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BPAL Madness!


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About wordortwo

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    a little too imp-ulsive
  • Birthday January 20

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  1. wordortwo


    While walking through a greenhouse at a massive botanical garden, I thought I caught a whiff of Hal. I looked around and realized I was eye level with a hanging, voluptuous jasmine plant. I could easily smell it through my mask. That is to say: the jasmine in Hal is apparently realistic, not to mention rich and complex. It dominates for the first hour or so, and then the honey and vanilla dominate. However, it never quite becomes cloying. This is exactly the sort of floral I love - rich and anchored with woods. The longevity is middling and the projection is low; the longer-term dry down is a mild honey. I've tried two second-hand versions of Hal - an older bottle with a few drops left, and a newer, almost full bottle. The older bottle was smoother, and the newer bottle is much more honey-forward and funkier (indolic? I'm not going to pretend to know exactly how to apply that term). I enjoy "funky," but I preferred the smoother version of Hal. I've set my bottle aside to age for a few months.
  2. wordortwo

    Don't Touch

    I purchased a decant of this (from 2019) from a fellow forumite. For a couple months, I could not get myself to test it further than a mild dab on my hand. The apple smell was overpowering, and it reminded me of a green apple candy or air freshener rather than apple blossom or pulp. I'm glad I forced myself to give it a proper try. That apple candy scent fades fast, thank goodness, and becomes much more of a fresh smashed apple smell. This is not a sweet and fermented smell like a trampled crab apple, but more like you just smashed an apple with a mallet and can smell the flesh and freshly bruised skin. The apple fades back further and a spicy-green smell takes over, which reminds of firm, shiny leaves crushed between your fingers. At this point, I start getting whiffs of the sweet-tart pomegranate and the frankincense. After reading the review above, I get that creamy apply blossom note just below everything else. All in all, it is not something I will necessarily buy a bottle of - I don't know how often I would wear it. However, I see myself using up this decant this summer.
  3. wordortwo

    Since There’s No Help

    I tried this one shortly after I received a decant and was simply bored by it. A month of rest has improved it, made it smoother and crisper -- the scent of a clean break. Wet on the skin, this is clean, bright, and clear lemon peel and green-grassy juniper. The lemon fades fast and is replaced by a tannic bitterness and something almost like a wisp of smoke, all of which I love. Something else, that I can only seem to describe as "elegant," steps in alongside the juniper and takes this fragrance out of air freshener territory. I agree with the spa and sauna references above. It is a bit like walking into a sauna from the cold, with some bracing essential oils wafting in behind you. Maybe, like SophieCedar, I am just extra goth, but I find this uplifting and relaxing. Unfortunately, this behaves on me the way many tea fragrances do. The dry down is faint, hollow, and flat (I know that description is not terribly helpful, but that's the best way I can describe it). I should say my S.O. actually said this phase smelled nice - I think he understood it as the scent of light tea, which I do not. Though I find the first 30-60 minutes spent with this fragrance to be interesting and fresh, the dry down disappoints me. Update: Ultimately, I found this unwearable, even after resting. Too flat, too scented candle-ish.
  4. wordortwo

    Hunger Moon 2021

    I have had a decant of this kicking around, but it took me a while to properly wear it rather than just dab on a test swipe. Now that my local weather is hot and muggy, this scent is a refreshing elixir. When first applied, I find the camphor and eucalyptus most prominent. That sounds like a bracing, medicinal combination, but I feel like they mellow each other out a little bit. The eucalyptus isn't so green, and the camphor doesn't quite have that sinus-clearing quality. It is certainly cool. Yet riding alongside these icy notes is a bright citrus note, which I find almost mouth watering in its juicy sweetness. As it dries, I momentarily smell something I interpret as musky, but that rises and retreats within a few minutes. Then, the herbal sage and verbena rise and blend with the eucalyptus and camphor. After an hour or so, this has faded to a sweet amber-verbena scent that wears close to the skin (my S.O. couldn't really smell it when asked). It does warm up quite a bit. The dry down reminds me of Since There's No Help from the 2021 Lupers, but I like this better (because there is no tea note). Still, I find this too sweet and short-lived. A nice momentary pick-me-up.
  5. wordortwo


    Reviewing a decant of the 2021 release. Raw, down, and dirty indeed. On me, Luperci is primarily an earthy, musky patchouli blend. The patchouli is balanced by a slightly powdery and clean musk, as well as a sort of herbal undertone. As it dries, I find something boozy about it, like beer or cider; this may be how I am interpreting the beeswax. It is lightly sweet, never cloying. It wears a long time - it lasted overnight for me - and has low to moderate projection. This is an appealingly feral yet complex and blended scent that I can see myself wearing daily. However, I love dirty patchouli and others always like it on me. If you don't like patchouli, I wouldn't bother with Luperci. If you do, I definitely recommend at least trying this. I bet folks who like Goblin would like this.
  6. wordortwo


