Cotton & Almond

A cut glass flask of cologne in a cannister of Quaker oatmeal.

The almond turns into nutty field grains and the cotton into cardboard–exactly like the bottom of a can of Old Fashioned Oats.
The label touts the word “Comforting” in several languages–and a nice bowl of oatmeal with brown sugar and cinnamon is a lovely comfort food–but sadly this has none of that indulgence.

Healthy, dusty and earnest.


A more fun Cotton.


A cup of chamomile tea, with a decant vial and paper test strip of Zoologist bottle.

Sloth’s timeline:

0:01 – Chamomile tea and loud mushrooms.
(The cat is deeply offended.)
0:05 – A bit of fruit and honey, then spiced coffee, with testicles.
Up close, in my personal space.
And they need a wash.
(I’m offended too.)
0:15 – The boys get a nice shower, with lavender.
0:20 – Unoffensive berries. (Not a euphemism.)
0:30 – Haaay!
Greens. Grassy greens, in the sun.
1:00 – Berries again, grapefruit sour, black currant bite. Nice.
2:00 – Oakmoss and resins 6″ above the skin.
4:00 – A smudge of herbal teabag dregs on cuffs.

Edit – 3/3/23

Aside from the dirty ball sack stage, this is a reasonable fragrance.

This designer made Bat, too, which has a lot of the same measured storytelling progression.
The mushrooms are odd–Tom Ford does them better in Black Orchid–but they’re brief, and kind of fun.
I like the acai berry very much, but it’s not my cuppa.


A proper Sloth playlist would have Dirty Head’s awesome NSFW Sloth’s Revenge, Tim Minchin’s hilarious Lament for the Three Toed Sloth and Sloth & Turtles’s jam A Song for Ants.

…but I’m stuck on this song today.


Cream honey on a tarnished spoon, with Zoologist bottle testing strip and a decant vial filled with slightly gray eau.

Starts with honey and the Di Da Jow bruise medicine my step-dad used after his Kung-Fu sparring workouts, and ends with a dirty penny.

Edit – 3/2/23

Wow, does Zoologist do honey well. (See Bee and Hummingbird.)

Di Da Jow is a lovely sweet camphorous mash of ginseng, spices, and herbs, meant to be used as topical pain relief. When I was little, I’d sneak drops on my cuffs to sniff at all day. I’m sure my parents knew, from the smell, but they never said anything.

Between the opening and the weird sweaty bit that comes across as screechy metal, somewhere inside the floral powder, are a few moments of smoke.
That’s kind of demented, honestly.


Olivia Newton-John died yesterday. (Breast cancer sucks.)
She was amazing.

Like the perfume, this song starts marvelously, and ends with some odd squeaky notes.


Fresh beets with a mini splash bottle of Demeter Beetroot cologne.

Okay, yes.
Beetroot is weird–an undead gourmand?!– but it’s interesting.

Begins with a big shovelful of the same dusty soil opening that Zoologist Bat has, cellar dry, and cool.
The sweet notes in the middle are an hour or so of white sugar–granulated crystals without fruit or flowers or spice–oddly earthy in its purity, and rather fun.
The end lasts another two hours, a smudge of dirt on the skin, with subtle smoke that reminds me of Tank Battle.

Not one for daily wear, but I’ll douse myself in it for the local Zombie Shuffle next Halloween.


El Wencho is awesome!


Black TokyoMilk mini bottle featuring a white beetle, sitting in the eye socket of a plaster skull draped in a snakeskin printed scarf.

Now this is what a Halloween fragrance should be–weird, earthy, evocative, and tricky sweet.

TokyoMilk Dark #17 lists Absinthe, Vanilla Salt, Cut Greens, and Crushed Fennel on the bottle–and Arsenic lives up to that, and more.

Wormwood out of the bottle, a satisfying poison green, with a bit of dusty white frosting, both edible and stand-offish.
A twitch of licorice keeps it fresh and fun for several hours at the edge of social distance, and then slides down to intimate space with intoxicating herbal green woods and mineral salts–the the kind that smell a bit sour and glitter when the light hits them right–until the next morning.

The sweeter top notes linger longer on hair and silk, and the bottom blooms brilliantly in a steaming bath (or cauldron.)
Compelling and sexy.
Leans to the warlock section of the spell-book.



A plate of whole canned beets and sample spray sitting in vermilion liquid, a pink rose, and a Diptyque box in the background.

Opens with nice earthy vodka that definitely makes one think of root vegetables, but then it warms up and the roses bloom on woody stems–sweet, pretty, and strange, with a hint of smoke in the distance.

Intriguingly genderless.
In the daytime it’s cheerful–sun on fresh turned soil and trained florid roses. At night it seems Gothic–a vampire graveyard, and coolly seductive.
Lasts four hours or so in personal space, with faint trails on cuffs.
I like it very much.

(I have no idea what beetroot has to do with Kyoto, but I’ve never been.)


The Cure’s Kyoto Song probably has as much authentic ties to Japan as this scent, but it has some of the same dark emo vibes.


Pineward sample vial and paper test cutout of Fanghorn bottle, burlap pouch and a taxus tip with green needles.

Fanghorn is a bit brighter than Murkwood and less sweet, with an earthy forest floor petrichor replacing the myrrh and incense.
Realistic pine in a summer rainstorm for an hour, then green lichen on the skin for the rest of the day.
Semi-permanent on cotton, with the wet fir opening.

Leans to unisex trees with rough bark.


More Tolkien inspired art:

Seaberry & Rose Clay

White capped roller stick, clear with red detail and a whale logo.

I’m so disappointed.
Sea-buckthorn, sanddorn (Swedish), argousier (French), or seaberry, is a creamy lemony pungent berry, close to a cranberry in texture and tartness.

The Old Whaling Co.’s version–a kid’s Body Shop strawberry and raspberry jam mashed with chalk and rose–was named by someone who has never touched, seen, eaten, or smelled a real seaberry.

Their Mariner’s Moon candle sounds nice.


Shanty-Tok was a wave of communal Covid-19 art, when musicians discovered the looping possibilities of the TikTok social media app, and combined it with sea shanty folk songs.
The Wellerman was the best, started by Nathan Evans.


Lollia “Little Luxe” bottle (I love them all so much) with gold letters and blue back design and gold cap, and a bit of florist purple fluff.

Slightly threatening cellophane packing tape.

The (very cute) bottle says White Tea and Honeysuckle right on it–but that’s been taken to the post office and shipped far, far away, leaving nothing but adhesive esters and nervous tension.


One out of five American adults deal with anxiety issues, and those rates are even higher for teens–


Palm reading sticker and sample card with arcane eye motif, and spray.

Garage metal shop–pleasantly sour earthy concrete, metallic dust with the smoke of flash sparks from a grinder, tools with wood handles that warm up with use–and spiced gumdrops.

Nice. Leans to the calloused fingertips end of unisex.
Lasts longer and louder on clothes than on skin, and makes one nostalgic for clove cigarettes.


Another metal catharsis.