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BPAL Madness!


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About BorealBacchante

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    casual sniffer


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  1. BorealBacchante


    Got this one as a frimp, and I’m very glad I did. It’s the kind of thing I’d eventually want to test anyway...but I am over the moon that I really do love it and not just the idea of it. I’ve never been in a church that burns incense! (I’ve hardly been in a church at all since I was in the single digits of age, and those were punishingly Calvinist, so...) In the imp I get earth and intense cedar. Wet, mostly cedar but the incense is now wafting and warming everything up. Recently dry, I get a creamy vanilla smell. I see others mentioning plastic or tobacco. I could see why but I haven’t found a perfect comparison yet. This phase is very vanilla to me and creamy. Suddenly smells like the 1980’s rather than a timeless cathedral, but the cathedral is still there. Perhaps it makes me think of purity, youth, a ruffle of lace? Communion dress? My own intensely frilly Christmas service dress? An unbelievably airy Shetland lace shawl...something like that, in this cathedral. Much later it again smells old and austere, something lovingly tucked away in a box of made of a wood I don’t know the name of. Lives up to description, but is much more multifaceted and interesting that non-BPAL “church incense” frags I’ve tried. Because this is more of a scent (that you might pick up or have an article smell like through use or storage) than a perfume (intended to be worn by a person) this is exactly the kind of thing I like to wear. It doesn’t scream “perfume” when people smell it, but it does smell like something real. I love that. A bottle for me, I think.
  2. BorealBacchante

    The Obsidian Widow

    This is a gorgeous rose made sexy and dark by the rose attar feel the other notes give. Pinot is there but I don’t know if I would have identified it sniffing it blind. Just glows deep sexy red. Somehow very sweet without ever coming out of the inky black red impression. Took awhile for some patch to rumble out through the florals. I really like rose and love when it is blended so nicely. I really love this one!
  3. BorealBacchante


    Oh no oh no I have been totally blindsided by love! I usually go for really dark, typically gothy or hippie scents. This doesn’t strike me as either. It makes me feel feminine and lovely and strong, like looking at an Easter Sunday photograph of my dear grandmother when she was 25, looking hard-eyed into the camera gripping her children’s shoulders fiercely with her delicate white gloves. Feminine but fierce and just...gorgeous. I can feel this as gorgeously fitting for a sea-salted nosegay, à la Judy Collins’ Albatross. I can imagine a woman walking along tide pools, wind tossing this smell around her lovely hair. Its so timeless...let me explain. In the imp I mostly smelled vanilla and sea moss. Wet, the sea notes and musk remind me of the complex musks of yore, something on an antique vanity that no one knows the name of and no doubt can’t be found...and even if a bottle could be found, it wouldn’t smell just the same as this mysterious bottle no one can name. Dry, the sea notes become more warm and blend with the other notes into something less sharp, the musks round out...finally I can say it feels like a vanilla scent. It was always there, but in this blend it isn’t foody, or sweetening up patchouli. It’s rounding out an extremely nostalgic musk. I haven’t had the pleasure of enjoying this kind of musk in a LONG time. I’m new to BPAL, so I’m hoping this musk is in many other blends. It’s a long lost lover to me, and it makes me feel classy and gorgeous in a way I usually simply don’t. Thank you so much Beth!
  4. BorealBacchante

    The Coiled Serpent

    Very woodsy patchouli! I love it! Smells very hippie. I know other have said this isn’t sweet at all, but there is some sweetness on me that gives sort of an incense impression. So I get a really lovely combo of patch, cedar, and a little background of sweet incense. I’m at a loss to write the long stuff I usually do. This smells like dancing through incense over raw new boards. I really adore it, definitely will be seeking a bottle.
  5. BorealBacchante

