At first, I wasn't going to review my Conjure Oils' Mixtape September: The Death of Summer Tracklist
, since the collection was sold out by the time my decants got to me (I waited too long to send my decants back, not Ajevie's fault). However, when Vajra mentioned in a Facebook post
that the scents are all still available until the end of the year and can be bought if you email her, I decided to go ahead and review these scents in case anyone's thinking of getting them.
This is my 3rd Conjure Oils review and for my previous reviews, you can click on the Conjure Oils tag on the side or here
For this review, I'm reviewing all 10 scents from The Death of Summer collection, as well as Fall in Love, a standalone limited edition scent. All the scents from The Death of Summer collection are named after a song, so I've linked the song in the titles of each scent review. As usual, reviews are done blind until the TL;DR's written. If anything in the notes surprise me, I write an overview.
"Tonka bean, Indian patchouli, cinnamon, orange blossom, black currant and wildflower honey."
This is a gorgeous honey scent! It's on of those honey notes that would be on a high key if it's a music note. It's not piercing though, though that part can be subjective. There's definitely citrus in this, but the citrus is more like a candied clementines sort of sweet, mellowed citrus. It's not the fresh, zing-y citrus. This floral-citrus honey scent makes me think of one of those gourmet honeys that are flavoured with all sorts of fruits/herbs/flowers/spices to the point where it can be a standalone dessert. There's also a slight creamy nut scent mixed into it, which sometimes smells a bit waxy. Not sure if the waxy part is deliberate.
Definitely a scent that makes you feel like prancing in fields with a picnic basket packed by a Michelin star café. I was kinda surprised when I heard the song since if I'm picking a song for this, it'll be an uplifting, happy country music sort of song. First song that came to my mind was Kacey Musgraves' Follow Your Arrow
, which is awesome song you should check out if you haven't. Oh, and the photo to accompany this has to be this:
|We can blame the dog for the waxy smell.|
Gorgeous photography by Celine Bissat
Oh wow, I would never have guessed there's patchouli in this because it's so quiet. If you hate patchouli, don't worry, it's not a loud note you can sniff out.
"The recollection of a fading dream: vanilla cream, Mirabella plum, Parma violet, ruby pomegranate, clove and a drop of ginger."
A scary savoury sour broth smell erupted as soon as I opened the bottle, which freaked me out. I tried it on my skin anyway and well...you know how something can smell crap in the bottle but smell great on your skin? That's what I thought would happen when I got the initial burst of violets on my skin, but this sour chilli scent took over literally seconds later.
I smell a soapy, waxy sort of violet floating up, but the star player in this scent is that sour chilli pepper that makes me think of Tom Yum instant noodles.
Thai instant noodles with a spicy-sour broth + soapy, waxy violets.
Another one of Conjure Oils' scents, Slasher Chic, also turned into this Tom Yum instant noodles scent too. Unfortunately, Slasher Chic's notes is completely useless for figuring out which note's to blame:
"The waters of Camp Crystal Lake, the steamy hiss of a boiler room and a dark Halloween night of crisp leaves and doom."
Maybe it's the ginger?
Update Sep 30, 2015:
The scent is less savoury now. Once the scent settles after about 5 min, it's a much better version of the scent 9 months ago. It's still definitely really peppery, but it's a more wearable sort of peppery scent. It smells like gorgeous, soapy violets with a green pepper spice. It's really clean and poised, and I can see this scent on a sharp woman who's flying up the career leather dressed in tailored pant suits. It's still not for me, but I can see women who prefer more masculine scents liking this.
"Delicate hummingbird attracting blossoms, honey incense, amber cream, spiced myrrh and white tea."
On the bottle, I got that game-y incense note NAVA loves to use but on my skin...woww. It's a clean, salty & spicy sort of scent. The spicy part initially tingles your nose the way pure chilli powder does but that bit calms down after a few minutes. It's also not mixed with any of the sourness that often comes with spicy notes. This scent has this really unique heavier, almost musky sort of cottony baby oil and honey scent that I just love.
