Thursday, October 10, 2019

Nocturne Alchemy Halloween 2019 - Part Two

Hey y'all! Gonna dive right into these scents, today I'm reviewing the Resurgence scents that I have from the Nocturne Alchemy Halloween LC release. If you'd like to read my reviews of the new releases I chose, you can click here.  NAlloween has always, and likely always will, be my favorite Limited Collection they do! I have so many treasures in my Halloween box.
Scarlet Bat - Red Sugar, Crimson Musk, Black Tea Leaves, Neroli-sugar, and NA Black Patchouli Absolute. Okay, my friend Heather picked this one up before I did last year, and she fell head over heels for it. I was already eying it, because I had two previous Vampire Patchouli Bats that I loved, and it had Crimson in it. It had to be a gimme. Like this year's Vampire Bourbon Patchouli Bat, it was a stunner right out of the mail - and it's only gotten better as it ages. Seriously, it's utterly fabulous. Slinky and sexy, and I think even if you ordinarily don't like patchouli, you might find yourself surprised by this one. Put simply, this is sugared red musk and patchouli. Crimson is a softer red musk than Kashmir, but there's almost a spiciness to it. This just warms up on the skin and reaches out, pulls you in. I crave this one when I haven't worn it in a while. For me, my two favorites of the Vampire Patchouli Bats are the Bourbon, and Scarlet. Neither is to be missed. And I don't find it to be like anything I have in my collection, either.
V by Thoth - Incense, Sweetened spices of Cardamom, Cinnamon, Allspice and clove swirled with Vanilla pods, Ghost Musk and Copal Resin. V was a fan favorite last year - and for good reason. It's part of a set of 7 perfumes, each one designed by a House of NA perfumer. I remembered that I have another favorite Halloween perfume that Thoth did: Frank's Monster. I love that one, so I was pretty excited when I saw V was done by Thoth, too. Y'all, I have a lot of incense perfumes. They're something I just can't resist. Okay, confession time: I did love this one, I thought it was a beautiful perfume, but I didn't really get it until I pulled it back out after aging it over the year. I thought I perhaps had similar perfumes...well. I was wrong. I tried it again a few weeks ago, when the weather started to cool down here in Florida, and it absolutely floored me. It was like I was experiencing a whole new perfume - this is positively SPECTACULAR. Very, very different from my other incense perfumes, and it might just be my favorite yet. I don't know what Ghost Musk is, but if it's that beautiful musk I'm smelling here, I could go for a full 10ml bottle of it. It reminds me a bit of Egyptian Musk, but not quite as sweet - very clean, and very appealing - floaty. I think that's it, and if so....Y'ALL, PLEASE MAKE THIS I WANT IT! Hahaha. I think I might like Ghost Musk better than Cemetery Musk, and I love that one too. Anyway - I'm dwelling. This is balanced against a light incense, and the spices are very much in the background, just a nice warm hum of support. But the copallll. I'm sure everyone knows copal rules my world, when we discuss favorite notes. It adds a lovely smoky, slightly sweet depth to this. I'm fully mesmerized. Thoth has outdone himself. I think this is backup worthy. So, a lesson to be had here, and one I realize quite often - if you don't really love something, put it aside for a while, and see what happens when you return to it. And I want to reiterate, I really did like this - but I didn't see, last year, what I was supposed to see with it - aging it and trying it when the weather was a little cooler and dryer really changed my perspective of it, and now it's become an obsession and a Halloween favorite. If you were looking at this one and wondering if you need it - let me ask, do you like musk and incense? If so, you'd better run and get this before it goes away.
The Mummy Returns - Patchouli, Vetiver, Australian Sandalwood, Cardamom, Frankincense, Myrrh, Rock Rose, Labdanum, Siam Benzoin and Tonka Bean. I made a little mistake, and it's the first time I've ever done this. I usually have a solid idea of what I have in my boxes, particularly my Halloween box, but I ordered The Mummy Returns this year thinking I missed it last year, but after my order came in, I was digging into my Halloween box and pulled aged bottle of The Mummy Returns. Yep. So I'll be putting up my new one for swap. At any rate, it just really proved to me about the differences aging makes in Nocturne Alchemy's perfumes, so I kind of enjoyed realizing the contrasts! The Mummy Returns is a resin lover's dream. It's a deep, dark, witchy scent. I love the balance between the sweeter notes, like the myrrh and cardamom, and the woods. I'm writing this based on my aged bottle, and it's just so....well, at the risk of sounding dramatic, it's deep and mystical, and I'll probably be using this for my rituals, I feel such a connection to it. I couldn't tell you how, but it's something I've smelled before - there's some memory I haven't tapped into yet. I find it to be comfortingly familiar, but at the same time, it feels solemn and sacred. If you are nervous of vetiver, as I am sometimes, it's not a note that stands out a lot here, I can barely discern it when I'm huffing at my wrists. So yes, The Mummy Returns is quite an intense experience for me, but I definitely would recommend this in a heartbeat if you, too, love resinous, woody scents with a little sweetness to them. It's a beautiful perfume. It lasts quite a long time on the skin, too - more than eight hours, and I would say it's on the stronger side, so try it sparingly at first, unless you love to slather like I do.
