Yes Hotties, it the Arcana review post of DOOM! I have gone through and reviewed the current general catalog of oils. Of course, different note work on different people so if you have a different experience with a particular oil, feel free to leave a comment. It helps readers trying to decide which oils to sample. Stay tuned for an add on post reviewing the Philtres.
Absinthe: Let the heady spirit of the Green Fairy whisper in your ear. Scented with aromatic herbs, sweet anise and a touch of pure Artemisia Absinthium. Imminent moral collapse not included.
In vial: Green licorice!
Wet on skin: Yep, it smells like Pernod. Green and metallic and licorice.
Dry on skin: Smells like absinthe.
Verdict: Meh, it smells like every other absinthe perfume I’ve ever smelled.
Alec d’Urberville: – The profligate essence of an aristocratic libertine. Amber resin, charred Madagascar vanilla, French cognac, clove, sandalwood, and dark musk.
In bottle: Resinous and sandalwoody.
Wet on skin: Clove and spice with some resin wafting around. As it settles I get a big shiff of the French cognac. Lovely!
Dry on skin: This has dried down to a nice clove scent. It’s mostly clove on me with the vanilla and sandalwood floating around behind it. The amber resin and cognac give it a smokey and earthy vibe.
Verdict: I really like this and it’s super sexy on boys!
Ambrosia: – Recipes for ambrosia, the magical food which bestowed eternal youth on the Greek gods, have long been lost. However, we have it on the best authority that this melding of fragrant honey, peaches, lemons, custard and coconut is divinely close.
In bottle: Soft creamy lemon.
Wet on skin: A blast of beautiful lemon merangue pie right at first. As it settles I pick up a whiff buttery crust and peaches.
Dry on skin: As usual, I’ve amped the lemon quite a bit. It’s mostly lemon on me and there’s something underneath that’s not quite working on my skin chemistry. I’m not sure what it is but it’s givng a powdery note.
Verdict: While it didn’t work for me this was gorgeous on my friend. It’s a warm lemon scent….like a hug from a lemon pastry square.
Avalon– A harmonious blend of fresh apples, green herbs, and wildflowers, in homage to the ancient Celtic version of the gloriously sweet hereafter: a happy land of apple orchards and perpetual soft summer days.
In bottle: Leaves and apples!
Wet on skin: Apples and herbs are right up front. It reminds me of a cripst and clean fresh morning rain.
Dry on skin: This has settled into a softly green and herbal floral scent. It reminds me of a green shampoo that I used to use as a kid. The apple is pretty much gone for me.
Verdict: This will be gorgeous on someone who likes a floral and green scent.
Burlesque: The sweet, smoky decadence of a bawdy dance hall, with bold amber, spicy chocolate and the warm wood of a well-traveled stage. Turn your daily grind into a bump and grind.
In bottle: Wood and patchouli.
Wet on skin: This is a very earthy and woodsy oil, it’s got a bit of a smoke and just a hint of chocolate peeking out.
Dry on skin: Sex in a bottle! It’s a very rich and decant and the chocolate is not a cheap candy type chocolate it’s more like deep dark baking chocolate.
Verdict: I am so very glad that I got a bottle of this…I think it’s going to age beautifully!
Danced To Pieces: The spirit of Grimms’ Twelve Dancing Princesses. Blushing candy sweetness and an angelic tangle of strawberry, raspberry, red currant, pink grapefruit, and white sugar weave a spell above a flagrantly destructive, self-indulgent base of dark peppery musk, resinous amber, heady cognac, opiate-laced cassis cordial, and the faint remains of a silver leaf.
In vial: Dark fruit!
Wet on skin: Dark fruit, wine and maybe something like a freshly bruised green leaf.
Dry on skin: It smells like really sweet wine to me.
Verdict: Not sure if it’s a keeper but I’ll definitely let it settle down and try again!
Devilish- Shaking off vanilla’s unfair reputation for namby pambyness, this infernally dark and smoky fragrance comes complete with licks of fire and sulfurous wafts of brimstone. The devil really does have all the best scents.
In bottle: Delicious bourbon vanilla!
Wet on skin: Leather is the first thing I pick up with perhaps a bit of black pepper?
Dry on skin: The brimstone and smoky fire definitely keep this from being a boring or girly foodie scent.
Verdict: This is a deeply sexy and dark vanilla scent. Good for those that don’t want too girly or foodie. Equally good for a boy or girl.
Filthy Viking-Between the sea voyages and the pillaging, it must have been difficult for Odin’s henchmen to stay fresh. Too bad they didn’t have this ferocious blend of scents from the Viking world: bracing Norwegian juniper, frigid Icelandic mint and the hardy wood of a longship.
In bottle: Very evergreen and juniper.
