Monday, August 12, 2019

7 Sucreabeille Reviews: Sansa + The Mountain + Mother of Dragons + Khaleesi + Three Eyed Raven + Tyrion + Varys

Sooo.. Here's some more perfumes where I've been sitting on reviews of oh, five of them, for a couple months now. Since Sucreabeille is retiring a number of their Game of Throne scents (You've got until the 18th!) I figured now was as good a time as any to knock out the last two perfumes in this review set and get it into the wild.
The perfumes covered in today's review are:

All perfumes in this review were allowed to rest for several days (around a week in this case) after arrival. The perfumes were kept in the dark in a plastic box if small enough. If too large for a box they generally sit on top of a bookcase or bedside table, or inside of a drawer. I did crack them open to sniff them directly after arrival, and with a couple to do an initial test. The reviews are not based off of these initial impressions - though if a rest did change the smell I’ll note that.
I’m doing a half-hour skin test with each perfume. They are always applied to skin that has either been washed or hasn’t had perfume on it that day. Sometimes I will run one scent on one wrist/hand/arm and the other on the other wrist/hand/arm. When I wash my hands for review purposes I wash with Dove sensitive skin, or almond Doc Bronner’s.
Before doing test periods I often wear or play with other scents in my collection (that I wash off). I also am often wearing scented lotion on my feet and ankles (that I do not wash off). so theoretically there could be cross-contamination.
For oils: Each sample was gently swirled before application. Then applied directly to skin - typically the top of my arm or the back of my hand.
Each review is written without looking at the notes in that moment. Frequently I will glance at a perfume’s notes beforehand. At the end of the review I will list what the official notes are and comment on how I think they interacted.
Bottle Review
See my review of Sucreabeille's drams [ here ]
See my review of Sucreabeille's 1mls [ here ]
A reminder: Each nose is different and each skin’s chemistry is different. Your mileage may vary.
In the bottle: Sugared, slightly syrupy lemon curd and vanilla.
Wet on my skin: Lemon frosting. Lemon is ever so slightly Pledge-y but is balanced by the vanilla. Slightly rubbery note that reminds me of toys I had as a kid. Sugar. It does smell a lot like a tea cake with a freshly cut lemon nearby. I don’t know if I’m rapidly going anosmic to it or if it’s just not a strong scent but my nose has to be almost on top of it to smell it.
Drydown: The lemon is still kind of lemon cleaner, the rubbery-toys smell is behind it. Getting a lot of whiffs of sugar and vanilla at arm’s length.
After 30 mins: The lemon is far at the edge but what’s there is still lemon-cleanser. Sugar and vanilla are at the forefront. Still a little rubbery - it’s like having a tea party with your toys as a kid where you’ve got vanilla buttercream cakes and for some reason you just cut open a lemon (maybe you sliced it to put in the tea you haven't brewed yet). I want to emphasize this isn't a bad rubbery - it's very nostalgic if you grew up with, say, My Little Ponies.
Official Notes: Rich, fluffy buttercream frosting, real vanilla, pure lemon.
Yup, I get those. The frosting is what I get in the throw and when I get close I get more of the vanilla and edges of the lemon.
This is a scent where I feel like a few tiny tweaks would take it over the top. Like the concept is solid but I feel like a more lemonade smelling lemon would be appropriate here (similar to the lemon note Stereoplasm uses in Lovesick Lake for instance). This smells like a lemon that is separate from the cake notes instead of being the scent of lemon cake. The lemon also smells a lot like the lemon you’d… squeeze into a glass of water instead of a lemon you’d eat in a cookie or cake. I think the rubbery kind of smell I’m getting is part of the particular vanilla note here and how it’s interacting with the lemon.
The end effect is nostalgic but it isn’t ‘Sansa’ in that it doesn't remind me of lemon cakes. For 'Tea Party With Your Ponies' the scent is much more accurate.
