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.

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Roxana Illuminated Perfume: Vera Solid Perfume

Roxana Villa, of Roxana Illuminated Perfume, is the creator behind one of my favorite lavender perfumes, Vera. I reviewed the liquid formulation of Vera this past fall, and am elated that Roxana is now offering it as a solid in addition to the liquid perfume. Organic lavender from Ojai is used in the formulations and lavender lovers in the Southern California area should consider attending the Ojai Lavender Festival on June 26th.



Both the liquid and solid Veras are comforting and unique renditions of lavender, but they do possess subtle differences. Alongside lavender, there are woods, resins, sage, oakmoss and orange blossom that coalesce elegantly in both formulas. In the topnotes, sage predominates the liquid while resins are much more enhanced in the solid. Resins of styrax (benzoin), Peru Balsam and cistus yield a supple aroma whose delicate sweetness hovers over the rich depth of a sunbaked thicket.


The middle notes of the solid continue to explore the resinous nature of Vera, as cistus (the essential oil of the rockrose shrub) becomes heightened in its rich radiance. In contrast, the heart of the liquid finds itself amidst the floral company of orange blossoms which temper the intensely herbaceousness of lavender. This herbal quality quiets even further in the liquid’s drydown which assumes a more powdery form. The solid on the otherhand, veers away from the powder path and into the deeper terrain of woods like cedar, vintage Mysore sandalwood and the aforementioned resins.



Vera in both of its forms are beauties, but I prefer the solid as the union of sweet, intriguing resins with aromatic florals reels me in effortlessly. Impressive longevity is bestowed upon both, but the solid wears closer to the skin. As always, Roxana’s perfumes are 100% natural, made with only the finest organic and/or wildcrafted botanicals.


As a special treat for Scent Hive readers, Roxana is giving away a trio sampler set of Vera, Rosa and Chaparral. As always, you are eligible for extra entries, one each, by following Roxana on Twitter and/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! Drawing will close Sunday June 13th at 9pm PST. We have our winner!


Vera is available at Roxana’s etsy site. $7.50 for a solid perfume mini is $7.50, $25 for a 5gm pot, $65 for a compact, or $150 for a 7gm flacon of the liquid perfume.


Posted by ~Trish

Disclosure: Samples from Roxana Illuminated Perfume were provided for this review. The opinions in this review are my own. I was not financially compensated for this review or any other.

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Scents That Sing Spring! A Blogging Event.

Growing up in Phoenix, one scent above all others sang “spring.” Orange blossoms. Their melody is beautiful and lush and the desert air becomes saturated with the intoxicating perfume of these tender white blossoms every spring. If you’ve never been to the Phoenix area, the orange trees are a funny site as the trunks need to be painted white to protect them from the blazing heat of the Arizona summer sun (as well as bugs). The photo just below is all about my childhood memories of Phoenix which always have a backdrop of white tree trunks and orange blossom redolence.

I live in the Northwest now where orange trees do not grow, so neroli is my go-to scent when I crave the playfulness of childhood and the sensuality of wearing a voluptuous fragrance as an adult.  Neroli is the oil from the orange blossom and has found its way into many of my perfumes and beauty products. The following is a list of those stand-out items from my collection that feature the exquisite orange blossom.


Skincare


In Fiore’s Pur Face Oil Concentré is a fabulous way to pamper your skin as well as your senses. I use it as a nighttime moisturizer when my skin needs the attention of grapeseed oil, rosehip seed oil, evening primrose oil and vitamin E. These ingredients help balance skin that leans oily and is prone to breakouts. While those healing oils do their work on your skin, cold pressed orange peel oil and Tunisian neroli flower oil get to work on your psyche. Pur is pure neroli heaven. When I have it on my skin, I feel like I am lounging peacefully under the shade of an orange tree teeming with blossoms.

