Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Alchemic Muse Summer Collection - Haul & Review

Disclaimer: all products were purchased by me.

Alchemic Muse is a small independently owned bath and body brand that I discovered last year and quickly fell in love with. The shop has a wide range of products to choose from including perfumes, cream soaps, sugar scrubs, hair mists, body whips (body butters), soaps and shower gels. Sample sizes are available in most products and general catalog items are restocked regularly throughout the year. With a wide variety of general catalog and seasonal scents to choose from there's truly something for everyone.

I first discovered this shop towards the end of last summer.  Unfortunately I was only able to grab sample sizes of a few remaining products since she was focusing on the autumn release.  I've been patiently waiting for the summer scents to come back and let me tell you...it was worth the wait!

Every product is wrapped in black tissue paper except for the perfume samples which are placed in a small black envelope.  Every jar (cream soap, body whip, foaming body scrub) is shrink wrapped and has a seal inside the jar to keep the product from leaking.  The hair mists come with a piece of tape wrapped around the cap to keep it secured (the black residue above the label in the picture below is from the tape).  Perfume bottles are 5 mL amber glass bottles and the sample perfumes come in clear glass vials with a wand attached to the cap.

I typically receive a shipping notice the same day I place an order but occasionally my orders ship the following day.  All orders have shipped USPS Priority 2-day mail and shipping overages are promptly refunded.  Samples are included with every order; usually I receive perfume samples but occasionally I get samples of bar soap.

And now onto the products!

Body whip (2 oz and 6 oz) - this is a lightweight body butter that really packs a punch.  The consistency is light and fluffy, it spreads easily over the skin and soaks in quickly without feeling greasy or heavy and my skin feels moisturized throughout the day.  Bonus...the fragrance lasts for hours!  This has quickly become my holy grail year-round moisturizer.

Cream soap (2 oz and 6 oz) - not exactly a whipped soap although this product is also light and feels whipped.  It almost feels like a bar of soap that sat at the bottom of a wet bathtub overnight.  It's very soft and melts easily once you begin rubbing your hands together.  It produces a generous lather and leaves my skin feeling clean but never stripped of moisture.  I've had great luck using this as a shaving cream as well but I prefer to use this as a shampoo.  Since using this as a shampoo my hair feels so soft with an incredible amount of shine.  A little goes a long way...a 2 oz jar lasted approximately 60 washes. Another holy grail!

Foaming body scrub (2 oz and 6 oz) - a clean-rinsing sugar scrub that leaves no oily residue behind.  The sugar is densely packed and can be a little rough compared to other sugar scrubs I've used but I prefer a bit of rough exfoliation.  The scrub transforms into a creamy lather that cleanses my skin.  I've had great luck using these scrubs in place of shaving cream...the gentle lather softens my skin and I've noticed fewer nics and cuts with the razor.

Hair mists (4 oz) - a lightweight oil-free detangler and styling primer that is made with botanical extracts, protein and vitamin B5.  I've only used these a few times as i have some other hair detanglers ive been trying to use up first but so far I've had great luck with this product.  It quickly detangles my wet hair and helps control frizziness.  I do wish the scent lasted a bit longer but since it's so light I can reapply throughout the day.

Perfumes (5 mL and sample vials) - the fragrances are diluted in fractionated coconut oil.  The 5 mL bottles come with an orifice reducer to minimize spills in case you drop it.  Sample vials include a wand applicator attached to the cap.

I'll review more products as I buy them (shower gels, body gloss, bar soaps and bath melts).  But for now, onto the scents!

Scent reviews
Mango Tea - drink in the aroma and the atmosphere of the islands.  Sweet, juicy mango fruit immersed in iced sweet tea softened with a touch of sultry vanilla bean and creamy white musk.  A slightly bitter mango blended with tea notes.  The mango note has a slight "green" quality and is the most realistic mango scent I've found.  Every mango scent I've tried has an almost sugary sweet quality but to my nose true mango smells slightly tart and green, almost underripe.  The fruity note slightly outweighs the tea note but both are discernible.

Pineapple Milk - evocative of gentle south sea breezes, swaying palm trees, and flowing grass skirts.  A perfect blend of fresh, tangy pineapple enveloped in rich and creamy milk sweetened with raw sugarcane. AH!  Now this is the scent that got me hooked on Alchemic Muse and I've waited nearly a year to repurchase.  I just adore this one.  The pineapple is slightly tangy and realistic, not a cloying pineapple scent.  The milk adds a creaminess that is a unique twist to your typical summer fragrance.  This smells like pineapple sherbert (and now I'm hungry!).  Sweet but slightly tangy, creamy, summery...this is a definite repurchase!

Tiki Moon - straight from the islands to entice your senses...freshly cracked coconut floating on a faint undercurrent of island fruits will have you dreaming of the tropics.  The coconut stands out initially but is then joined by a blend of tropical fruits.   I can't pinpoint what those notes are but the coconut always stays at the forefront.  This reminds me of a tropical drink and if you love coconut you'll want to try this scent.

Bali Ha'i - a tempting blend of sweet flowers and creamy, exotic drinks...juicy tropical fruits and island blossoms drenched in coconut milk and vanilla cream with a touch of praline.  A fruity floral blend but I can't quite pinpoint the notes.  Melon?  Plumeria?  I definitely smell coconut in the background, no vanilla or praline though.

Castaway - lost in paradise...creamy coconut milk and ripe banana amidst a light breezy veil of island orchids awash in the salty, summer essence of sand and sea.  A tropical beach in a bottle.  The coconut and banana notes are prominent along with a sharp wet sand note.  I don't detect any floral notes in here, just the scent of tropical fruits carried in a crisp ocean breeze.  I wouldn't call this an aquatic scent though.  It's more like a fresh, clean beachy scent that is a summertime necessity.

There's another scent from this collection called Waikiki (a coconut lime blend) that I don't have yet but once I have it I'll review.  I still have a ton of scents to review, mostly from the Valentine's Day and spring collections but also a few general catalog offerings.  Stay tuned!

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