The cottony baby oil and honey part makes me think of serene, elegant new mothers, but the salty and spicy part of the scent just gives this scent an edginess that makes me think of an elegant young mom with a lot of steel. She'll be the type who puts the baby to sleep in between international conference calls from her very efficiently run home office. The type of woman who'll casually close a hostile takeover bid with an elegant smile before anyone finishes underestimating her.
|This is a picture I took of a family friend. As you can see, she's a gorgeous, stunning woman even though she's in her 40s in this photo. She's also the CEO of a multi-million dollar company she started on her own. Anyway, she clearly doesn't realize how beautiful she is because once, a guy about half her age stopped her and told her, "I've been following you. I think you're sooooo beautiful! Can we be friends?"|
Instead of realizing that she is probably the first woman that socially awkward guy ever attempted to pick up, her first thought was, "Ohmygod he must be trying to ROB me!"
She ran for it.
Your typical Indonesian female CEO.
Oh wow...I thought myrrh is a death-note for me, but apparently not!
"Black patchouli, pink pepper, Indian jasmine, deep sandalwood and a sultry drop of ylang ylang."
There's a dry, sour woodiness in it, and a scent that really makes me think of Indonesia. Maybe there's dragon's blood in this. It smells like going into one of those high end spas in Bali that try their best to look "traditional" by building luxurious, air-conditioned wooden huts. This is the kind of scent they'll use –woody, warm oils infused with Balinese florals (usually some combination of jasmines, ylang ylang, champaka), and of course, a faux ancient smell that's most probably from patchouli. As if scent can convince people that an air-conditioned hut is totally traditionally Indonesian and bursting with local mystic wisdom.
The dry down is that extremely dry and sour wood scent that some perfumers use as their black tea note. I don't think it's a black tea note though, since I had successes with Conjure's black tea note before. My boyfriend asked me to scrub it off since he described it at "vomit-y".
Faux traditional wooden massage hut in Indonesia.
I think it's the pink pepper causing the sourness. Patchouli, sandalwood & jasmine are often scents used for dragon's blood, so no surprises there.
Update Sep 30, 2015:
The sourness is gone! It's definitely the most beautiful, complex ylang ylang scent I've ever tried and I like it a LOT.
"Sorrowful notes of King mandarin, bergamot, juicy peach, black tea and Moroccan myrrh."
Wow, this scent is a trip. At first, I was so sure I got orange candy, then it became a bit more like a Japanese/Korean peach tea drink. Right as I started typing it up, it turned into sweet earl grey tea, with a bit of dustiness. I still smell whiffs of peaches every now and then, but it mostly blended into the tea sweetness. It makes me think of an Asian earl grey mint (which, like a lot of Asian mints, is more cool than minty), that comes with some fruity flavouring.
Asian fruity earl grey mint.
While I'm waffling on getting this in full-size, I have to say that this black tea note is one of my favourite tea notes.
"Dark chocolate, woodsmoke, toasted marshmallow and aged vanilla extract."
Omg, this is so delicious! Actual chocolate and marshmallows! That doesn't smell artificial or plasticky! Omg, LOVE. Unfortunately, I raved too soon. As the scent wears on, there's times when the scent is on the verge of developing a plasticky oil (think sunblock left out for too long) scent. My skin behaved though, so it stayed mostly smelling of s'mores, with just a hint of plasticky oil. I'm definitely nervous about getting this in full-size though. I had another s'mores scent, Alchimia Apothecary's Gimme S'more, and that did NOT age well at all. After a few months, it became straight up plastic and old oils, with hints of woodiness. I had to swap it. I'm definitely worried this would age badly as well.
S'mores with a hint of plasticky oil.
Update Sep 30, 2015:
After 9 months of aging, the plasticky part is gone! It's now delicious marshmallows and chocolates, with just hints of graham crackers that could be from the woodsmoke. I love it!
"Pink grapefruit, delphinium, pink calla lily and crimson dragon's blood."
