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lizzieborden

The Caterpillar

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Heavy incense notes waft lazily through a mix of carnation, jasmine, bergamot, and neroli over a lush bed of dark mosses, iris blossom, deep patchouli and indolent vetiver.

 

Heavy incense notes waft lazily through a mix of carnation, jasmine, bergamot, and neroli over a lush bed of dark mosses, iris blossom, deep patchouli and indolent vetiver

In the imp: I'm getting heavy, strong, florals. I'm kind of hoping this will stay more an incense and floral mix on my skin, instead of going too heavy on the vetiver and patch, but we'll see.

Wet on skin: Still strong florals, overall, though I'm getting a little more of the incense. I'm also starting to get more of the vetiver, but it seems to be a grounding note, more than a top note, and I can appreciate that, as long as it doesn't get too heavy.

Dried down: More of the soft incense - I think my skins amps up incense, but I'm not sure. I generally don't mind too much, though. There's a lot less floral going on now, though. And the vetiver's still there as a grounding note. I think it works better for me with the incense than with some other notes.

Throw: My nose is stuffed (again), but I get a little hint of scent off of this while typing, though not near as much as when I sniff my wrists. It's almost more of a feeling of scent in the air than actual scent, though. Weird, huh?

Verdict: *** 1/* This isn't bad, but there are other incense-y blends I like better. I'm glad I tried it, but I think this one will probably go into my swap pile.

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Thought I'd get incense and a hookah smoking vibe, instead I get a grande dame's perfume a la Guerlain. Lovely, but sure as hell not what I imagined. The jasmine, iris, and moss notes are what's making that connection, since this notes are included in line half of Guerlain's lineup.

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In the imp: Sultry, lush florals; primarily jasmine. I'm A-OK with this, since jasmine is my One Floral to Rule Them All. There's a hint of bergamot to keep things from getting *too* dark, but in general, it's a very mysterious, almost-heavy-but-not-quite scent.

 

Wet: Very much the same as ITI: the jasmine continues to dominate, with the bergamot providing some brightness and zing to counteract all that languid, indolence. So while it has much more gravitas than the screechy drugstore perfumes of my youth, it's a definite "perfumey" scent, nonetheless. Unfortunately, after about half an hour, something distinctly soapy starts to develop. Ever since Venustas, which I was 100% set to declare my HG scent, veered straight Dove and stayed there for eight hours, I've been super wary of anything even vaguely soapy.

 

Dry: Alas, the soap settled in to stay. I mean, it's a nice-ish soap - you would find it in the cleaning aisle at Target, but it would be called "Arabian Nights" or "Night Garden" or something. Dangit, I really wanted to like this one, too! Oh, well, maybe it'll age well?

Edited by Lunasariel

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In the bottle: Jasmine, a little bit of incense, and a hint of the same "soft" note that's in Wolf's Heart.

 

Wet on my skin, the jasmine and incense have TREMENDOUS throw. My incense-averse daughter has forbidden me to put it on in the same room as her. The jasmine's still the easiest note to pick out, but the incense, the other florals and the bergamot are definitely involved. The bergamot is more citrus than herb. Can't find the vetiver at all.

 

Dry, the throw is much subtler. The bergamot and the incense are on top, the vetiver is in there, and there's a powdery sort of iris. It's not very long-lasting on my bare skin indoors by the fan on a 90-degree summer day.

 

I've had some world-class photosensitivity with bergamot oil in the past, so I do not plan to wear this blend anywhere that the sun can shine if I'm outdoors.

 

Update 2 months and 1 bottle purchase later: The Caterpillar is wonderful. I get compliments on it, I love the way it smells, and it plays well with Wolf's Heart, my go-to fragrance for work. Back-up bottle, here I come!