Alchemilla’s Neroli Rehydrating Essence is another facial oil loaded with healing ingredients like jojoba nut oil, hazelnut oil; herbal extracts of ginkgo biloba, chamomile, calendula; and rosehip seed oil. All of which are organic. This too makes for a soothing nighttime treatment as the hypnotic essence of neroli lulls you into sweet dreams.

 

Kahina Facial Cleanser is a creamy, lightly foaming cleanser that I have been using for almost a year, and still love. The organic floral water and neroli oil create a light citrusy floral scent that is refreshing and relaxing. The gentle foaming action gets my face clean, but does not feel stripped dry thanks to the argan oil, oat amino acids and organic honey in the formula.

At the risk of being redundant (regular readers know how much I love this product) I would be remiss if I did not mention Velvet & Sweet Pea’s Orange Blossom Body Frosting. I come back to V&SP’s frostings again and again because they provide luxurious hydration and fragrant pleasure. Laurie Stern, creator of V&SP, uses jojoba oil in her frostings that have been infused with Tahitian vanilla beans for at least 6 months. This bestows a creaminess to all of them, but especially to her Orange Blossom. The result is a flirty, playful, uplifting fragrance that softens your skin better than any body butter I have tried.

I am placing Intelligent Nutrients Focus Aroma in the “Skincare” section because it has many uses. You can spray it on your skin, face, and hair for light hydration and a gorgeous scent. Aside from neroli, bergamot, jasmine, rose, chamomile, geranium, and ylang ylang complete the essential oil list of Focus. Even though that’s an impressive floral cast, neroli commands the fragrance leaving the others, most notably rose and jasmine, to enhance the orange blossom.


Perfumes

Galatea by Strange Invisible Perfumes embodies the intoxicating nature of neroli. Galatea melds neroli with galbanum which gives it a green clarity, tuberose which provides sensuality and benzoin which graces the mix with a soothing warmth. This is a fascinating and intriguing perfume, one that needs to be a part of my collection sooner than later.

Roxana Villa launched her Chocolate Natural Perfumes this year, and her Fleurs de Orange remains my favorite of the lot. Neroli, blood orange, and orange blossom absolute flourish on the skin while dark chocolate gently envelopes the citrusy floral perfume. Fleurs de Orange is not sweet like candy, but it is a honeyed gourmand that gives a new spin on my favorite springtime scent.


Palas Atena by Ayala Moriel Parfums feels very classic to me. It’s a gorgeous blend, created with a skillful hand. Neroli, along with patchouli, lavender, and amber, are radiant in the opening, each note moving seamlessly into the other. The more I wear Palas Atena, the more attuned I have become to champaca and cinnamon in the heart, but again, the essences work in concert, merging harmoniously. I look to Palas Atena when I want a sophisticated scent that uses neroli’s floral elegance, not as a soliflore, but as a traditionally composed perfume with a vintage feel.

Please visit the following bloggers who are also singing about the scents of spring!

Smelly Blog (with a giveaway! check it out)

Katie Puckrik Smells

Perfume Shrine

The Non Blonde

I Smell Therefore I Am

Notes from the Ledge

Savvy Thinker

Roxana’s Illuminated Journal

Perfume in Progress

All I Am A Redhead

Ambre Gris

Olfactarama

A Rose Beyond the Thames

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GreenWitch: A Captivating Perfume from Roxana Villa

If you read Roxana’s blog post regarding her inspiration for GreenWitch, you will find it was named after the book “GreenWitch” by Susan Cooper. It so moved Roxana, that she shifted her creation of a green perfume with an oakmoss base, a chypre (Sheep-ra) in other words, to one a little more oceanic. I appreciate chypres and their fascinating history in perfumery, but they are not my first choice in terms of perfume categories. But GreenWitch is not your typical chypre in a way that will pique the interest of chypre enthusiasts and garner the curiosity of chypre-skeptics. And isn’t today, the first day of Spring, the perfect day to savor a lush-green perfume?

