102 & 103: blooddrop holding hands & loves me



Two today! And you can still buy them, even. It’s a brave new world, kids.

Not much from Blooddrop’s Valentine’s Day release appealed to me (aside from Charming, which I already have), so I only picked up two decants out of seven scents. In retrospect I kind of wish I’d grabbed Just Because, but I’ll survive.

Holding Hands: A sweet, kind, loving and carefree scent of plum, peaches, amber, myrrh, rosemary, and skin milk.

In the vial, Holding Hands is a golden, fruity sort of scent – peach and plum, thick resins, and a bit of rosemary. It’s really lovely.

Wet on skin, the rosemary is surprisingly prominent, and its earthy green herbal scent goes nicely with the resinous fruits. The combination is deeper than I would’ve expected from cold sniff.

The peach and plum come out a bit more as it dries, getting sweeter and juicier. The rosemary, myrrh, and amber blend together nicely and ground the fruits well, so it’s a little more interesting than just a light, juicy spring peach scent would be. Not that there’s anything wrong with light, juicy spring peach scents. I love that shit.

I’m honestly not sure what “skin milk” is. I keep reading it as “skim milk,” which, no. If I had to guess I’d say it’s giving the scent a sweet, sort of musky vibe, but whatever it may be, I like this one quite a bit. I don’t think it’s quite bottle-worthy (I’m getting pickier in my old age/as I come face to face with the horrifying reality of the size of my perfume stash), but I’ll definitely keep my decant around.

Elevator Pitch: Juicy peach and plum over an earthy base of rosemary and resins. Lightly musky, not too sweet.

Loves Me: Requited love! A lush, beautiful scent of Bulgarian rose, sandalwood, oud, Bourbon vanilla, and cream.

In the vial, Loves Me starts out with a nice rose, sweet-ish, a bit of cream… and then oud. I’m not historically a big fan of oud, and it’s giving me the same sort of curry vibe here that turned me off of Darling Clandestine’s Tyto, though it was much stronger in that case.

Wet on skin, it’s rose, curry, and cream. Frankly the combination is sort of revolting. Obviously this is a serious YMMV situation, because by all accounts oud smells lovely, but man alive this one is not working for me.

As it dries it gets a quite powdery, and the rose gets stronger, skewing it more toward the “old lady rose perfume” side of things. It gets really unappealingly perfumey as it wears. And there’s always that vague whiff of curry underneath.

NOPE. Sweet jesus, I hate this scent.

Elevator Pitch: Loves Me starts out as a creamy, sweet-ish rose scent, but gets very powdery and perfumey as it dries. The oud smells distractingly of curry at first, but mostly fades. Mostly.

34: haus of gloi first blush


Apologies for a few days without posting, guys! I came down with a nasty stomach bug late Tuesday, and while the worst of it has thankfully passed, I’m still not feeling entirely up to snuff. But the headache I’ve had since Tuesday has finally faded enough that smelling perfume doesn’t literally make me want to throw up and cry simultaneously, so let’s jump back in – with a non-Arcana review!

WHUT. Yes, it’s true. I do own stuff from other brands. This little gem is from Haus of Gloi’s recent Valentine’s Day release – one of two new scents, and the only one that appealed to me.

Tahitian vanilla bean, white tea, lavender and peach.

In the bottle, First Blush is delicate and sweet – fresh peach, vanilla, and lavender.

Wet on skin, it’s quite a bit more floral – I credit/blame the white tea for this, though it could be the peach, which sometimes does lean floral – but the peach is definitely still dominant. The combination smells, appropriately, like a light peach iced tea. I don’t get much lavender or vanilla at this stage at all.

Later on, the floral elements tone down a bit and I can pick up a little more creamy vanilla and some sweet, herbal lavender. The vanilla continues to come out as it wears, and I like this stage the best, but it never quite approaches the sweetness it has on cold sniff, and that’s a very slight bummer. I also wish the peach and/or white tea leaned less floral in general, but that could very well be a skin chemistry issue – and it’s not really an issue during wear, just on first application.

Sillage is low, but it has decent longevity for such a light scent.