    I purchased a decant of this from a forumite. I've been interested in collecting the Only Lovers Left Alive scents, and I was particularly drawn to Kit - I love the character and I was intrigued by the scent description. Whether or not I'm biased by my expectations, I enjoy this perfume. Unfortunately for anyone reading this, I find it very difficult to describe. It opens with sharp, fresh, nearly mentholated marjoram. The base is made of balsamic resin, dry sandalwood, and worn fabric. It is comforting and subdued, yet oddly cheerful. I haven't paid attention to projection or wear length for this one. Unusual, comforting, and wearable - that's a good combination for me.
  7. wordortwo

    The Carousel

    I purchased a decant of The Carousel from a kind forumite. When first applied, it smells like Dawn dish soap. Then, the copper tang of blood hits the back of my throat, which I thought was a marvelous little detail. As it dries further, it smells like flowers and honey coated in Dawn dish soap and drizzled in blood. After about an hour, from a distance, it smells mostly like Dawn dish soap, and up close, it smells like honey. So far, this is not for me. I anticipated loving it, so I'm going to give it another test eventually.
  8. wordortwo

    Gingerbread and Leather

    I purchased a decant of this. I thought Gingerbread and Leather would be more leather-forward, but it is primarily spicy, chewy, molasses-rich gingerbread. When I apply lightly, the scent only lasts a couple of hours. When I apply heavily, I feel like I'm walking around in a haze of cinnamon and clove, like if you rolled Pig-Pen from the Peanuts in baking spices. This one doesn't work for me, but you may like it if you dig gingerbread.
  9. wordortwo


    Paramatman is calm, warm, comforting -- soft, clean florals blended with creamy sandalwood. When I first tested it, it reminded me of an upscale yoga studio. This isn't a powerful, head-turning blend; it is calm, comforting, inoffensive, and light, but has reasonable projection. I enjoyed it on the hottest summer days, but I have not been motivated to buy more after I finished my frimp. Edit: I take it back - I do want more of this. The weather has quickly turned properly warm, and once that happened, I missed Paramatman. Now there's a bottle in my cart... That's all to say: I do think this is a great warm-weather scent if you are like me and do not necessarily gravitate towards "fresh" scents.
  10. wordortwo


    I received this as a frimp from the Lab several months ago. To me, it smells like strong sweet orange essential oil mixed with green tea powder, and nothing else. Perhaps what I am smelling, rather than orange, is the mixture of grapefruit and lemon. Either way, I've worn it a few times waiting for the citrus to fade, as citrus top notes usually do, but it persists. If the citrus settled down, and the leather, wood, and amber chimed in, I think it might be smooth and bright and pleasant. But I find it cloying and suffocating -- in fact, the scent unpleasantly hangs in the back of my throat. Not a winner for me.
  11. wordortwo


    I find both The Black Rider and The White Rider to be un-sexy. This may be a silly way to frame it, but they both smell exactly as described, and I find both of them soothing. The Black Rider is smooth black leather sweetened by oppoponax, amber, and tobacco. White Rider is dry sandalwood and pale leather; the leather is particularly strong.
  12. wordortwo


    In the bottle, Night smells like a dark chocolate liqueur. The oil separates rather quickly, with what I am assuming is cacao settling at the bottom of the bottle. I recommend spending some time mixing this before applying. On the skin, there is no chocolate here - it is bitter, earthy cacao with a swirl of smoke. It truly does feel like an enveloping darkness, but in the sense of stepping outside in the middle of the night. A light sweetness rises, which I interpret as tobacco and resin, and it's run through with a cool floral. It settles into the skin as rich, earthy cacao with a hint of smoke. As others have said, it is velvety, lightly floral, and just sweet enough. Night is strong and incredibly long-lasting - I can smell it on clothes for days. (I also have a tendency to slather it on, so take that with a grain of salt). One of my favorite BPAL fragrances.
  13. wordortwo

    Le Lèthè

    This is a warm, dark bedroom, heavy with the lingering scent of bodies. Incense mingles with musk. The nutmeg prevents a syrupy quality from becoming cloying sweet. Sexy, brooding, a little melancholy. One of my favorite frimps. It lingers a while but I don't find it to be a super strong or long lasting fragrance.
  14. wordortwo

    The White Rider

    You're walking down a small town Main Street on a hot summer day. As you pass a shop, the scent of leather draws you inside. Standing in the center of the small shop, the sun-warmed wood blends with the leather and you forget all about wherever you were headed. I received this as a frimp and tested it without looking it up. It is recognizably, no-nonsense pale leather and sandalwood. It is bone dry, potent, and mesmerizing. I can't quite speak to the longevity, but it stuck around after I washed my wrist. It has medium projection.
  15. wordortwo

    The Poinsettia Gown

    Poinsettia Gown is well outside my comfort zone, but I adore it. It feels elegant and sophisticated yet playful and cozy. It opens with rich and warm and big florals. The jasmine slowly settles and the fragrance becomes a sweet, floral-laced cloud of whipped cream. Cloud may be the wrong word if it suggests this is an ethereal or subtle scent; it is not - it has projection and staying power. Overall, it makes me feel cheerful and warm.