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BPAL Madness!
GypsyRoseRed

Mama-Ji

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Spices, cardamom, nutmeg, and flowers.

 

Wet: For a brief moment I worry that the "flowers" are turning out to be jasmine, but I'm wrong, it's a spicy floral, more like carnation.

 

Dry: Mostly creamy sweet spiciness. As others have mentioned, this does smell somewhat "incensey". it's glorious. It doesn't have a lot of throw on me. I'm waiting to see if it has some lasting power to know if I need a bottle.

 

:wub3: P.S. thank you Elka!

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Ever open a bottle from BPAL and find yourself unable to speak in anything but curse words and moans? Yeah, me too. That's Mama-ji.

 

I was so hesitant to buy this because of the polarized reviews, until I got to test some at a Meet and Sniff. The very next order, my own bottle came to me, and I've been wearing it at least 3 times a week. I'm going to try to really do this the proper justice.

 

Mama-ji is definitely related to Morocco and Scheherezade, as others have said. The best way to get a feel for it is to take a bottle of Morocco and an imp of Scheherezade into your kitchen. Open a jar of cardamom, a jar of nutmeg, and both BPALs, then (mentally or really) add a few carnations and some unidentifiable, elusive, velvety flower smell. If that's rose, I need to know exactly what kind immediately, because it's a freaking unicorn rose, not soapy or sharp or sour, just pure velvet.

 

The result is warm and spicy and exotic and refined. It's gorgeous, and kind of does make me feel like a goddess.

 

Probably because she is a mother but also a well-rounded and awesome human, Beth has a real talent for "mother-goddess" scents. Somewhere in modern society's eye, mothers became lame and sexless and unkempt, chasing after children, harried and exhausted. Mama-ji, like Brisingamen (my other favorite) is not a MOM Perfume. It's a mother goddess, the kind who likes sex because of course how else did she have kids? She's a lover, and in her prime of life. It's equally appropriate for hugging a child, going to work, a nice evening out, a sexy evening in, whatever. It smells like a grown-ass woman, eternally comfortable and powerful in her own skin.

 

Hell yes.

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Cardamom and nutmeg and flowers...SO good. The flowers are hard to identify, there may be carnation. If there is rose in here, it's probably pink.

 

From the bottle to application to hours later, Mama-ji is sweet, spicy and warm. It's perfectly balanced between spice and flowers. I am a huge cardamom lover, so this is definitely my jam.

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In the bottle, Mama-Ji smells to me like a spicy carnation-rose blend, but the flowers are subtle. On my skin, those flowers bloom wide-open, stepping out in front of the spice, and it seems I smell lotus flower among them. The rose, if there is rose, seems pinkish to blend with the lotus.

As this dries, the spices come out again, cardamom foremost. As the lotus (if that's what it is) fades a bit, I get more of a spicy carnation-rose combination that reminds of the spicy carnation of Morocco. Later still, I smell a little soft vanillic something in the mix, maybe benzoin.

This blend smells pinker and more playful than I expected, given the passage about Mama-Ji in the description. But it's lovely. Before three hours have passed, it's mostly gone.

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This is exactly what I hoped Bastet would be on me--spicy, sexy, dark, and yet still playful. The florals are very traditional and powdery under all that nutmeg, and the spices are assertive, so it ends up coming across as both masculine and feminine at once. There's a sweetness to it but there's also a lemoniness and burnt quality to the spices. I love how complex it is and may have to get a bottle.

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I coveted Mama-Ji because of the cardamom, a spice I'm obsessed with. If you are selling a cookie, main dish, cocktail, or (obvs) a perfume and you put cardamom in it, I waaaaant. I put off buying Mama-Ji for years because of the florals. There are a few flowers I can wear but I rarely do. So many of them read as "gijrly" to me which isn't really my style. Many florals just give me a headache.

Cardamom, though. And nutmeg. I mean, come on.