I smell cool, elegant florals like lillies or gardenia. There's a bit of woodiness in this too, but it's very, very subtle and blends really well with the florals. The scent has a bit of a powderiness to it, but it's more of a clean, light and cool sort of powderiness. If I'm picking an ad for it, it's definitely this one:
|There's something about this scent that makes me think of a grey, white and blue colour palette. And definitely something high fashion.|
Gorgeous photography by Katherline Lydia
It's a scent that's florid yet tastefully elegant as well, it's just so high fashion.
High fashion cool, florals with hints of powder and wood.
I definitely could not have guessed those notes since pink grapefruit isn't something I expect in a scent so elegant. Dragon's blood often has wood in the blend, so that's probably causing the woody scent.
"Serpentine blue musk, salty sea air, bioluminescent blossoms and sapphire amber."
This is a very subtle floral blue. Definitely smells more like a high end perfume rather than a roomspray. Something was threatening to go sour on me at first, but my skin behaved and the scent went amazing. It might be something to watch out for though. This scent makes me think of delicate flowers lying on crystalline clear water.
|It's such a clear, elegant scent.|
Gorgeous photography by Anastasia Ri, she has so many pretty macro works!
It's not too sweet and really has a clear water quality to it. I think I may have to revisit BathSabbath's Holy Diver because this scent can upstage it to become my favourite blue scent! It's such a clean, elegant & sophisticated blue.
TL;DR: Flowers on crystalline clear water.
"Toasted black tobacco, oud, aged vanilla resin, roasted almonds and kush."
Whoa. The first thing that exploded was caramelized cough syrup, but it soon calmed down. It's definitely a heavy, warm and sweet scent, like caramel popcorn that's overdone and kinda burnt. There's also this sour, smoked woody scent that makes me think of how an old saloon in one of those Wild West films would smell like –wood, chewed tobacco, lingering brash sweetness of cheap perfume. The only thing missing is the scent of spilled booze.
|Add a sepia filter to make it look old.|
Image courtesy of wallpaperup.com
TL;DR: Western film saloon selling overly burnt popcorn instead of booze during Prohibition.
Overview: I wonder if the slightly bitter, medicinal bit at first is the almonds?
Update Sep 30, 2015: Oh wow. The burnt part is gone, and now it's gorgeous boozy caramel with slightly sour tobacco. The tobacco part lightens the scent and makes it more unique, but I'm still not a fan. I wish it's just the boozy caramel, because it's beautiful!
"Delicious passionate torture: Wildberry, anise, cinnamon, orange blossom, Haitian vetiver, sandalwood, blood cedar and vanilla."
Ok, there's a cloying fruity scent that smells like kids' fruity flavoured cough syrup (to all medicine manufacturers out there, you're not fooling anyone! They taste like crap. The only advantage is that it strongly discourages kids from faking illnesses). Luckily the fruity scent disappears after about 3-5 min, and now I'm getting this woody scent that smells almost peanut like. There's still a cinnamon candy (like Red Hots) type of cinnamon scent in it. I like the woody peanut but, but the Red Hots type of cinnamon is my least favourite type of cinnamon, so I'm not sure about this scent.
The scent it leaves lingering on your skin is gorgeous though! It's a creamy cinnamon and fruity sort of scent.
Peanut-like wood with Red Hots cinnamon.
I'm really not sure what combination is creating that peanut-like scent.
Fall In Love
"Envelope yourself in the soft and sultry, where the love of fall and the falling of love collide: sugared fig, black amber incense, toasted coconut, crisp autumn leaves and a slathering of oud."
Oh wow this is complicated. There's something peppery that's the first note that hits you, but then there's creamy coconut with some sweet perfumed water sort of scent. The coconut is an actual shaved coconut scent, not sunblock, so I'm really in love with it. I really like this scent. Floating up, you get this sophisticated sort of sweet scent with a hint of something peppery, and underneath, there's that filling scent of coconuts that make your stomach feel happy.
Sophisticated perfume with filling coconuts underneath.
I should be able to identify fig by now, but somehow, I always identify it as perfumed/sweet water. Nose fail.