Edited by Teamama

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This is deep, dark, jungle-y feeling scent, but it's never heavy. The incense, patchouli, and vetiver form a nice smoky, gritty base. Deep green moss, jasmine, spicy carnation, and neroli bring a lush and humid vibe and bergamot brightens up the bunch. It's a complex, mysterious scent.

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Jasmine soap SN.Of course. :/

Work very well on my co-worker, Caterpillar is a mix of incense, neroli and jasmine, not too strong :)

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In the imp: Lots of strong florals and incense -- not normally my thing, but it's kind of appealing. A poster above said it's like a grande dame's perfume, and that seems accurate to me. Sophisticated and maybe a little old-fashioned, but not necessarily a bad thing!

 

After applying: Still florals and incense, but it's going powdery on me.

 

After a couple hours: The baby powder dies down some, while my skin amps the incense. The end result is incense with relatively faint florals and a touch of powder. Not normally my style, so no bottle for me, but I'll hang onto the imp.

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In the imp, I pick up the incense and jasmine, and not much else.

 

Wet: Jasmine. I'm not really sure if jasmine loves me because it likes to loudly announce its presence, but I can assure you that I don't love jasmine. It's nothing but a jasmine sn once it touches my skin. Loud, heavy, suffocatingly sweet.

 

Dry: This reminds me of my grandma's Sunday perfume; dark, heavy, slightly soapy. At least I can detect incense with the jasmine now. Unfortunately, it's so overwhelmingly sugary (powdered sugar is how my nose reads it - is there musk in this?) that it makes me nauseous. Caterpillar is not a win.

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Poof! Incense. Smoky champaca framed in an indolic jasmine (not loving the back-of-the-nose pee-diaper tone in this one), bergamot, and moss. This is a lush, deep green moss note -- love that part, and the incense, but the jasmine (I think) is bringing something a bit nasty to the scene, something I only smell on the end of the inhale.

A bit later, I can pick out iris -- not usually a favorite for me, but it's much nicer than the jasmine here -- and carnation. And then a lean, dark base of vetiver and patchouli. I don't mind the patch in this blend.

This dries into incense with mild hints of patch and flowers. Once the jasmine calms down, I like this.

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This is very different on my skin than I would have guessed from the notes; I expected a cool powdery floral with some citrus and a dark woody base and basically got...a textbook Oriental floral. It starts with a blast of incense, and then the white flowers blend in as it warms up. I get no bergamot at all, and no iris either. The jasmine/neroli combo definitely takes center stage, with patch/incense in the background. As I've noticed with some other patch/vetiver combos from the lab, there's an almost-burnt note in the background, separate from the incense. Although I can't see myself wearing it much, this is a very nice perfume and would be great for anyone who loves classic Oriental scents.

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I tried this long ago when I first got into BPAL. My notes say "head shop" but I wanted to give it a second chance (and a proper review) now that my tastes have matured.

 

Wet: Much different than I remember! Much more jasmine than incense. Though the incense is balancing it out, and keeping the dreaded cat pee effect at bay. Quite a bit of dry, earthy patchouli as well. Reminds me of a jasmine and patchouli candle I had when I was young that I quite liked. I find I am enjoying this more than I expected to! I almost don't trust my nose - it smells like jasmine, without the cat pee, and some patchouli and incense. It's like a hippy day dream. I kind of like it!

 

 

Dry: The jasmine amps way up, and turns into cat pee, and all is strangely right with the world.

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In the imp: This is strong on the florals, especially the jasmine and carnation, with some bitter neroli, some incense, and some patchouli. A lot of the notes in this are iffy on me, so I will be surprised if this one works with my skin chemistry.

 

Wet: This is intensely floral on me, with the jasmine and carnation taking the center stage, but I'm still getting the bitter neroli note, a waft of incense, and now, some vetiver. Then, the moss emerges, and it is making this veer into soap territory on me.

 

Dry: It's still predominantly floral, but the bergamot and neroli are stronger now, and the moss has calmed down. This particular iris note has a Dr. Pepper-like vibe on me. I am getting very little patchouli and vetiver, but I can still smell the incense in the background.

