Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab Scents – the Review VIII

Its no where near my favourite holiday as I write this. Why do I dare then? Well because as an avid addict of the Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab’s Samhain offerings, I can have Halloween everyday. Don’t believe me? Well then you are in for a treat. And possibly a few tricks along the way as well. So come on gouls and goblins, have have a perusal of tonight’s offerings, two very different elements of Samhain: Trick or Treat, and October.

Trick or Treat (2009)

Scent Description: The sticky sweet scent of candy corn!

Trick or Treat undeniably belongs in the Halloween line-up, as its without a doubt the highlight of childhood during Samhain. I suspect this might be why the promise of tricks and treats has been experienced both an initial introduction in 2005 and a re-visitation in 2009. Both are utterly delicious but for the sake of sanity, lets talk about the more resent version.

Nose to the bottle, like a naughty childhood peeping into a sack full of sweets post costumed begging, I find this scent to be gently wafting sweetness. The scent is caramel and sugar and all sorts of shivering delicious sweets. I feel like I am 10 years old again, overwhelmed by the promise of the sugar high to come.

On first application, the sugar runs riot in an almost corn syrup kind of way. It is tempered by a cream note but totally gives me mental images of sticking my head into a bowl full of candy corn. It is warm and golden, and diabetics beware. The caramel deepens and the scent grows into a carmelized sugar, reminding me of caramel toffee popcorn. Almost like butterscotch caramel sweets. Without a doubt, this is amazing. I want to eat my arm, the scary power of perfume.

As the oil dries on my skin, the scent remains a pure caramel candy corn scent. The sweetness keeps on going strong, and I am a happy bunny. I suspect this might be sickly sweet and induce diabetes if you aren’t a sugar-phile, but if you are this is the scent to grab ahold of. Just don’t tell any sugar craving zombies, because I am sure this scent could lead to by demise during a zombie apocalypse


Scent Description: Dry, cold autumn wind. A rustle of red leaves, a touch of smoke and sap in the air.

October is a deviation from the usual BPAL scents that lure me to give them a try. Still there is something charming about the scent of bottle autumn leaves. Growing up in the sun drenched lands of southern California, you get a nose for weather changes, as they are quite few and far between. One of those scents is the cooling down of summer, as autumn arrives. Its crisp leaves with a sharp chill breeze. And it happens to be one of my favourite scents. I wonder, can BPAL catch this in a bottle?

In the bottle, I am met with a strong cologne fragrance. Did they bottle a renegade male cologne model instead? Its sharp and perfumey, thought I am prepared to give it the benefit of the doubt, as I do get an undertone of something dark and dirty.

As skin meets perfume, it becomes autumnal cologne. I suspect this male model scent is actually a bit of ozone. As time goes on, I think the ozone fades skyward, and the remaining breeze starts of blow leaves across my mindscape. The scent becomes moss, and a green-herby note dug up from the forest floor. The moss dominates, and conjures imagery of tree bark covered in thin dusting of green lichen. I also catch the scent of dry leaves-but it’s fleeting, like a drifting leaf on the breeze.

The scent has a cool element to it. How can a perfume control my mental thermostat, you ask. Well, it is a good question. One I have no answer to. With this perfume on my skin I feel as if I have actually stepped outside into that cooling autumn weather, even though I am still inside my house. Perhaps there is some magic afoot in this bottle.

Drydown, is highlighted by the arrival of woodsmoke on the breeze. The smell of moss and dry bark and trees and leaves strengthens as well. I almost feel like I am lost in a damp autumn forest and with every step I make en route to the tea kettle I expect to here the crunch of crisp leaves. I admit the sound never reaches my ears, so perfumes perhaps have limitations. Still this is an amazing blend. It harnesses the feelings and texture of October, not just the scent. Its like a paintbrush on the mind, and truly magic.

One note of caution regarding the October blend. I know it will sound silly and almost counter intuitive but I genuinely feel that this is a scent for the autumn. Rebel that I am, I have dared to test it during the summer, and I find it just so out of place that it seems that its spectacular magic goes haywire. Therefore, while it seems strange that your perfume might start making demands of you, I think this is a scent that is best for a crispy cool day.

I know, I have teased your sweet tooth and made you crave the weather’s cooling. My apologies if you are now counting down the days to Halloween like me. But remember everyday can be Halloween with these little treats. Just wait until I get the batch of tricks out as well.

Sources: Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab: