Monday, August 30, 2010

Today's mixture

Banana (isoamyl propionate) +vanillin +Isobutavan (creamy vanilla cream soda white chocolate) +Jasmatone in a Jasmine perfume I got from CVS = awesomeness.

Monday, August 23, 2010


I have to mention this. I read somewhere that Habanolide has a "hot-ironed fabric" aspect, but I didn't immediately sense it from my smelling. I put it on a paper and followed the drydown, however. It went from a white musk to a musk with a harsh, ambery note, finally to, after a few days...... Fresh-ironed fabric. It's amazing! It really does smell exactly like something that's just been hot ironed with steam. I didn't realize something could smell like that. Amazing.

That is all.

Addendum: Now it smells fainter, and still has a hot-ironed fabric aspect, but also smells a bit like sun-heated dried pine needles. Interesting!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Perfume PREview on

Go read my PREview of Mariah Carey's Lollipop Bling over at

CLICK HERE to read.

I'm sure it will earn me a lot of hate from Mariah Carey devotees. Good thing they changed my description from "abortion fuchsia" to simply fuchsia.


Monday, August 16, 2010

Talk About Gs

I have promised that I will write something for someone, so I'm practicing here by yakking.

Let's talk about Gs. Two Gs, to be exact. First=Galaxolide.

Galaxolide: Wow. I've just been able to smell a 50% dilution of it, and I have to admit that I'm absolutely amazed. I started in my usual way: smelling from the bottle. And I couldn't smell anything. Well, I can't really smell ambroxan from the bottle either. So I put some on a blotter (blotter=torn up piece of paper) and left it to smell later. Verdict with requisite colon: It's incredible! While I knew that White Linen and Tresor have galactic amounts of this musk, I was so not prepared for how it would smell. I just assumed it would be like all the others: powdery, fresh, blah blah blah...... But no. It's very sweet. And bright and floral. And recognizable, if vaguely. It's cool and sweet and all around lovely. It's something I would put with a floral accord. If you haven't smelled it by itself, you really should, because I was amazed that a musk chemical smelled so sweet and fresh. And it just gets better as the days go by. It's been about 5 days now, and it's still powdery fresh and beautiful, and I'm starting to get a fabric-softener feel from it. (Contrast this to Habanolide, which after a few days smelled like a version of that harsh ambery smell in Karanal, except 1000 times less intense and without the body. Ethylene Brassylate, by contrast, smells sweet but recognizably musky.) I can't believe I went so long before smelling one of the basics.

The other G: Grisalva. This is supposed to be "the character of ambergris... in a single chemical." I have no idea what ambergris smells like. Or, rather, I don't remember if I do, because I'm pretty sure I smelled a tiny piece of it at Enfleurage once, but I wasn't sure what to make of the scent. I mean, how would I know if it smelled like "high-quality" ambergris or not, right?! My friend A, however, bought some, and he said it had a certain "locker room" tonality to it. Interesting. Enter Grisalva. For some reason I was expecting to smell something like Karanal or oxyoctaline formate from it, because its odor was depicted as "medium," as opposed to ambroxan, the odor of which is colossal. So I smelled it from the bottle. Interesting! Not at all like Karanal or OF. More like what I'm used to thinking of as ambroxan, but less woody. Put it on some paper. Waited. It started to remind me very much of D&G's Light Blue for women, and I don't like that scent anymore. It seemed citrusy sweet. And of course, it reminded me of a whole slew of men's colognes. More like a class of men's colognes, I guess. And the more I smelled it, the closer to nausea I got. I assumed that this was what ambroxan maybe would smell like if I took the trouble to dilute it to where I could actually smell it. Because it wasn't as 'mineral' or woody as ambroxan had seemed to me. Then it started to seem almost foliage-like, and I thought that this (Grisalva) would go great with sharp, celery-green notes. And then it stopped nauseating me. A couple days later the smell on the paper faded enough to where I could sort of see how it could be described as "animal... leathery." It's much less unpleasant now that it's faded. My verdict is that I'd love to try to make some kind of novelty scent from it, something not meant to be taken seriously. That said, I definitely see the value in it.

