Sweet and evil.
Lolita Lempicka Minuit Noir will always be my witching hour perfume–my house reeks of it on Halloween.
Sugar spells and dark iris magic, wicked candy licorice and violet patchouli brew.
It’s nicely powdery, keeping the juice intriguing–fey dust rather than cloying syrup.
Lasts all Samhain and charms sleeves for days after.
Sea buckthorn, — or argousier (French), sanddorn or havtorn (Swedish), olepiha (Russian) — is a thorny bush growing in the sandy soils on European coasts and across northwestern China and Mongolia. The leaves are sage green, and the berries bright orange.
The oil of the hippophae rhamnoides is gaining popularity as a cosmetic ingredient and the berries as a dietary “superfood,” packed with vitamins and nutrients. I first discovered sea buckthorn on the island of Öland, Sweden, when my father’s wife made a custard pie with berries harvested from her yard.
The fruit is pungent smelling, with an herbal spiciness of clementines and cardamom, and has the firmness of a cranberry, with a single seed in the center. The pulp is sour, with a waxy mouth-feel, and tastes like lemons, but without the citrus bite–more luscious, almost like passion fruit. Sugar brings out the flavor beautifully.
Zarkoperfume’s wonderful Cloud Collection–with seaberry at its center, sweetened with jasmine and bolstered with wood and leather notes–shows off the creamy richness of the fruit.
In contrast, Brocard’s Oblepiha i Kryzhovnik pairs the sandthorn with gooseberry, highlighting the astringent spice.
Sea-buckthorn can also be found flavoring herbal and black tea (compare Ahmad’s Sea Buckthorn Candies to Twinings’ Lady Grey) and in jams and jelly candy and–my favorite–licorice truffles.
A unique fruit I hope to taste and sniff more of in the future!
It’s blue! And weird and wet and marvelous.
Marine water and smoke out of the vial that darkens down to black fountain pen ink, dirtying up sea foam.
Algae blooms, delicate green, strangely organic and chemical at the same time, with big juicy sillage.
The ambergris rises to the surface an hour later, making it even wetter with ocean spray; benzoin sweetens it, turning it fresh again.
Six hours later and it’s still there, chaotic, never seeming to settle down to one depth; yet it’s oddly comforting and beautiful.
Gov’t Mule does a terrific jam cover of Jimi Hendrix’s 1983 (A Merman I Shall Be)–from Electric Ladyland–that goes deep under water around the 4:15 mark.
Tomato, by Demeter Fragrance Library.
Late summer garden pungent freshness that fades to delicate leafy green in minutes.
A super cheap yet lovely spritz.
I like this cover of Sublime’s Doin’ Time/Summertime, too.
David Bowie wore Minotaure.
So of course I had to know what the Goblin King smelled like.
Paloma Picasso’s only masculine opens with a sharp and spicy fizzy lime pop, then eases into fruit candy–the fancy jelly slices with sugared edges. The sweetness turns floral, then herbal, bubblegum slowly drying down to brooding cedar.
Sandalwood talc and vanilla tonka powder settle above the skin, shimmering all night long, both comforting and seductive, sexy Stardust indeed.
Fades into the collar and cuffs with androgynous amber, and leaves songs stuck in your head–You remind me of the babe–for days.
My favorite Bowie song is still China Girl.
Tipsy strawberries and seawater, roses and a tangled forest.
Projects like spilled wine and soaks clothes for weeks.
Several years ago I wrote a novella set on Öland, an island off the coast of Sweden. My two young lovers celebrate midsummer eating strawberries and getting drunk, and if the pages could be scented, they’d smell like Sådanne.
Salty sand and boozy sweet fruit, so sun-ripe it’s alcoholic, eaten in the shadows of the sea-wind twisted trees on the shore.
I adore it.