Monday, September 23, 2019

4 Sucreabeille Reviews: Alembic + Bezoar + Distillate + Quicksilver

My intro today is going to be brief by necessity. My keyboard has been malfunctioning which, as someone who writes, is a real teeth-grinder of a problem let me tell you. I have a fix coming, but it will be here tomorrow and I want to get this set up tonight... so brevity it is!
Originally I was going to run another set of reviews... but then my keyboard started just... not registering key strokes on certain keys and I opted for a shorter review set. So I'm kinda pacing some Sucreabeille reviews closer together than I'd like to... but when life gives you lemons you rearrange your review queue so you only have to spend four reviews worth of time with said keyboard-lemons.
The Perfumes covered in today's review are:

All perfumes in this review were allowed to rest for several days ( see intro for amount of time) 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, honeysuckle Meyer's Clean Day or almond/citrus 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). Sometimes I wear scented hair products simultaneously. 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
You can see my review of Sucreabeille's 10ml bottles [ here ].
A reminder: Each nose is different and each skin’s chemistry is different. Your mileage may vary.
In the bottle: Spicy, smoky, wet leather. Perhaps some tobacco in there? Also getting something sweet in that gourmand-creamy-sugary way. Dark brown and a little animalistic and musky.
Wet on my skin: Buttery, salty toffee and a floral? It’s hard to pick out exactly what’s in there beyond the toffee. I’m getting that touch of leather near the base and a bit of smoky tobacco near the edges. Also some of that ‘wet’ note that’s hard to place. Maybe some pumpkin in there too?
Basically there’s topnotes of salty, sugary buttery toffee scent (might even be a cookie note), something that smells very much like a subtle floral, a bit of what reminds me of pumpkin (it’s certainly vegetable in nature), then wet leather with a tiny touch of smoke.
It’s a very strong scent and I’m definitely going anosmic to portions of it - I just picked up the bottle and couldn’t smell much beyond the salty-sweet gourmand smell. After doing a nasal palate cleanser (huffing a pillow for a few minutes) I was able to make out the darker/smokier/leathery smells in the scent.
Drydown: As the scent dries down some it becomes a tiny bit less potent (still packs a wallop) so I’m no longer anosmic to portions of it! I think!
At the forefront of the scent I get salt, smoke, and maybe a touch of tobacco. The salt is potent enough in this to be almost chemical. It’s like, Salt with a capital S. There’s an edge of what seems floral but it’s hard to put my finger on.
Beneath the salt and smoke are some gourmand scents - something vegetable (pumpkin, I’d guess, and something creamy-sweet. At the base is that dark brown leather, decay-sweet, almost animalistic-musky scent. I wouldn’t be surprised if there’s some nag champa in this or a black musk.
There’s also a lick of spices in there somewhere.
After 30 mins: Very similar to the drydown. Still very strong - scent cloud starts a good four inches out and the throw on this is pretty strong.
The salt is still very forward, perhaps a touch less overwhelming, and I feel like I’m getting a bit more spice. The midnotes seem about the same - though, one midnote I keep failing to mention is paired with the creamy sweet scent is something a bit astringent - almost like a coffee note maybe, or maybe it’s just some of the leather note from the base coming through.
Overall, salty-to-the-point-of-seeming-slightly-chemical, smoky, spicy, gourmand, and then dark almost-animalistic base notes paired with leather.
Official Notes: Sweet pumpkin souffle dotted with marshmallows and drizzled with buttery maple syrup. Tuberose wafts through the open front door.
Well, all right. Let’s go by note section.
In the topnotes I have no idea what’s so salty, but it’s popcorn levels of salty to my nose. The maple syrup is probably adding that astringency and some of the smokiness. It’s sweet in that nose-tingly way. The tuberose is that faint floral, and probably was adding some of that decay-sweetness from its indolic properties. The gourmand midnotes are the pumpkin souffle (the spice and pumpkin notes) and the marshmallows are where that creamy-sweetness comes from. The open front door is probably the dark base note I thought was leather - if it accounts for a wood note. I have no clue what’s giving this a bit of an animalistic twist other than it leaning dark. Could be the maple, could be part of the pumpkin souffle accord.
Verdict: Another dark gourmand. If you liked Suc’s Alchemist, this one struck me as Alchemist But More So. Not my thing - it’s very strongly salty-sweet and that tiny decay note is not my jam - but for lovers of Alchemist and dark gourmands that lean salty it might be worth a spin.
In the bottle: Sweet, with a lightly-indolic floral and a waxy smell that honestly reminds me of the smell of hair. Appropriate for a bezoar scent, I suppose. There’s also a hint of that kind of toffee-sweetness that gourmands have before they open up on the skin. I think I also recall this having a vanilla note?
Wet on my skin: Vanilla ice cream, a lightly-indolic floral, that waxy smell (which is now combining with a kind of coconut smelling gourmand) and a kind of almond-nutty-earthy smell at the base.
