Sunday, January 3, 2016

Solstice Scents Valentine's Day

Disclaimer - all products were purchased by me.

These are most of the fragrances that have been included in the Valentine's releases for the past two years. It seems like this collection is mostly comprised of general catalog scents that are offered year-round. There are two brand new scents from 2015 and one limited edition fragrance that is only available in this release (Cherry Cordial).

The turn around time is insanely fast, and I typically receive a shipping notice the same day I order. A free perfume sample of your choice is included with every order. Also be sure to sign up for an account on the website so you can accrue points for their rewards program. Every $200 spent will get you a $20 gift certificate to apply to a future order.

Cherry Cordial - milk chocolate, dark chocolate, maraschino cherries and black cherry. I smell a lot of chocolate with just a touch of cherry. It's mostly a milk chocolate with a touch of bitterness and depth from the darker chocolate. It's a nice blend of the two so it's neither too sweet nor too bitter. The black cherry is a more subtle touch and weaves in and out. I don't smell the maraschino cherries. On the skin the maraschino cherries come out and this scent becomes sweeter but never cloying as it wears. Eventually the cherries fade and a smooth milk chocolate remains. The chocolate and cherry notes used in this fragrance are very realistic and smell exactly like cherry cordials. I know sometimes cherry fragrances can either be sickeningly sweet or resemble cough syrup but I didn't find that to be the case here.

Cherry Vanilla Amberosia - amber, black cherry, maraschino cherry, deep vanilla, whipped cream, blood orange essential oil, sweet orange essential oil. In the vial it smells like a jar of maraschino cherries with a brightness that I suspect is from the citrus (although I don't actually smell the orange). On the skin it starts out heavy on the sweet cherry but the amber is lurking in the background making sure this never becomes cloying. The cherry gradually fades and I'm left with a soft vanilla and amber blend. Again the cherry smells true to life rather than like cough syrup. It's not cloying to my nose but if you're concerned it may be too sweet I would recommend a sample size first.

Heart of the Night - Moroccan rose absolute, Bulgarian rose absolute, sugar, chocolate, vanilla, Edge of the Night base. Red roses and chocolate in the vial. On the skin the chocolate fades first, then the rose. There's a powdery floral-musk that lurks in the background and eventually takes center stage as the chocolate and rose fade. I'm guessing this is the Edge of the Night base but I've never smelled it so I can't say for certain. It's what I would consider to be a sophistcated, mature woman's fragrance and can become a little headache inducing. IDK, it makes me think of a department store fragrance marketed towards older women. I like the way Heart of the Night begins but the dry down just isn't working for me.

Nightgown - vanilla, white chocolate, tuberose and tiare flower. In the vial I smell tuberose (or is it tiare? It smells like gardenia so I'm going with that) and a pinch of white chocolate. It's a sensual floral that makes me think of a white silk négligeé: alluring, romantic, very come hither. On the skin the gardenia is prominent but the vanilla and chocolate soften things up so the floral note is never overpowering. It smells like there's a touch of citrus in here that adds a little zing. For a white floral this is surprisingly soft. The sillage is low to moderate so I don't see this as being offensive in a conservative environment. Even if you don't gravitate towards white florals give this one a try. You might be pleasantly surprised.

Rose Leather - Moroccan & Bulgarian Rose Absolute and Leather. This was a new scent that was first offered last year and is now part of the permanent collection. Ive never thought of rose fragrances being masculine but that's what this is. It's a dark, velvety rose and loads of dirty black leather. I love the Moroccan and Bulgarian rose blend used in Rose Mallow Cream but this smells so different. Like this is a voluptious red rose while RMC would be pink or white roses. On the skin the scent is the same but as it wears it begins to take on an almost intoxicating quality. The rose fades rather quickly and eventually it becomes all black leather. The sillage is rather strong and this isn't a scent I would wear in a conservative setting (it's pretty kinky!). I was starting to enjoy this once I tried it on but that leather took over and became a bit too much.

Rose Mallow Cream - Moroccan rose absolute, Bulgarian rose absolute, marshmallow fluff, strawberry nectar, white chocolate, vanilla, white musk. This is a velvety smooth rose sweetened by fluffy marshmallows. Sometimes I find rose fragrances to be a little matronly but not this one. It's very youthful and delicate. For some reason I occasionally smell bubblegum in the vial. On my skin the rose amps immediately and it's like a pink rose bouquet floating on a fluffy cloud of marshmallow and sweet white chocolate. Tart strawberries weave in and out after a half hour but don't make much of an appearance beyond that. Once the rose fades I'm left with the white chocolate and marshmallows with a light touch of musk. At this point it's creamy but also very cloying; I have a hardcore sweet tooth and this is too much for me. I wore this perfume once when I had a cold and this dry down gave me the dry heaves. I love this fragrance and I'm not willing to give up so quickly so this is when I reapply it. Once I smell that beautiful rose aroma all is well again.

I'm planning on a comparison between this and Moonalisa's Georgina fragrance, which is another white chocolate, rose and strawberry blend. I haven't reviewed Georgina yet so that comparison will be included in the Moonalisa Valentine's Day collection post.

Violet Mallow - marshmallow cream, violet flowers, vanilla bean, white musk. Sweet, sweet, sweet. In the vial it's all sugared violet with fluffy marshmallow cream. I think I'm smelling a sharp green note but it's faint and could be my imagination. On the skin there's an initial blast of violet that is softened by the marshmallow but eventually the violets fade and it becomes a sweet, creamy white blend. Similar to the dry down of Rose Mallow Cream but slightly less sweet and easier to tolerate. But then the violets return and it smells like it did when I first applied it. Apparently violets contain a chemical that inhibits your ability to smell them for short periods of time and I'm guessing that's what is happening here. The violets weave in and out of the fluffy white notes until the fragrance fades completely. If you love sweet florals this is one you'll need.

Violet Truffle - dark chocolate, violet, violet leaf and vanilla absolute. In the vial this is heavy on the chocolate with a touch of sugary violet underneath. Just a touch. This smells like a blend of milk and dark chocolates. It's smooth and a little sweet like a cup of hot cocoa, not bitter at all. Initially on the skin this is heavy on the chocolate but the violet emerges quickly and takes center stage. It's sweet, powdery and slightly green with the chocolate grounding the florals. Eventually this becomes so powdery that it begins to smell like a flea collar. I don't know what happened here, it started out so nice. But that's what I smell.

Violet White Leather - violet, vanilla, white leather and coumarin. This was the second new scent that was offered last year and has since become a part of the general catalog collection. In the vial it's all leather with a barely discernible touch of violet sweetness. Very different than Rose Leather though. Think of this as a feminine, more luxurious leather scent than it's rose counterpart. White leather would be the Chanel handbag while Rose Leather would be the rugged black cowboy boots. Once I apply this to my skin this is just leather. No violet, vanilla or coumarin...just straight up leather for about two hours until the violet and vanilla emerge and add a powdery smoothness. The leather remains the dominant note until it disappears completely. I enjoyed this once the vanilla and violet jumped in but it took too long to get to that point. Maybe if this was heavier on the floral and vanilla and the leather was used with a lighter hand I would spring for a full bottle. But for now I'll try layering this with Violet Mallow to see if that helps.

Final thoughts - this is one of my favorite collections from Solstice scents because of all the rose and violet blends. Violet Mallow is my top pick from this collection, with Rose Mallow Cream coming in at a close second. If you like sweet gourmands then this is a collection worth checking out. Most of these fragrances are currently in stock on the website and remember to create an account so you can accumulate points for the rewards system.

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