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Thursday, December 4, 2014

Review: 11 Scents from Solstice Scents

I finally got hold of my Solstice Scents (SS) perfume samples!

SS is a company I've reviewed before, and now that I've tried 17 scents from them, here's my general review:

Perfume Oils General Review

You still have to get as close as intimate whispering distance to get the full scent of these perfumes, but you do get single notes floating up to casual conversation distance, and I still can't predict which of the single notes will go really strong. So that's a bit of a problem since sometimes, a scent smells amazing when you get close enough to whisper a secret to my wrists, but a stray note that smells horrible runs loose and assaults everyone sharing an elevator with me. By 1-2h into the scent, you have to get really close to the skin to catch a whiff.

SS is definitely good at getting that old, English lady sort of scents (like perfumed floral stationery, a very grandiose Victorian style living room, old lady powder, etc.), so if you're into those kind of scents, you'll love SS. Their gourmand scents are definitely prone to morphing around though, so if you're one of those people skin chemistry that goes iffy on caramels/vanilla/gourmands, you need to be careful. Their fruit notes also tend to be the artificial, tutti frutti/bubble gum sort of fruits scents, so if those are a turn off for you, it's best to be careful too.

Anyway, on to scent reviews. As always, they're done blind until the TL;DR's written. If anything in the notes surprise me, I write an overview.


Blackburn Farmstead

"Blackberry Jam, Boysenberry Preserves, Vanilla Bean Accord, Creamy Vanilla & a Touch of Vanilla Musk."

Another artificial fruit scent. Darn it! I think it may be artificial blackberries, but it leans towards that artificial grape scent. The kind neon purple drinks/candy smells or tastes like. It's slightly creamy but by 10 min, the creamy bit turned into that metallic smell some creamy gourmands get. 

TL;DR: Metallic artificial purple fruits.


Devil's Tongue

"Chypre, Brown Leather, Warm Tobacco, Woods & More."

Extremely dry citrus wood with a medicinal tinge. I think the medicinal bit is patchouli. The citrus fades after about 15 min, leaving behind this scent that smells like the living room in an old English lady's home. Old, rather powdery, and clean –even though the old wood smells rather dusty.

And you know it's the kind of room where you'll be judged on your manners.
Image courtesy of

This is another scent that's similar to SS' Manor's base. If you like Manor, you'll like this.

TL;DR: Old English lady's living room...with  a bit of citrus.

Overview: I had to look up the scent of chypre to figure out what it is. First of all, I found out it's pronounced "ship-r" with the "r" being the French "r" which sounds like the sound you make while clearing your throat. This is from Wikipedia:

Chypre, is the name of a family (or concept) of perfumes that are characterised by an accord composed of citrus top-notes, a middle centered on cistus labdanum, and a mossy-animalic base-note derived from oak moss and musk. Chypre perfumes fall into numerous classes according to their modifier notes, which include but are not limited to leather, florals, fruits, and amber.



"Ozone, Rustling Leaves, Rich Black Soil, Chimney Smoke & Woods."

This is a sweet, cool, earthy green that's pretty nice. It leans more towards a room scent rather than a perfume, but it'll be one of those subtle, elegant room scents from diffuser reeds. I can picture this scent in rooms that look like this:

TL;DR: Clean, green and earthy toned room.

Overview: I didn't get any smoke on me, and the scent is more sweet and wet rather than the dry scent I'd expect from those notes. I guess the ozone bit is dominant. 



"Red Musk, Dragon's Blood Resin, Burning Wood, Somalian Myrrh & Egyptian Musk."

There's that cottony, baby oil scent, with something that smells old in a herbal way. Maybe it's patchouli. It ends up smelling like one of those Indonesian massage oils (smells woody, herbal in an Indonesian way and has faint whispers of florals) that's mixed with baby oil.

TL;DR: Indonesian massage oil with baby oil.

Overview:'s the Dragon's Blood. Cheryl from Midsummer Dreams Apothecary was nice enough to send me a single note of Dragon's Blood as part of the IMAM gift exchange. The particular Dragon's Blood she uses is the same Dragon's Blood SS uses –it's an Indonesian woody smell. If you've gone to Indonesia, you'll know what I'm talking about. It smells like a spicy, slightly aged wood, but has a sweet, rounded floral touch to it.

I also notice that this is the 2nd "Egyptian musk" scent I've gotten that smells just like baby oil. This is something I may have to watch out for.


Halloween Night

"Sweet Candy Corn, Chocolate Candy Wrappers, Melty Gooey Marshmallows, Sticky Caramels & Black Jelly Beans" 

I think a vanilla's going sour on me, because I'm getting a sour, clay-like scent. The sourness disappeared after 5 min, but it's still a clay-like vaguely vanilla scent. I'm also getting hints of waxy gasoline. No idea wtf is going on with this scent. 

