|Artwork: Beresford Egan|
I ordered up Marie from the Diabolus collection, which is described as "a blend of sinuous violet and elegant tea rose: the chosen scent of France's demigoddess of debauch: Marie Antoinette." Violets and tea roses sounds exactly like a recipe for Eau de Old Lady, but reviews I read about the fragrance kept insisting how complex, dark, and unexpected it is. I trusted the reviews and am pleasantly thrilled with my purchase! The scent really is complex, so much more than just violets and roses. I can't tell what else is in the blend and Black Phoenix doesn't say, but I know that I definitely want to order more from this company.
Luckily, they also sent me two tiny perfume samples at random. I've got Inferno, "the Dark Side of Fire: cinnamon, bitter almond, and neroli. Heavily spiced, torrid, and possibly conflagrant." I have no idea what neroli is, but I swear this is like fire in a bottle if only fire smelled like delicious spicy candy. I'm sure you're thinking, "Who wants to smell like that?!" It sounds completely weird, but it's surprisingly wearable. It's sweet then spicy, exotic, mysterious, and downright amazing. The other sample, Lilium Inter Spinas (literally, lily among thorns) is just as complex but somehow not quite as appealing (though that's really just a matter of personal preference).
Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab now has an actual brick-and-mortar shop in Burbank, CA! The perfumes are also available for order online and in certain select stores across the U.S. Although the proprietors warn that shipping will take 14-21 business days, that was simply not the case at all for my order! I had my Marie perfume within the next week. Another plus for Black Alchemy: what they sell is actually perfume oil, which is about 70% fragrance. In comparison, eau de parfums are about 15% fragrance, while eau de toilettes are about 8%. Not bad for $25 including shipping, hmm?
Is it just me or do department store perfume counters suddenly seem awfully boring?