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Low Key Lyesmith

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“Cigarette, sir?”

“No, thank you.”

“You don’t mind if I do?”

“Go right ahead.”

The driver used a Bic disposable lighter, and it was in the yellow light of the flame that Shadow saw the man’s face, actually saw it for the first time, and recognized him, and began to understand.

Shadow knew that thin face. He knew that there would be close-cropped orange hair beneath the black driver’s cap, cut close to the scalp. He knew that when the man’s lips smiled they would crease into a network of rough scars.

“You’re looking good, big guy,” said the driver.

“Low Key?” Shadow stared at his old cellmate warily.

Prison friendships are good things: they get you through bad places and through dark times. But a prison friendship ends at the prison gates, and a prison friend who reappears in your life is at best a mixed blessing.

“Jesus. Low Key Lyesmith,” said Shadow, and then he heard what he was saying and he understood. “Loki,” he said. “Loki Lie-Smith.”

“You’re slow,” said Loki, “but you get there in the end.” And his lips twisted into a scarred smile and embers danced in the shadows of his eyes.

Black clove and cassia flung onto glowing cinders and mingled with slow-dripping poisons.

Clove and cassia lovers, take note. This one is mainly a heavy clove, with a touch of cassia. On wet, I got a curl of smoke, but it has dried to a slightly masculine clove/cassia blend and a fair dab of an herbal poison in the background. In some ways, the heavy clove reminds me Goth Queen and the Bay Rum SN that the Lab had as a lunacy event exclusive. Except this one is a little trickier, a little shadowier, and a little more deadly?

It's clove, but there's something else lurking underneath. You know what, a girl needs a little danger in her life. A girl needs a bottle. A girl needs.

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I blind bottled this, because I have been obsessed with smoky clove scents recently

 

Wet: A huge clove punch in the face. Clove is one of those spices that can overwhelm everything in cooking. It's totally overwhelmed this perfume. It smells like straight up clove essential oil right now. Hoping it settles a bit and gets softer, lets some of the other notes (whatever the "poisons" are) come out. It's not bad, at all, I love the smell of cloves, it's just very single note right now.

 

 

Dry: Soft sweet clove. I'm going to age this and see if the other notes come out, but either way I really like it, and will likely keep it even if it does turn out it's going to be clove single note forever.

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Smoky cassia and clove. Very even - one note doesn't overpower the other which makes sense as cassia and clove my skin likes to amp.

 

It's a bit much for me, but I'm happy to have tried.

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Low Key really makes me want a black clove single note. The first fifteen minutes or so on my skin, I really don't like this one. It's earthy and spicy, but in a strange, unpleasant, plasticy way that reminds me of cheap craft store wreaths and potpourri. The cinders also smell like a dirty ash tray. Fifteen minutes in, I'm pleasantly surprised that the dirtiness disappears and the cassia chills out enough to let the clove take over. I love clove fragrances. The 'cinders' add some warm smokiness around the edges of the clove, and the cassia adds a hint of woody cinnamon, but this is mostly a spicy, sweet, heavy clove. Similar to a bay rum type of scent. A bit black peppery smelling too.

 

I was considering full bottling this one, but I probably won't, because I don't tend to wear fragrances where I don't enjoy the initial stage... I just never want to have to wait for the pleasant drydown, and the start of this one is pretty bad on my skin. I think I'll stick with Shadow for my spicy win from this collection.

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Wet, and in the bottle, this smells really gross; acrid poisons dripping on embers, plumes of vile smoke filling the air. But after it dries, smooth clove. I want to wear my stompy boots and smoke a clove cigarette. I miss my black clove candle. This will be perfect for autumn.

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Clove and then cassia bringing a slight craft-store tinge to the whole thing. There's something that smells like tobacco ash at the beginning. This dries down softer than I'd expected it to: a faintly ashy clove.

 

I love clove, but I think I prefer it with some kind of resin.

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In the imp/wet - cinnamon and something sharp/sweet

Freshly applied - toasty cinnamon-clove that mostly avoids smelling like Christmas. My skin stings where I put it on
Five-ten minutes in - Sweet, warm, toasty cinnamon-clove with something acrid and hot/dry/sour underneath. Definitely fall spice-themed now, as my cinanamon-amping powers kick in. I want to lick my arm (which is still stinging, BTW, though it hasn't gone red), despite the fact that it smells like it would burn my tongue.
Thirty minutes in - Edging into craft store cinnamon broom territory now, but I love craft store cinnamon brooms, so IDC. Craft store cinnamon broom with an undercurrent of something fruity, like a hint of mulled cider. I smell like a fall kitchen decorated with every cinnamon-spice/pumpkin pie spice/spiced apple scented product Michaels makes. My arm has finally stopped stinging/tingling.
Loki stays about the same for most of the rest of the wear time, but has started to fade by two hours, and by the three-hour mark, all that's left is a faint, dusty skin scent, like long-faded potpourri or maybe traces of dried snake venom on the floor of a dusty cave.
Loki has too much delicious cinnamon for my cheap, fragile skin, alas. If applying it in the middle of the day gave me twenty minutes of mild stinging, putting this on in the morning right after a shower is going to give me red welts. Sorry, Loki. A full bottle of you is not in my future. You're going in my oil burner so I can make my whole apartment smell like that kitchen I was talking about, and I'll have to keep searching for a replacement for Chimera's magical non-burning cinnamon.

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holy clove batman. and something stinky, like wet ashtray and anchovies. as it dries down it gets a little less terrible, and starts to remind me of Chrismas a bit. but not enough to keep my decant or buy a bottle lol.

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Low-Key Lyesmith was given to me recently in a spectacularly generous PIF.  It's something I was curious about but would never have gambled on more than a decant for.  In the bottle, this is not promising.  It smells industrial, like a furnace where used whisky barrels are being burned.  But within a very few minutes, the spices shake off the initial harshness, which disappears, and they continue to bloom and soften over the course of the wear length.  I get mostly smoky clove against a ground of cassia.  It's rare for a BPAL to transform from something frankly unpleasant to something I truly enjoy wearing, but that is the case here.  The longevity isn't exceptional, but I'm happy to reapply when the end result is this good. 

 

TL/DR: Dark clove with an edge. 

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