Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Scent by the Sea Part II: My Two Cents on These Ten Scents

Excuse the cheesy title - I had to do it.

Like I said in Part I, I bought ten samples.  Even though I had read all of the descriptions when I picked them out, when they got to me, naturally I had already forgotten what scents were supposed to be associated with each sample.  So I played a little game, got out a notebook, and tried to write down my thoughts on each scent as I went through them.  Then, I went back to Scent By the Sea's Etsy site to read the official descriptions.  Fun!  I'll try to describe them for you here, though I encourage you to read their descriptions if you're interested in some of these. 
The samples come in lovely little glass vials, and you are given are a generous amount - more than enough for several days of wear, each.  With some scents, I definitely had to give it a few days before I could decide whether I liked it or not; others were more polarizing.  I would definitely like to emphasize, though, that fragrances are probably one of the most subjective "beauty and bath" products out there, so even though I didn't like them, please don't write them off.  And, my preferences say nothing about the quality of these; I found these to be well blended and long-lasting.  They are oils, so they will leave a tiny bit of residue, but that fades in a few minutes.  I wore one scent a day for a week or so; I found that a few dabs - in all the right places, *wink wink* - lasted all day, well into the evening (haha, yes, my cheesiness knows no bounds today!).
1. Moon Bride - smells like jasmine flowers, but is a little more understated; there are additional notes in this one, versus the strongly one-note Jasmine (below).  It's softer, sweeter.  It smelled okay to me out of the sample vial, but when I wore it, it became too heady and powdery, and I got a headache after a day of it.  Not for me.  I didn't even attempt to wear Jasmine after this.

2. China Rain - in the vial, it was sweet but somehow clean smelling - exactly like rain.  The melon scent was pretty strong, and usually it's not one of my favorites.  When I dabbed some on and wore it around, I was really confused.  Sometimes I didn't like it, sometimes I really did; it was definitely melon, and sweet, and also ever so slightly floral, but it still retained some of its soap-like, fresh aspects.  It smells like melon, and soap, but not like melon soap - it's an important distinction!  S.'s first impression was that it smelled like fabric softener, but he also said he liked it (yeah, I left it at that :P).  I wore it a couple more times, and decided that I actually really liked this one.

3. Lolita - lemon cookies!  This is what the bag smelled like when I opened it, and I desperately hoped that that meant one of the perfumes smelled exactly like that!  And it did.  When I put it on, though, it's not citrusy and is sweeter - more cotton candy-esque, but not sickening.  It reminds me of another perfume, but I can't think of it. (I do find that most scents turn sweeter and fruitier on me than in the jar; I don't know if this just means I'm sweeter than I let on, or if the fragrance is trying to make up for a certain lack :P).

4. Fiori di Roma - Floral, but not like the jasmine scents.  It's lighter, cleaner, more fresh (S. said it smelled like soap, :P) and strangely alluring.  It didn't seem like something I would like, initially, but I find that I really do like this one.  I think it's perfect for summer.

5. Côte d'Azur - when I first opened this one, it smelled like a box of crayons.  I know.  Not cool.  But I forced myself to take another whiff.  Spicy and sweet, but kind of cloying to my nose.  I dabbed some on and wore it around for a bit, but then I had to wash it off.  Not for me.  If you like spicy scents, though, I'd suggest this one. (Strangely enough, the smell kind of reminded me of tequila!  Haha).

6. Green Tea - citrus.  Just citrus.  Another "one-note Diva scent," that turned out subtler on my skin than in the vial.  Kind of reminded me of bathroom sprays, though, and it wasn't a favorite.

7. Winter Beach - I get a lot of rose, and a bit of the saltiness that is in the description.  Mostly rose, though.  But it does have that extra bit of something that gives it an edge, and keeps it from being overly flowery or feminine.

8. Jasmine - Too heavy and flowery for me.  See Moon Bride.  It's a simple, powerful jasmine perfume oil, so if jasmine is your thing, this might entice you.

9. Morpheus - my first impression was of incense and exotic places; it's spicy, with just enough floral sweetness to keep it interesting and not too harsh.  Not my favorite, though, but I think this just isn't my kind of scent.  I'm not a fan of the smell of incense.

10. Egyptian Honey - Sweet and somewhat too musky and floral when I put it on.  It does have the heavy sweetness of honey at the bottom, I've noticed.  Not entirely unpleasant, though, and it reminds me of banana pancakes, for some reason.  I like banana pancakes!  Not sure I want to wear banana pancakes, though.  Hm.

So, would I purchase again?  Yes.  I didn't really fall in love with any of these (well, maybe China Rain) - that is, none of these will be my new signature scent, or anything - but that's just personal preference, and I'm picky with my smells.  I do like the company, and the sample prices were reasonable ($14, including $2 shipping, for 10 samples).  If you don't want to pick your own ten, they also have themed and preset combinations of samples to try.  They also introduce new perfume oils every few months, so I'll be keeping an eye out for anything I might want to try in the future.  I will probably pick up full bottles of China Rain and Fiori Di Roma, too; after my initial test, I've been wearing China Rain every day, and I love it - fruity and clean and light, perfect for summer.