A few years ago, at the request of Sam over at Haute Macabre, I wrote up a little primer/course guide for folks who were looking to dip their toes (or dive straight into) the mythical, mystical, magical catalog of fragrance oils offered by Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab.
Shortly afterward, I came on board as a staff writer and have written all kinds of stuff about all kinds of things for the Haute Macabre blog since that time, but this week they are again sharing that BPAL guide for curious newcomers to the brand–along with a giveaway of some of my favorite scents that I give mention to!
[GIVEAWAY CLOSED! A WINNER IS CHOSEN! CONGRATS SUSAN, CHECK YR EMAIL!]
After a ruthless bout of Swedish Death Cleaning, this morning while I had time on my hands after rescheduling my counseling appointment due to some bad crab last night (why have you betrayed me, crab legs? I love you so!) I have whittled my unruly collection of fragrance samples down to about twenty five.
What to do with the other hundreds? Would you like them? There are lots and lots of of lovely niche and indie scents in here, manufacturers samples, and samples from places like Lucky Scent, and Twisted Lily, and decants from Surrender To Chance and The Perfumed Court, and probably only a tiny amount of boring Sephora perfume sprayers, which I feel I need to point out, because who really wants those? Fuck off, Marc Jacobs Daisy! Well, there are a few of those, too. There are also some vials and tiny bottles that were given to me by this friend or that, who gave me samples from their own collection, or perhaps passed something on that didn’t work for them. Maybe they will work for you? There are so many fragrances here to sniff and sample and fall in love with, or pass on!
If you’d like this GLAD bag full o’ samples*, and whatever else I’ve got lying around that I might throw in a box for you, leave a comment below and tell me something interesting. Could be something you learned, could be a piece of news, it could be something about yourself–whatever! I’m spending a lot of time on the toilet today and need some interesting links to click! I will choose a winner on Monday morning!
It probably doesn’t need to be said, but these are vials and sprayers and bottles that I have sampled, myself; some are completely full, some might be halfway full, some might only have a drop or two left. If you’re weirded out by free stuff that someone else has used, well, now you are forewarned!
*Friends outside the U.S. I love you dearly, but I really don’t want to pay for that kind of shipping or deal with the hassle, so this little giveaway is for in-country only.
I know in many places you’re getting snow and blizzards but closer to the equator, we’re just starting to experience autumn’s chill. A perfect time to review Solstice Scents Fall 2018 collection! Peek over at Haute Macabre today for my thoughts on a handful of these seasonal fragrances, and leave a comment on the blog post to enter to win a FULL SIZE Bottle of one of the scents!
Next up in our reviews of Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab’s archetypal adventure and tarot-inspired collection: The Emperor, at Haute Macabre today. It’s a bit of a last call, as well, for The Emperor’s stern countenance is only gracing the lab until 11/26/18 before he and his beard and the rams he rode in on rides off into the sunset!
Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab’s new collection, inspired by Edgar Allan Poe’s The Masque Of The Red Death, is live on their site (along with the 2018 weenies, wooooooo!) In a brilliant stroke of genius, to accompany these new scents, they have created a wonderful audiobook recording of this bloody tale, narrated beautifully by Tom Blunt and illustrated with an assembly of reveling phantasms brought to life with label art by the marvelously clever Tenebrous Kate.
If you’ve never read the story –and would you believe I have not?–now is the time to slip on a pair of headphones, darken your chambers, and dream of delirious fancies, and, “much of the beautiful, much of the wanton, much of the bizarre, something of the terrible, and not a little of that which might have excited disgust.”
It’s always so thrilling to me to see the artists and artisans I adore collaborate on projects together, so when I saw that Kate was going to be working with BPAL on this collection, my heart exploded with glee (no gore, it’s a metaphorical explosion, of course.)
I asked Kate if she had any thoughts about the collaboration, and she enthused on the following points:
Like many spooky folks, I’m a longtime fan of Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab, to the point where I own special storage boxes to organize my collection. I’d had the opportunity to create art for BPAL’s inaugural Drag Con scents, and when I was asked to return to illustrate a Halloween collection, I agreed before I even heard the full details of the project. When I learned it was a multi-part Edgar Allan Poe collection, I realized that I’d be adding to the imagery already created by two of my biggest influences, Harry Clarke and Aubrey Beardsley–a daunting but fabulously rewarding prospect! Oozing gore, overblown decadence, and the sinister threat of death–what more can one ask for in a scent collection?