That's the beep for now.

Thursday, August 12, 2010


Today I was in Target, and I came across two Glade fragrances. And they were not horrible. They're themed in not-ugly "autumn" packaging. (Yeah, I say autumn, phuck you very much. Hmmmm, I just thought to myself, "I should creatively spell the wirty dord, because this is in all-ages blog. And then I remembered that "Tom Ford" is the phrase driving the most traffic here. So clearly I'm not attracting a "family" audience. ...Or I am, depending on your regional dialect. And what church you go to. I'm driving myself crazy with this idea and will stop. Right. Now.) That leads me to think they're new introductions, but I think I've seen the one before.

Anyway, the one I bought is called Cashmere Woods. It's the candly thing that melts in the tray; their attempt to rip off Yankee Candles tarts, making them easier to use (but lower quality). The other one is some forgettable spice number. Forgettable BUT NOT AWFUL!!! That genuinely surprised me, considering that Glade actually managed to screw up a pumpkin-type scent. Anyway, I'm liking the Cashmere Woods, and that disturbs me, to be honest. So I will explore why I might enjoy this fragrance. Here are the hypotheses, none of which I will test:

1) My brain is melting. This is, sadly, likely. But since it's the most intriguing possibility, I will give interestingness and climacticity the finger and not go into it. I'll just say that today I felt like one of Elizabeth Gould's marmosets in the original lab environment. And if you get that reference, PLEASE HANG OUT WITH ME!!!!!!

2) The name confused my nose. Another likely possibility. Because how can you look at something called Cashmere Woods and not wonder if it has Cashmeran in it? Given my nascent appreciation of Cashmeran, of course I'm smelling it there. Does this have Cashmeran? Ordinarily I would say probably not, but I SWEAR I smell it in a Downy fabric softener, so possibly it's cost-effective enough to be used in a Glade fragrance, where I presume the budget is 1/1000 of a cent per unit. Smelling the CW I can't tell. Cashmeran is such a rich and versatile chemical, and to me it smells very clean and chemical, with a pine nuance. It could be in here. Don't know what's backing it up if it is--vanillin? Some superstrong maple chemical (aren't all maple chemicals superstrong? Speaking of maple, check out Homofuronol if you get the chance. It's lovely--bready, caramellic, a bit burnt; kind of a bread pudding nuance)? Maybe one of those mutant super-high-performance woods? Don't know. But that segways [sic] well into the next putative reason...

3) I've been really into woods lately. Ebanol, which is dry and not too sweet, and is less like a wood than a sandalwood presence to me. I adore it, actually. Sandalore, which is creamier than Ebanol and, together with it, supposedly produces a good sandalwood replacement. Okoumal, which I need to experience in massive dilution, as it's harsh like Timberol but in that way that I'm discovering is referred to as amber, as in ambergris. As in Ambroxan, except that you can smell it from the bottle. Ambroxan, to me, smells faint from the bottle, and I think that's because it's odor intensity is colossal, and it plugs up your receptors right away. It's crystals, though, which makes it cool. And it's woody and mineral and interesting and improves just about anything (something I'm sure I'll regret saying in the future). And oxyoctaline formate, which I detest. I thought its odor intensity was supposed to be "medium," but to me it was strong and harsh and not pleasant. Just that amber smell. But it's supposed to blend woods well. I've yet to smell Karanal and Grisalva, and the former frightens me. I may not ever open the bottle. Of course I'll open the bottle. Anyway, all this talk about woods is something that occurred to me in the Target parking lot, and I can't really remember now that I'm typing why it should make me like this scent. Maybe it was because I perceived a woody tonality in the scent and immediately started filing through my brain to figure out what it could be. And on...

4) Glade, or at least this Glade, is improving. This could be possible--maybe aromachem prices are dropping. Maybe the budget is bigger. Maybe not. I'm starting to detect a slight Black Flag-type aftersmell in this Cashmere Woods.