Wet on skin: Evergreen and mint goodness. The greens settle down and the wood makes an appearance.
Dry on skin: As it’s settled down this is slightly remeniscent of Irish Spring soap, which I love! It’s a very lush evergreen scent with a slight hint of wood and mint.
Verdict: This scent really blossoms on a boy or someone who likes pine and wood scents.
Frilly Underpinnings: Pink, white, and black pepper lace delicately through sweet cream, bourbon vanilla, caramel amber, white musk, two sugars, spice, and everything nice.
In vial: Hmmm…a little aquatic and peppery.
Wet on skin: Oooh, there’s some pepper! A little bit of the bourbon vanilla and caramel is coming out.
Dry on skin: Oh, this has softened into something really soft and sexy and pretty. You can smell the sugars and caramel and bourbon vanilla.
Verdict: I think I shall cherish my sample and it will get better with age!
Frivolous Aside: A silly, sexy little blend which flirts shamelessly, teases everyone at the party, and flashes the top of its garter on the balcony. Bubbly champagne cocktails, vanilla frosting, deep pink musk, sugar cubes, toasty coconut, and a soft compress for your head the next morning.
In bottle: Pink girly champagne.
Wet on skin: It definitely smells pink! It smells like all things pink, candy, sugar….you get the idea.
Dry on skin: It’s perfectly lovely and soft and pink.
Verdict: It’s right up my alley but not a top 10 by any means. This will be a great layering note for something that needs a bit of sweetening up.
Frozen Heart: The essence of a snow queen’s glacial affections. An enchanted concoction of spiky black pepper, cold peppermint, icy watermelon, pale vanilla and pearl musk. Beware of glittering women in sleighs who promise you the world.
In bottle: It smells pink!
Wet on skin: Oh, there’s the watermelon! I’m not sure how, but this oil does smell cold.
Dry on skin: This is a really icy and pretty and girly scent. It’s very sweet yet chilly smelling at the same time.
Verdict: This will be perfect for a hot summer day!
Fugue– To know that one doesnt know is best. Lao Tzu
An amnesiac haze of dark clove, spiced amber, sugary milk, white musk, nutmeg, and a drop of aged patchouli.
In bottle: Spicy and rich.
Wet on skin: The clove is righ tup front with the nutmeg close behind. As it settles down you can really pick out the sugary milk.
Dry on skin: As it dries down, the sultriness of this blend realy comes out. The white musk and amber blend together into a sexy pair that dance around the softness of the sugary milk.
Verdict: This blend has just the perfect balance of spice, musk and sweet. And I can tell it’s only going to get better with age.
Ganesh- Ganesh Perfume Oil: Honor the generous and happy spirit of Sri Ganesha and he will bless you greatly. A large, joyous snoutful of coconut cake is snugly wrapped in honey, vanilla, Indonesian clove, green coconut, and a warm blend of spices.
In bottle: Fruity and spicy.
Wet on skin: Honey first and foremost. Like sniffing straight out of a honey bear bottle. But not normal honey, like a wild flower organic honey.
Dry on skin: It’s like if someone was eating really fancy expensive honey and smoking clove cigarettes but without the smoke.
Verdict: Yay, it’s a honey scent that I can wear! This is spicy, sexy honey.
Herne– Horned trickster, lord of the forest, god of the wild hunt. Cassia cinnamon, Atlas cedarwood, fir needle oil, and a whiff of Herne’s holy oak tree.
In bottle: Super spicy cinnamon.
Wet on skin: Super cinnamon and something very evergreeny smelling, like juniper. It most be the fir needle and cedarwood.
Dry on skin: The cinnamon is still right up front but the woods and fir needle seem to really temper it.
Verdict: This is a strong scent with a lot of sillage. I think it would be equally sexy on a boy or a girl and I think a bit of aging will richen this oil up quite a bit.
Last Hours Of Empires– “…all that gamut of intensified colors, correspondent to Autumn and the setting of the sun, to over-ripe fruit and the last hours of empires.” –Theophile Gautier on Baudelaire’s Les Fleurs du Mal A rich blend of precious oils, evocative of regret and resplendence, featuring highest quality Omani frankincense, true Indian sandalwood, delicate top notes of bergamot and tangerine, and the smallest wisp of black patchouli.
In bottle: Bergamot and herbal, but with slight spice.
Wet on skin: It’s very green and citrusy right at first. The frankincense makes an appearance right away with the tangerine spiraling around it.
Dry on skin: It’s definitely a farnkincense blend with herb and citrus in the background. It’s very clean and freash smelling but not aquatic.
Verdict: I like this and it would be perfect for something that like a clean and fresh, slightly proper but spicy scent. Like a proper Victorian gentleman would wear.