Drydown: Almond or pistachio ice cream with a bit of caramel sauce and a mildly-indolic flower on the side adding a touch of sweet-decay-smell. Creamy, sweet, very sugary, nutty, and dark with that kiss of indole-smell making things quite cloying to my nose.
After 30 mins: Very similar to the drydown with perhaps a touch less of that indolic note… but otherwise yep, nut ice cream with some caramel and a floral in there.
Official Notes: A rich, decadent gourmand of double salted caramel, marzipan, and coumarin, with a dash of old teakwood.
So I get the double salted caramel, the marzipan is where that strong almond smell is coming from (and probably what I was reading as ice cream. The coumarin in this must be what smells like an indolic floral verging on a decay note - it’s beyond the usual ‘nutty vanilla’ note I associate with tonka… and someone told me recently that in sufficient concentrations coumarin can start to smell like sweet, drying-but-still-wet hay. Which, yep, this smells like.
I don’t get much of the teakwood - it’s maybe a faint woodiness near the base of the scent that adds some darkness. Perhaps that’s what smelled waxy to me early on in the scent?
Verdict: Not my thing. Passing on my bottle. Fans of dark gourmands and marizpan/nut ice cream might like this one though - particularly if they like high concentrations of coumarin.
In the bottle: Herbal in a way that says ‘MINT!’ to me, but I’m suspicious because lately I’ve been reading some lavenders as minty. The peppermint scent is layered over a scent that reminds me of a spiced herbal tea. There might also be a hint of bergamot or something in there. Bright, clean in that minty way, and kind of creamy.
Wet on my skin: Spiced herbal tea - reminds me of the pumpkin tea I drink sometimes in the fall. Edge of that minty smell and then… a hard to identify spicy-herbal smell that kind of reminds me some of the smell of human body odor and a little bit of patchouli. There’s something a little sour in here as well that reminds me of wormwood.
Drydown: Okay, so, Weird Observation Time. To me this smells really spicy and kind of sour and bitter in a way that reminds me of human body odor. To my husband it smelled exactly like a fresh baked cinnamon bun with cream cheese icing. I can sort of see where he is coming from, but for me that bitter odor in there keeps it from smelling like a food and frankly makes it kind of stinky. I wonder if I’m smelling something he can’t or if he’s smelling something I can’t. Regardless this will probably be a divisive scent depending on if you get that bitter note or not.
For me it’s spices, wormwood-sourness, a bitter-sharp note, and a bit of herbal tea.
After 30 mins: Still about the same for me. In the interest of Science I had my husband sniff it again. He said that it smells spicy now, like a cinnamon soap to him.
Official Notes: Bright, gleaming metals shine against a familiar background of oranges, cloves, and cinnamon.
So, the herbal tea smell is the oranges - which in this lean more towards a bergamot. The cloves and cinnamon are the spices. The metal accord must be what smells bitter-sharp to me and kind of soapy to my husband.
Verdict: Not for me - going to pass on my sample. I hope most people get the cinnamon-roll smell my husband initially got from it.
In the bottle: Spiced lemon, a kind of buttery note, white musk with a white floral edge. Very ‘clean’ smelling and mildly sweet. Unlike the other alchemist florals I’ve tried this one lacks an indolic edge. It still leans dark, powerful, and spicy like much of the collection.
Wet on my skin: Topnotes of lemony greenery, a white floral, and dark spices over a woody base note. It is broadly buttery/musky smelling but I can’t tell if that’s a gourmand or a musk. I suppose the drydown will tell.
Drydown: Lemony greenery and clove spiced honey layered over dark wood. Still a bit musky but I’m willing to chalk the musk up to the honey. Very rich, thick, and dark - like a bowl of black wood filled with honey at midnight while you wave some lemon verbena nearby.
After 30 mins: Still midnight honey offering to the Fall Goddess. Slightly musky lemony greenery, honey, spices and then the woody notes. It could ‘just’ be a woody note, or it might be two notes… it kind of reminds me of the smell of acorns. Something like acorns and dark wood.
Official Notes: Pumpkin spice incense, bright pink peppercorns, an early dusting of snow.
Well, okay! Interesting! So the pink peppercorns must be what I was reading as lemon verbena - very bright and peppery. The buttery-musky note that kind of reminded me of acorns and dark wood is the pumpkin spice incense accord. That early dusting of snow accord must be where I’m getting a white floral note early on and a honey note later on (that or the honey is part of the pumpkin spice incense accord.
Verdict: Torn on this one on whether I’m going to keep my bottle or not. I do like the midnight-black spiced honey scent the pumpkin spice incense took, and the brightness of the peppercorns… I just wish this scent had some more piquant topnotes to balance out all the dark heavy notes. Of the four I’ve tried today it’s probably my favorite of the four of them but I honestly don’t know how often I’d wear it.

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