GreenWitch introduces herself decidedly as a chypre with oakmoss, galbanum and a handful of crushed violet leaves and rose petals. The fragrance opening is full, but not sharp. This allows for ease when you sit in her presence, even though you’re not quite sure where you might be lead.

Watery teal was Roxana’s color choice for the art and beautiful hand-crocheted pouch that houses GreenWitch. Apropos since the oakmoss takes on a seaside tone with a vaguely nutty, salty air that vetiver and tonka can both lend. It also develops other floral nuances like boronia and honeysuckle. There are many, many essences in GreenWitch. Far too many to list here. Boronia is on that list, but not honeysuckle. Yet that is what I sense. Could it be that mimosa, ylang ylang and beeswax, which are in the notes, meld together in this fragrance to create a honeysuckle accord? I’m not sure, but I do know that the sweet green nectar of honeysuckle finds its way into my nose everytime I wear GreenWitch. Ultimately, the summery honeysuckle sugar gives way to boronia’s balsamic violet hue which is bright, sumptuous, and augments the green woods of oakmoss.

Wearing GreenWitch after several hours is like a day at the beach coming to a close. It’s the scent of warm skin, salt in your hair, and suntan lotion that barely lingers on your body. Probably not what you’d think from a perfume that started off straight-up chypre. There is a nod to that beginning though, after about six hours of wear when a delicious soapy green freshness develops.It has incredible sillage and staying power which lengthens the fragrance’s evolution, and GreenWitch might well be Roxana’s most multi-layered perfume yet.

GreenWitch is available at Esty. $150 for a 7gm flacon and $25 for a 1gm vial. Each flacon sold will give a percentage to Green Peace.

Please visit these other blogs for their impressions of GreenWitch.

Ida at BitterGrace Notes

The Non Blonde

Perfume Posse

The Windsphere Witch

Perfume Shrine

Portland Examiner

Roxana and Davis at the Illuminated Perfume Journal


Posted by ~Trish

Photos and images ©Roxana Villa and ©Greg Spalenka.

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Roxana Illuminated Perfume 2nd Tier of Chocolate Perfumes

Spring is burgeoning with much vim and vigor here in the Northwest. Camellias, Daphne, Forsythia, Crocus, Cherry Trees and Narcissus grace us daily with new blossoms and a kaleidoscopic display of color. That means Mother’s Day will get here before you know it and Roxana Villa’s chocolate solid fragrances are special and lovingly made gifts. This review is for Roxana’s 2nd Tier of chocolate perfumes, and you can read my review of her 1st Tier posted just before Valentine’s Day.


Pétales: “The classic combination of chocolate and roses.”

Beautiful and subtle. Pétales is the perfect name for this scent as the rose fragrance is delicate, very pretty and thankfully the chocolate does not overwhelm its dainty petals. Because the rose scent is so authentic and lovely, I would like it to be a little more pronounced and to possess more throw as Pétales wears very close to the skin. It’s perfect for a work or scent-sensitive environment, but I’d love it to be more intensely rosy for an evening out as well.


Coeur de Jasmin: “Rich heart of jasmine enveloped by creamy chocolate.”

Sometimes it only takes a few words to aptly describe a perfume, and Roxana did so with her above written depiction. The heart of jasmine in this case is juicy and indolic, worked into an even more sensual experience with the decadence of dark chocolate. Coeur de Jasmin is truly for the jasmine lover, who wants it with a gourmand touch.


Fleurs de Orange: “A buzz with orange blossom flowers, honey and chocolate.”

This is the one I fell hard for the moment it landed on my skin, and is my favorite of all 11 offerings. Orange blossom absolute, neroli and blood orange put the Orange in Fleurs de Orange. (The difference between neroli and orange blossom absolute is the manner in which the blossoms’ essence is obtained. Neroli is from steam distillation of the bitter orange blossom and the absolute is extracted using solvents.) Fleurs de Orange is a full-bodied, intoxicating citrusy floral, with a mere suggestion of cacao. It is different than L’Orangerie, from the first tier, as L’Orangerieis more of an orange tinged chocolate confection while Fleurs de Orange is a rich and lush floral with a hint of indoles and honey.


