Monday, October 10, 2011

I said, Doctor, is there nothing I can take?

Perfume Challenge Week 38: Monday, 10/3/11 to Friday, 10/7/11

This week I bring you five scents from Amanda at Esscentual Alchemy Natural Perfumery, a line of scents that are 100% natural with modest sillage and longevity. She describes her line as follows:
When I create a perfume I do so intentionally. Being mindful of putting myself in a positive and loving, and uplifting emotional place. So that the perfume is positive, loving and uplifting emotionally as well. Each one blessed with good thoughts and wishes for the wearer.
Good thoughts and wishes? Sign me up.

First up, Queen of Punk - The Queen of Punk is a dirty girl. A dirty, dirty girl. Notes: Civet, Tobacco, Patchouli, Amber, Cognac, Rose, Coffee, Linden Blossom, Bitter Orange, Black Pepper, Mimosa.

In my life, I've known two kinds of punk girls. I've known fairly butch punk girls and I've known these surprisingly feminine punk girls who would smile sweetly at you while the ripped the nose ring right out of your face. Queen of Punk belongs to the latter. Queen of Punk is a surprisingly light 'dirty' scent. I get a healthy dose of fat wet patchouli leaves in the opening, but they are not too heavy, which makes this scent a nice surprise in the world of patchouli scents, which tend use a heavier patchouli. The civet is subtle, blending seamlessly with the cognac and coffee. I don't get a lot of the floral aspects beyond the linden blossom, and the black pepper kicks me in the nose like an aftertaste. A very pretty, decidedly feminine scent for such typically heavy notes, which is indivicative of how well made it is. 3.5 of 5 nods.

Mint Ginger Truffle - Chocolate Mint Ginger asks you to drizzle on some Chocolate Mint, and then later sniff again, and you've found the Ginger Center! Mmm...a little scented truffle for your nose. Notes: Chocolate, Mint, Ginger.

A very light gourmand, just insanely light for the spunky mixture of notes. The chocolate is faint and powdery on me, putting the mint and ginger to the fore. The ginger is tangy, as though you were sucking on fresh ginger root shavings. The mint provides a freshness to the scent without making it all about the mint or reading as some terrible mint-flavored gum or syrup mess. If you like desserts that aren't overly sweet or foodie and tend toward the fresh or spicy, I recommend this. 3 of 5 nods.

Lumberjack Man - This sultry cologne combines smoky tobacco, leathery labdanum, musky agarwood, sensual ylang ylang, spicy ginger, fresh lime, bitter wormwood, savory saffron, zesty black pepper, warm and floral rosewood, blend into a rich, and warm, yet crisp cologne, that is loved by both men and women. Notes: Tobacco, Labdanum, Agarwood, Ylang ylang, Ginger, Lime, Wormwood, Saffron, Black Pepper, Rosewood.

Dear reader, if I said Lumberjack smelled like a lumbar yard, would you think I was wimping out on you? It does though. And also vaguely of Home Depot, but minus the chemical fertilizer smell. In other words, if you like wood scents, you'll like this. Lumberjack is a strong, spicy wood with strong ladbanum aspects, it reminds me of what I would expect the Log Lady in Twin Peaks to smell like when she's chewing her pitch gum. 3 of 5 nods.

Autumn Spice - Woody myrrh, sweet sandalwood, earthy patchouli, the sweet spices of cinnamon and nutmeg, freshly floral lavender, the rich citrus of a blood orange, and the sparkle of bergamot are all arranged in this perfume with a delicate touch. Notes: Myrrh, Sandalwood, Patchouli, Cinnamon, Nutmeg, Lavender, Blood Orange, Bergamot.

Autumn Spices wears on me like a comforting friend. Mostly showing up as a sandalwood and spice blend, it has manages to be autumnal without feeling like a rehashing of the 'holiday' scented candles you find everywhere this time of year. One of the ways Autumn Spice manages is this is by using an unexpected base. Instead of going to the old autmunal stand-bys of heavy woods, smokey tobaccos, or sweet vanillas, it flourishes in a lavender and bergamot base, giving the scent an unexpected undercoating that reminds me of the scent of old books. If fall to you means back to school and late nights in a library cramming for tests and researching papers while drinkking gallons of herbal tea, this will smell *exactly* like those memories. 4 of 5 nods.

Fun fact: Autumn Spices is worn by Camryn Manheim, star of The Practice, a show demonstrating some heinously unscrupulous lawyering in thepursuit of roller coaster dramatic storytelling. I watched it for the latter, and still cringe at the memory of the former. Manheim is really talented and terrific in The Practice as Ellenor Frutt, though. She was also on The L Word and is now back on law t.v. in Harry's Law. I heart her.

Lime in the Coconut - This lime and coconut perfume might make you hungry...This smells like a delectable cream pie, and everytime I smell it, it makes me hungry first, and then makes me want to bake pies! Notes: Key Lime Hydrosol, Toasted Coconut Tincture, Lime essential oil

"You put the lime in the coconut, and drink'em both together, put the lime in the coconut, and then you feel better..." Sorry, had to get that out there. Love the song (even have the t-shirt), love the scent. A wonderful and realistic lime with a warm gently sweet coconut base.  What is so impressive is that I've tried coconut heavy scents and lime heavy scents and this is the most realist scent I've never had.  It's a unique and interesting blend of notes I've ever encountered in scent.  My only wish is that the sillage was larger, but I could definitely wear it in my scent sensitive workplace, so if you need light scents, this is a great one. 4.5 of 5 nods.

She put the lime in the coconut, she drank 'em both up
Put the lime in the coconut, she called the doctor, woke him up, and said
Doctor, ain't there nothin' I can take, I said
Doctor, to relieve this bellyache, I said
Doctor, ain't there nothin' I can take, I said
Doctor, to relieve this bellyache

~ "Coconut," Harry Nilsson

Scents generously provided by the perfumer. Images from Esscentual Alchemy except for the t-shirt, which is from Zeusandhera thanks to Creative Commons.


Anonymous said...

Autumn Spice caught my eye in this lovely batch: just what I have to seek out from my perfume stash.

cheerio, Anna in Edinburgh

esscentualalchemy said...


Thank you so very much for the beautiful words of my perfumes. I'm happy that they spoke to you, and that you enjoyed them!

As an aside, I must tell you that our eldest daughter, formulated Autumn Spice, when she was 10 :)

Scentedly yours,

Anonymous said...

Goodness me! Very impressed by your 10-year-old daughter's formulating tastes, Amanda.

I think I would've been mixing honeysuckle and water and hoping for the best at that age:-)

cheerio, Anna in Edinburgh

Kim said...

I agree, Autumn Spice is definately one of my favorites too. Perhaps your daughter has inherited some of your awesome olfactory abilities as well! :)