Chaparral by Roxana Illuminated Perfumes

Back in July of 2009 I was a part of a “Summer Pastimes and Fragrances” blogging event. One of the categories was “Favorite Meditation/Summer Incense Scent” and I chose Roxana Villa’s Chaparral not only for its beauty, but its appeal as a summertime incense perfume. When I look back on what I wrote over a year ago, I realize that I still feel the same way about Chaparral:

“Roxana’s gentle and expert hand with frankincense and sage allow this to be a very accessible and seasonless incense fragrance. Chaparral never becomes weighted down with dark and smokey cathedral imagery. Quite the contrary. California breezes flow on your skin when you wear this, providing a reverence for the “Cathedral of Nature” as you close your eyes and meditate on the breath that sustains you.”

I am wearing Chaparral as I write, and it does indeed encourage more intentional breaths and to revel in its outdoorsy serenity.Chaparral is offered in two forms, solid and liquid. Both are similar of course, but with some subtle, key differences. The solid and the liquid maintain a strong foundation of fresh sage and are undoubtably green and herbaceous. The solid form -in a base of unrefined beeswax, jojoba oil and infused oils- leans more nutty and smoky, like a recently tamped out brushfire. The liquid on the other hand has a tartness to the green/herbal aspect which ultimately gives way to the arid, hazy scent of Southern California’s natural landscape as embodied by Chaparral’s distinct sage and frankincense blend.

Just days ago, Roxana added another fragrance to the Chaparral duo called Tangent. Roxana told me she views Tangent as the cowgirl counterpart to the more cowboy nature of Chaparral. I completely agree as Tangent is softer and sweeter with what I’m guessing is a more generous use of benzoin. The result has a touch of sensual powderiness that the other Chaparrals do not possess. For quite some time now, Chaparral has been my go-to incense perfume, but cowgirl Tangent has clearly made a gorgeous impression on me.

Leave a comment about Chaparral or Tangent and you’ll be entered in a giveaway for samples of both forms of Chaparral. Extra entries if you follow Roxana on Twitter or her blog. Extra entries as well if you follow Scent Hive on Bloglovin,Twitter, Google Friend Connect,Facebook’s Networked Blogs, or subscribe to Scent Hive. Please let me know in your comment what you did so you get the entries you deserve! US entries only. Entries accepted until Sunday Oct. 5th 9pm PST. Drawing now closed, we have our winner.

A portion of profits from the sale of the liquid flacon perfume go to the Chaparral Institute.

Chaparral is available on Roxana Illuminated Perfume etsy site. Chaparral solid compact is $65, Chaparral liquid is $150 for a 7gm French glass flacon, and Tangent is $25 for a 1gm vial.

Posted by ~Trish

Images courtesy of Roxana Villa

Disclosure: Samples were sent to me for consideration by Roxana Villa. The opinions in this review are my own. I was not financially compensated for this review or any other.


50 thoughts on “Chaparral by Roxana Illuminated Perfumes

  1. What timing! I was just resampling Chaparral in liquid this week. It’s not love at first sight for me, but I’m getting to know it better. I love reading others’ impressions as we all bring such different scent associations to fragrances. Tangent really intrigues me, as does the solid version on Chaparral.

    I’m already a huge fan of Roxana’s and follow her on Twitter and subscribe to her blog and newsletter. Also a huge fan of Scent Hive and am fully connected in all the various ways. 🙂

    1. Kathleen, how wonderful that you are already a fan of Roxana’s work. Thanks for commenting and good luck in the drawing.

  2. I’ve been reading about Chaparall and Tangent on Roxana’s blog and they both sound intriguing! As a girl from the south I’d love to experience a sample of southern California! I follow Roxana’s blog, read her newsletter, follow her on Twitter, same for Scent Hive (except Bloglovin-not sure what that is). Thanks!

  3. I’m already a Roxana fan. Vera is my current favorite. Chaparall and Tangent both sound lovely. Pleaseenter me in the draw. I subscribe to both scent hive and Roxana’s blog.

    1. Cynthia,
      I love Vera as well 🙂 I think you would adore Chaparral as it has a similar meditative feeling.

      3 entries and good luck!

  4. Roxana is amoung the tops, with me. I love hearing about her creativity & would LOVE to try these two!
    (I subscribe to Roxana’s blog as well as Scent Hive FB) : )

  5. Chaparral is one of my fave Roxana scents, it’s the desert landscape come to life for me……….which is funny because it’s not my favorite terrain in CA, but has some of my favorite scents, and this perfume totally captures them!

    1. Ditto on everything you just said 😉
      Not sure if you’ve tried both forms, so good luck in the drawing so you can do some comparisons.


    2. Qwendy – you’re one of the reasons I’m revisiting Chaparral – your comment about it being perfectly evocative of the desert landscape. Hope you’re well. I owe you an email!

  6. I am in awe of what Roxana does with her talents. All of her perfumes are so visually captivating and always have a story. You can tell she puts her heart into everything. I love your descriptions Trish. Makes me want to try immediately!! thank you for always supporting Natural Perfumery.
    I already follow the lovely Roxana on Twitter and you as well!

    1. Nikki,
      Roxana’s heart certainly is in everything she does and Chaparral and Tangent are no exceptions. And thanks to you for your contributions to natural perfumery as well! 🙂
      Thanks for the follows, that’s 3 entries for you.

  7. Great review!!
    I am intrigued with the description of these scents. I think all of Roxana’s Perfumes sound wonderful!
    I am a big fan of Herbal fragrances and summer:)

    I am following Roxana’s Blog and i am an email subscriber of Scent Hive
    Thank you!!

