Arcana: Bermuda Triangle

Arcana Bermuda Triangle

White coconut, ginger cakes, fresh ginger, red bananas, golden vetiver, creamy almond, and cask-aged rum.

Kicking off my Arcana Halloween Part 1 review series is a scent that hits close to home, literally. One of the points of the Bermuda Triangle is Miami, Florida, which is within an hour from me. I was a little nervous to try this scent however, since almond is a a death note for me.

In the bottle: I’m immediately hit with the smell of very, very sweet bananas. It then rounds out with a nice dose of rum and some sweet almond. At first I thought that this was way too sweet, but the more I smell it, the more I like it.

On the skin: This one is a serious morpher. The sweetness really calms down a lot, leaving the scent of ripe, but not necessarily sweet, bananas. It’s backed up by a lovely rum note that isn’t too boozy, and a beautiful mix of coconut and vetiver that really reminds me of this particular restaurant in the Little Havana area of Miami. This scent is super summery and tropical without being a standard tropical scent. There is a point where it threatens to go into sunscreen territory but it never truly goes there. It’s unique and fun, and I’m glad to have it. Weird bonus fact: My dog is obsessed with this perfume. He wouldn’t stop smelling my arm and he kept trying to lick it.

TL;DR: Ripe bananas with coconut, vetiver, and sweet rum. Tropical and summery without being typical. 4/5. 

Advertisements

Nui Cobalt Designs: The Bee’s High Tea

Nui Cobalt Designs The Bee’s High Tea

Delicate vanilla tea cakes with rose petal preserves, elderflower wine, and Earl Grey tea with a dainty drop of spring harvest honey.

Nui Cobalt Designs is an indie shop that specializes in all things magickal, such talismans and special ritual fragrance oils. Arcana has collaborated them several times for their Crone’s Crate box, and they stock many Arcana scents. Recently, however, the company has come out with their own line of perfumes. I was very excited to try them, since magickal items are not my cup of tea. My friends raved about this scent, and based on the notes, I can see why: it sounds like the most perfect perfume for spring.

In the bottle: …Sweet Tarts?? Seriously, this smells how Sweet Tart candy tastes. It’s got that sweet/sour thing going on. I’m looking at the note list and I’m very confused because I have no clue what is causing the Sweet Tart smell. Maybe the elderflower?

On the skin: It smells less like Sweet Tarts on the skin, but the only thing I’m getting now is a faint floral scent. I think its the rose and elderflower. It’s so light though; I can only smell it if I smash my nose into my arm. I’m sad because the note list for this was so promising!

TL;DR: Faint, floral Sweet Tarts. I’m very confused. 2/5.

Arcana: Aestas

IMG_9015

Arcana Aestas

Madagascar vanilla, yellow cake, soft peach nectar, golden musk, black musk, and a hint of patchouli.

Today is a review of a scent that I have been wanting for a while now. Named after the ancient Roman goddess of summer, Aestas has a bunch of notes that I adore: peach, patchouli, vanilla, and musk. My only hesitation came in the form of the cake, since I don’t like overly foodie blends. Despite that, I was super happy to find a full bottle because I had a feeling that this was going to be a scent that I would love.

In the bottle: Oooooo. I’m getting the most glorious peach note with some subtle vanilla cake. The peach note is identical to the one in NAVA Adele, to my nose. Actually, this is like a muskier version of Adele!

On the skin: I’m getting more of that buttery cake, and the peach note is no longer similar to Adele; Adele’s peach note is lighter and more delicate, whereas the Arcana peach note is much richer.  It’s heavier and almost more sensual. The musks are still very present, and I like that because it prevents the scent from being too sweet and foodie. I’m starting to get some of that patch, but it’s not in your face at all. Someone who hates patchouli would still like this scent, I think. Frankly, I wish there was a bit more patch, but that’s really the only complaint I have with this scent. It’s rich and golden and absolutely stunning.

TL;DR: Rich, golden peaches with buttery vanilla cake rounded out with musk and the smallest touch of patch. Glorious. 7/5.

Arcana: Ganesh

Arcana Ganesh

A large, joyous snoutful of coconut cake is snugly wrapped in honey, vanilla, Indonesian clove, green coconut, and a warm blend of spices.

I’ve been wanting to try this particular scent since I got into indie perfume; it sounds like the perfect gourmand for me as the notes suggest that its not overly sweet. Unfortunatly, this perfume has been out of stock for months and no on knows when it will return, if ever. I was very lucky to be able to find a decant of it in a destash list. As for the name, this fragrance is named after Ganesh, a very important and popular Hindu deity. This scent is currently out of stock.