So, I like it a lot – enough that I’m cool with having blind-bought a bottle – but I’m not head-over-heels like I expected to be on first sniff. Come Hither remains the undefeated Champion of My Heart from the Haus’ Valentine’s Day offerings, but First Blush is #2.

I’d like to note that I also picked up a mini pumpkin butter and a whipped soap in this scent, and while I haven’t tried the whipped soap yet (working on an Olde Cider Haus whip at the moment), the lavender is more prominent in the pumpkin butter, but it layers very well with the perfume and definitely increases sillage. I like it, and if I didn’t have an entire closet shelf full of lotions that I could never get through if I moisturized continuously every moment for the rest of my life, I might try to snag a full size tub during the restock. But I do. So I won’t. Probably.

Elevator Pitch: A delicate, girly mix of slightly floral peach tea, sweet lavender, and mild vanilla. Heavier on the floral elements at first, and never super sweet. A light scent that wears close to the skin but lingers.

arcana new orleans trio



Part two of my review of Arcana’s Valentine’s Day releases! The main Valentine’s collection is here. On with the smelling things and writing about smelling things.

The New Orleans Trio

Erzulie’s Soft Kiss:  Sweet, vain, flirtatious Erzulie Freda is the luxe Loa of beauty, sensuality, love, and pleasure. Ripe pink strawberries smeared with honey and bee pollen.

In the vial this is sweet strawberries and honey. It doesn’t have that plasticky, artificial, Strawberry Shortcake doll smell that strawberry scents sometimes do. On skin the fruitiness is toned down a bit. It’s sweet and smooth and after a few minutes there’s a bit of something slightly powdery in there, but not baby powdery – I’m assuming that’s the bee pollen.

I love this one – it’s a definitely bottle purchase for me. It’s not a super complex scent journey, and that’s fine, because sometimes you just want to smell sweet and fruity and have what you put on be what you smell like in an hour, you know? And it’s hands-down the best strawberry scent I’ve tried so far.

Maman Brigitte:  The bawdy, fun-loving queen of death, Maman Brigitte guards the cemetery, protects prostitutes, gets down on the dance floor, and curses like a Somali sailor. Black amber, cherry-infused red musk, animalic musk, cocoa absolute, white amber, clove bud, tobacco, and the smallest sprig of graveyard mint.

In the vial I get mostly cherry and mint with that fuzzy white amber underneath. (I feel like if mint is mentioned in the notes at all, it’s one of the only things I’ll smell.) On skin the cherry is still the strongest note, with the mint fading back a bit and the amber and musk coming out more. The cherry isn’t sharp or medicinal – it’s fairly smooth and a bit candied. At first I don’t get any cocoa, but after a few minutes it’s there, more of a dark chocolate scent, not overly sweet. As it dries, the cherry fades away and the mint gets stronger again, so that I’m left with amber, mint, and a whiff of dark chocolate. Once it’s fully dry the clove makes an appearance as well, but it’s not overwhelming.

White amber and I are generally not buds – it always reads as “fuzzy” or “cloudy” to me, in a headachey sort of way – and that feeling is exacerbated here by the mint. This isn’t a bad scent, but it’s not for me.

Simbi d’l’Eau:  A Loa with the unpredictability and immense power of the oceans, he is pleased by offerings of water and green ribbons. A fresh, aquatic mix of tart raspberry, rainwater, green musk, clematis, osmanthus, tiare blossoms, and ambergris.

In the vial this is very ocean-y. Heavy on the ozone, quite floral, and green, and there’s something unpleasant that reminds me of dead things washed up on the shore. The ambergris, I’m assuming. On skin it’s heavily floral with a touch of airy ozone and a good dose of musk. There is little to no raspberry on my skin , and every once in a while I’ll get a whiff of that unpleasant dead note, decaying and almost salty. But mostly it’s just very, very floral.

I don’t like this one at all. It’s a scrubber.

