Friday, March 8, 2019

Nocturne Alchemy Valentine Mini-Reviews

Hey, y'all. I know it's cutting it close to when this collection goes down, so I want to make sure these reviews go up today. They've extended the deadline until Monday, so if something sounds appealing to you, there's still a little time! 
I recently did a little swap for Candied Egyptian Musk, and my swap mate kindly sent along a few decants from the current update for me to try out as well. And as an extra, I've got my bottle of Vanilla Wedding Cake that I haven't yet reviewed. I got my swap on Monday, and they definitely needed a little rest, so I wanted to give them enough time to recover to be able to properly review them.
So let's jump right to the full bottle, from the Candied line. I was really interested in these, they honestly all sounded very appealing, but I was most interested in the two musks, Candied Crimson, and Candied Egyptian Musk. And I was having a difficult time narrowing it down, so this little swap took the indecision away for me! Big thanks to Hannah! When I first got them, I am just like everyone else, I cannot resist for the life of me opening them straight away and sniffing. Okay, let me be totally honest, even swiping a bit on for quick testing. I could smell in the bottle that Candied Egyptian Musk was gorgeous, really appealing, but when I went to test it, it was pretty travel shocked. Here's a perfect example of why we shouldn't toss these into the nope pile the day you get them, because on my skin, it turned pretty powdery, and I couldn't get a handle on it - smelled nothing like the bottle. Luckily, I've learned not to give up on these out of hand, because even on day two it was powdery. I set it aside, and tried to be patient. Wednesday night though I put on my sweater that I wear when it's chilly, and caught a whiff of something pretty glorious on the cuff of my sleeve. I realized it was Candied Egyptian Musk, and I was SO glad to get an idea of what it would properly smell like with rest! Eeee! (SO. MANY. EXCLAMATION. POINTS. Sorry, y'all. I'll try to restrain myself.) Ahahaha, moving on. Here's the notes: Victorian-style Sugar-Candied perfumes infused with Lime Zest, aged Orange slices, Raspberry Essence, Pear Essence, Sugar Accord, Lemon Zest, Vanilla Extract, Pink Sugar, Bourbon Vanille Absolute, Crystalline Absolute and Vanilla Bean. Using Absolute versions from the Studio Limited Originals. Candied Egyptian Musk: Candied Accord with Egyptian Musk Absolute. So in the bottle, I get a big waft of citrus - yum! I love their citrus notes. Very realistic. A little sugary note floats along with it, and at the base, their Egyptian Musk. Wet on my skin, the fruits are accented by a touch of vanilla and sugar, I'm definitely getting sugar rimmed fruit, with a little creaminess. The Egyptian Musk comes out to play a few minutes in. I love the Studio Limited scent, it's a soft, beautiful, clean, tranquil musk that floats fairly close to the skin, but obvious enough that I get a lot of compliments from people when I'm wearing it. Here, it's really beautifully paired with the candied fruit. I am loving where this is heading! Once this is fully settled into my skin, this isn't a strong scent. It lasts a long time for me, I definitely get a full day's wear from it, but it stays about as close to the skin as the SL does - which is soft, for sure, but it leaves a sort of trailing scent, not as personal of a skin scent as for instance Bastet Amber. The fruits are pretty melded with the sugar and vanillas, I don't get a clear reading on what the fruits are now, but they're a lovely, obviously juicy mix of fruit, sweetened with sugar and "cream".  I wasn't sure how these would all play together with the accenting notes, but the Candied accord is a lovely accent to Egyptian Musk, neither overwhelms the other. Instead, they give you a really beautiful, different tone to a familiar scent. I can see this being something I reach for quite a bit in the warmer half of the year. 
Candied Crimson: Victorian-style Sugar-Candied perfumes infused with Lime Zest, aged Orange slices, Raspberry Essence, Pear Essence, Sugar Accord, Lemon Zest, Vanilla Extract, Pink Sugar, Bourbon Vanille Absolute, Crystalline Absolute and Vanilla Bean. Using Absolute versions from the Studio Limited Originals. Candied Accord with Crimson Egyptian Musk Absolute. I probably love Crimson as much as I love Egyptian Musk. It's somewhat stronger than its sister, but not as forward as Kashmir, their other red musk. Crimson is a red musk, and the oil is tinted a pale, almost watery red. I finally picked up a bottle last January after realizing I absolutely loved it in blends, and I would probably really enjoy having the single accord on hand - and I do. Musks are something NA does very well, and this one is no exception. If you're looking for something a little less sexy and forward, say, than Kashmir, possibly more appropriate for day wear, I would recommend it. Again, this is lovely paired with the Candied accord! I get a burst of citrus when I open the vial, and Crimson following quickly behind. As with Candied Egyptian Musk, Candied Crimson opens on the skin with the fruits - I should mention that you get a real meld of fruits on the skin, not just the citrus. It's almost like a fruit bowl, if that makes sense, with a little sugar and cream. The Crimson pairs really well right away with this. If you've ever tried Green Tea Crismson, it's a little like that, if you added Sugarcube - but obviously more fruity/creamy, with no tea. Crimson adds a bright, smooth, clean, almost softly purring musk with the candied fruit. With long drydown, the two aspects complement each other, neither one overpowering the other. This lasted a good full day on me as well. 
