Frequently Asked Questions
Do you accept custom orders?
Yes, custom orders and sizes are available upon request. Pleas email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
I'm new to natural perfume. What should I expect? How should I approach your shop?
Sample widely. Keep an open mind and nose. If you're used to scents at the fragrance counter, you will be in for a recalibration of your sniffer. A "sweet" natural perfume is going to be much earthier and markedly less sweet than what counts as "sweet" in the saccharine, dessert-y, gourmand saturated landscape of contemporary corporate perfumery. Flowery is not necessarily floral, and you may actually love lavender and patchouli.
How long do your fragrances last?
Longevity will vary from fragrance to fragrance, and person to person. The main factors are fixatives in the composition, and the skin chemistry of the wearer. Generally, you can expect natural perfumes to last from a few hours to several days (on clothing). The longest lasting fragrances tend to be musks, with animal musks outlasting botanical musks by days, even years. A good botanical musk, though, will wear for several days on scarves and sweaters.
To extend the longevity of my fragrances, I offer "fixatives." Fixatives function as primers, creating a barrier that slows the absorption of a perfume into your skin. Simply search "fixative" in my shop, and they will come up.
I opened the bottle and don't like the smell. What should I do?
Apply the fragrance to your skin. I recommend the inner wrist for this. Natural perfumes are truly dynamic creatures, and will often smell dramatically different in the bottle than on your skin. On your skin, it has a chance to warm up, mix with your own chemistry, and move through the stages.
What are the perfume stages?
Perfumes unfold over time, based on varying evaporation rates in their aromatic oils. "Stages" are used to describe their wear. To truly understand the character of a perfume, it is important to see it through the three stages, from beginning to end. The first stage is dominated by top notes, the most fleeting, volatile elements. Top notes generally dissipate and recede after the first few minutes, when the fragrance enters the second stage. Here the heart or middle notes come forth. This second stage can last up to an hour before the final stage. This is the dry down or dryout phase, when base notes deepen and complexify the entire composition. I recommend letting a perfume wear at least an hour before deciding it's not for you.
Which lasts longer? Liquid or solid perfumes?
This will vary from person to person, but generally the solid perfumes have greater longevity given that the beeswax traps aroma chemicals and slows their evaporation rate. That said, the solid perfumes may seem like sleepers, growing in intensity over time, whereas the liquid perfumes open with a bang and evaporate more rapidly.
What's the sillage of natural perfumes? What about the projection?
Sillage refers to the scent trail left in the air by the wearer. In natural perfumes, sillage tends to be subtle and intimate. When compared to the sillage of mass produced synthetic perfumes, which can be nauseating, stagnant and one dimensional, the sillage of natural perfumes is often complex and dynamic.
Projection is how far out a perfume projects from the wearer. Again, natural perfumes are intimate affairs. Generally only you and those intimately near you will catch wind of your fragrance. Unlike their corporate counterparts which can be overpowering walls of scent, natural perfumes rarely project beyond 12 inches from the wearer.
What are your concentrations?
Perfumes, Colognes, Fragrances: 40-60%
Skin and hair care: 1-5%
What are your longest lasting fragrances?
Panther (F)/Meta (M), Medusa, Hecate, Sun, Venus in Mars (F)/Mars in Venus (M), Samhain, Yellow Musk, Flower Rites, Witch, Grimoire, Chai Musk, Skin: Masculine, Magic Chamber, Taurus Moon, Catacombs, Sleeping Beauty, Vanilla Ocean, Revenant, Winter Leather, World, Clay, Sacred Terrestrial, Temperance.
What are your longest lasting enfleurage?
Gardenia and Civet; Gardenia, Bushman's Candle and Poplar Bud; Gardenia and Patchouli; Honeysuckle and Patchouli; Tuberose; Gardenia and Bushman's Candle; Lilac and Bushman's Candle; Lilac and Wild Vermont Fir.
What are your favorite fragrances?
Red Riding Hood, Scorpio Man, Everlasting, Feeding Hansel, Medusa, The Maze is Inside the Maze, Samhain, Sun, Milk Oolong Gardenia, Magician, Laudanum, Black Cat, Big Sur, Black Fox, Magic Chamber, Bastet, Daedalus the Architect, Queen, Aries Moon, Splitting, Hecate, Chocolate Banana Cream Pie, Taurus Moon, The Minotaur Path, Catacombs, Pepper Musk, Venus, Venus in Mars, Star, Devil, Fire Opal, Lilac Wine, Sleeping Beauty, Lotus Musk Attar, Juniper Musk, Sacred Terrestrial, New Orleans, Ariadne had a Clew.