In the bottle: So fragrant! It’s all honey, cloves and spices with a touch of coconut.

On the skin: It’s basically the same as it is in the vial, just with stronger clove, but the clove is like chai clove so I love it. There’s a strong warmth to this as well. You would think it would be gourmand based on the notes, but its not; it smells like potpourri, but in the best way possible, if that makes sense. Just spicy and warm and sweet and golden. It’s not as coconut-y as I expected, but I really like it.

TL;DR: Strong chai clove with honey, spices, and a touch of coconut. Warm and delicious. 5/5.

Alkemia: Honeycakes for the Harvest Moon

Alkemia Honeycakes for the Harvest Moon

Freshly baked honeycakes, autumn beeswax, gleanings from ripened grainfields, and newly harvested fruits lightly spiced with nutmeg, ginger, and golden cloves.

As you may know, I love honey scents, but they can be kind of finicky on the skin. Thankfully, a friend sent me a sample so I could test it out. This scent is currently unavailable.

In the bottle: It’s beautifully sweet honey cakes. It reminds me a lot of Sharing the Cake HG!

On the skin: This no longer smells like Sharing the Cake HG at all; it’s less sweet and more true to actual honey rather than honey cakes. I’m getting quite a bit of nutmeg too which I like! It adds a nice spice note to the blend. I also like how this scent isn’t a very heavy gourmand; there’s a kind of lightness to it that prevents it from being overly foodie. Overall, I like it. I don’t think I’ll buy a full size of it, but I’m happy to have my sample.

TL;DR: Sweet, gently spiced honey cakes. Not overly gourmand. 3.5/5.

EDIT: I’m sorry to say that my opinion of this scent has completely changed. I’ve discovered that applying this to my skin results in a bizarre celery smell after a few hours and I really don’t like it. Into the destash pile it goes!

 

Black Phoenix Trading Post: Hair Gloss Reviews Pt.2

BPTP Hair Glosses Pt.2

When it comes to BPTP hair glosses, there is a very wide variety of scents. Because of that, I like getting little 5mL decants of a bunch of them so I can test them out. All of these hair gloss decants (except So Below) are from the lovely ladies at Crown and Tulip decants!  I highly recommend them for all your decant needs. They’re really great people, and they’re super professional as well.

Now, on to the hair glosses!

So Below (Haute Macabre collection)

Amber and black copal with black coconut, Sumatran red patchouli, green cardamom pod, and golden musk.

I love this one. It’s a really different take on patchouli; it’s not the dark kind you would expect, it’s much lighter. I get mostly that patch note alongside the coconut, cardamom, and amber. It’s dirty and sexy, but also very tropical.

Sugar Plum Fairy 

Sugar plums, vanilla-infused sugar, tiare, amber musk, apricot peel, and a light dusting of cacao. 

Oh boy, this is sweet. Like really sweet. I primarily smell sugared plums and apricots with a touch of chocolate. I love gourmands, but this is too sweet for me. It’s very candy-like and a bit cloying. If you gravitate towards super sweet/candy scents, you’ll love this.

Mischief (Carnival Diabolique collection)

Blood-spattered cotton candy.

Spun sugar and cinnamon! I’m not getting any actual cotton candy, but I don’t mind that. I find this to be surprisingly autumnal. I would love this, but it unfortunately vanishes from my hair within minutes of application.

Who’s Nibbling at My House? (Carnival Diabolique collection)

Caramel apples, cardamom cakes, hazelnut cream, and butterscotch.

Gourmand heaven. It’s all caramel and butterscotch with a little spice from the cardamom. It’s so warm and gooey and perfect for fall. It actually smells like a richer version of Owl Creek Aleworks. 

 

Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab: Eat Me

IMG_6492.JPG

BPAL Eat Me

Three white cakes, vanilla and red and black currants.

This guy was another free sample and I was excited to get it since I love gourmands. You can buy this on the BPAL website for $17.50 US for a full size of 5mL or $4 US for an imp, but the latter are sold out.

In the bottle: Very sweet. Currently I’m getting a lot of buttery cake and vanilla. It almost reminds me of buttered popcorn a little bit.  The currants are subtle in the back, but they add a little fruity tinge in there.

On the skin: The longer I’m wearing it, the more the currants come out which I like because it makes it a little less super sweet. Now it’s like a sweet berry vanilla cake.  If you like gourmands, this is gonna be a winner. Its a very good cake scent.

TL;DR: Buttery vanilla cake with berries. Beautiful cake gourmand. 4/5.