(A note on ambergris – it’s an intestinal secretion of sperm whales, traditionally found floating or washed up on the shore. It’s generally a waste product, but obviously not vegan in any case. But it’s very rare and therefore very expensive, so it’s pretty much always synthetic anymore, even among conventional perfume houses. If I found out that an indie was using real ambergris I’d eat the intestinal secretions of a sperm whale. So seeing it in the notes listing doesn’t turn me away for vegan reasons, but after this scent it WILL turn me away for other reasons, like the fact that I think it smells like ass and dead fish.)

These scents are all still available from The Soapbox Co and The Rhinestone Housewife.

arcana valentine’s day 2014


arcana_vday14Back in February Arcana released their Valentine’s collection, called The Beast, as well as a small trio of scents inspired by New Orleans. I ended up with samples of almost all of the scents (and multiples of a few) – some came from a decant circle, some from a generous sample offer by Julia, and the rest were free samples with Soapbox Co orders. I’ll be reviewing all but one scent from the main Valentine’s collection here, and then I’ll cover the New Orleans trio by itself, because this post is already going to be a million years long.

The Beast Collection

Afterglow:  It exists between ecstasy and quietude. The soft euphoria of white amber, vanilla bean, vanilla milk, Malbec grapes, Arcana’s own Lust blend, cognac absolute, and a drop of cool peppermint.

Straight out of the vial I get cool grape and peppermint, with a strong dose of white amber. The white amber is kind of fuzzy and cloudy, which is… appropriate. Wet on skin the grape and peppermint are still the strongest notes. I get a bit of vanilla, and the white amber is there, but it’s not going crazy, which is rare for me. (Though I do tend to have much better luck with Arcana’s ambers than most other companies.) As it dries down the sweet vanilla milk makes more of an appearance, smoothing out the fruity grape. Once it’s completely dry the peppermint is mostly just a ghost, providing a coolness to the whole affair.

I said the amber wasn’t going crazy, and it’s not, but my losing streak with white amber in particular continues – the more I sniffed at this, the more it gave me a headache. It’s a shame because find this scent really interesting (grape isn’t a note you come across all that often) and quite pretty in the end.

Coitus Captivus:  An ensnarement of smoky, boozy sugarcane syrup with tiny hints of peach, red apple, pumpkin, and a warm grip of treacle.

In the vial this is WHOA SMOKY. Like, nostril-flaringly smoky. If I keep sniffing, I get some faint fruit and dark molasses underneath the smoke. Wet on skin the smoke is still strong, but the sweet molasses really comes up as well. After it dries down a bit, the fruitiness is more detectable, but it’s not a bright, fresh fruitiness – it’s more like the kind of caramelized harvest fruitiness that you usually find in fall scents. This seems very much like a fall scent to me, actually. In the end I’m left with a slightly sweet, dark, smoky molasses-y scent with faint whiffs of peach and apple. I don’t hate it, but the smoky molasses really makes me think of a barbecue.

It’s funny, though – I washed my wrist (twice!) before I worked out tonight, and the whole time I kept catching whiffs of something familiar. I sniffed my wrist again and it was this! Still! And what it was reminding me of was Solstice Scents’ Kitchen, which is a sweet, warm, peachy, slightly spicy scent – apparently after you try to scrub this one off, it turns into something very similar. Weird!

Limerence:  Blind hope buoyed by fixation and obsession. White tea, cotton candy, marshmallow, kush, blush musk, hibiscus blossoms, and a slash of dragonsblood.

In the vial I get mostly airy sweetness, a bit floral, with something green and almost bitter in the background. Wet on skin I get a lot of hibiscus and musk, and a bit of tea. That green, slightly bitter note (the kush, presumably) is still lurking in the background, but it stays quite strongly floral on me, with very little of that spun-sugar sweetness I smelled in the vial. I’m not a fan of most florals, so this one’s not for me.

Little Man in the Boat:  Serving no procreative purpose, the clitoris exists only for pleasure. Definitive proof that we were designed for bliss? Of course! Peach nectar and delicate musk dripping with Tupelo honey, Clover honey, and one dainty tuberose petal.

