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Queen of Sheba

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… Her scent is a bounty of golden honeyed almonds and a whisper of African and Middle Eastern spices.

 

I've tried several of the BPAL almond scents now, and Queen of Sheba is the imp I keep returning to - but I still have mixed feelings about her.

 

In the imp: pure almond extract

 

wet: a blast of almond extract, then when it settles down, a dry, roasted almond and a touch of honey

 

on the dry down: I like this phase the best - the almond is dry and nutty, not sweet at all, but the honey gives it a little warmth. The spices start to come out

 

dry/later: mostly spices, very nice ones, but they are a bit dusty.

 

overall: like I said, this is a scent I've reached for several times. I like it throughout and love it in the sort of 'middle' phase. I'm not convinced I need a bottle of this one, however, not yet anyway :rolleyes2:

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Bottle: Almond, and then honey. Just a hint of spice.

Wet: Strong creamy almond with a drop of honey. This is hyper-nutty -- almost all almond at this stage -- definitely an almond lovers' blend. Usually almond turns to amaretto on me, but this is steady.

Dry: This becomes a comforting honey musk, with lingering almond.

I like this one, though I wish I were getting a little more of the spices. It might be worth layering with a spicier blend.

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Sigh. I want to love Queen of Sheba. I love the Lab's honey note, and spice notes of any sort are usually wonderful on my skin. But apparently I don't get along as well with almond, or possibly just a bit too well, since it comes out loud and clear in the front end on my skin. I end up getting something that smells a lot like those hotel lotions that claim to be "almond creme" or something, which I've always hated, and that just swallows the other notes entirely. I sometimes get honey and the spices, but those seem to be the odd times out rather than the rule.

 

I just don't know. It's not terrible, just not something I really like...even if it never goes disgusting or wrong on me. I think it's an imp that I'll use up, but probably never purchase, and any more frimps will likely be gifted away to those who might like it better.

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Perfumed honeyed almonds. Almost cookie status but not quite. It's not unpleasant but it's much too nutty on my skin.

 

I think it would make a killer hair gloss though.

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Lab fresh imp. This is a strange one, as far as how it interacts with my skin chemistry. When I sniff the imp all I get is paint thinner, and the same when it's wet on skin. After about an hour of paint thinner, the sweet almonds, spices, and honey start to emerge. "Whisper" is a very appropriate description for this scent, it smells kind of dry, like a desert wind! It's sweet, but not exactly foodie. I really like the dry stage, but it does take a while to get there and the paint thinner wet stage isn't that great!

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Wet: Buttery saffron with a hint of sweetness and pepper. Fairly exotic.

Dry: Spicy almonds. I'm happy that this going towards a sweet honey. However, I feel like the throw is really low. My skin might be eating this slowly. I really have to get my nose close to smell anything. It's nice, but I'm sad that the saffron seems to fade quickly.

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This was an imp for me, maybe one I purchased as part of a lot? I have too much BPAL now. I can't keep the origins of them straight :biggrin:

First Sniff Impression: Yup, honeyed almonds.

Wet in Vial: Sweet honey almonds, almost like they were honey-baked and crystallized, and there are some spices but I can't really pick them out.

 

Drying Down on Skin: The honey and spices seem to blend well with the almond, so the almond isn't overpowering since I tend to find almond to be an almost sicky-sweet scent in general.

Dry on Skin: The almonds fade pretty quickly in this. It's a tad perfume-y dry, but not too bad. It might just be that I'm not usually a huge fan of the Middle Eastern/African spices. The almond is still there, but it's in the background. If the honey is still there at all, it's now more mixed with the spices, maybe giving me that perfume smell I'm getting. Honestly as it continues to sit, it's getting a little powdery.

 

Conclusion: This one started out nice, in a foody way, but turned pretty perfume-y on me. Not a huge fan of that. I think it might've been a skin chemistry thing. I'll be passing this on to my cousin, since I only tested it in the off chance I liked it before sending it to her anyway.

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First Sniff: Maraschino cherries.