My cardamom lust and curiosity got the better of me and I'm so glad it did. Mama-Ji isn't girly, like so many florals read to me, but womanly. The flower and spice are so well blended to my nose that I can't pick out any of the individual notes. Mama-Ji is deep and warm and smells like herself. It's really beautiful. I find myself picking up my bottle more and more. It's really turned into one of my favorites.

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Mama-Ji is an abundance of spice and flowers, predominantly cardamom and nutmeg, with a background of some sort of wood---perhaps a drop of frankincense(?) although not a listed note. I'm detaching myself from any sort of characterization put forth by Gaiman and instead closing my eyes to let my imagination wander and envisioning a woman of some Asian descent holding a bouquet of wild flowers, dusky-gold and slightly wilting, but so, so full of sunshine in their chlorophyll. She is aged, at least sixty, with a warm smile and "wise" (read: wrinkled) face, crows feet around the eyes, and still ready to put down if you give her hell. This scent is warm and dry, and it's absolutely fantastic divorced from my skin. (That is to say, I don't fit the intended demographic my brain concocted, but I don't see why you would not!)

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Wet: Spicy cardamom floral. I wasn't sold on these notes on paper, but on the skin, they smell much nicer, like a high-end eastern perfume.

 

Dry: Whatever those 'spices' are, they bring something really nice to the proceedings. Unfortunately, as others have mentioned, the drydown goes very 'floral potpourri.' There's enough moisture to keep it from drying out completely, but it's a little too dried flower petals for me.

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In the Vial:

A soft jasmine


On the Skin:

The spices bloom immediately but they are not harsh. Overall a nicely balanced floral and spice. I don't get cardamom particularly. The overall scent is lovely and warm.


On the Drydown:

This has a linear drydown. It is really nice but doesn't really have great staying power. Still worth a bottle.

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In the imp: soft warm floral and dry spice. In the family of Morocco, but more floral and less vanilla.

 

Wet: Carnation, a touch of jasmine, and maybe dry rose. It could be the spices that make this so dry. But's not in a bad way at all.

 

Dry: Pretty much the same as wet. The spices are hot and arid and give the flowers a more sultry feeling. On me the scent is fairly strong, but the throw isn't very far. It's condensed in a nice little cloud around me.

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I made the mistake of testing Zorya P and Mama Ji at the same time. The ethereal beauty of Zorya P just could not withstand the spicy floral brick-to-the-face of Mama Ji. I love it. Up close, I am getting TONS of pink rose, which for me is great, because IMO the more rose the better. But at a distance, the spices are dominant. They're so dominant I'm almost getting that tickle in my nose I get when I go into an Indian spice shop. I don't know if it's the flowers or the spices but there's a kind of undertone of funk like the flowers are just on the edge of being past their best. It's that hint of death in life that I suppose is very suitable for a Kali perfume. I can't pick out any specific spices or flowers other than rose, this thing is so well blended. I'd say I'd douse myself in it, but I think people in the next street can probably smell the teeny drop I applied to test, so go easy. Definitely not one for the office. I kind of want to take up salsa dancing or something similarly as sexy so I have somewhere to wear this.

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In The Bottle, a spicy floral.

 

Wet On Skin, the layers of spice start to reveal themselves. The nutmeg is definitely saying hello.

 

Dry Down: I can see what is being said about this being in the same family as Voodoo Queen. It's sexy and spicy and there's something here that feels incredibly powerful. I can see wearing this when I require some serious female-centric energy to pull me through something intense.

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Sorting time.

 

In bottle: spicy. not a fan. hm. could get better.

 

wet: interesting melting into the skin. Very SPICED with a bit of something else.

 

dried on: OK this is a very image-y, evocative scent. Fell like I've just entered a seductive tarot reader's shop. Not incense kind of way, more intriguing.

 

I like this, or I would on someone else. This is not me. I'm way more into ephemeral, flighty type of seduction. This is too heavy for me, but I'd totally be attracted to someone wearing this lmao. Adding it to sell pile.

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Champaca often goes weird and wrong on my skin. I think there's champaca in this. I was running through the mental list of what flower is it that's ruining this for me -- is it violet, is it tuberose, it's not jasmine, is it... yep. I think it's champaca.

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