As a note: This scent was purchased months ago and the review written a couple of weeks after purchase. I know Andrea is experimenting with stabilizers specifically with this scent - so it might be that the version of Sansa I have is different from the version of Sansa currently on the site (particularly if you're reading this in the Far Distant Future). Make sure to check and see if they've reformulated!
Verdict: I dunno. Probably going to swap my dram. I suppose there is a chance I might keep this.
The Mountain
In the bottle: Really delicious, slightly alcoholic, golden, sweet oatmeal.
Wet on my skin: Sweet golden slightly spiced oatmeal with a big dollop of honey. Slightly creamy resin. A very golden scent.
Drydown: The oatmeal has died back some (still definitely there) and the resin has come forward. I think I remember this having amber in it. It’s a good amber. A tiny touch of booziness and a whisper of earthiness with honey at the edges. I’m gonna go ahead and say that I really like this.
After 30 mins: Pretty much like the drydown. Maybe slightly more blended and a touch more earthy. I’m glad this is so consistent because I’m liking this one. Kind of a… toasted rice smell to it too. It’s really nice.
Official Notes: amber, a pint of oatmeal stout, pure golden honey.
Yup! Get all of those.
Perhaps my biggest take from this is that Sucreabeille has really nice amber, oatmeal, and honey notes. Like the combo is great - really tasty without being overly foody - but dangarang I’m gonna be all over their other scents with oatmeal/honey/amber.
Verdict: Went ahead and got a dram of this. This isn’t in that territory of Wear Every Day scents for me largely because it is firmly a gourmand. Though, hey, I’ve recently discovered that while gourmands are something I use sparingly as perfume I love them in bath products. These notes are so fantastic that they’re going to make exploring the Suc catalog in the future an adventure in seeing ‘What Honey, Amber, and Oatmeal scents Are Available’ .
Mother of Dragons
In the bottle: Smoke and warm leather. Something golden - kind of resinous bordering on alcoholic. Amber?
Wet on my skin: Smoke and slightly acrid leather - but it blends with the smoke well. Definitely a resinous note. This might be a very dry dragon’s blood? Or incense? And, shoot, could just be dark amber.
Drydown: I think there’s a golden floral in here but I’m not quite sure what it is. The leather in this is actually very nice - it loses any chemical/acrid smell to it quickly and smells like actual leather. The smoke has moved to soft edges. I do think this is an amber note in here - it reminds me of The Mountain’s amber note.
After 30 mins: The longer I wear this the more I like it. It’s a really well balanced smoke, resin, and leather scent with the leather smelling like actual leather. There’s something sweeter in there too I can’t quite put my finger on. Part of me is like ‘I think it might be a rose’ but I don’t know for sure.
Official Notes: Sweet vanilla, maple butter, smoke from the village you just burnt to the ground, decadent leather.
Okay, wow, bunch to unpack here. The smoke and leather are yup, for sure there. I think this perfume’s take on maple is blending with the smoke and creating what I’m reading as resinous because there’s nothing remotely gourmand about the scent. The vanilla must be what’s adding that touch of sweetness for me. I don’t know what on Earth I was reading as rose-like.
Verdict: I love leather scents that smell like actual leather. I upsized this one to a dram!
In the bottle: Grand Marnier (orange liqueur), nutmeg, old mushrooms. Oddly indolic.
Wet on my skin: Indolic old mushrooms, Grand Marnier, and nutmeg.
Drydown: Old mushrooms and nutmeg - kind of an animalistic odor to it. Indolic but not a sharp indolic more of a rounded indolic. To my nose the indolic on this amped hard - not hard enough to go fecal, but getting close to it (very animalistic smelling). Edges of the Grand Marnier smelling orange. If you haven’t smelled Grand Marnier before it’s a very medicinal, syrupy smelling orange. It’s actually one of my favorite liqueurs - but it’s not something I want to wear as a personal odor.
