Friday, June 2, 2017

Solstice Scents Spring Haul

Disclaimer - all products were purchased by me

I look forward to the spring release from Solstice every year. I know Angela is known more for her heavier woodsy / autumn type of blends, but her gourmands and florals just manage to hit the spot. This year was particularly special with the introduction of four new scents and the return of a couple discontinued ones as well. Plus I made my first investment into one of her EdP sprays.

There was a sadness lingering over this purchase though. My most favorite scent in the whole wide world, Cameo, has made its final run and will be discontinued once it sells out. A key component has been discontinued by a supplier that Angela is no longer able to replace. I will keep the hope alive that it will return one day, even if that means a reformulation. I think I'm stocked up and prepared for the worst case scenario though...

At least I hope so. I do have my doubts and worry at least a dozen times a day if this will last long enough...

On a happier note, here's this epic spring order!

Almond, rose, yellow cake, tonka bean, coconut, ginger and green orange

Sugared rose petals and almond cookies. It's a sticky sweet floral-gourmand blend that smells fun and flirty. It doesn't morph a whole lot but the coconut does begin to emerge further into the drydown and adds a soft creaminess. Moderately strong sillage and this lasts all day. 

Cherry Vanilla Amberosia
Amber, black cherry, maraschino cherry, deep vanilla, whipped cream, blood orange EO and sweet orange EO

I grabbed this from the Valentine's collection since it was a final restock and I've been craving cherry scents lately. It's a sweet maraschino cherry scent with an initial orange zing and soft hints of fluffy whipped cream. No cherry cough syrup notes, which is always a bonus. After a few hours, it morphs into a sultry, somewhat powdery, sweet amber and vanilla cream. The sillage is moderate even after wearing this all day long. Seriously, this one just didn't want to quit, and I'm very happy with that. This is now my go-to cherry scent. 

Vanilla, white amber, white musk and lemon myrtle EO

Since I've been using a sample of this lately and it is also part of the spring collection, I'll include it here. It's primarily a tangy, true lemon with a minor floral undertone and a delicate touch of fluffy vanilla. Things gradually become sweeter after several hours, reminding me of powdered sugar-dusted lemon bars, but that lemon stays front and center the whole time. It's fresh and uplifting as well as light and airy like chiffon fabric. This is one of Angela's dual concept fragrances meant to capture the feel of chiffon cake and the fabric all at once. She hit the nail on the head. Sillage is moderate and it wears throughout the entire day. I already have a lemon scent that is somewhat similar, but once that is gone, I'll order a bottle of Chiffon.

Devil's Millhopper
Heather, oakmoss, fern and delicate wood notes

I've been lusting after this one for years now and snatched up a bottle when it made a brief, unexpected return this year. All those years of waiting paid off because this is remarkable and a new favorite from Solstice. This scent is all purple and green from start to finish. The heather opens this blend, smelling like a combo of sweet purple flowers and fresh green herbs, and slowly that green scent begins to fade. Purple flowers reminiscent of Into the Rain make up the heart of the blend and give a classic, Victorian feel. The drydown becomes the sharp green smell of ferns and I swear I'm picking up notes of hyacinth as well. The wear time was around five hours with a medium sillage. I really hope this returns next year so I can use this without fear of ever running out.  

Garden Gate
Lilac, wisteria, green grass, African bluegrass EO

Like Devil's Millhopper, this is another oldie that I've been lusting after. It returned this year but only as a whipped soap, so this review will be shorter. It's a rather linear scent in this format that is all lilac. There is some green freshness just underneath that, but lilac is basically all I smell. If it ever returns in perfume form, I'd grab a sample, but I don't think this would be a full bottle purchase.

Lavender Vanilla
Lavender EO and sweet creamy vanilla 

I ordered this in a whipped soap that smells entirely of lavender, but after foraging around, I found a perfume sample that I'll focus this review on. It's a sharp, herbal lavender with that icy coolness initially, but quickly dries down into vanilla ice cream. The transition between lavender and vanilla goes wonky for a short while and smells soapy, but eventually that mellows out into the sweet vanilla base. The throw is somewhat strong until the lavender fades, with the vanilla hugging very close to my skin. It lasted less than four hours. It's a general catalog scent that is available all year. 

In addition to the above scents, Angela introduced four new fragrances. I went with a sample pack so I could try three of them. The other three scents were ones I've had my eyes on for a while. They arrived inside of a paper pouch (for lack of a better term) with beautiful, detailed graphics inside.

Blueberry Violet Truffle
Cocoa absolute, blueberry, violet, tonka, vanilla

It starts out with a rich, slightly bitter dark chocolate and blueberries, but once the violet comes into the picture, it begins to smell like sweet tart candies. The blueberry is very tangy and more candy-like than the actual fruit, with the chocolate now fading into the distance. The drydown is a soft, sweet vanilla that stays close to the skin. Low to medium sillage with close to four hours of wear. 

Covered Bridge
Woods, moss, leaves, wood smoke, dirt, ozone, fir absolute

This starts out with a brisk autumn air carrying notes of freshly chopped wood and crunchy reddish leaves that have fallen to the ground, but those notes are quickly replaced by what I can only describe as tar. You know the smell when a road has just been paved? That's what I get. Black, sticky and a little smoky.
That's all I was able to smell through the end of the day. One person noted that I smelled like frankincense and myrrh after I had been wearing this for several hours. Personally, I don't quite get the impression of a covered bridge. I imagine that to smell more like Cellar from the general catalog with the cool air notes and the aroma of wet stone. Strong sillage that lasted the entire day.