What more can one ask for, indeed! This collection is gonna be fantastic.
At Haute Macabre today we give a glimpse beyond the veil and share a few secrets regarding the hauntingly beautiful fragrances from Seance Perfumes–as well as the collection’s creator, Lacey Walker.
A few mini reviews as well! Did I finally find a rose to love, and which will love me back? Am I late to the love of creamy white florals? Read more to find out, and avail yourself of a discount code to pick up a few of these otherworldly scents for yourself!
Welcome to another installment of Stinkers & Duds, wherein I complain about the products that really gross me out! Don’t expect thoughtful, articulate commentary on these things (I hope you have figured out by now that you should probably shouldn’t ever expect that from me). These are beauty products and cosmetics that usually make me a little bit irate, so it’s basically just a lot of cusses and hate.
Why is it that when someone gifts you with something awful, it’s a jumbo-sized version of that awful thing? Yes, I’m a jerk for complaining about a gift…but…it’s not like I’m complaining to their face, right? Aqua di Gioia from Giorgio Armani was a Christmas present this past year, and I am fairly certain I already knew I would hate it; a very similar scent was gifted to me right after high school, as well. And true, when we are young, we haven’t really developed all of our tastes, we are still trying to figure out what we like, but I can assure you that when it came to fragrance, I knew what I was all about–and it was not “shower fresh”, “soapy clean”, or “the world’s most watery glass of lemonade.”
This is a bland, polite scent whose very inoffensiveness offends me. ALSO, and here is a loathsome confession. I am kind of addicted to the youtube channel of this really horrible celebrity; I don’t know why I continue watching her, but I just cannot look away. There is really nothing at redeeming about this person or her place in the world, including and especially her horrible taste (which I know is so subjective, and I am sorry, but she’s pink and UGGS and spray tan and oh my god why can’t I stop watching her?) Anyway, she bought herself Aqua di Gioia as a Christmas gift and as soon as I saw that this dumb dummy loves it, well, that just summed it all up for me. It’s just a dumb, pointless perfume.
Oh my god, I am such an asshole. This LUSH Shoot For The Stars bath bomb was a gift, too, and even worse, it was a gift that I suggested someone buy for me. It’s beautiful, right? It purports to smell of bergamot which sounds super classy, right? Well, we would be wrong for thinking that. It smells like a peach gummy scented urinal cake. Which is the exact opposite of classy. It also left both the tub, and my post-tub bod, super greasy. I know this for a fact because when I went to bed that night, I snuggled up against my partner, who remarked, “…ugh…you’re super greasy.”
Joseon Beauty of Joseon Dynasty Cream was highly recommended to me, first by friends, and secondly by the internet–reddit threads, facebook groups, beauty blogs. It has a cult following, all sorts of heavy-hitter ingredients, and it seems to be everyone’s Holy Grail multifunctional skincare cream. It’s supposed to be brightening, anti-aging, and give you beautiful, bouncy skin. Use it as a face massage, a sleeping pack, with your bb cream, whatever. It was starting to sound like coconut oil, in that regard, right? Like, what can’t this amazing stuff do?
Well, I could not use it long enough to find out. While I didn’t love the powdery-cucumbery scent, it was the slimy, sticky texture that I couldn’t get past. It had a this horrible jellied, stringy consistency (if you are familiar with snail mucin products, you know what I mean), and if I am being honest with you, it looked like someone jizzed all over my face. It was really bad. Like, Faces Of Jizz 18: The Jizzening bad. To add injury (injizzy?) to insult, not only did I look like a glazed fucking donut the few times I used it, it really reddened and inflamed the sensitive areas on my face. Not cool, Joseon Dynasty Cream*. Not cool at all.
To be fair, I purchased this product through amazon. I am aware that purchasing things like this through third party sellers can be risky business, but I truly think I was using the actual product, and it just didn’t work with my skin.
So that’s it for my recents Stinkers and Dud products? What about you? Tell me what you’ve been hating lately!