TL;DR: Sweet, waxy clay with hints of gasoline.

Overview: I need to avoid anything with caramel from SS. I tried sniffing this again and I finally got the liquorice in the background for a short while, but that blended into everything else creating this chemical-ish, cloying bittersweet scent that smells like gasoline. 


Heat of the Night

"Vanilla, Mango, Coconut, Orange, Sandalwood, Amber, Orange Blossom, Edge of the Night Base"

You know those perfumed paper? The one that typically has a faux aged look and features tons of florals? Like this:

I actually think this is pretty and you guys should totally check out the designer's blog,, where she provides a lot of designs for free.

This smells like that. Sharp, powdery, very very old lady type of florals with an old, dry, papery scent. With citrus. 

The perfumed paper bit is the same perfumed paper scent I get from SS' Manor. So if you like Manor, you'll like this. 

TL;DR: Perfumed paper & citrus. 



"Pumpkin, Sugar Cookies, Peach Preserves, Spice Breads, Danishes, Caramel, Vanilla & Sweet Wood Smoke"

This is Possets' Gelato: Vaniglia's shadow. It's the same creamy cinnamon with a raisin type of sweetness, but the creamy vanilla bit isn't as rich as Possets' vanilla and the sweet part gets searing at times. The sweet, fruity bit is definitely stronger here. While Possets' Gelato:Vaniglia only has hints of raisin in the sweetness, this is a fruity type of sweetness with creamy cinnamon.

Don't get me wrong, it's still a delicious scent, but I just keep comparing it to Gelato: Vaniglia and it's not as impressive. It's definitely a scent I would've fallen in love with if I haven't tried Possets.

As the scent dries down you get a searing, room-spray sort of fruity scent. 

TL;DR: Possets' Gelato: Vaniglia's less impressive sibling.


Owl Creek Aleworks

"Sticky English Toffee Pudding, Blackburn's Parlor Vanilla Ice Cream, Caramel, Toasted Coconut & Hazelnut, Sugared Pumpkin Cream Stout."

Caramel watered down in a lotion. It's like a caramel scented body lotion, only they used too little caramel fragrance, so you get mostly lotion and a bit of a thin, watered down caramel scent.

TL;DR: Caramel watered down in a lotion.

Overview: It's definitely the coconut going all lotion on me. I find that coconut notes are often very iffy since they tend to smell like sunblock.


Pumpkin Spice Latte

"Hot steaming coffee, sweet pumpkin, cinnamon, gingerbread whipped cream and a drop of Nutmeg. Contains coffee and nutmeg essential oil."

This is that spiced coffee scent that I'm starting to get bored of since so many perfumers do it. SS' version is a more bitter, watery & hollow type of coffee note, though. It ends up smelling like a really watered down spiced latte where it's 90% water, 7% coffee, 2% vague spice flavouring & 1% milk. 

TL;DR: Overdone spiced latte scent.


Thornwood Thicket

"Sugared Blackberries, Black Agarwood, Aloeswood, Sweet and Smoky Guaiacwood & Amber."

A woody version of some kind of artificial fruit. The wood is slightly like that sharp, powdery perfumed paper scent again. The artificial fruit bit gets more and more searing as it wears on. If you're as sensitive as me when it comes to artificial scents, this scent will give you a headache. 

TL;DR: Perfumed paper and artificial fruit. 

Overview: This scent is an insult to agarwood. Real agarwood smells like rich incense-ish wood. It's a deep, rich scent that transports you to romanticized Arabian palaces. Not this perfumed paper bs. Whoever supplies this agarwood note need to be sent to the jungles of Indonesia to sniff real agarwood. 


Witch's Cottage

"Warm Baked Goods, Dried Herbs, Sweet Annie, Soft Woods & Fragrant Hearth Smoke." 

Soapy apples and a smoky nut scent. The smoky nut part in the beginning reminds me a lot of DC's Carny Wedding, but the soapy apple bit overwhelms it pretty fast. After 5 min, the scent also starts to develop a slightly cool scent. The scent is more of a soft apple with smoke. It's definitely a soothing, soft scent that makes you think of snuggling with a kitten in winter.
It's as cuddly as this scent feels like.
Awesome photography by Elena Shumilova

The apple bit kept threatening to go room-spray on me, but fortunately never does end up full room-spray.

TL;DR: Soft, smoky apple.


  1. Have you ever tried Chiffon? I had such high hopes... The opening is so beautiful, assuming it is the tiare flowers but after 10 minutes, my arm smelled like those red packets that's perfumed!
    Must be an Asian thing. Good thing I didn't blind buy a full size.

    1. I haven't tried it! And omg! Red packets! That's it! I think a lot of SS scents have this underlying red packets scent! I couldn't put a finger on why I hated them, but you hit the nail on the head!