 

Initial Wet Application: The maraschino cherries are still prominent, but not as in-your-face as first sniff. It’s also changing to a warmer, more nutty scent now, which I really like.

 

Dry Down (first 15 minutes): This was lovely as it dried! Warm and nutty with a delicious almond scent. It stays close to the skin though so I hope it doesn’t fade too much more.

 

My Reaction: I really like this, but it’s faint, even after two swipes with the wand. It’s yummy and nutty with a tiny hint of Moroccan vanilla which just makes this lovely.

 

Rating: 4

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Wet: Lovely sweet cherry/almond (my nose does a weird thing and reads them very similar). There's also a weird wet cardboard thing happening that I usually associate with lily. There's a spice there I can't place but it's almost savory? Hmmm.

 

 

Dry: This is really pretty icky on me. Hard to describe, but just not good. It's the spices, I think. Blarg. Not for me!

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In the imp: This smells like raw almonds to me, but instead of having a honeyed quality, there's these savory spices accompanying them, with a vibe that reminds me of peppers. Sriracha almonds, maybe???

 

Wet: The spices actually remind me of Doritos dust for some reason!? And they're what is dominating the scent. I wonder if this imp has gone off, or if this is just how the spices are meant to be. The honeyed almonds are buried far, far behind this spicy chip dust smell. This is not good on me. AT ALL. I swear there's paprika in this. I can't shake the association with pepper-y chips (pepper as in actually peppers, and not peppercorns).

 

Dry: Same. There are only a few scents that I can think of that are just vile on me, and this is one of them.

 

Verdict: This one may actually need to be washed off. It's just really, really horrible on me. I wish I had gotten honeyed almonds, but alas! On me, it's just chip dust.

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Lab frimp aged about 4 years.

 

In the imp: Almond extract mixed with some chopped real almonds. I love the scent and taste of both, so this is already a winner.

 

On me, wet: The nuts outweigh the extract, and they are unbelievably realistic. And there's the honey, too. I'm so impressed. I have a strong aversion to foody perfumes, but this . . . this is in a class by itself.

 

Within 5 minutes, the almond extract has floated away, leaving behind the toasted almonds and honey. There's a glimpse of something else, cardamom? And/or coriander? And maybe a drop of vanilla? Which would make sense, the touch of vanilla to provide a bit of creaminess - the milk and honey I associate with the Queen.

 

At about 15 minutes, it's beginning to remind me of hazelnuts rather than almonds. With cream.

 

At 20 minutes: The notes are blending together, making it harder to pick out individual ones. It's edging towards powder, only better. There may be some white musk or amber, both of which tend to dry down into a particularly beautiful powder on my skin. The spices keep it warm, although they are no longer distinguishable as separate notes. I'm sensing something floral, too, which helps prevent it from being too foody.

 

At 30 minutes: . . . and the hint of nuttiness that lingers on keeps it from being too powdery. It's a lovely balance.

 

At 1 hour: No further change in the scent, just a little softer.

 

After 2 hours: Almost complete gone. This doesn't last as long as most BPAL perfumes, but I don't mind reapplying. Because I adore this in all its stages, so that's just another chance to experience the journey again.

 

Verdict: A fabulous perfume to honor a fabled queen. I'm blown away by how much I love it - me, the avid hater-of-foody-perfumes!

 

My rating: 6 stars

 

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Note: Several reviewers have been puzzled by, or asked about, the cherry note they perceived in this. You aren't weird. There's a perfectly good reason for that. It's because maraschino cherries are strongly flavored with amaretto, the almond liqueur. (Or nowdays, it's more often almond extract.) So cherries and almond flavorings or scents end up being grouped in the same category in our minds, as having the same scent.

Edited by Ghost of a Rose

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Almonds, one of my enemies! Wet it's just all almond! Strong and super sweet! almost bearable for someone with it as a death note, bahah. 

On drydown it actually reminds me of Edith Cushing somewhat, just with "more almond". Is there coconut in here? It's not bad. Not for me, but not bad!

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