Morphine: The softening of hard remembrances and the inexorable embrace of warm oblivion. Cocoa absolute, vanilla oleoresin, sticky marshmallow syrup, a trickle of aged patchouli, and a delicate shot of smoked vetiver.
In bottle: Cocoa and patchouli.
Wet on skin: Dry wood and patchouli. After a little bit the cocoa starts to come out.
Dry on skin: Everything softens a bit and the vetiver is peeking in. It’s not bad and it’s very faint and soft.
Verdict: I already know I like this but I think it needs time to settle and age. It’s only going to get better!
Murder Ballad Blues– In the tradition of murder ballads, the essence of an old-time jailhouse lament (on fiddle): wild Appalachian blackberries and sugared mountain violets with hints of dark earth and guilty secrets. Enriched with coconut milk, sweet almond oil & blackberry seeds. No mice were harmed in the making of this soap.
In bottle: Sugared berries.
Wet on skin: Vanilla and berries with just a bit of violet peeking in. As it settles the coconut milk shows up and mingles with the almond oil.
Dry on skin: Yum. This is like a fruity musk…I think that’s the dark earth. The almond oil really grounds this and keeps it from being too sweet. The coconut milk is very soft and just hovers in the background.
Verdict: This is so delictable and ymmu smelling. It’s fruity but in no way little girlish. Bottle worthy!
Mutiny– Tyrants be damned! The scent of discontent, broken ranks and open rebellion on the sea. Indonesian patchouli combines with black pepper, dark wood and a smoky haze of gunpowder.
In bottle: Wood and man. Heh.
Wet on skin: The pepper and wood are what I pick out right at first. The pepper eases back and the wood comes out front after a couple of minutes with a generous dose of gunpowder.
Dry on skin: Oooh, this is leather and wood and a quick flash of gunpowder. Manly and adventurous!
Verdict: This is a scent for plundering and ravaging…..here ye be warned.
Namaka– Mighty Hawaiian sea goddess Namaka-o-Kahai’i rules ocean currents, tidal waves, and thundering waterfalls. Coconut, vanilla bean, rice milk, golden amber, watermelon, banana leaf, aged patchouli, and lemongrass.
In bottle: Sweet and sugary.
Wet on skin: There’s a very soft and pretty vanilla bean at first closely followed by the amber and banana leaf.
Dry on skin: This is a lovely soft pretty scent. First I smell the rice milk and golden amber but they are a blanket on the banana leaf and watermelon. The lemongrass and patchouli and very light and just barely peeking out of the background.
Verdict: Gorgeous, sexy, soft and alluring. You need it! Finally, a Hawaii inspired scent that I can wear.
Puppy Kisses– The essence of pink sandpapery tongues, silky ears, and sleepy little sighs. A batter of rich cream, soft coconut milk, rice syrup, copaiba balsam, massoia bark and milky pearl musk is gently licked with sweet peppermint, sugared bayberry, and the tiniest smooches of Oregon lavender and Dalmatian sage.
In bottle: Soft lavender and cream.
Wet on skin: A very soft creamy lavender is right up front followed closely by rich cream and peppermint. As it dries I pick up the softest whiff of sage and sugery bayberry.
Dry on skin: This is a very creamy sage blend….I don’t hink I’ve ever expericed it before. I can also pick up on just a bit of the sweet mind.
Verdict: Gorgeous! This is a unique blend that I’m betting you don’t already have.
Queen Crossbones– The adventurous scents of a pirate queen’s far-flung travels: creamy Egyptian musk, wild honey, sweet coconut and exotic resins.
In bottle: Honey and soft musk.
Wet on skin: There’s a sharp burst of wild honey right at first. I definitely pick up the resin, it’s pretty strong. There’s something very powdery floating around in the background…I think it’s the honey.
Dry on skin: Once this dries down all the sharpness and powders settle down and what’s left is a sweet honey and resin scent with just a bit of musk and sweet coconut.
Verdict: Man, I love this! Sexy and soft and sultry. Quite the compliment to Mutiny.
Quim– The softest things in the world overcome the hardest things in the world. Lao Tzu
Lush French cognac, deepest chocolate, banana creme, and succulent orange entwine over a base of sensual ambrette musk.
In bottle: Sexy creamsicle.
Wet on skin: Dark chocolate and orange are right there with the briefest whiff of ambrette musk wafting around.
Dry on skin: I have no other way to describe this other than it smells like a sexy creamsicle ovulating.
Verdict: Currently my number two perfume oil. I’m wearing it all the time.
Romani Princess– Passionate, seductive and regal, with an unsettling mastery over strange divinations. Dark garnet grapes, burnt sugar, fir needle oil, iron-distilled patchouli, river water, and our hand-extracted dragon’s blood.