 

Verdict: This one was better than I thought it would be, since some of the notes have a history of being problematic on me. I don't dislike it, but it's still not really my cup of tea. I'll hold onto my imp anyway since I like to hold onto everything Mad Tea Party.

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Most of these notes are reliably terrific on me. Then there's jasmine. And what do I get from The Caterpillar? Indolic jasmine. Nothing else wet. No neroli, no bergamot, no carnation, just stinky old jasmine. Eventually some incense emerges, but with my chemistry The Caterpillar's jasmine is an invasive species crowding out all the other plants, including the patch and vetiver. I love the concept, but it doesn't work on my skin.

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Wet, the Caterpillar delivers a one-two punch of florals and incense. The jasmine strikes first with a dizzying :whack: head

shot that is closely followed up by a solid body blow of appropriately 'head-shoppy' incense. I'm glad I applied sparingly, as

this one could be a heavy hitter if you're not cautious.

 

If you manage to keep to your feet through the opening barrage, you'll find them on a substantial grounding of patch, moss

and vetiver. I'm getting the feeling that this one's gonna go the distance.

 

The mid and dry down are where I actually begin to enjoy this scent. Initially, it's a bit :ack: duck and cover, but as it

settles on my skin, other nuances begin to :peep: peep through. A dark clove-spiced carnation and a sharp, bright citrus

float by, softened by a powdery iris.

 

Hours later, I find myself looking for that stick of really good incense that I must've brushed against my wrist before

misplacing. Gotta remember to pick up some more of that!

 

Jasmine plays fair on my skin and I'm a sucker for a rich, complex incense blend, so, yeah, I'd get in the ring with

the Caterpillar again.

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The florals are of the deep and intoxicating variety rather the light and fresh variety; it's more classically ‘perfume’ floral rather than walking in a garden. Jasmine comes in strong, and possibly carnation or neroli in second. I also get something that reminds me of narcissus, possibly that’s the iris? The incense notes deepen it a bit and the moss, patchouli, and vetiver add earthiness. The patch is fairly strong at first but settles down nicely. Now the florals are, as promised, drifting lazily around with the incense. No surprise, I love this, as I love heavier oriental florals 😂 Beautiful, not too sweet or heavy though. Reminds me almost of a darker version of Moscow?

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Stoked to have gotten this as an imp as I collect the Alice scents but was hesitant on this one. 

 

Since it's a "masculine" scent I also tested it on my partner. 

 

Me:

On: floral, something very heavy/smoky, incense. It almost reminds me of lavender which I don't like but there's none in this... 
Drydown: wow OK so this mellows out on me in a lovely way. I was really worried about the florals as I'm not too fond of them but the combination seems to work. There's something sweet coming through and it's definitely an androgynous scent. 
Later: sweet incense, bergamot. Actually quite lovely 

 

Him:

On: floral incense, bergamot, musk, something from his childhood 
Drydown: musk, a little sweet, maybe a bit citrus floral

 

Note: My partner tends to amp anything sweet and absorb smokes, so although it was more citrus and musky on him, it still worked for both of us in different ways. 

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I like most of the notes in this, but there's unfortunately some combo in here that my brain interprets as the rubbery smell of car tyres (or perhaps some other car related smell like hot dashboard). If I had to guess the tyre combo, it would be the vetiver and jasmine - my nose-brain connection sometimes just does weird things when layering very different notes.

 

Behind that weird scent, I can smell a chill and hazy floral. It's a very unisex kind of floral, and it's not 'fresh' (which I don't mean in a bad way at all). The soft incense emerges after a while too. Annoyingly, I think I'd really like this scent without the rubber!

 

After letting the imp age a little, the tyre smell seems to have chilled out a bit, but it is still very much present. It fades a bit when dry, but takes a while and never truly goes away. Oh well.

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