    Saloon #10 Atmospheric Spray

    Received this as a sample with my order, and I’m glad I did. This is the exact kind of thing I was absolutely mad for the first time I checked out indie fragrance. It’s no longer what I’m looking for and I’m not sure why... When I opened my order box I smelled this...but I didn’t know what it was. The lingering scent in the box was metallic to me. I have no idea what exactly that note is. I think it’s part of the leather. But if it was in a blend that was supposed to smell like metal, I would believe it. Quirk of my nose I guess. First spray is extremely boozy. The booze almost hides the sharpness. Almost. Because then to my nose the whole thing smells strongly of very sharp sunscreen. Maybe the spray kind. As it settled down I was able to enjoy the tobacco and the leather became delicious. This kind of leather note is so unique to indie perfumery that it makes me feel warm and fuzzy. The sharp sunscreen impression is preventing me from enjoying this fully. I’m not sure if that sharpness if part of the whiskey or the leather, but it’s the metallicy effervescent chemical smell I noticed when I opened the box. I’m truly fascinated by that smell. I just don’t love what it does here. For me, sadly, this isn’t quite the booze and leather of my dreams, I don’t think...But it is extremely potent. I sprayed my sample a couple of times on a pillow to have something to sniff as it dried/faded and my small house was totally awash with it. As it settled into a totally heavy potent leather...I came to really enjoy it. Sadly if I snuggle into the pillow I sprayed, I get that sunscreen again, and as it totally fades away I am left with more metal/plastic than leather. A fragrance best loved at arms’ length for me. Intriguing as always. I’m really glad I got this as a sample, it’s been really fun and I don’t know if I would have been brave enough to order it!
  6. BorealBacchante

    The Lights of Men's Lives

    Honeyed vanilla and beeswax...very sweet and light to me. In the imp: total sugary vanilla, no candle. Wet: Immediately becomes a delicious beeswax candle smell. Vanilla AND candles, but not a vanilla candle. Just lovely. I smell some candle smokiness right away, as just a smudge of lampblack. I am delighted by that. Early drydown: beeswax is smelling a bit more like straight honey if I sniff my wrists too much. The wafts of airy, ethereal vanilla I’m getting as the oil on my neck warms are absolutely lovey and still carry the distinct wax&smoke of candles with the honey much fainter and reading as a sweet beeswax. Hours later: vanilla and creamed honey. Musk? There is still something special to it, some lingering memory of the candles that stops it from being just another light, creamy vanilla smell. I don’t know if others would say “aha!” if I told them that smell is beeswax and smoke or if they would just look at me funny. But I know. And it is very nice. It really is a lovey, light vanilla. It didn’t really change too much over time which is nice for a sweet, comforting smell like this. Throw and longevity are great for a lighter vanilla...I do mean light as a qualitative impression, not light as in too next-to-skin to be detected. It does become a lovey skin scent but it is so much more...the skin/candle relationship is delightful. This is a great compromise between something unique for enthusiasts (lampblack! Beeswax! A great story inspiration!) and something you can safely wear anywhere (sweet, vanilla dominated). Overall, I don’t know that it’s what I’m looking for in a bottle since I seem drawn to more...polarizing stuff. There’s not a thing wrong with it, and I will see how the imp ages and if I start longing for more of it...it IS a nice departure from smokier waxy lampblack scents I’ve collected in the past and the honey makes it stand out among the mainstream frag light vanillas I have.
  7. BorealBacchante

    Belgian Chocolate and Scorched Caramel Home & Linen Spray

    Really nice, heavy, deep chocolate and caramel. Very toasty and nice, I personally notice the toastiness first and maybe overwhelmingly at first spray. I don’t always like those toasty notes in home fragrance...we have all smelled a candle or two that smelled of nothing but hot crumbs! But I trusted this to be a better execution to satisfy my warm cozy cravings, and it is. Delicious as the chocolate note takes over and the toasty smell keeps it warm and inviting. Caramel sweetness, but not too sweet.
  8. BorealBacchante

    Hotaru No Yu Hair Gloss

    Very lilac, in the best way. Right away I get clean, fresh lilac with jasmine. I’m not super aware of the grass note as such but there is definitely some green in there keeping this bouquet smelling real. The honeysuckle brings a little extra sweetness after the initial lilac blast. I adore jasmine everywhere, but because I really do love dirty, skanky jasmine, I am noticing the lilac much more here. I can pick out the major florals but they harmonize too. Then...waiting for it...I finally got the amber note. My little bias is that a lot of amber smells to me are partway between animalic and resinous, and this was true for me here. Honestly this kind of amber note always reminds me of sweet, dry saliva, like an old woodwind case, in a good, better-than-real way. This was very fresh, dewy flowers to me. The amber coming through after the barely-there indoles brings it back to skin, perfume instead of a still life of a bouquet...kissing? I only really get the full amber when really sniffing my hair, the wafts I’m getting are pure fresh lilac with jasmine and honeysuckle as accessories, and the wet, green impression of stems. Super lovely.