Friday, September 30, 2011

BPAL 101

Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab is an independent perfume house, located in Los Angeles, California, and owned and run by Elizabeth Constantine Barrial and her brother, Brian Barrial. I've been a huge fan of BPAL, as it is known to its customers and reviewers, for almost five years now.

The best place to start is at the Lab's welcome page. There you can get an idea of the history and purpose of the company, after which you can follow one of the links in the left-hand sidebar to find the scent of your dreams!

The first link in the sidebar is "Shiny and New," which will give you the latest updates to the available collections. You can't buy from the "Shiny and New" page, to buy you need to travel to the "Limited Edition" page or one of the collections pages like "Alchemist's Local 93". Once a month, there will be a very limited edition perfume (usually available for about three days) commemorating the full moon.

Other annual LE collections include Lupercalia, the celebration of love that typically comes out in January, Halloweenies, which are typically available starting in August and ending on October 31st, and Yules, which are typically available starting in November and ending on December 31st.

For news and other fun stuff, you should check out the Black Phoenix Gazette, the Lab's blog. For reviews and sales and swaps, you should definitely check out the officially unofficial Black Phoenix forum, The forum is a great place to read reviews and the Swaps and Sales sections are great places to get imps, or imp's ears (the Lab's sample-size vials) for great prices. Some sellers even have special introductory packs containing a sampler of the most popular scents.

If you happen to be in the L.A., Seattle, Roswell GA or South Burlington, VT, during the full moon, you can have the fun of attending a Will Call at one of BPAL's retail partners. Otherwise, you'll need to buy your perfume online, which is another reason to join and read reviews!

I hope this post has been helpful, and I plan to follow up with more info on Black Phoenix and other etailers.

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