In bottle: Aquatic grapes.
Wet on skin: Wine right at first with the burnt sugar and just a bit of patchouli. At this point I’m not picking up the water or fir or any dragon’s blood.
Dry on skin: This is really pretty and sexy. It’s a soft and rich wine scent sweetened with the sugar. There’s just a *touch* of water and patchouli in the back and I don’t really get any dragon’s blood at all.
Verdict: Quite possibly the only blend I’ve ever tried with dragon’s blood that actually works for me! I bet it will get better with some age as well.
Swashbuckler– Proof that you can be the scourge of the high seas and still breeze into port smelling divine. Concocted from West Indies bay rum and a dark blend of spices.
In bottle: Spicy and masculine.
Wet on skin: Super spicy and I can’t really pick out individual notes but I think something citrusy?
Dry on skin: This is nice. It’s a pretty straight forward spicy scent but the rum and mysterious citurs grounds it nicely.
Verdict: Like a nice cold spicy rum adult beverage on a muggy day. Perfect.
Sturm and Drang– The scent of intense revolutionaries, fevered dreams, violent longings, and general hyperbolic mayhem. Big bold candy grapes face off with an ecstatic blend of apricot, caramel, sugary coffee, three rich ambers, and a pinch of dark patchouli.
In bottle: Candy and apricot.
Wet on skin: Candy and caramel with just a bit of sweet coffee.
Dry on skin: As it dries down the coffee gets a little stronger and the patchouli makes an appearance. As they blend with the grape candy and apricot it achieves a slightly musky vibe.
Verdict: This is a really interesting blend. It’s soft and warm and musky in the best and fruitiest way possible.
Tess– A pure woman, faithfully presented. Rustic violets, fresh cream, amber, vanilla bean, and soft, milky musk.
In bottle: Creamy soft floral.
Wet on skin: The violet and milky musk smell a bit…….like BO? Lol Fortunately that phaze is quick and this settles into a sweetly feminine floral. But NOT a rose or high pitched floral.
Dry on skin: Very creamy and rather floraly. On me, this smells a bit like Skin So Soft. Florals frequently do that on me.
Verdict: Not for me but it would be gorgeous on someone who can flaunt the florals!
The Huntress– She is the goddess known by many names: Diana, Artemis, Artume, Frau Wode, and Nicevenn, yet her unbound spirit is eternal. Sweet clove, black pepper, aromatic mint, blood orange, and a whiff of her sacred oak groves.
In bottle: Clove and pepper.
Wet on skin: Right off it’s peppery clove with a shot of the mint.
Dry on skin: As it’s dried down the citrus of the blood orange and the mint take the front with the spicy in the background. Reminiscent of clove and mint gum!
Verdict: I’m not sure. I think I like it but it might be better on Mr. McNaughty.
The Sweet Trade– This laid-back tropical tangle celebrates the less black-hearted side of piracy. With heady notes of caramel, honey, orange blossoms, rich coconut cream and dark Indonesian patchouli.
In bottle: Woody and resinous.
Wet on skin: There is something really woody…it’s the coconut cream and orange blossoms together, I think. There’s a heavy sweet scent wafting underneath and I think that’s the caramel and honey.
Dry on skin: This ends up drying down to a sweetly spicy floral and then….poof! It’s gone.
Verdict: It’s a sweet and pretty oil, slightly cloying but softened by a subtle spice. Too bad it disappeared on me!
Vampire’s Garden– For vampires and other dark souls addicted to topsoil, the sweetly herbaceous scent of freshly turned earth, blood oranges and staked tomato vines under a midnight sky.
In bottle: Grassy and green.
Wet on skin: Very much like sharp tomato vine. Herbaceous to the hilt with a bit of dankness from the soil.
Dry on skin: Muksy and dark and green. This really does smell like tomotoes under the light of a full moon.
Verdict: Typically tomoto, green and herby scents don’t work on me and this is no exception. It’s a great blend, but more suited for someone who loves those notes!
Velvet Underpinnings– Our popular Frilly Underpinnings blend made even more seductive by the addition of chocolate: pink, white, and black pepper lace delicately through rich chocolate, sweet cream, bourbon vanilla, caramel amber, white musk, two sugars, spice, and everything nice.
In bottle: Sugared pepper.
Wet on skin: Sweet and slightly cloying sugar scent tempered by black pepper. As the sugar settles down I pick up the caramel amber (maybe a little toffyish?) and creamy bourbon vanilla.
Dry on skin: This dried down to a creamy sweet and slightly spicy scent thanks to the pepper blend.
Verdict: I love it! It’s very ‘pink’ smelling but the peppers keep it from being too girly or precious.