Thursday, July 2, 2015

Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab: St. John's Eve

purchased and reviewed by ThoraSTooth

BPAL Scent of the Day:  St. John's Eve (Limited Edition, 2009) -- A summer bonfire, with frankincense and myrrh, bay rum, and white rose.

In the bottle, St. John's Eve smells like bay rum that's been filtered through something that took off all its sharp edges.  Sniffing deeply, I get just a hint of soft white rose.

On my skin, it's all tangy smoke over bay rum.  As it dries down, though, the resins come up.  The tangy smoke subsides to a tickle of spicy smoke in the background, while the rose just contributes a light, bright smoothness.  The bay rum is a warm, prickly, cinnamon-herb note that plays very well with the frankincense while the myrrh lies under everything like a net, catching and keeping it in mid-air rather than having it sink into darkness.

Every year I ask myself why I don't wear this one more often, because it really is sumptuous, like burning ritual incense over a hickory fire.  It's light, with not a lot of sillage, but it lasts for many hours on my skin.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

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Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab: Liberty

purchased and reviewed by ThoraSTooth

BPAL Scent of the Day:  Liberty (Comic Book Legal Defense Fund charity scent, 2010):  frankincense, beeswax, olive blossom, chamomile, sampaguita, magnolia, apple blossom, gunpowder, and smoke.

In the bottle this is floral-honeyish.  I particularly notice the sampaguita and olive blossom notes, but when this bottle was new the gunpowder note was somewhat more strident than it is now that the scent has aged.

Wet on my skin the sampaguita does its usual jasmine-y climb, making it the top note along with a touch of ripe magnolia and the olive blossom which has a rich, almost woody scent.  Underneath there is beeswax and resin serving to prop up the florals.

Liberty dries down to a rich, un-sweet, beeswaxy floral on a resinous base.  The olive blossom shapes the scent, giving it a slightly dark and sober cast.  The sharp florals it displayed when fresh have aged to tasteful, cooperative ones.  The apple blossom manifests as more fruity than floral.  It also seems as if there is some sandalwood or other similar note helping the frankincense to hold this together. 

Note from Jammies: Thora wore this on Friday to celebrate, and I got to see Summit County residents taking advantage of their new ability to get marriage licenses.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Sally Hansen Velvet Texture: Plush

purchased by me

Sally Hansen describes the Velvet Texture™ polishes as "the lush velvet-like finish you’ve always wanted!"  I describe them as true matte polishes--no sparkle, no shimmer, no satin, just simple, quick-drying polish with a matte finish.  Plush is a medium turquoise, leaning just a bit green on my fair skin.  It's opaque in two coats, dries quickly like most matte polishes, and also has a short wear time.

Plush also made a beautiful base for the Color Club blue-green shimmer polish Lady Liberty.  One coat of Lady Liberty over two coats of Plush:

The Velvet Texture polishes are not limited edition.  I found them at Walgreens for $4.99 each + tax.  Lady Liberty is available at the Color Club website.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab Plagues of Egypt reviews Part II

purchased and reviewed by ThoraSTooth

BPAL Testing Day:  Plagues of Egypt II

All the Dust of the Land (Plagues of Egypt, 2015):  An infestation of Ceylon cinnamon bark, black patchouli, tonka absolute, bitter almond, and frankincense.

Medb v4 (Clearing out the Cobwebs I, 2009):  no description given.

Upon Man and upon Beast (Plagues of Egypt, 2015):  Dry patchouli and white sandalwood oozing with lesions of labdanum, wet red cherry, and opoponax.

A Very Grievous Murraine (Plagues of Egypt, 2015):  Brown musk, myrrh, and sun-baked leather afflicted by splotches of saffron and red musk.

* * * * * * *
All the Dust of the Land begins by smelling like a frankincense cake with patchouli filling and tonka icing.  There's a dusting of cinnamon almond on top, but it's very tangy and dark.  After a while it becomes mostly patchouli and tonka, a robust, dark, thick scent.  Black patchouli lovers, this one is pretty tasty.

Medb v4 is a green scent.  It starts off with some aquatic, herby, citrusy, meadow floral.  It calms down quickly and a sugary citrus-lavender impression arises to balance out the floral.  It reminds me a bit of Bat of Longevity for a long time, but eventually mellows to a lightly vanilla floral with grass-green undertones.

A Very Grievous Murraine starts off very red musky, with a lot of myrrh beneath and some bitter saffron.  It's dark, very dark.  After a while it becomes mostly red musk over myrrh, and stays that way for many hours.  This one had rather a lot of sillage/throw on me, like red musk usually does.

Upon Man and upon Beast has a somewhat fugitive cherry note, or maybe it's just that the patchouli slapped it down.  This one is pretty dark, with patchouli and other resins; I get an almost leatherishly dark feel from it. After a while, though, it goes over to mostly patchouli and opoponax -- staying on the dark side.