo in Hanerot Halalu, except richer and without Hanerot Halalu's fresh/clean feel. I'm tempted to upgrade my sample vial to a full bottle just so I can wear this during Hanukkah.
  6. Elspethdixon

    Vanilla Bean, Marshmallow, and Benzoin

    If you loved Stekk or Stale Sugar-crusted Marshmallow Chick, run, don't walk to get a bottle of this one. The marshmallow note is obvious, but instead of Stekk's soft, clean wooliness, this is a sweeter, richer scent. It didn't occur to me until I read kaileycatface's review above, but the vanilla is indeed similar to/reminiscent of the vanilla in Antique Lace, like you opened up a bag of Kraft marshmallows and poured an imp full of Antique Lace all over them.
  7. Elspethdixon

    The Candy Butcher (2015)

    I got a partial bottle of this back in 2015 when it was newly re-issued and it didn’t wow me, possibly because I was expecting a sweeter and more candy-bar-like chocolate. Either my nose/taste has improved, my skin chemistry has changed, or six years worth of aging have worked magic, because now it’s the perfect rich, slightly bitter dark chocolate base scent to layer literally any chocolate or cacao blend with. My chocolate-eating skin chemistry zaps the dark chocolate notes after a couple of hours, but the very late drydown at the end of the day (we’re talking the 8-12 hour mark) is this amazing sweet/rich vanilla-like scent that will last on my hair until the next morning.
  8. Elspethdixon

    If your top 5 scents are... Then try these!

    You may want to check out the Sugar Plum Tree perfumes in this year’s Yules. One of them, The Shore of the Lollipop Sea, has blueberry lollipop as a prominent note. Rope Pulley from the 2020 Shungas is pure strawberry marshmallow. It ended up turning into the scent of a 1980s Strawberry Shortcake Doll on me, but I have bad luck with strawberry notes. As a fellow lavender marshmallow lover, both A Place of Seeing (rosebud, lavender, amber, sandalwood, marshmallow, and bergamot) and Lights, Camera, Something (lavender, vanilla, and cardamom) from this year’s Liliths and TKO from the general collection all give me a sweet/soft lavender vibe similar to Capax Infiniti.
  9. Elspethdixon

    Bath oil

    Black Phoenix Trading Post bath oils are amazing! They're my all-time favorite bath oils from any company, and I'm not just saying that because we're posting on the BPAL board. Their base bath oil mix is wonderful on my super-dry skin - I use it all over as a body oil in the winter. While not as great as BPAL's, Haus of Gloi's hair oils also make pretty good bath oils.
  10. Elspethdixon

    Health Goth

    This one has become my new sleep scent. The lavender and juniper make it similar to Mitral Valve from last year’s Lupers, but the bergamot and white incense make it a fresher, lighter scent (whereas Mitral Valve is cool and dark). It layers beautifully with No Coward Soul is Mine, which feels like an especially apt combo for a Lilith scent.
  11. Elspethdixon

    You're a Daisy If You Have

    This is a strong, long-lasting leather scent, almost a leather single note. It's definitely a cowboy/tack-room leather rather than a leather-jacket/motorcycle leathers or leather-seats-car-interior leather. I expected a smokey vetiver note thanks to the mentions of gunpowder, but nope - it's all leather here and no guns. In the Imp - Fresh leather-goods shop/suede with a hint of clean, dry grass? Wet/freshly applied - A pleasant combination of suede-type leather and grass, like a tackroom or maybe like horseback riding out in the sunshine. It's a very dry, clean, soft leather, like fresh suede. On my hair there's a hint of smokiness and dry grass accompanying the leather, but on my skin the leather dominates. Half-hour in - Clean, dry leather, with an almost grey quality to it, and maaaybe a bit of drying grass accompanying it. It combines really nicely with the Song of Autumn I and II grass scents I'm testing on my other arm. Late dry-down - Hours later (and by hours I mean a complete work day) the leather note is still going strong on my skin. I cannot stress enough how much staying power this has. I applied it to my hair as well as my skin and 48 hours and one hair-washing/shampoo later I could still catch faint whiffs of tack shop leather from my hair.
  12. Elspethdixon

    Songs of Autumn III

    In the Imp - Sweet grass/plant scent, slightly fruity. Wet/freshly applied - PLAANNTS. Then a more perfumey note starts to come forward as it dries on my wrist. By several minutes in, it's notably a lighter, drier scent than the freshly-cut green grass of Autumn I. At the 10-minute mark it smells like summer. Perfume-y drying grass. Half-hour in - Dusty, slightly-sweet skin scent, like dry desert warmth with a hint of sunblock. I never really got any smoke from this, and sadly it's fading pretty quickly.
  13. Elspethdixon

    Songs of Autumn I

    The description said wet grass, and it meant it. Green, freshly-cut, lushly growing grass. This is a very summer-time smell. In the Imp - Grass. Sweet, green, freshly-mowed grass with a hint of perfume-y fruitiness (and without the lawn mower exhaust scent that always accompanies mowing grass IRL). Wet/freshly applied - Freshly cut wet grass, which gains a slightly drier tint from the sage as it starts to dry on my skin Half-hour in - Cut grass, just beginning to dry in the sun, along with a bit of perfume-yness and a hint of something that does remind me of lawnmower exhaust now (but not in an unpleasant way at all - plus I suspect my brain might be subconsciously adding that note in because I am so strongly reminded of mowing the lawn by this scent). At this point it's less like mowing the lawn and more like raking the grass cutting up afterward.
  14. Elspethdixon

    Kisses for Us All

    I was anticipating something similar to Jezebel's honey-orange blossom-rose with an added spice note, but instead it's a sexy combo of red musk, tangy honey, and sharp rose with the clove adding a hint of something almost metallic. These are definitely bloody kisses from Dracula's vampire brides. In the imp/while wet I get a sharp, vegetal rose, with a hint of green stem (the sort of fresh/sharp rose that has an almost minty quality) alongside a sexy/tangy honey that reminds me of the honey note in Elegant Vulva. Definitely not the orange juice/velvety rose opening of Jezebel at all. As it starts to dry on my skin the red musk comes forward along with a metallic hint of warm/sharp clove and it turns into a sexy scent that's neither overtly floral nor spicy but instead a sort of sensual crimson/deep blush pink skin musk with an underlying sharp tang that makes me think of blood (but thankfully without the rotting-blood note from Whitechapel or Mischief HG).
  15. Elspethdixon

    Gordian Hairmop

    Goes on all soft teak, with the coffee coming forward as it dries. It smells like a restful/peaceful hotel room morning and I love it. I only put it on my hair, but sadly even that made my scalp tingle/burn in places. Whhyyy must I be allergic to oakmoss?