    1. Crystal, since you are a fan of herbal scents, Chaparral is a must-try! Thanks for the follows, that’s 3 entries for you.
      Good luck 😀

  8. I have a solid mini of this scent and just love it. I wear it when I want to feel sexy and outdoorsy. Someday soon I’ll be purchasing a full-size solid. I’m having a hard time choosing a favourite Roxanna scent, but this might be the one!

    1. Lynn,
      It is so difficult to pick a fave Roaxana scent isn’t it? For me, it tends to be whichever one I am wearing 🙂
      Good luck in the drawing!

    1. Chaparral is outdoorsy, but not in a sporty way. More dreamy and relaxing. Good luck and thanks for your comment~

  9. Trish,
    I love Roxana’s perfumes and reading her blog enteries. In her blog Roxanan gave this wonderful reciepe for making your own lime tincture with jojoba oil and mine just matured, it smells devine. Anyways, I just recently tried Chaparral in the solid form and I was wondering what the difference between the solid and liquid was. It is so lovely to read your thoughts on how the liquid is more arid and hazy where the solid is nutty and smokey. Roxana is a master at beautiful smokey scents. I would be very excited to try Tangent being the softer and more feminine version of Chaparral and I love benzoin. Her Pheonix Myster has benzoin in it and it smells gorgeous. I also follow her newsletter too. Angie

    PS. I am excited her release of the liquid Cimbalom, it is one of my all time favorite perfumes.

    1. Angie,
      You always write such thoughtful and interesting comments, thank you so much 🙂
      I just got a sample of Phx Myster and can’t wait to try it as I too adore benzoin. I’m not sure that it’s in Tangent, but it sure smells like it!!

      Good luck in the drawing,

  10. Trish~
    These all sound so beautiful. I have not had the opportunity to try any of Roxana’s scents. I know, where have I been?! Just signed up for her emails & subscribe to Scent Hive of course. Thnx, Joy

  11. Joy, you need to try her fragrances!! I wish you lots of luck in the drawing, thanks for the follows (3 entries).


  12. Hi Trish,

    What a lovely review! I’ve tried and really like Vera, but haven’t sampled Chapparal yet. I was afraid it might be too masculine for me, but after reading your review, I’m sure it wouldn’t. And as for Tangent, I’d love to experience how all the green outdoorsiness of chaparral combines with a powdery, benzoin note.

    I already follow Roxana on Twitter and follow her blog, and I subscribe to you, follow you on Twitter, follow your blog. Six entries? Do I get extra entries for crossed fingers, toes, eyes?

    1. Thanks Laura, and thanks for reading! Chaparral is very wearable for men and women IMO. If you really lean feminine in your taste, Tangent would be a must-try.

      And yes! 6 entries, good luck 🙂

  13. Oh, I would love to try this, Roxana’s perfumes sound so very interesting but I have never gotten to try them myself. And I am a blog follower as well. Thank you 🙂

    1. Thanks for the follow Ellen, that’s two entries for you. I hope you get the chance to experience a Roxana perfume, they are all so lovely.

      Best of luck,

  14. I already left my comment on the 29th but forgot to note that I do subscribe to Roxanna’s newsletter. I’d had to pass up a chance for an extra entry for a chance to win this yummy sounding scent. I know I love Chapparal, so I’m guessing I’ll love this as well.


    1. Great! That’s two entries for you. And the giveaway is for samples of both the solid and liquid forms of Chaparral.

      1. Well, darn – I just noticed that the giveaway is in the US only. I’m in Canada. I guess I just assumed that since she ships to Canada from her etsy site the contest was open to me as well. I guess I should have red the bold, red print in the instructions?? Oh well, I still love Chapparal and I hope that whoever does win loves it too.



        1. Sorry about that Lynn, I am the one who will be sending the package and I need the convenience (and lower cost) of being able to ship domestically from an automated postal machine. Unfortunately you can’t use the automated deal for international shipping 😦

  15. Thank you for hosting another Illuminated Perfume Giveaway. Tangent sounds lovely (I thought Roxana’s description on her blog of how she chose the name (or, rather, how it chose her) was very interesting. I think it was meant to be.
    * I follow Roxana’s blog
    * I follow the Scent Hive blog

    Thank you!
    ❤ Peg in SM

    1. You are very welcome! It’s my pleasure 🙂
      And thanks to Roxana for supplying the lovely samples!!

      3 entries for you Peg,

  16. Both Chaparral and Tangent sound lovely! I love incense perfumes in the fall and would love to try these.

    I follow Roxana on twitter
    I follow Scent hive on twitter and am also a facebook fan

    1. Chaparral is lovely in all the seasons, but I think Fall is when it feels most cozy. Thanks for all the follows! That’s 4 entries.

      Good luck 🙂

  17. When I read how Tangent was made, it occurred to me (partially because of the kid inventors featured on the Ellen show recently) that most good inventions, like Tangent, were unconsciously created by accident!

    1. Lisa,
      I too love the story behind Tangent. Inspired serendipity I suppose?

      Good luck in the drawing,

    1. Yee Haw!! 😀

      I hope you get the chance to experience Tangent. The drawing is for samples of the two Chaparral forms, which are equally as beautiful.

      Best of luck,

  18. WOW ! Both Chaparral & Tangent sound beautiful !! Count me in….I follow Roxana on her blog, her journal and her monthly newsletter…. I also subscribe to Scent Hive and follow you on facebook network blog…

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