Kitsch and witchery.

This will be brief, because it is half past four in the morning and I really ought to be asleep; eloquence at this hour is in short supply. Basically, I'm writing to keep my mind off of other things, and this is the subject that presents itself. It's not very complex, but it will have to do.

The first Esscentual Alchemy perfume I ever tried made me wild with enthusiasm. This was Mermaid's Carnation, which combines some of my most-loved perfumery tropes (peppery carnation! mystical backstory! the salt of the eternal sea!) and for which I retain a distinct soft spot. I can't begrudge my zeal for not stretching to cover the other four Esscentual samples I possess. Though pleasant, they simply didn't tell me the same ripping yarn as Mermaid's Carnation.

Of the four, I found Carry My Heart to be the least noteworthy-- a fun, blowsy, deshabille rose, all Victorian picture-postcard sentiment. Kama appears to have been modeled after an Indian hina attar, with its dozens of ingredients steeped in sandalwood oil; unfortunately, a overbearing oud note takes over and won't give anyone else a chance at the wheel. Orange Chocolate Roses is precisely what its name itemizes-- a bit of tasty-yet-unoriginal kitsch, a novelty item without much novelty. But Dvora, now-- Dvora is something different. She could be Puredistance M's gourmandise offspring-- a big-boned Julia Child of a fragrance, whose kitchen is perpetually redolent of desserts past, present, and future, most of them involving hearty -- and not strictly necessary -- slugs of Cointreau. Over the top in a benevolent, bursting-with-goodness sense, Dvora is the one I found myself reapplying most. (What do you want? Sometimes you can't stop at one bite.)

Scent Elements: White rose attar, frankincense, ambergris, rose hydrosol, rosewood, petitgrain, lavender (Carry My Heart); orange blossom, neroli, white rose attar, rose Damascena, Moroccan rose, pink pepper, tangerine, bergamot, citron, blood orange, amber (Dvora); saffron, ambergris, vetiver, sandalwood, ambrette, oud, frankincense, myrrh, patchouli, davana, cinnamon, jasmine, lotus, rose, nag champa, tuberose, neroli, clove, nutmeg, coriander, mimosa, carnation, cardamom, frangipani (Kama); labdanum, ambergris, benzoin, cacao absolute, gardenia, rose, orange blossom, ylang-ylang, rosewood, bitter almond, blood orange, mandarin (Orange Chocolate Roses)