In the vial this is heavenly – strong honey and sweet peach with a slightly floral note. On skin the whole affair is softer, with the honey staying strongest. I get less peach and more tuberose (boo). Arcana’s honey is my favorite – it’s strong and sweet and deep, very much a thick, golden note, and it rarely goes powdery on me. As it wears I get a bit more of the peachy sweetness – not a ton, just a whiff here and there. The musk comes out more and intertwines with the tuberose and the whole effect is very heady. Once it’s dried down, the peach happily becomes a bit more prominent.

This is a definite bottle purchase for me.

Nymphomania:  Lusty Victorian ladies who foolishly admitted to liking sex wound up with this diagnosis. Eating too much chocolate, reading too many books, and wearing enticing perfumes were all among the causative factors. (Which explains a lot, no?) An indulgent blend of smoked frankincense, golden amber, warmly spiced vodka, thick myrrh, ruby guava, black tea, tobacco leaf, and pink pepper.

In the vial I get a blast of guava and then it’s all strong frankincense and amber. On skin the spices and resins remain at the forefront, but I also get the black tea and tobacco underneath, and occasional whiffs of guava. As it dries down the tea and tobacco come to the top, and I get just a hint of sharp pepper. The guava keeps popping in and out of the mix with little bursts of sweetness. It’s much softer at this point, far from the aggressive resin-heavy scent it started out as. It’s really interesting, and very evocative of the atmosphere it’s supposed to represent. And the combination of tobacco leaf and black tea is actually a very comforting scent for me – it reminds me of my dad, who drinks Earl Grey and used to smoke a pipe when I was younger.

What this dries down to is very different from what I get on cold sniff – it went from something I would’ve been inclined to scrub off to something I actually like quite a lot. I don’t know if I need a bottle (though if I caught one in an LJ sale I’d be tempted), but I will definitely hold onto my sample and and put it on now and then for happy nostalgic memory purposes.

Papillon D’Amour:  The butterflies of love. Warm skin musk and noir musk over apricot, dry ginger, a pinch of cinnamon, a nibble of mint, a bite of mace, and a tiny scratch of blackseed.

In the vial this is sweet apricot and cinnamon, a bit of spicy ginger, and a cool whiff of mint. On skin the apricot and cinnamon come out strongest, with the cinnamon quickly taking first place. I tend to amp cinnamon, so that’s not surprising. It is kind of unfortunate, however, because this mostly ends up smelling like Big Red gum on me. I hoped maybe the apricot would come out again once it dried, but nope – Big Red. Every time I went back to my wrist, it was just Big Red. So I’ll be passing on this one.

Tumescence:  Dragonsblood resin engorged with smoked labdanum, incense, blood amber, crimson musk, peru balsam, tree sap, and black pepper.

I don’t have a sample of this one! Just as well, since I probably wouldn’t like it much. But it exists, just fyi. And the name makes me think of Ms. Perky from 10 Thing I Hate About You.



This collection is still available from The Soapbox Co and The Rhinestone Housewife.

arcana blood lust


bloodlustRich red anise and animalic musk with fermented apples, burnt sugar, iron-distilled patchouli, Bourbon vanilla, and the merest whiff of peppermint.

(OH MY GOD it’s been forever since I posted. I am the worst. This month has been weird and really busy and I just haven’t had the time to sit and sniff things. I haven’t even been wearing perfume! Which is nuts considering how much I have. But anyway, I do have a review today, so let’s get on with it.)

Apples. I cannot resist them. If a scent has apple as one of its notes, I will at least try it, no matter what else is in there with it. I actually like most of the notes here – anise, apple, burnt sugar, bourbon vanilla, peppermint. It’s just the patchouli and musk that made me wary and prompted me to get a sample rather than a bottle straight off. (Which is a terrible habit, really, buying bottles unsniffed, and I really need to stop doing it.)

In the imp Blood Lust smells sharp and licorice-y with a hint of sweet apple. On skin it’s less sweet but the apple actually seems more present, only it’s like hard cider instead of apple juice. The main note I’m getting is still the anise/licorice, but it’s less sharp. I smell a bit of vanilla and a faint wafting minty note, like a pot of peppermint tea that was brewed hours ago and still lingers in the kitchen. I don’t get a ton of patchouli, and what there is isn’t the cheap head shop patchouli that puts me off the note in the first place – it’s spicy and smells like incense that I wouldn’t immediately throw away. (That’s saying a lot. I hate incense. It makes me gag.)