Gin Flower
Osmanthus, elderflower, apricot, vanilla, juniper, lime, manuka honey accord (vegan), pear, citron, Hawaiian sandalwood

An opening of cool juniper and zesty lime opens this as a fresh, green blend that gradually morphs into more of a woodsy citrus rather than a fruity floral that Angela described. The woods are brisk and clean, but I'm also picking up what smells like leather just underneath. The citrusy topnote still remains, keeping the blend bright and kinda fizzy, but primarily a mix of woods and leather for most of the wear. Later into the drydown, a smooth, almost buttery, sandalwood is left behind. Moderate sillage that wore for close to eight hours. 

Into the Rain
Lilac, wisteria, blue lotus, rain, green accord, wild violets, earth

Aptly named, this scent opens with a walk through a lush garden of lilac and wisteria nestled amongst green leaves. It has a distinctly purple aroma with a green freshness underneath. The wisteria is what mostly pops out with the lilac right behind and, as much as I loathe lilac, this one is sweet, pleasant and alluring. Suddenly something sharp pierces through that sweet aroma, like the crack of lightening, followed by the rain. Once again, for someone who tends to avoid aquatics, I can get on with this. It's clean without being salty and brisk like an ocean breeze, and more like delicate dew droplets clinging to the lingering green notes. Once the storm has cleared, a skin-hugging wet earth smell is all that remains. Lemme say this, I was not expecting to like this as much as I do, but a full bottle is likely in the future. Sillage is moderately strong and lasted around seven hours. 

Mountain Vanilla
Sweet clover, coumarin, vanilla musk, fresh green accord, poplar buds, morning dew

I thought this would turn out to be a creamy green blend, but damp soil and hay mixed with buttery vanilla bean is what I'm getting. It's more of a brown scent, but the green notes do eventually emerge far into the drydown. By this point though, I'm having a hard time smelling it and it's time to reapply. The vanilla is present the entire time. It has a medium strong sillage and wore for close to five hours. 

Pinyon Truffle
Chocolate, pinyon pine, pinyon resin, Swiss stone pine, tonka, vanilla

Chocolate and pine? Sure! I trust Angela to make it work. It starts out with notes of pine and dark chocolate with accents of spices and pinecones. The spices and pinecones fade quickly, leaving behind icy pine and a chocolate that now reads more like a cup of hot cocoa. The drydown is a soft blend of vanilla with tonka accents. The sillage is moderate at first but the drydown stays very close to my wrist and is difficult to detect at times. Wear time of five hours. I'm going to try this a few more times, but I think a bottle will be heading this way once the weather cools down. I did notice this staining my skin a muddy brown color so the next time I will try rubbing a dab of unscented lotion on top to see if that helps. 

Obvious favorite aside, my top choices are Devil's Millhopper and Into the Rain. These purple florals feel so classy and elegant while also being sweet and playful, and I wish there were more of them on the market. Pinyon Truffle was one that surprised me and worked out well. On the flip side, I was thisclose to grabbing full bottles of Blueberry Violet Truffle and Gin Flower but I'm happy I stuck to samples first. I'll revisit them periodically to see how they age, but as of right now, samples will suffice. 

Website @ Solstice Scents


  1. I am bummed I skipped this spring restock. I am glad I got to read these reviews first though because it makes me happy I didn't splurge on some I was eyeing like Gin Flower. I do really want to try Mountain Vetiver though. So this Cameo.... I think the only reason I was hesitant to try it is sure to the almond note. I have had such abysmal almond experiences in wax (tea and cakes, pistachio) that it made me scared. But since you love it so I am sure I am missing out on something spectacular. I will claim ignorance is bliss in this one case, so I won't get impossibly hooked on a creation that I cannot obtain.

    Pinyon Truffle is a mercurial little thing on me. I love it but I also tilt my head at it and think "what was I just smelling?!" every so often. I am still nursing that sample. I did choose a sample in Mountain Vanilla with an order I placed a couple days ago. I wanted to finally pick up full bottle oils in Basilica and Butter Rum. Hoping she restocks Lavender Vanilla oil and a few others this weekend. (tonight? tomorrow? I need to check).

    Great haul!!! How are you finding the experiences between the oils and EDP as far as them being in the same scent? Do you sometimes prefer a scent in one format over the other?

    1. Yeah Gin Flower, I though fruits and flowers and BOOZE! But it ends up being woodsy and leather. She did mention that this is the first in an upcoming cocktail collection so that sounds fun!

      How do you like Basilica? That's an incense heavy blend, right? I really want to branch out into those

      I just tried the EdP and can't tell a difference between this and the oil. They're perfectly identical. Hmm, I think there are only two scents that I have in both oil and alcohol but have not noticed a difference. I do prefer EdP because they seem stronger and can spray them in my hair and clothes where they last longer, but the downside is that they evaporate. That's OK when it's a $20 bottle, but at this price point, I'll stick with oil. What about you? Do you notice certain scents perform better in one format?

    2. I tend to love EDP, like you, I love spraying and the clarity of the alcohol based fragrances. But then that price point is so much more attractive with the oils. I kind of wish she would do a smaller 30 ounce size so I could buy more scents in the EDP. I feel like $8 for the sample is a bit much. Especially since I will drain one of those in only 2 wears. But I still buy them to sample anyway. I am just trying to figure out what I want in which format. I love the Vanilla Pipe Tobacco and Conjure but do I want them in oil or EDP? Choices, choices. And I do want to try White Feather one day.

      I see that Cameo glace is having a limited run tonight. :-) I am angling for those lavender vanilla soaps. Mmmmm!!

  2. I adore Solstice Scents; thanks for the summer fragrance reviews!