druidspell: Me, bowling at a family reunion, with my username inset in the bottom right corner. The blurriness is intentional. (Default)
[personal profile] druidspell
As a relative newbie to perfume and especially to perfume reviews, I've been having such a great time reading [community profile] smellsgood that I was inspired to finally do something I've been wanting to do since Seanan McGuire announced that Conjure Oils had designed a set of perfume oils around her characters in her October Daye series. I didn't end up buying any sample pips from that collection (I set a hard limit of "no more than $35 on pips" for my first time ordering, and had others that I wanted to try equally as much or more than the 7 pips I could get for that price in the Toby collection), but I did end up with quite a few pips to try. I'm only reviewing some of them, because my nose gets tired, but I'll post the rest in the next couple days.

From the Speakeasy collection, I have six sample pips.

Cherry Red Lipstick
From the web: Cupid's bow lips seductively blowing kisses across the room. Chypre spiced roses, a diabolical dry down of cardamom and a swirl of succulent black cherry.
In the pip: Sweet cherry candy and baking spices; I don't really get the rose, but I really love it in the bottle.
Wet on skin: The rose becomes more prominent almost immediately on my skin, and the spice takes a bit of a backseat to rose and cherries--fresh cherries this time, dark and ripe.
Dry: Cardamom comes out to play, and I love how this is so nicely blended; I'm getting a great blend of cherries and rose and spice. The cardamom is especially prominent right up next to my skin, and with the minimal amount I put on my wrist, the throw isn't overpowering. This is an important plus, as I have coworkers who are extremely sensitive to "loud" perfumes.
Overall: I love this so much; a full bottle is on the horizon, I think.

From the web: Short hem lines, shorter hair, jazz clubs and faux pearls irreverently swing in the face of decent behavior. Smoky, sexy vanilla suede, hootch and a trail of Oriental sandalwood make this scent not only the bee's knees, but quite possibly the cat's pajamas as well!
In the pip: A faint hint of booze, but mostly SANDALWOOD.
Wet on skin: SANDALWOOD. Wet, I'm getting no vanilla, no hootch, just SANDALWOOD. It smells like the ceramic shop where I went for ceramics class and Druid lessons in high school--which means that now that I've made that connection, I also smell a faint hint of wet clay and acrylic paint. Those last two are all in my head, but I feel 15 again.
Dry: A teeny tiny bit of vanilla suede is peeking out, but it's being overpowered still by sandalwood.
Overall: I'm not ordering a full bottle of this, for sure, because I don't like sandalwood that much, but I might use it on sabbats when I miss having a grove.

Sloe Gin Fizzy
From the web: Succulent blackthorn plums sweetened with refreshing lemon sugar and sparkling soda water served cold.
In the pip: Wonderfully fruity, enough lemon to be noticeable but not so much as to make it astringent.
Wet on skin: Lemon sugar and plums. My wrist smells like the most amazing jam cake.
Dry: As it dries, the plum comes more to the fore and the lemon sugar drops back a bit to complement it.
Overall: I really like this smell--it's light and fruity and very summery to me, and if one of my coworkers weren't so sensitive to lemon I'd probably wear it a lot during the week. As it is, it'll have to be a weekends and vacations thing. I don't know if I'll buy a full bottle yet, but I'll definitely wear this to the last drop in the pip.
edited to add: this gets a little Lemon Pledge-y with my nose to my skin, but at the edges of the throw it's still very pleasant.

The Ol' College Try
From the web: Rah! Rah! Rah! Don your raccoon coat, root for your team into your megaphone and shake that pennant! The brisk scent of a flawless autumn afternoon: The chill in the air, fresh grassy turf, azure skies and the zing of leather pig skin as is soars through the goal. Touchdown!
In the pip: Men's cologne, cut grass, and wet leaves.
Wet on skin: Still very much like men's cologne, with a bit of grass. Maybe a hint of leather?
Dry: Grass and fallen leaves, but it's also a lot like Irish Spring soap.
Overall: I like it? But it reads as very masculine to me, and I don't know that I would wear it often. Maybe aging it a bit will help tame the Irish Spring and bring out the leaves and cut grass more. We'll see.

From the web: Definitely not for the church goin' crowd! All the evidence of a bawdy traveling road show. dusty merlot bottles, tobacco, dirty jokes and slapstick black amber.
In the pip: Definitely amber, definitely merlot.
Wet on skin: I get a little more tobacco, sort of like how the smoke from a good pack of Black & Mild Wine smells. The amber is still very prominent, but it smells a little more like the smell of a car with plush seats where the woman who drives wears an amber perfume and smokes occasionally. (I mean that in the best possible way.) It's a sort of androgynous feminine, with the tobacco.
Dry: The amber's coming back, but it's still very "Black & Mild Wine smoked by a woman with amber perfume."
Overall: I like this one--I may not buy a full bottle, but I'd definitely buy another pip.

From the web: Cracked and worn leather seats, contented puffs of sweet pipe tobacco, fresh air tousling your hair and the nothing but open road in front of you for miles. Aooga!
In the pip: It smells like the inside of a smoke shop--go inside one and you'll know exactly what this smells like in the pip--heavy on the tobacco and slightly astringent.
Wet on skin: On my skin, the astringency calms way down and the tobacco takes center stage--instead of a smoke shop, now it smells like my old next door neighbor's living room when her husband smoked his pipe. The leather note, if that's what I'm smelling, is extremely masculine to me.
Dry: Smells like the well-cared-for leather coat of a man who smokes a pipe and wears cologne. The astringency calmed down on my skin, but it's coming back on the top notes.
Overall: I think this needs to age a bit to smooth out the astringency, but it's a pleasant and masculine scent--not one I could wear to work, though.

Date: 2014-07-23 11:38 pm (UTC)
lunabee34: (Default)
From: [personal profile] lunabee34
Hi! Welcome to perfume fandom. :)

Did you know about [community profile] aftertheendtimes? It's a new comm to discuss Seanan McGuire's books, post fic and art, and etc. Right now, there's a Newsflesh read along going on, but people post about all the books. We'd love to have you over there.


Date: 2014-07-28 02:31 pm (UTC)
lunabee34: (Default)
From: [personal profile] lunabee34
I've only read Newsflesh, but I am a recent convert. :)


druidspell: Me, bowling at a family reunion, with my username inset in the bottom right corner. The blurriness is intentional. (Default)

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