A Change of Heart Copal Resin, Shiraz Wine accord, Kashmir Absolute, Indian Oudh, Leather accord and burning embers. This bottle actually was gifted to me by my friend Heather. When I first got it, the leather seemed a little loud on my skin - and that made me nervous, because I was thinking it would be more like Hokum, which is a snuggly, sueded leather. But I figured I'd put it away, and let it age - and it would probably balance itself out. Well, that's exactly what happened. This is one of those scents that you can identify the various notes, if you're familiar enough with them - but they compliment each other so well, they're seamless together. It's definitely a chilly day scent, I did try to wear it in the summer and I don't recommend that - it just doesn't do well in the humidity of Florida. But it's great throughout fall and winter - like the leather in Hokum, this is a snuggly, easy to wear leather, and the copal, wine, and red musk of Kashmir just meld together so well. The wine is sweet, and a nice foil - definitely not a sharp note. I do love the way NA does their wine notes. I'm actually kind of wanting to pick up She Could Raise The Dead, which also features a wine and leather combination - reviews are really intriguing for that, too. And I have totally fallen for both Hokum and A Change Of Heart, so I think I might need it! The copal is of course my favorite note ever - it's a little sweet, sticky, and resinous - and also a bit smoky. This really accentuates the smoky oudh when it starts to shine in long drydown. I'm not sure I am doing this one justice - it really is unusual, and striking. Leather was a death note for me previous to NA - I simply could not wear it. If I tried to put on a perfume that had leather as a note, it would take over on my skin - and I couldn't get away from it. But these soft leathers (vegan, by the way!) that Nocturne  Alchemy uses are very wearable for me, and I really am enjoying being able to wear it!
Pirate Rum - Bay Rum and a Chypre of Lavender, Chamomile, Pirate Ship Cedarwood and Siberian Fir Needle with a touch of French Vanilla and Oak. I got this one for my fiance, as the notes reminded me a bit of his beloved Ghost Ship. I can only give you a brief impression of this as to how it smells on him, but I thought someone might be interested in hearing that, so I'm including it! So on him, the bay rum is a nice, round spicy scent. If you're thinking Old Spice, push that right out of your head - this is dark and sexy, and nothing like that old standby. Much more complex and well done. The woods in this are the perfect balance against the bay rum, and the chypre is clean, but not at all feminine, so don't let that lavender scare you. I love this on him. Long drydown is a deep, warm spice against weathered, well aged wood. Very appealing! I tried a drop on me, and it's very different with my skinistry. I get a lot more of the chypre and chamomile, the spice of the bay rum is sedated a bit. I think it might come out more with age, if you wanted to wear it as a unisex scent, though. It is there, it's just not as evident as it was on him. The wood notes are gorgeous - I loooove that fir and cedarwood against the slightly herbal chypre on me. I will say, I much prefer this on him right now.
And a bonus - Halloween 2020, which was given out as a sample with orders for this release. It's also available in the All Hallows' Eve section as part of the Permanent Collection, so if you love this, you can even get a big 10ml bottle! Notes: A special All Hallows’ Eve blend of  7 Sandalwoods (Hawaiian, Indian, Australian, New Caledonia, Indian Santalum Album, Karnataka Sandalwood, African Sandalwood (Baphia Nitida), Cardamom essential oil, Clove essential oil, Bourbon Vanille Absolute, Bastet Amber Absolute, smoked sandalwood infused with oak and pine smoke in the NA Studio. There was also a beautiful frosted black bottle, a special edition, along with Halloween 2018 and Halloween 2019, in frosted red and orange bottles, in the Halloween LCs this year. I had a feeling I was going to love this one right away - and I do. SEVEN. SANDALWOODS. 7, y'all! Now this will likely change and get even better with age, but my first impression of this? It is like a sister scent to Bastet Halloween 2016, which is one of my favorite PC scents. The spices in that definitely have a similar feel to the cardamom and clove in Halloween 2020, and of course the presence of Bastet Amber, one of my soul scents, is a star here, too. But those sandalwoods. So smooth. I'm making my way through that 2ml sample alarmingly quickly. Right now I'm not getting much of the smoke on my skin, but the clove starts out a little strongly when it's first applied. Once it warms up and sinks into my skin though, the other notes come out to play, and the clove sinks into the background to add a little spicy kick with the warmth of the cardamom. Beautiful for fall, truly. Brings to mind blue, blue skies, bright leaves, wispy white clouds. A fluffy scarf wrapped around your neck as you explore a farmer's market. That's the picture I have in my head when I huff at my wrist. I'll be reaching for this frequently. I can't really differentiate all the sandalwoods, but the blending of them reminds me just a bit of my beloved Pyramid Santalum. I think if you wanted more smoke, you could layer this with Titanosaurus - or if you wanted to really play up the sandalwoods, you could add even more Santalum or Pyramid Santalum, or Pteranodon. Hey, never enough sandalwood, am I right?
 And that wraps up the second half of my NAlloween choices.  Did you read the first half? What perfumes did you choose from this release? What are your favorites? I'm thinking about going back for one or two more, there are so many that caught my eye!

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