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Death on a Pale Horse

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The End of All Things: empty white musk and mint seeped with solemn lavender, doleful patchouli and vetiver, scythe-sharp yuzu and lime, with geranium bourbon, white sandalwood and calla lily.

 

This starts off a syrupy sweet floral with a hint of bourbon. Something in this just smells like sugar!!!!! over all the other notes.

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When this is wet, there is a glorious moment when you can pick out most of the notes in this. There's a bit of lime, mint, lavender, musk and patchouli that adds up to quite a lovely scent. But, on me, once this dried I was left with mostly patchouli. It was a beautiful, creamy, almost sweet patchouli though. I guess that was the effect of the other notes. I like it. But I'm not sure I need it.

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I absolutely hate patchouli, except very, very rarely, when it's smothered in other notes and in something specifically trying to evoke dirt or woods, so when I got this as a frimp I already knew I wouldn't like it. But I sort of hoped I would since i was super curious about all the apocalypse scents back when I first discovered BPAL, and I am discovering that I adore lavender pretty much all the time. I actually come very near to liking this, so I'm sure it's actually quite beautiful.

 

After a limey stage post-application, almost all of the notes in this come out rather sweetly. Lavender, sandalwood and patchouli - but less terrible on me than most, sort of a softer, paler patchouli? - with a growing sweetness that I can attribute both to the flowers (I love lily and if not for the patchouli I think I'd love the blend for this mixture!). There's a sort of otherworldly windswept feel which I think the notes contribute to in general, but the musk and mint are just like a chilly overlay, and then there's a kind of dark undercurrent from the vetiver. I wouldn't call this desolate or forlorn though I can see how it lends to that; it's pensive and pretty, and leans masculine only in that it's not overtly feminine - not overtly floral, sweet or anything else, but the musk doesn't dominate the way "masculine" scents feel like on me.

 

It's a real pity about the patchouli because I actually really liked this. It's like a lying on a tomb in a white dress reading baleful poetry sort of scent. Listless, but holding your attention with its unusual prettiness.

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Started out pale and wispy, with mostly dry white sandalwood. Dry the vetiver and patchouli form a strong, earthy base but not heavy. The blend is buoyed by white musk and lavender. I do not get any other note specifically, but overall this is an herbal, dry and solemn scent.

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A nice blend for the concept. Death on a Pale Horse begins lavender-strong, with the lavender medium-sharp, with patchouli, pale musk, green citrus, and lily evident. I find a little mint and sandalwood when I hunt for them.

As Death dries... er, does this have orris in it? I feel like I'm mainly smelling an orris-patchouli-sandalwood mix, with a cold breath of lily, after drydown.

Two hours later, it's mostly gone. Death has passed.

I'm glad I tried this, even though it's not for me.

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I have wanted to try this forever, because I love the name, but the notes really haven't called to me much.

 

 

Wet: Wood - No...cardboard? Hazelnuts!? WTF am I smelling??

After looking at the notes, I am smelling lily (cardboard on me), sandalwood, and the vetiver (which is sometimes nutty on me). Something green peeks through. Something herbal, maybe the lavender? Not identifiable as lavender though. This one is perplexing and intriguing.

 

Dry: Quite soft. I get mostly sweet, nutty vetiver. I love this version of vetiver, but with other notes, and stronger. It's pleasant, just not wowing me. Weird that of all the notes, I am left with vetiver - my skin usually eats it within minutes.

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I was really, really hoping that the citrus notes would take the lead here, but I wasn't that lucky. Vetiver really just took over and turned it into a smoky mess on me. I amp vetiver, so I shouldn't have been that surprised. Sometimes it behaves, but when it doesn't it's tragic. Oh well, off to the swaps.

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In the imp: I'm getting the white musk, geranium, patchouli, and some citrus. It's really strong on the white musk, though.

 

Wet: The white musk reigns, and I'm also getting some florals (the high-pitched geranium and white lily for sure) and patchouli. The patchouli mostly just adds some warmth to the scent and isn't as strong as the musk or the bourbon geranium.

 

Dry: The white musk and florals continue to reign for a really long time.

 

After a few hours of wear, the musk note calms down significantly, and so do the florals. The white sandalwood has appeared, and the patchouli has gotten stronger. I'm also getting a bit of smoky vetiver now.

 

Verdict: I was hoping to get some mint and lavender from this, but neither of those really played a role on my skin. This one isn't really my cup of tea, but I'm glad I got to try it.

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Light, fresh and airy. If death smells like this, sign me up! I'm getting light musk and florals, with a touch of lavender/mint. This one smells like spring, nice to try, and would be a great blend in the heat of summer to cool off with. Nice, but I'll just keep the imp.

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I believe this was a frimp in my last order, as I have zero recollection of ordering it, and none of my receipts show it anywhere. Received back in May, so aged around 6 months.

 

In the imp: this one tricked me entirely - I got leather, spice, and bay from the imp, none of which are listed in the scent notes, along with white funeral flowers.

 

Wet: ah, there's the bourbon and sandalwood, which I think is what must have been giving off the spice notes in the bottle. A tiny splash of the lime, and a lovely dark undercurrent of vetiver (which I will again say is an absolute WINNER on my skin, and I have no idea what I did to deserve such great chemistry with that tricky little bastard).

 

Dry: a beautifully smokey fougere. heavy enough on the sandalwood that the vetiver is all but drowned out - an impressive feat since that's another note I tend to amp. A good strong dose of Catholic church incense, which I love, yet the whole event is very short lived.

 

Life is barely 4 hours, and reapplication doesn't help; my skin just eats this up. Throw is incredibly mild, blink-and-you'll-forget-it. I love it so much, but realistically, I'd never buy a bottle since it doesn't have the staying power.

 

Stars: ★★★★

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Wet this is a beautiful lavender and lime. Dry the patch and vetiver emerge but the lavender keeps them in check. It’s quite nice but I think I’ll only need the imp as a little goes a long way. 

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An imp from 2011ish.

In bottle: smells exactly like a hair salon to me.  

On skin: can definitely smell the patchouli.  

After a few hours: unfortunately, on me the patchouli overwhelms any other scent.  

This one I think I'll swap, as patchouli isn't a scent I particularly enjoy.  

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Not sure when I received this frimp, so I cannot attest to it's age. My daughter was having a sleepover last night with her bff so I decided we'd have a sniff party with the two girls and I came across this hidden gem.

 

Wet, I smell lime and something sweet. Almost nutty. Every so often I get the merest whisper of mint, but it's super soft, and not sharp like peppermint. This actually reminds me more of the candy mint or even the stevia plants I can buy at our local farmer's market. If Im getting patchouli it's subtle and not at all like walking into a New Age shop burning too much incense.

 

As this begins to dry down the sweetness remains and the lime continues to play through with gentle notes that are just bright enough to keep this from going to powder on my skin.

 

It's beautiful, like a haunting melody or a gentle lullaby meant to soothe your fears and keep you calm. People tend to fear death, and the reaper is cast in a dark, horrifying visage, but maybe he's simply there to calm us and lead us kindly onward to the next life. That's the Pale Rider I'd like to meet, but not just yet.

 

Unless this goes completely awful on me in a few hours, a full size of Death on a Pale Horse will be in my next order. I think it's going to be perfect for the Spring.

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