On the whole this scent is much more mild and even sweet than I expected from cold sniff. It’s very anise-y, moreso than any other scent I own, but I actually really like it. It’s also got a nostalgia factor going for it that I never would’ve anticipated – it reminds me a lot of a licorice-flavored gum called Black Jack that my dad chewed when I was growing up. I hated the taste of it (I still hate the taste of black licorice) but I loved the smell and associate it strongly with my dad and pleasant childhood memories.

That’s the stuff. 

Would I buy it again? A full bottle, probably not. I do like it quite a bit and it has happy scent memory associations, but I doubt I’d wear it often enough to warrant 5 ml of it. But I think I will hold onto my sample, which I wasn’t planning to do before trying it out. File this one under “pleasant surprises.”

Available from: Wherever Arcana oils are sold – The Rhinestone Housewife and The Soap Box Co among other places, or you can order direct from Julia using the contact info at Arcana Soaps. Blood Lust was part of Arcana’s 2013 Valentine’s Day release.


arcana the darling buds


The fresh essence of the darling buds of May. Baby cucumber, strawberry, petitgrain, grapefruit, pomegranate, basil, and a splash of pink rosewater.

What better perfume to review on the first of May than Arcana’s The Darling Buds?

In the bottle, The Darling Buds smells like strawberry, grapefruit, and cucumber. It’s sweet, fresh, and very Springy. On skin it’s less sweet and the basil, cucumber, and petitgrain are the most prominent notes – herby, green, woody and citrusy, a bit watery. The fruity pink notes of strawberry, grapefruit, pomegranate, and rosewater are almost undetectable, just providing a faint sweetness in the background.

I really love this one, and it’s pretty much the definition of a Spring scent for me. It’s funny, because while searching around for an image to convey this scent, the first thing that came to mind was some of the visuals from the show Pushing Daisies, which if you haven’t seen you should watch immediately. In addition to being a wonderful story and well acted and all that, the visuals are just stunning. It’s one of the most attractive shows I’ve ever seen and I will forever cherish my DVDs. So I don’t know why exactly, but to me The Darling Buds smells like Pushing Daisies looks.

Pretty! Also, Lee Pace and his eyebrows. Be still my loins.

Would I buy it again?  Yes! Absolutely yes. I love this and I know I’ll be wearing it a lot this Spring.

Available from: Wherever Arcana oils are sold – The Rhinestone Housewife and The Soap Box Co among other places, or you can order direct from Julia using the contact info at Arcana Soaps. Eros was part of Arcana’s Valentine’s release, and is still available as of this posting.

arcana amorini



With their chubby knees and wings, these tiny creatures are like particularly naughty cherubs. A playful mix of cherry candy, three vanillas, pink musk, guava, sugar, and a warm rush of cinnamon hearts.

Amorini was part of Arcana’s Valentine’s Day release. When I did my first sniff impressions post, I said it smelled like cherry lollipops. In the bottle it really does – cherry candy and a bit of pink musk. I’d say it’s vaguely cough syrupy, but it smells just as much like cherry popsicles or cherry hard candy as it does cough syrup, so it’s just got that intense, sweet, artificial cherry thing going on.

On skin it smells distinctly more like real cherries, and there’s a rush of warmth from the cinnamon. My skin has a tendency to amp cinnamon, but it’s not with this, which I’m really happy about. Too much cinnamon and this would smell like Red Hots or Warheads – but it doesn’t. I get a bit of the more cleanly fruity guava and the musk is still present, but there’s decidedly less vanilla than I expected from the description. It’s sweet, don’t get me wrong, but with the inclusion of three vanillas I kind of expected it to smell like cherry cheesecake or cherry vanilla ice cream (which I LOVE SO MUCH). It doesn’t.

As it dries the cinnamon gets a little stronger, but it never takes over. It provides more of an impression of heat than actual spice. The vanilla also comes out a bit more, lending a creamy sweetness. And after a few hours, the pink musk is quite a bit more noticeable. But after all is said and done I’m sticking with my original assessment: cherry lollipops.