These two are both so good, I kind of wish I'd been able to try all of them! 
Teak & Sandalwood: Indonesian Teak Absolute, Santalum Absolute, Australian Sandalwood, Spices of Pink Pepper and Nutmeg, Ember Vanilla Cream, Butter accord, Caramel Accord, French Vanilla Bean Absolute, Vanilla Milk accord, Vanilla Orchid, Crystalline Absolute and Vanilla Sugar. Okay, this was the other sample that came along with my swap. I absolutely love the Bastet's Ice Cream accord, but these are a little different from previous incarnations - they're wood, spices, and cream. I was really curious what these would be like. I tried this on my skin, and found it to read pretty masculine. I love pepper, as well as teak and sandalwood, and I can usually pull off scents that run in the middle. I know it's just my skin, but on me, though, I tried it and it read pretty strongly towards the other way, so I decided to try this on my fiance, Jody. And oh, wow - it's absolutely mesmerizing. At first, it's a little sweet on him, which made him nervous. I'm not sure if y'all have read some of my early entries, but Jody is pretty firmly in the "I hate vanilla" camp, which is really, really rare. He does love the more resinous ones, like Ember Vanilla or OP Pakhet, though, so I made him wait a bit before darting to wash his wrists. Hah! It settled very quickly on him, and it's dead on intoxicating. The teak and sandalwood blend so beautifully with the peppers and ice cream accord, the strong wood balances with the sweetness to just envelope the senses. It's really sexy. I mean, I drool now every time he's put it on - we had errands to run both yesterday and today and I could smell him all day long. It kept my attention. The pepper adds a great little kick in the background, too. 
Vanilla Wedding Cake: Vanilla White Cake accord, Sweet Almond Elixir, Sugar Cream, Bastet’s Ice Cream Absolute and Crystalline Absolute.  I usually don't go for more foodie scents, but Bastet has really started to draw me in, just as she's done with florals. This is no exception! And it pairs well with so, so many scents. I got this last year, so mine's had plenty of time to age. This one is pretty straight forward for me, but oh, is it good. The white cake is just...yummy. Smells just like a rich, moist white cake, not too dense, not too dry. I don't get a lot of the almond on my skin, and there's a lovely, white, slightly buttery frosting. Creamy. The almond is an accent, and it's perfect here. It's actually kind of uncanny how well this is created as a perfume, it's absolutely perfectly balanced, and I can describe it as I would actually eating a slice of wedding cake. I get a long wear time from this - it will go on for a good ten hours. It's not as powerful as my well-beloved resins, but I would give this a medium throw. I wanted to see how a little more almond would smell, so I paired this with Speckle Bunny, and I am here to tell you it was a pretty amazing layering combination. I've also done it with Egyptian Peach Blossom, Coconut Milk, Pteranodon (because I have to try layering that with everything, goodness) and even Camarasaurus, which I have to say is so, so gorgeous. Honestly, I don't think, if you wanted to try it with other scents, there's much it wouldn't go with - I did it with a coffee scent, and with White Tea Vanilla - it's just extremely versatile. 
I just remembered I have a partial of Bastet's Ice Cream: Tibetan Crystalline. Santalum Absolute, Crystalline Absolute, Nag Champa Accord (Halmardi Resin, Incense, Sandalwood, Patchouli, Plumeria essence), Vanilla Crystalline Cream, Butter accord, Caramel Accord, French Vanilla Bean Absolute, Vanilla Milk accord, Vanilla Orchid, Japanese Vanille Incense accord, Crystalline Absolute and Vanilla Sugar *different NG accord for this blend than the Studio Limited Original. I don't have enough room on my skin right now to give this a proper testing and evaluation for a full review, but very quickly, this is definitely different than the SL Tibetan Crystalline. It's gorgeous, and really eye-rolling good. The creaminess of the ice cream accord is just so smooth with the nag champa! I haven't done a side by side yet, but I might even love this more than the SL. Intoxicating. I will try to come back to this tomorrow morning, if I have time, to do a more solid side by side and full description. 

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