BPAL Mouse Circus
A toodle oodle of pink cotton candy noses, vanilla spun sugar fur, scattered kernels of popcorn, and a touch of polished golden wood.
I’ve always loved carnival and circus themed things, and I’ve been on the hunt for the perfect carnival/circus scent for a while now. Most of those kinds of fragrances are too sweet for me. However, I heard that this one is a good balance of sweet and not-sweet, so I had to give it a try. I will also be wearing this scent for Halloween, as it matches my costume (2017 version of Pennywise the Dancing Clown.) You can buy this on BPAL’s website for $26 US for 5mL.
In the bottle: Mostly cotton candy and spun sugar with some popcorn. Thankfully, it’s not overly sweet.
On the skin: The popcorn and cotton candy switch; the popcorn becomes the main note and the cotton candy becomes secondary. It’s a perfect mix of sweet and salty. I feel like the polished wood is the base that prevents any of the notes from going too sweet or too salty. It’s also a very realistic popcorn note, but the scent as a whole is surprisingly wearable! I think I’ve finally found my perfect circus/carnival scent!
TL;DR: Popcorn with cotton candy and spun sugar. The perfect circus scent! 5/5.
Solstice Scents Smokewood Apiary
Smoked Honey, Creamed Honey, Beeswax, Amber, Wooden Frames, Ginger & Vanilla
Solstice Scents is a brand that I have not delved into too much, so when I had the opportunity to get a sample bundle in a swap, I jumped at the chance. This particular scent is well-loved by fans of honey, which means it is right up my alley. You can find this scent on the Solstice Scents website for $16 for a full size (5mL) or as part of a sample pack.
In the bottle: A lot of smoke and a little honey. That sounds good in theory, but I’m getting barbecue sauce from this.
On the skin: The ginger comes roaring in, and it creates a very sharp mixture with the honey. That, combined with the smoke, creates a very interesting combination. There is also some kind of underlying bitterness to it, as well as a prominent wood note. I’m not really a fan of this and I have other honey scents that I like more.
TL;DR: Smokey honey with ginger and wood. Somewhat barbecue-y. 3/5.
Fyrinnae Tarnished Crown
Smoldering hardwood, dark vanilla swirled with smoky resins, and a hint of black pepper.
Fyrinnae is one of the most popular indie cosmetic companies, and they are known for their fabulous duochrome eyeshadows (Mephisto is GORGEOUS, and I’ve heard great things about Rapunzel Had Extensions). However, they recently revived their fragrance division and have received rave reviews. While the majority of the scents did not appeal to me, I’ve been wanting to try this one, since vanilla and smoke are some of my favorite notes. I was also curious about the black pepper in it. Since this was really the onnly Fyrinnae scent I was itching to try, a lovely redditor sent a sample as part of a swap. You can buy this on Fyrinnae’s Etsy page for $2.50 for a sample or $12 for a full 5mL.
In the bottle: Very smoky, but also sweet. It reminds me of this old perfume oil I got at the Renaissance Faire years ago.
On the skin: I’m getting more vanilla from this on the skin, but not a lot; it’s mostly smoke and wood, which makes it smell somewhat similar to Solstice Scents Manor. There is also something distinctly “perfumey” about this that I don’t like. It’s middle of the road for me.
TL;DR: Wood and smoke with a tiny touch of something sweet. 3.5/5
Solstice Scents Conjure Dark
Amber, Frankincense, Sweet Incense Smoke, Dried Rose Petals, Sandalwood, Vetiver, Woods, Oud, Vanilla
Okay, this one was a gamble for me. I enjoy the smell of church incense, but I hate anything that smells “headshopy”. This one has that “sweet incense note”, but the kind of incense isn’t exactly specified. But I figured “what the hell, I’m gonna try it.” You can purchase this on Solstice Scents’ website; its currently sold out for the 5mL perfume oil version, but you can still get it in the 60mL EDP version for $90 US. The perfume oil version is still available on the Rhinestone Housewife and Pretty Indulgent.
In the bottle: Oh no. Okay, so I like the smell of frankincense, but HOLY CRAP. It’s a very strong bite of frankincense and something sour in the background. I think that’s the vetiver?
On the skin: I think my fears about incense have been confirmed. It’s very strong incense and with more incense. It’s like a headshop with a church next door. The scent is very strong and it’s kind of burning my nostrils. I don’t like this, but if you love incense, then I think this could be a holy grail.
TL;DR: Incense, incense and more incense. Too strong for me. GET IT OFF OF ME/5