Photo by anaulin on Flickr

Would I buy it again? Yes. It’s not a complex scent journey or anything, but it’s interesting in that I don’t have anything like it in my collection. It’s candysweet, so if you don’t like that sort of thing I’d stay far away from this one, but I like it a lot. It’s a very fitting scent for a Valentine’s release – it’s almost a literal interpretation of the holiday, all glossy red candy and cut paper hearts.

Available from: Wherever Arcana oils are sold – The Rhinestone Housewife and The Soap Box Co among other places, or you can order direct from Julia using the contact info at Arcana Soaps. Eros was part of Arcana’s Valentine’s release, and is still available as of this posting.

arcana eros


In Greek mythology, dark, irresistible Eros joined with Chaos to create the whole human race. Bittersweet cocoa absolutes from France and Cote d’Ivoire, black tea leaf, mallow root, blackseed, vintage patchouli, and a drop of overripe strawberry.

This one scares me! Just look how dark the oil is. There’s all kinds of sediment that needs shaken up and mixed in, which is a bit hard to do in an sample vial – much easier in the 5 ml, I’d imagine. But let’s soldier on anyway, because adversity builds character.

In the imp, Eros is patchouli and chocolate strawberries. It isn’t very sweet – bittersweet is exactly right. Wet on skin the chocolate fades to the back and the strawberry takes on a greenness, like fruit that’s not quite ripe. It’s definitely not a sweet, juicy strawberry note. The patchouli is there, but I don’t hate it – it’s not a stinky head shop patchouli. There’s something a bit creamy – I’m guessing the mallow root – and a whiff of black tea.

As it dries down the strawberry sweetens a little and the bittersweet cocoa rises back up, actually becoming quite a bit sweeter itself. Once it’s fully dry the chocolate and strawberries are the most prominent notes, and although it’s much sweeter than on cold sniff, it’s still not terribly sweet. This isn’t a sugary, gourmand kind of scent at all. Think strawberries dipped in dark, dark chocolate. And patchouli. Which sounds like an awful combination, honestly, but it’s not at all. And I am Very Anti-Patchouli, so that’s saying something. It just really works here.

As an added bonus, this one lasts. I put it on before bed last night, around 11:30 or so – it’s now nearly 12 hours later and I can still smell it on my wrist. That’s impressive.

Would I buy it again? Surprisingly, yes. I fully expected to hate this and ended up liking it a lot.

Available from: Wherever Arcana oils are sold – Magical Omaha and The Soap Box Co among other places, or you can order direct from Julia using the contact info at Arcana Soaps. Eros was part of Arcana’s Valentine’s release, and is still available as of this posting.

arcana soft hearted


All tenderness and compassion. This gentle union of pink grapefruit, sweet lavender, green lotus and softest musk is touched off with an arterial spark of black pepper.

In the imp, Soft Hearted is all lavender and soft grapefruit. I usually find grapefruit pretty abrasive, but this is really gentle. On skin the grapefruit gets stronger, and it’s a bit more juicy/zesty. The musk makes an appearance, but true to the description it is very soft. I get a hint of black pepper but it’s not overpowering at all – it just sort of adds a bit of sharpness to the scent. I don’t really know what green lotus smells like, so I’m hard pressed to say if I’m getting it or not.

Once it’s fully dry, the lavender has mostly faded and the grapefruit starts to ride the line between “fresh and zesty” and “cleaning product.” I’ve found this to be the case with nearly every grapefruit scent I’ve ever tried, though, so I can’t necessarily fault this particular blend – it may just be my skin chemistry. The end result here is not nearly as soft and lovely as sniffing the oil straight from the imp, which is disappointing – not because it’s a bad scent, but because I was hoping I’d finally found a grapefruit that I’d like. That being said, I definitely don’t dislike this – it’s just not quite right for me.

Would I buy it again? Probably not. I love it in the imp, but on my skin the grapefruit goes to astringent and the lavender isn’t present enough for my liking.