5) I originally had 5 reasons, but I don't remember them now. See reason #1.

And that's that. I guess 'tis brainmelt after allen.

But since I'm here and talking about Cashmere, I picked up Vanity Fair today--because Gaga is on the cover, duh--and smelled a strip for a Donna Karan rehash. I think it's called Cashmere Mist Silky Nude or Nudey Water or Nuder Duder. Something with the word nude in it. You know what? I hate Cashmere Mist, or at least I used to (haven't smelled it in forever), but I loved this stuff. It smelled like fabric. Of course we all know that everything smells good in the scent strip in the magazine, but I would love to smell this in real life. I bet I could even pull off wearing it. It was less floral than transparent musk. Habanolidic, I guess you could say. If you get the reference, let's hang out.

Well that's the glizzp for the moment.

Monday, August 02, 2010


I'm starting to get into musks lately. My favorite, hands-down, is Cosmone. It was the first one I ever smelled by itself, however--that may make a difference. It smells so soft and warm and transparent. Powdery a little, but not noticeably. Just GOOD. With a slight vanilla-like nuance that's barely even there. I adore it. I may have to make a perfume with just Cosmone (apart from the one I made for myself where I just diluted it in water and shook it up before spraying it all over myself. It goes with everything, by the by). Especially since I read that Helmut Lang did the same with

...Velvione (and called it Velviona, if the story is true). I got that at the same time as Cosmone, and smelled it second. It's more typically what I expect from a musk--that cleanish note that we're all more or less familiar with. It's supposed to impart a velvety feel to a fragrance. Hence the name. Cosmone imparts "cosmetic volume." Can anyone tell me exactly what that means?

I used to have some muscenone and ethylene brassylate, but ran out of it before I got enough into musks to notice differences. I remember e.b. having a creamy kind of tone, like it would work very well in a vanilla scent, and muscenone being a bit more animal.

Now I have Animalid, the musk deer reconstruction. It's the typical musk odor. I was hoping it would be more gamey. I also have Exaltolide 50% and Musk R1. Exaltolide--again, a typical musk type smell--clean, maybe a powdery feel. Musk R1 is interesting--for one, it's a crystalline solid, but that's not exactly unusual. Coumarin's solid; so is raspberry ketone. But when I smelled it I immediately though of Fresh White Musk Fantasy, that thing by Coty, I think. I remember when I first smelled that and was completely perplexed, because I thought musk was supposed to smell animalic and even a bit gross. I figured they'd dress it up, but I wasn't expecting the scent to have that particular character. Which we've come to notice as musk. Must R1 smells like it had to be the building block of that scent. It smells just like a stripped-down version of it: cleanish, a bit harsh, a bit oily, perhaps with a woody nuance in the manner of scotch pine (or I'm thinking this because I mixed it up with some scotch pine oil).

If you count Cashmeran as a musk, and I guess most people do, I have that too. But to me it smells nothing like what I'd expect from a musk. To me it smells harsh, sharp, "aromatic," piney, and maybe spicy. I don't get the red fruit aspect from it. And I used to dislike it quite a bit, but it's grown on me. I think it's a smell like no other, and it can work magic in a blend. I'll have to smell Dan Tes Bras again to see if I like it better now that I'm more familiar with Cashmeran. And I'll have to smell that black bottle of Downy fabric softener--I think 'orchid' is in the title. Because the last time I smelled it, I immediately thought, "Cashmeran!"

And since we're sorta speaking about animal notes, I've recently received some of the Civette reconstruction by Firmenich, uncut. WOW. I thought I knew civet, because I smelled it at Symrise. I knew ye not. I must've smelled a dilution there, because this civet doesn't smell like a rotten tooth. This Firmenich stuff smells like an animal's ass. Stinkier than African Stone oil. Not pleasant like castoreum reconstruction. But very useful. And it's always interesting to smell something that's very different from what you're used to. I used to think of civet as a slightly dirtier Lactoscaton, but now I have a whole other appreciation for it.

That's the beep for now.