After 30 mins: It’s old mushrooms, animalistic indole that is strong to the point of stink for me, with a forward nutmeg note and edges of Grand Marnier.
Official notes: fresh orange, spicy cinnamon, white musk, and freshly ground nutmeg.
The orange + cinnamon must be what smells like Grand Marnier. I will note the orange does not smell fresh to me - it smells very syrupy. The nutmeg is the nutmeg. The white musk… this is the second time something like this has happened to me with white musk. The white musks I’m used to are like a sweet cloud, almost marshmallowy. This one smells like it came from an animal (even though I know it is a vegan accord). It’s animalistic odor combined with old mushrooms, not the sweet, soft, pillowy white musk I’m used to. I know natural musks are far more “dirty” than their synthetic counterparts and I wonder if Suc’s white musk note is one that’s closer in smell to a natural musk than the synthetics I’m used to.
Also just as a note. While this is not as indolic as Chloroform is it’s still quite indolic. If Chloroform didn’t work for you this scent is probably a pass. On a similar note if you loved Chloroform this one is probably right up your alley.
Verdict: Swap.
Three Eyed Raven
In the bottle: Dark cocoa and an almost floral lemon. A little musky, almost.
Wet on my skin: Rapidly anosmic to the chocolate - only getting the faintest hints of it. I say anosmic because i can’t imagine it fading this fast. Mostly getting that really complex lemon - it’s almost more of like a lemon flower than lemon itself. I really like it. That thing I was reading as musky is sorta like a nectar.
Drydown: There’s a scent in there almost like a leaf - like it reminds me of mint without the kind of iciness of mint. I like it because it doesn’t go heavily into the green territory I’m used to. It reminds me a lot of tonka/coumarin. At this point I’m getting almost zero chocolate aside from some edge chocolate in the throw. But I really like this… slightly lemony, nectary, floral.
After 30 mins: Still very little chocolate except for maybe like a cocoa butter/tonka vibe and faint edges of cocoa powder. Lemon and kind of that nectary, mint-leaf-ish smell.
Official Notes: Freshly squeezed lemon, fresh lemon verbena, fancy dark chocolate
Ah! The kind of floral, kind of leaf-y smell I’m getting must be the verbena (I really like it!). The dark chocolate might be a combo of a cocoa note and a cocoa butter note.
Verdict: Probably not an upgrade because I don’t know if what I’m smelling it what others are smelling. I really, really like that verbena though. I’ll probably keep the sample and keep my eyes peeled for other verbena scents from Suc.
In the bottle: I didn’t recall the notes for this until I opened the bottle and they hit me like a wave. Leather, fig, vanilla are all the ones I recall - though I’d be surprised if a Tyrion scent didn’t have a wine note. In the bottle the first thing is the leather - it’s the same one in Mother of Dragons. Very realistic and not acrid - but a little dry, like suede. Mingling with that is a rich vanilla - it might even be the same vanilla from Sansa that smelled kinda rubbery to me there. But here anything ‘rubbery’ is blending with Sucreabeille’s rich, earthy, slightly green fig note. The whole perfume smells sweet, kind of moist, and a little grubby (in a good way). There’s something cloying in there that I could see being a wine note, or just part of the fig. I’m also getting a kind of musty note - old books? Or that might just be me projecting the character onto the perfume.
Wet on my skin: Leather and something like very dry parchment. It’s a bit odd since this perfume smelled so damp and sweet in the bottle. It’s still grounded in the earthiness of the fig and there is some of that cloying-sweet fruitiness-mixed-with-vanilla at the edges.
Drydown: So what’s strongest in the throw (and boy howdy does it have a throw, could smell it with my hand completely at my side while walking around the house) is the leather with edges of vanilla and fig.
Closer to the skin the fig starts to dominate (though the leather is still present). The fig is almost piquant and a little green - enough for me to wonder if there is indeed a wine note in there adding some of that brightness. The vanilla in this blends heavily with the leather, adding a bit of sweetness to it. In the midnotes there’s a peppery, dry, papery scent.