Edit: I’d written this one off and went about my day, but when I sniffed my wrist again a few hours later I found that I actually like what it turned into. The grapefruit settled and I think the green lotus came out, providing a bit of a floral tone. It ended up becoming a soft, musky, slightly citrusy scent – not bad after all. I’m still not going to get a bottle of it, but it worked out better in the end than my initial impressions led me to believe it would.

Available from: Wherever Arcana oils are sold – Magical Omaha and The Soap Box Co among other places, or you can order direct from Julia using the contact info at Arcana Soaps. Soft Hearted was part of Arcana’s Valentine’s release, and is still available as of this posting.

haus of gloi valentine’s butterbombs


Butterbombs! Even the name is adorable. The product itself – little scoops that look like ice cream or cookie dough – are even more adorable. So much so that even though I am not, historically, a bath person (a traumatic bath time roach incident in my gross college apartment left me with no desire to ever soak in a tub of water ever again THANK YOU IT CAME OUT OF THE DRAIN), I picked up a few of these anyway, because… cute! And I want to be a bath person, really. They seem so relaxing. Plus, again, cute.

I have four from the initial release around Valentine’s Day and two from the recent Spring release. I’ve gone back and forth about whether I should review them all at once or by scent, and I eventually decided to just do a sort of collection overview each time new ones are released. This review will cover the butterbombs I purchased from the Valentine’s Day collection: Toasted, Sea Salt Brownies, White Bluberry, and A Simple Rose.


In the order they appear above, left to right:

A Simple Rose: “Bulgarian rose absolute supported by Egyptian geranium in a base of amyris wood.” Gorgeous, fresh rose. Love this one, it’s my favorite.

Toasted: “Reminiscent of warm milk, aromatic rice and burnt sugar.” Smelled creamy and toasty through the wrapper but once I sniffed the actual butterbomb I smelled basmati rice, burnt sugar, and milk. It’s warm and a little bitter.

Sea Salt Brownies: “Dark chocolate brownie accord with supporting notes of cocoa c02, a gentle touch of coffee co2 and speckled with sea salt.” Semi-sweet chocolatey scent. Not overpowering or fake.

White Blueberry: Blueberries awash with white vanilla sugar, cream and a sprig of white thyme.” This also smelled creamier through the wrapper, but the bomb itself smells fresh, herbal, and a bit tangy. This is my second favorite.

And here’s what Haus of Gloi has to say about these little guys:

Toss these little scoops in hot bath water for a fizzy, slightly foamy and decadently moisturizing bath. Crumble under running bath water for best results! Please be cautious when moving around or standing in the tub, these little bombs can make things slippery!

I’ve only used one butterbomb so far, in my inaugural bid to take a bath without having a panic attack. I picked Toasted, since it’s my least favorite of the scents I picked up from this collection, and I always like to save my favorite things for last.


(I finished An Abundance of Katherines during my bath, fyi.)

This is what my bathtub looked like after I crumbed the Toasted butterbomb under the faucet. It creates a thin layer of milky, foamy bubbles that lasted until about halfway through my bath. After that I was left with slightly milky water that smelled really nice, which isn’t nothing. The smell is quite strong and it does linger, since the butterbombs leave a kind of moisturizing film on the skin throughout and after the bath.

I found the overall Butterbomb Experience very pleasant, but there are a few downsides. The moisturizing goo that the bomb deposits in the bath water and on skin clogged my razor like crazy when I tried to shave. That’s easily remedied by, well, not shaving in the bath, I guess. I don’t (in theory, in the future, if I ever take a bath again, which I probably will) take baths to get clean, but to relax, so that’s not a huge deal to me, although it is a little annoying. The only other thing is that I wish it created more bubbles, but since it’s not advertised to do so, it’s certainly not a knock against the product itself, just against my expectations. The bombs do exactly what they say on the tin, so as long as you go in knowing that I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.

Would I buy it again? Absolutely. While they’re not going to produce a mass amount of bubbles, they add a nice amount of moisture and scent to the bath water and really make the whole process more luxurious. Which, in my mind, is the whole point of a bath.

Available from: Haus of Gloi