Blanc: “Opposite of Noir, a milk chocolate truffle featuring the Vanilla Orchid Bean at center stage.”

Blanc is the most straightforward fragrance in Roxana’s chocolate collection. It smells just like high quality milk chocolate. The vanilla gives it a creamy feel, but it’s really all about the chocolate. Blanc would also be a wonderful fragrance for layering.


Chêne (Oak): “A tribute to the mighty Oak with notes of wood, resin, moss, and oud. The cacao note is more subdued.”

I would agree that the chocolate tones are subtle in Chêne, but it does give a delicious buttressing in the topnotes. Like Roxana’s La Forêt, chocolate and basalmic notes meld beautifully together with the bittersweetness of rich cocoa supporting and intensifying the earthiness. Chêne reminds me of two other Roxana perfumes, as it has the resinous quality of Qand the earthy tang of oud that resides in Terrestre. Chêne has incredible staying power and lasts on my skin for the entire day. I highly recommend it to lovers of piquant woody fragrances.


Thanks to Roxana for another generous giveaway! Go to Roxana’s Etsy site to check out the 5 gm jar and pick the one from the 2nd Tier Chocolate Series you would like to win. Leave a comment telling me which one you want and you will be entered. You are eligible for extra entries, one each, by following Roxana on Twitter and/or her Blog, or making her a favorite on etsy. You can get can also get extra entries if you follow Scent Hive on Bloglovin, Twitter, Google Friend Connect, Facebook’s Networked Blogs, or subscribe to Scent Hive. (Check the right sidebar for the Scent Hive links). Please let me know in your comments what you did so you can get the entries you deserve! We Have our Winner!

Posted by ~Trish

Disclosure: Samples from Roxana Illuminated Perfume were provided for this review. The opinons in this review are my own. I was not financially compensated for this review or any other.

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Valentine’s Day Beauties from Roxana Villa + Giveaway!

This Valentine’s Day, Roxana Villa of Roxana Illuminated Perfumes has created the perfect gift, a beautiful set of solid fragrances. Chocolate is the unifying note of this solid perfume series and is presented in adorable truffle boxes as a duo or quartet, as well as a complete sample set of all six. Roxana works only with pure botanical essences including the chocolate aroma for her new series. The solid perfumes are made with Scharffen Berger 99% cacao, cocoa butter, organic cocoa powder and theobroma cacao extract from South America. Beeswax, and jojoba seed oil comprise the base of the solids, making them creamy and luxurious to apply.

Noir is dark and bitter with a richness only high quality chocolate can impart. But as the darkness of the chocolate opening faded, the darkness of moist earth began. Patchouli became the prominent note in Noir’s heart, and remained so until the drydown. This patchouli doesn’t have the fecund mintiness that I have grown to prefer, but it nevertheless is a superb patchouli that gets your hands dirty in rich, warm soil.

Cerise is a cherry truffle scent. I am not a cherry/chocolate person when it comes to my preferred candy choices and I probably would have passed it by if it weren’t for this review. Turns out, Cerise is one of my favorites of the six. Its cherry was like a sweet port rather than a cloying syrup and was very well-balanced against the intensity of Scharffen Berger’s 99% cacao. The cherries morphed into blackberries on my skin, recalling the dog days of summer. Yet, as those last summer days are a reminder that time is fleeting, Cerise was fleeting too. It didn’t last nearly as long as Noir, but because I adore Cerise I would not hesitate to buy the compact and I do hope that Roxana makes this into a body butter.

