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zankoku_zen

Balancing the Sake Cup

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This isn't what I expected but I do really like it.  This is not a sweet or "lemony" ginger like you often find with Bpal ginger scents.  Either they use different ginger accords or the orange blossom is playing tricks on my nose..  This is a very dry herbal scent and I was reminded of Sweet Ginger and Patchouli hair gloss.  In fact this is a great scent to pair with that hg.  After some time passes, it becomes softer and the clove definitely comes out.  Kind of reminds me of a carnation scent to be honest (I know it's just the clove doing that).  I can tell the benzoin is a light incense-y backdrop.

 

Overall, I was expecting warm, sweet and cozy, and after I got over my expectations I find this to be dry, herbal, sophisticated, with very little floral.  Not a gourmand scent at all to my nose.  I'll really enjoy wearing this.

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My initial impression of Balancing the Sake Cup was of sticky honey and ginger, or possibly wasabi.  The ginger has an earthy bite to it.  It's not quite fresh, but not quite dry spice either, giving it a texture that makes me think of wasabi paste. Honey isn't listed as a note, but my brain really wants to put it there. Perhaps the "candied" bit contains undeclared honey, or perhaps my tricksy nose is registering the sweet, stickiness of orange blossom and adding honey by itself.  Either way, in the bottle, this smells like it could almost be some sort of sweet, oriental sauce.  

 

It changes drastically on my skin, immediately becoming far less sweet, and FAR more spicy.  The ginger pops right out, along with a bit of clove, giving this a delightful warmth.  At this point, it's no longer what I'd call feminine.  I don't really smell honey anymore either.  This faze lasts about an hours on me, though it fades in strength and becomes closer to the skin.  It's not like any ginger I've smelled in other BPAL's, so if you're a fan of that note - definitely check this one out.  

 

The sweetness reappears, after an hour or so, as almost a bubblegum-honey, threading its way through the sillage.  When I sniff close, the scent is still all earthy ginger dusted by clove. This was very much a surprise winner for me. :heart:  

 

I highly recommend this one for ginger lovers.  Spice lovers and orange-blossom lovers might also take note.  

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Wet: mostly orange blossom, with a spicy twinge.
Dry: The neroli has all the throw but up close this is spicy/clove and lovely. Hm. I can't tell if I like it or not! I think I err on the side of liking it but mostly because clove makes me happy.

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This oil is bright orangey-yellow.

 

Freshly on, it only smells like peppery ginger root. Peppery like the heat of raw, dry ginger root, but also like wasabi, or like the way that good-quality olive oil tastes a bit peppery.

 

Dried, the orange blossom and a little clove have come out. 

 

Balancing makes me think of cooking a gourmet dish with spices and orange olive oil. I don't ever notice benzoin or get a candied impression of the ginger.

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The first hour of this is really strange to me. Like bright orange-colored kitchen spices, maybe curry powder mixed with powdered ginger and annatto. It's so foodie in a spicy way, I just...feel really weird wearing it. Like I got some curry sauce on me and was wearing it as a perfume. Not sweet at all, just very powerfully hot-spiced. I don't like this phase.

 

The drydown goes quite jasminey orange blossom, with a hint of spice, the clove and ginger keeping it from turning too floral-y. I do like this orange blossom quite a lot. It's indolic in a humid summer night in Florida kind of way. However, much as I love orange blossom, that early phase means I don't think I'll be keeping this one.

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Orange blossom, and a whiff of jasmine, ginger, and clove. This smells like a hot summer night in Florida. Medium throw and wear length.

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Dear Diary,

 

Today I learned that on my skin, benzoin smells like lightning hit a plastic milk jug. This particular milk jug had orange-ginger salad dressing from my favorite Thai place in it, which was unfortunate because when the plastic caught on fire, it obliterated the salad dressing, which otherwise smelled really good. I am very sad to learn this fact.

 

love and kisses,

Soupy Twist

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In the decant: Ginger, and something that comes across as almost astringent. I'm wondering if that's the concentrated benzoin and orange blossom before they've had a chance to "air out."

 

On my skin:

 

Wet, it's candied ginger immediately, followed by more recognizable orange blossom, followed by more of the sweetness in the candied part of "candied ginger" coming out. As it dries, it's the orange blossom, I think, that's giving the ginger an almost herbal or astringent or sour tang. I'm still deciding whether I like it, but I will note that this is very different from the ginger I get foodie or even more traditionally spicy scents. I don't think it's bad-weird, but it definitely is weird. (I also don't get much clove as of yet, but as I perpetually want more clove in things, that doesn't mean it's not there.) 

 

After a while, the sour tang damps down, but it's still left with a fairly dry, herbal, earthy ginger. I'm leaning toward finding it engaging and interesting, but I would totally understand if any given person felt this was just not what they were looking for in a perfume. 

 

After quite a while (2 hours after application), the candied aspect of the candied ginger comes back out, and the perfume sweetens on my skin. Now it's a much more conventionally sweet and spicy ginger scent -- though it's still much like candied ginger pieces rather than ginger flavored candies or ginger-containing baked goods. This stage is utterly delightful. For me -- because of how much I love this stage and the fact that I found the earlier stage more interesting than off-putting -- I think this is going to tip my scales into bottle land.  

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This is reminding me of something, the ginger is just a little bit medicinal, like a salve or a foodie sauce. The notes are competing with each other at first, it takes a few minutes for things to calm down. The clove and ginger are giving me a foodie sort of spice, while the benzoin steps in and lends an aquatic, watery top note. It's got a dampness to it i'm not sure about. It's harder for me to write about the ones that confuse me.  It does give me flashbacks of being by the ocean, but i'm sitting in a waterside cafe eating sushi and downing sake, LOTS of sake. 

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This one goes on weird but settles down to orange blossom and clove most prominent, which was exactly what I wanted since one of my discontinued faves is Succubus, which also highlights orange blossom/clove. I'd say that this is heavier or darker than Succubus. I'm not sure what the ginger is doing or why it is candied. Gonna see how long this one lasts on my skin, and try it a few more times before buying a bottle but I'm hopeful.

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I am an orange blossom fiend, it usually smells fantastic on me.  Ginger is also a favourite, so this was a no brainer.  There’s the orange blossom, and something herbal and pungent.  The off note goes away, and all I really get is the orange blossom, which is fine with me.  This really smells like a lotion rather than a perfume, but that’s fine with me, I’ll keep the decant.

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 I initially hated this one but I will say this one has calmed down a lot in the past month! It's already gotten much nicer, so I'm still a bit curious about it tbh

 

it's strong, the pepper comes through right away. once the pepper has faded, i can feel the more subtley blended "japanese barhouse at night" smells. 

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