At this point it honestly reminds me of the leather saddle on a horse… with a bit of the dusty, mammalian smell of the horse. That’s probably the best way to describe the scent in fact: it smells like a saddle on a horse with its saddle bags laden with fruit and dry, almost peppery, parchment.
After 30 mins: Similar to the drydown but with a touch more cloying sweetness and a little more of the peppery, papery scent. In some ways this reminds me of a more masculine, leather-infused counterpart to Sucreabeille’s Arsenic with how the fruit plays out.
Official Notes: Tahitian vanilla, juicy fig, freshly tanned leather.
So the vanilla is the sweetness at the edges melding with the leather. Speaking of the leather: the expanded notes (the long description) mention old books - so I think there’s a bit more to the leather than the short notes mention. Because I’m definitely getting something peppery-and-papery that I don’t associate with leather on its own. The fig is the entirety of the fruit and it plays out really complexly in this scent. It isn’t boozy or obviously ‘wine’ (as shown by my waffling throughout the scent on if there’s a wine note or not) but it is piquant, green, and earthy - contributing to both the topnotes (via bright fruitiness) and the base notes (via fig’s innate earthiness).
Verdict: Hey old book sniffers. I know you’re out there. My review of Little and Grim’s Footfalls let me know you’re always excited for more old book smells. Here’s another old book smell. I like the leather in this, and like the fruit - but the papery, peppery scent here is not my thing but I think it will be yours, old book sniffers. It’s a pass for me, but, I think, another win for the old book sniffers club.
In the bottle: Creamy, sweet booze with an edge of dirt. I remember the dirt note from the official description - but not the rest. But hey! I’m digging this contrast of sweet cream with dirt. It smells like the fanciest spiced, spiked eggnog served while you sit outdoors on the ground.
Wet on my skin: Dirt is a bit more forward, a bit more sharp. Still spiked eggnog with dirt though. Like, I don’t know how much this screams Varys The Spider to me but it does kinda scream Rustic Winter at Christmastime. You could call this scent Hillbilly Santa and I’d be like ‘Oh yeah, dead on. Perfect’.
Drydown: While I loved this while wet it morphed on me during the drydown. The sweet parts went really, really, sweet. The rich, creamy nuances died back. The spices went from smelling ‘spiced’ to smelling ‘medicinal’. The dirt stayed about the same. Perhaps it’s adding a little bit of potting soil sharpness that’s blending with the medicinal smell.
After 30 mins: At this point the scent is strong cloying sweetness, layered over some rich creaminess, layered over heliotrope, layered over a touch of potting soil. All of the complex parts of the scent have vanished on me and what’s left is kinda disappointing.
Official Notes: rich chocolate, patchouli, freshly whipped buttercream, peasant dirt.
Okay - so, cracking open this bottle again I can see where the chocolate is - it’s what smells boozy in this and adds that kind of rich roundedness I associate with eggnog. It’s not a heavily ‘cocoa’ chocolate - and more like a… chocolate flavored booze. The patchouli must be what was adding the spiced feeling to this - but as it dried down more and more it marched towards a much more dry, heliotrope smelling scent. The buttercream is the cream - as it wears it kind of… separates? Into a kind of ultra sweet vanilla that’s at a different ‘level’ of the scent than the cream. The dirt is the dirt.
This morphed really hard on me - I don’t know if it was a lack of stabilizers or if it’s just my skin chemistry. But I loved this wet - it’s a really good scent wet!
Verdict: I was all ready to upsize based on how the scent smelled wet. Was sitting there like that picture of the woman with the numbers spinning around her head trying to figure out how to do a single scent purchase before the 18th. With how it morphed though… alas, it is not for me. I’d really like to see a slightly reformulated version of this come back in the future with a little more stability to it! For the time being I’ll keep my sample for scent locket experimentation.

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