La Forêt is probably the least chocolatey of the six, but nevertheless, my favorite of the bunch. It’s a “dense conifer forest” as Roxana describes, and indeed the aroma of pine, spruce, and fir welled up when applied.La Forêt is reminiscent of Mandy Aftel’s Fig which has an equally sophisticated and dense piney scent. But whereas Fig is jammy and teeming with jasmine’s floral intensity, La Forêt’s greenness is augmented by unsweetened chocolate. Winter holidays come to mind whenever I smell such a lovely pine scent, but keep in mind, this scent is used in aromatherapy to refresh and revitalize any time of year.

L’Orangerie took me by surprise. I thought it would smell just like those chocolate covered orange sticks that are scrumptuous, but I wasn’t sure I would want to wear that scent on my skin. Well, I was right and wrong. They do smell like those candies, and I love smelling like a box of them!  The orange is radiant, and more like a ripe juicy tangerine with its sweetness. The chocolate in L’Orangerie seems sweeter because of this, never overwhelming the bright citrus.

Bois de Chocolat is the solid I have worn the most, and after wearing it again last night, I might have to rethink claiming La Forêt as my favorite. “Smokey woods and chocolate” is the scent description from Roxana, and it is indeed smoky. My impression of the woods in Bois de Chocolat is that of Agarwood (oud). It’s got the tangy, freshly chopped wood quality that I associate with Agarwood. Bois de Chocolat is a gentler version of Oudh Lacquer, another smoky/chocolate/agarwood scent that Liz Zorn created last year. Oudh Lacquer is a gorgeous perfume, but might be too intense for some tastes. Bois de Chocolat is the Yin to Oudh Lacquer’s Yang. So give Bois de Chocolate a go if you’re looking for a more subdued yet equally enticing experience.

L‘epice is a spicy mix of cloves, cinnamon and bitter orange rind. Are you familiar with Celestial Seasonings Bengal Spice tea? I drink that brew frequently, and L’epice is reminiscent of its spicy goodness. Roxana doesn’t list the specific notes for her chocolate fragrances, but states that L’epice is: “Spice, hint of vanilla and chocolate”. The vanilla and chocolate escaped me, and I would love to smell more of those notes in L’epice. Regardless, it’s a lovely mulled spice perfume that hastens comfort and a touch of sensuality.

Now for the giveaway info! Go to Roxana’s Etsy site to check out the 5gm jar and pick the one from the Chocolate Series you would like to win. Leave a comment telling me which one you want and you will be entered. You are eligible for extra entries, one each, by following Roxana on Twitter and/or her Blog. You can get can also get extra entries if you follow Scent Hive on Bloglovin, Twitter, Google Friend Connect, Facebook’s Networked Blogs, or subscribe to Scent Hive. (Check the right sidebar for the Scent Hive links). Please let me know in your comments what you did so you can get the entries you deserve!

Update: Because of the amazing response I need to pick the winner sooner than I thought!  You can enter until Friday January 29th at 9pm PST. Comments closed, I’ll announce the winner soon!

And just for fun, two extra entries if you Tweet about this giveaway. Use this short link (http://bit.ly/5SIuAx) within your tweet. You can let me know by posting the Twitter link in your comment.

Disclosure: Samples from Roxana Illuminated Perfume were provided for this review. The opinons in this review are my own. I was not financially compensated for this review or any other.

Illustration by Greg Spalenka at Spalenka.com

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Cozy Lavender Perfumes: Ajne, Tsi-La, & Roxana Illuminated Perfumes

Lavenlight

Most of you fellow perfume lovers know the uncontainable fervor of a “note obsession.” That desire to experience every perfume that features a specific note until you find the perfect fragrance in which that scent, be it cedar, vanilla, gardenia, whatever… comes alive for you as it never has before. If you are new to fragrance and intrigued by this world, you will almost certainly find yourself on a “note obsession” bender at some point.


