So I spent some time debating if I was going to do any reviews of the indie perfume world I’ve dived head first into after getting a small sample in one of my subscriptions. About a month ago I didn’t know much about mainstream perfume, let alone the wide and varied range of indies.
However, in the interest of “adding to the literature” on indie perfumes, I decided to go ahead and review. (I’ve been doing too much lit review for my thesis, and it’s showing). Before purchasing any of my perfume samples, I did a bunch of google research, (more fun than thesis research), to see what I would like and not like. While there are a handful of awesome bloggers reviewing these kinds of scents, sometimes it was hard to find impressions on specific scents or brands. Hopefully I can help fill in that void!
So for my first indie perfume review, I picked a well-established brand, Solstice Scents. Given the time of year, and my love of seasonal themes, I jumped right in with their Autumn Collection (Part I, apparently).
Here’s what I thought:
When I was researching what indie perfumes to jump into, Solstice Scents came up often. Between the fast shipping, easy to use website, and reward points system-it was easy to see they’re pros at the business side of perfumes. If you’re a beginner like me, I think this would be a great company to start with.
I paid about $22 bucks with S&H to try the Autumn Collection, this included 8 perfume samples, and one freebie sample I got with my first order. I chose to get samples because I am cheap and new to perfumes, so I had no idea what I liked and disliked yet, or how my skin would react to the perfumes. (Apparently skin chemistry can affect the way perfume oils smell as well as how long they last-the more you know!) I think this price is not bad if you are also looking to try some new perfumes without spending too much money.
Anyway, it seems like perfume scents can be somewhat subjective, but I’m going to do my best to describe these scents for anyone else interested in picking them up this Fall:
Blackburn Farmstead- Blackberry Jam, Boysenberry Preserves, Vanilla Bean Accord, Creamy Vanilla & a Touch of Vanilla Musk
This was a very fruity scent and a little bit went a long way on me. I actually really enjoyed the blueberry scent and it eventually mellowed out into more of a vanilla.This lasted about 5 hours on me. Worth it.
Devil’s Tongue– Chypre, Brown Leather, Warm Tobacco, Woods & More
This smells like pure masculine leather to me, and I’m pretty sure my coworkers might be terrified if I came to work smelling like leather. Thankfully, Mr. Danger loves it, and I love it on him. It’s not too strong but I get occasional whiffs of it on him throughout the day. Worth it for Mr. Danger.
Foxcroft- Ozone, Rustling Leaves, Rich Black Soil, Chimney Smoke & Woods
This is one of those scents that evokes an image in my mind. Specifically this one:
This just smells like a open grassy field on a clear day. I didn’t think I would like this earthy, clean scent, and I probably couldn’t wear it every day, because it’s a bit too masculine for my tastes- but I will be using up this sample. Pretty good!
Gehenna- Red Musk, Dragon’s Blood Resin, Burning Wood, Somalian Myrrh & Egyptian Musk
To me this scent comes out as musky, smoky, and intense. It’s a little too much for me, and Mr. Danger didn’t like it as much as Devil’s Tongue. However, I can appreciate that’s it’s well blended and smooth- so if musk and smoke are your things, you might enjoy this scent. Not for me.
Halloween Night- Sweet Candy Corn, Chocolate Candy Wrappers, Melty Gooey Marshmallows, Sticky Caramels & Black Jelly Beans
At first this scent was wayyyy to sweet for me, however in a few minutes it mellowed out into creamy, sugary, Halloween candy scent, as it’s name implies. It lasted almost all day on me, (though I’ve found my skin loves to turn scents into marshmallow smells, so this could be just me). I like this one, but it’s a little too sweet for everyday use, also. Pretty good, though!
Pumpkin Spice Latte- Sweet Pumpkin, Cinnamon, Gingerbread Whipped Cream & A Drop of Nutmeg
I don’t really like PSLs, but I do love this scent. When it’s wet on the skin, it’s creamy and vanilla scented and I even pick up on a bit of espresso, but then as it drys the pumpkin and spices come out. It was very strong on me and lasted almost all day, and I had to remind myself not to lick my wrist all day. Love it.
This starts out fairly similar to Blackburn Farmstead, with a strong, delicious berry scent. However, after this starts to dry it becomes a bit more woodsy and musky. I’ve discovered that I really love scents like this, fruity notes followed by something a bit more interesting to keep it from being too sweet. This lasted about 4-5 hours on me. Keeper!
Witch’s Cottage- Warm Baked Goods, Dried Herbs, Sweet Annie, Soft Woods & Fragrant Hearth Smoke
At first I get a crisp, clean scent, a bit of apple and herbs. However, as it dries a baked goods scent comes out. I say baked goods, because it literally smells like muffins or spice cake. I was not expecting to like this, but it’s such an interesting combination of scents, I think it’s perfect for fall. I got about 5-6 hours of wear out of this one. Neato!
Rose Mallow Cream- Moroccan Rose absolute, Bulgarian Rose absolute, Marshmallow Fluff, Strawberry Nectar, White Chocolate, Vanilla, White Musk
This was the free sample I got to pick out. I’ve been on the hunt for a great rose scent, so I figured combining rose with marshmallow could be a winning combo. And while I like this scent, I picked it out before I realized that my skin LOVES marshmallow. The rose scent stays a little in the beginning but ultimately, this just smells like marshmallows on me. Not bad, but not what I was looking for.
All in all, I think this is a really great round-up of scents. There is a nice range of types here, and they all are well blended and thoughtfully crafted. Ghenna is the only one I wasn’t crazy about, the rest will get a lot of rotation this fall. If I had to buy any full size, I would probably pick Pumpkin Spice Latte, Witch’s Cottage or Thornwood Thicket. Mr. Danger WILL need a full size of Devil’s Tongue, and at $15 bucks for 5ml, that’s much cheaper than most mainstream men’s scents.
I’m already planning a second Solstice Scents order when their Autumn Collection Part II comes out later this month. I’ve also got my eye on their Foxcroft Collection and some of their body ganaches, so I would say I’m a big fan!
Questions of the Day:
-What are your thoughts on perfumes? Do have a mainstream or indie you love?
-Do any of these scents interest you?
-Do you have a free stock photo website you like, because mine was very annoying during this post.