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BPAL Madness!

Dead Leaves, Lemon Verbena, and Cedar

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Imagine youve invited your 3 favorite people to eat dinner with you on Halloween. All three are smart, interesting and attractive and youre excited because youre sure theyre going to love each other. But unexpectedly something goes awry! When the three arrive, not only are they not talking, they arent even acknowledging the others. OMG! Is the moon in Mercury?


Thats how this blend affected me. Individually, the 3 notes are among my Top 10, especially the BPAL earthy, green-spiced dead leaves (as in Pile of Fallen Leaves). It can be mid-August with temps in the hundreds and murderous humidity but a sniff of the SN tricks my brain into imagining mushrooms, rain-soaked earth and drifts of maple leaves outside.


The smooth, soothing, spicy warmth of cedar seemed like a natural complement to the bite of green, maybe adding a subtly darker spice to the base. I wasnt so sure about the Lemon Verbena, even though LOccitane Lemon Verbena soap is almost always in a soap dish somewhere in my house. At best, I reasoned, it would work with the green spice of the leaves to enhance their invigorating rush. At worst I worried it might sink the boat. Im not savvy enough to know if thats where this Dead Leaves blend veered off course. But thats my guess since I got the references to Lemon Pledge I remember from reviews of other blends. Color me Sad.


Hoping time would encourage the notes to cooperate, I was about to store my bottle. Then, on a whim, I decided to try a 50/50 mix with some of my beloved Pile of Dead Leaves. The result is a greener, spicier fragrance that seems more grounded (or rounded) than either blend alone. Im completely delighted with this serendipitous concoction. Earlier, I had tried layering the two but being in the same bottle enables them to enjoy each others company more fully.


OCTOBER 2018: What a difference a year makes! The 3 components have commingled and the result seems very nearly perfect to my nose - deeper, rounder and smoother, if a green scent can be described as round. I havent bought a backup bottle in years but its definitely time.

Edited by artemisia

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Pretty much what it says on the tin: lemon verbena brightness and sweet cedar over a base of dead leaves. Throw is pretty minimal, and my skin absolutely devours it, but it's a nice light unobtrusive scent. 

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This might be a new favorite of mine among the dead leaves blends, and I don't know why I didn't pick up a bottle of this during its original run. In the decant, it's true, dry, crunchy dead leaves, alongside a bright, herbal lemon verbena that complements the DL note surprisingly well. On my skin, it starts off with a loud blast of lemon verbena, but then it settles to a mostly DL/cedar scent, with the lemon verbena providing a faint brightness in the background. The cedar blends almost seamlessly with the dead leaves, helping give the leaves that dry/crunchy quality. Like walking through the woods on a dry, bright, windy late fall day, with lots of leaves crunching underfoot. Glad to have scored a decant after the fact.

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