I have been on many over the past six to seven years. The most recent ones have been vetiver, tobacco and lavender. My lavender fascination took me by surprise, as most “note obsessions” do. Usually a subtle passing whiff or a mere suggestion in casual conversation can trigger a full-blown infatuation. It was two summers ago, and I must have tried every lavender scent I could get my hands on. I won’t bore you with my research details, but the final contenders were Annick Goutal’s Eau de Lavande and Caron’s Pour un Homme. Both are fantastic lavender renditions, but neither felt completely at home on my skin. My lavender crush became a summer fling.

Ajne deLavandeIt’s in those moments when you let go of finding perfection, that little treasures enter your life. Summer left and the bone chilling northwest rain made its entrance.  Along with it came the discovery of Ajne, an exquisite natural perfumery in Carmel, California. They do chakra evaluations in their boutique, and also over the phone, if you’d like guidance in selecting your perfume. I figured it would be interesting, so I took the test. The results directed me to the lavender scent I had been looking for all along, deLavande. According to the folks at Ajne, deLavande helps open the throat chakra, the area that allows you to speak your truth. (Their chakra test also revealed that I needed some work on my crown chakra, so Fleur Blanche, my gardenia holy grail, was also recommended). So here I am to tell you about it.


deLavande is created with three types of lavender, Ajne’s own that they grown on their organic farm, as well as lavender from Provence and Bulgaria. Ajne does not list specific notes other than “smoky-almond wood” which hopefully is enough to stir up the warm, softening experience of deLavande in your mind. Lavender of course is the vital element of this fragrance, providing the herbal and slightly medicinal quality that brings rejuvenation and relaxation to those of us who enjoy the scent. But alongside the subtle smoky woods, is a luscious powderiness that must come from either benzoin or labdanum, or a blend of the two. The result is like being enveloped in the aroma of bread baking in a lavender infused wood stove. It’s not gourmand, or foody, it just possesses the warmth and comfort of freshly baked bread on a fall day.


Tsi-La MisakiTsi-La’s Misaki and Roxana Illuminated Perfume’s Vera are like sisters to deLavande. They all look similar, but have their own individual characteristics that set them apart. Misaki has much more of a tannic and slightly green feeling, which makes sense as warm tea, green tea moss and crushed mint are listed in the fragrance description. French lavender is too, (no big surprise there), but Sicilian bergamot, Tahitian vanilla orchid and neroli are as well, none of which made an impression on me. I could not sense any citrus or vanilla tones in Misaki. Once the intense tannic quality quieted and the drydown settled, a hint of maple-kissed tea leaves developed, redolent of immortelle essential oil. I would consider both deLavande and Misaki wearable for both men and women, and appropriate for all seasons. Yet, Misaki might lend itself more unisex and more seasonless since it’s less powdery.


VeraWhile I did find Vera to have a powdery-lavender nature, it is also the most herbaceous of the three due to its prominent sage note. California lavender, sage, hay and orange blossom mingle to give Vera a well blended bouquet. At the top, Vera has a fabulous boozy hit, like that of a lavender infused vodka allowing for a seamless transition to the verdant sage and hay notes. All of those herbal ingredients could have turned Vera into just another lavender perfume, but Roxana’s masterful touch drew upon orange blossom in just the right amount, giving the fragrance softness and a gentle floral garnish. Like deLavande, it’s cozy, a little sensual, and beckons all lavender lovers to try the perfume on their skin.


All of these perfumes are 100% all natural and are wonderfully long-lasting. Roxana Villa gives a portion of the proceeds from the sale of Vera to support the Ojai Lavender Festival.


deLavande is available at Ajne: $40 for  0.125oz Parfum Petite, $80 for 0.5oz, $130 for 1 oz

Misaki is available at SpiritBeautyLounge: $125 for 1.7oz

Vera is available at Roxana Illuminated Perfume: $150 for a 7gm flacon in a hand crocheted pouch.

Posted by ~Trish

“Lavenlight” original photograph by AliciaBock on etsy.
Disclosure: A sample of Vera was sent to me by Roxana Illuminated Perfume for review. The others were bought by me. The opinons in this review are my own. I was not financially compensated for this review or any other.

