Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab Scents – the Review II

Just in time I see. You wouldn’t want to be late for these ones. Nestled in the world of the Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab’s general catalogue, one can easily stumble across the Mad Tea Party scent line. I will be the first to admit that it was all Alice’s fault for my current perfume proclivities. Before I ran across her and the White Rabbit frolicking across the internet, I had been blissfully ignorant of the potential extra dimensions and shades of the rainbow might be discovered through one’s nose. Well I am ignorant no longer, and I tip my hat to Alice and her cohorts.


Scent Description Curiouser and curiouser. Milk and honey with rose, carnation and bergamot.

Sniff. My nose hovering suspiciously over my very first BPAL decant (called ‘imps’ by the company). And this is perfume unlike any before. Forget rampant floral bouquets and granny scents. This is Alice we are talking about. In the decant, she is whispering to me and her breath is soft with the smell of almond milk.

Excitedly, I apply a small bit and dare to have another sniff. It’s the same almond milk, but now there is a threatening powder like scent in the eaves. I am worried because the creamy scent seems to be getting lost in powder.

Luckily, it clears like a fog and Alice is back. Curiouser and curiouser…the scent develops a spicy feel that I suspect is the carnation. I admit I hadn’t really appreciated the carnation scent before today but it’s quite magical. Its arrival signals the arrivals or honey and a faint rose. Not enough to call this a floral rose perfume, rather just a breath. Perhaps Alice has a rose behind her back that she hasn’t shown me. Overall, this scent is light and creamy and beautiful. I have heard people refer to this one as perfume for young girls. Personally, I love the milk, honey and carnation creation that is Alice. And if you don’t mind, I’d rather sniff my own wrist with this one on.

The Caterpillar

Scent Description: Heavy incense notes waft lazily through a mix of carnation, jasmine, bergamot, and neroli over a lush bed of dark mosses, iris blossom, deep patchouli and indolent vetiver.

Taking this sample in hand, I expected to be bowled head over heels by a hookah smoking, incense lighting caterpillar. Perhaps, the unexpected tumble would explain the mossy and floral notes. While the bottle did not open with a plume of smoke, it did burst on the scene with a very strong incense scent.

On my skin, it continues to maintain a darker scent of incense and patchouli intermingled with vetiver. I smell faint edges of wood, and even a twinkle of the jasmine. I feel like I am somewhere shadowy; perhaps the caterpillar has forsaken his mushroom for a dark wood lined library somewhere.

As time passes, the incense wanders away and the scent becomes more herbal. I wonder to myself if the caterpillar has changed his smoking preferences. The patchouli stays strong and I wonder if the tingle of slight spice could be the carnation. Though if it is, it’s certainly not from the same flower garden as Alice’s carnation.

This scent maintains a warm, and mysterious air as the day continues. It refuses to tell its secrets and I am amazed that the air isn’t misted with smoke around me. Overall, it’s amazingly complex. It’s definitely a dark scent, and I suspect the proper words have not been invented to describe it. Perhaps we should ask the Jabberwocky on this one.

White Rabbit

Scent Description: Strong black tea and milk with white pepper, ginger, honey and vanilla, spilled over the crisp scent of clean linen.

I lower my nose to the wee bottle and it doesn’t fail to poke me right in the nose. I suspect it was an effort designed to make me sneeze because in one breath my world is swimming with pepper. Instantly, I feel like Alice with the duchess and her cook. Pepper, pepper everywhere and I am not sure there is an appropriate ending for that one.

I slash the imp’s little tester stick across my wrist and dare to sniff again. The pepper is still there waving a fist at me menancingly, as if I have no right to follow this white rabbit. But as it dries, it shakes off the seasoning, and becomes much more. It settles to a lovely cream tea. It is soft, sweet, and inviting. And as I take a seat at this impromptu tea party, I find the late arrivals ginger and linen at my side. The ginger flutters against my sense of smell like a butterfly and linen wafts faintly like translucent laundry on the line. We spend the rest of afternoon like this, and pepper doesn’t return. Perhaps it felt that there wasn’t a place for pepper in tea, which is a fair assumption. Overall, very intriguing artistry in perfumery and who can resist a subtle milky cup of tea?

That’s all that is in the teapot today, my wee dormice. Stick around and I promise to take you by the hand again and lead you further into Wonderland. And perhaps t he time will come to talk of many things. No, not shoes, ships or sealing wax. Rather something distinctly more delightful like perfumes that conjure the scent of sweets and sometimes things more sinister.

Note: Don’t forget, I can only whisper to you where the scents steal me to and the adventures we have. This makes me no more then your own dedicated little sign post holder. To see if the scent performs the same magic (or even better magics), you must capture them and ask directly. And I tell you that is the fun bit. So, enjoy.