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Impressions of Peace. This is a poem about the world that is ours, or could be.

FIVE A.M. IN THE PINEWOODS

I’d seen
their hoofprints in the deep
needles and knew
they ended the long night

under the pines, walking
like two mute
and beautiful women toward
the deeper woods, so I

got up in the dark and
went there. They came
slowly down the hill
and looked at me sitting under

the blue trees, shyly
they stepped
closer and stared
from under their thick lashes and even

nibbled some damp
tassels of weeds. This
is not a poem about a dream,
though it could be.

This is a poem about the world
that is ours, or could be.
Finally
one of them— I swear it!—

would have come to my arms.
But the other
stamped sharp hoof in the
pine needles like

the tap of sanity,
and they went off together through
the trees. When I woke
I was alone,

I was thinking:
so this is how you swim inward,
so this is how you flow outward,
so this is how you pray.

Mary Oliver, House of Light
Beacon Press, Boston (1962)


Peace Has Begun

Today is International Peace Day, as declared by the United Nations. It’s a day to highlight efforts by individuals, communities, nations and governments to end conflict and promote peace. As a parent, and midwife, my focus tends towards women and children, and an organization that I’d like to draw attention to is Women for Women. You’ll see their link at the lower right of my blog, or you can find their website here. They are a terrific organization that Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl Wudunn included in their list of organizations that help women in developing countries. This list was an addendum of sorts to their heart-wrenching but very salient article in the New York Times, Saving The World’s Women: The Women’s Crusade. If you missed it, I highly recommend you read it on this day of International Peace.


Roxana Villa, natural perfumer and Perfume for Peace bottlepromoter of peace, has gathered ten of us perfume bloggers to discuss her “Perfume for Peace” (the perfume is unnamed, represented only by the peace symbol) as well as our thoughts on this day. Some proceeds from Perfume for Peace go towards helping the Peace on Earth Project come to fruition. The Peace on Earth Project aspires to be a series of concerts in sacred places all over the world, that is envisioned as a musical prayer for peace. It will also be a live concert telethon that will, “address pressing issues of hunger, poverty, shelter, health, and the safety of children worldwide.”


So how does Perfume for Peace smell? Joyous and uplifting, then moving into sublime and serene. The liquid perfume is energetic with vibrant citrus and ginger, enough to waken your senses and get you moving in the world. A gentle call to attention if you will. From this piquant, spicy citrus, emerge lovely florals and woods which was revealed to me as vintage Mysore sandalwood after I wore the fragrance for a few hours. Honestly, I would have guessed oud with its tangy yet dried woodiness. Smooth vanilla enhances the drydown, so if you like a honeyed, balsamic end to your fragrance, this Perfume for Peace might be one to consider.


Roxana has also created this in a perfume solid, which has the same notes (clementine, neroli, ginger, champa, blue lotus, vintage Mysore sandalwood, tobacco and vanilla orchid bean), but its evolution is slightly different and wears closer to the skin than the liquid perfume. It begins with that tang from the vintage Mysore sandalwood right off the bat, and the vanilla is more evident from the beginning as well. It unfurls quickly into the sweet and smooth vanilla woods that is reminiscent of Lyra. (Read here about the “ice cream cone trees” both Lyra and the Perfume for Peace remind me of). Both are beautiful creations from a gifted natural perfumer who has created a fragrance about the world that is ours, or could be.


If you leave a comment at Roxana’s blog by October 1st, you will be entered in her drawing for a sample of this Perfume for Peace. Roxana’s Perfume for Peace is available at her esty site.

Please visit the other participating blogs:

Bitter Grace Notes
Examiner, Cleveland
Examiner, Portland
Illuminated Perfume
Indie Perfumes
Memory and Desire
Perfume Shrine
Perfume Smellin’ Things
The Non-Blonde

posted by ~Trish

Peace Has Begun illustration by Greg Spalenka at etsy.com

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