Aiona has generously sent me her set of Profumo samples, so even though I'm not officially part of a sampling group, she asked that I post my impressions to Purplebird's thread.
BTW, if you missed the Profumo's sampling group initiative, but are curious about the scents, join our Natural Perfume sampling group.
Rose de Bois -- This is my favorite by far in the set I got from Aiona. Rose is not very pronounced, or at least 'concealed' by cinnamon, woods, and vanilla. It's sweet and spicy at the same time, with the rose lending a crisp floral aspect. It's like wearing an all-natural Guerlain. Longevity is good so far (it's been an hour since I put it on, and it's still going strong, although I sprayed more generously than I typically do). Fantastic!
Castoreum -- This one is interesting. I put it on with a dabber and rather cautiously, expecting something skanky and unwearable. Instead, it was pleasantly leathery and floral. However -- a big but -- I think it gave me an allergic reaction akin to hay fever. Within minutes, I was sneezing, had a runny nose, watery eyes. The symptoms subsided when I washed it off. I've not been brave enough to try it again.
African Queen Pink Panther and African Queen Black Panther -- This was fruity/minty, with the 'fruit' note reminding me of the scent of freshly picked blackcurrants, warm and fragrant right off the bush. This must be the 'Karo' fruit that's part of the composition. I was also getting a 'pissy' note someone mentioned (so it's not just me). It was strangely alluring and not unpleasant. I will have to test these two again -- Black and Pink Panther seemed pretty similar to each other.
Acqua Santa -- The bottle was nearly empty, but I was able to get one spray out. This reminded me of a citrus-incense composition. Light and refreshing, although also somewhat churchy. It seemed a bit dissonant - 'churchy' + citrusy. I did not really have enough to test it fully, but would be a good one to try for incense lovers.
More next time!
Last edited by kess; 24th July 2009 at 08:12 PM.
Update on African Queen Pink Panther and African Queen Black Panther: I'm having a hard time finding the differences between the two. Pink Panther is perhaps sharper/brighter and more incense/minty. Black Panther is a touch sweeter and softer. I can't say which I prefer -- they are both quite interesting. Found this descriptions from TCP: "African Queen Black Panther is another variation on the African Queen fragrance and features bucchu betulina (a new essence he received from South Africa that has an undertone of clary sage and a slight tobacco note) in an animalic fragrance." Ah, it's beginning to make sense -- what I thought was 'mint' is probably clary sage, and tobacco came across as incense to me. I typically don't really like tobacco fragrances, but this was not quite "tobacco-like" and more incense. Don't get much 'animalic' either (unless it's the 'pissy' note that I mentioned earlier --> but I think that was actually part of the sage/mint that I was smelling). Overall, quite alluring albeit unusual.
Karo Karounde -- hmm, that was not quite the fruit note I expected from smelling Pink Panther/Black Panther. Upon the initial application it reminded me of the smell of salami, or more precisely Russian salted pork fat ('salo') - salty/peppery/meaty. Seriously! A quick search on the internet revealed that I was confused about it being the fruit note (why did I think that?); it's actually a flower, which I'm guessing is not a perfume ingredient I want to smell, at least not in large quantities, unless I want to feel all nostalgic for 'salo.' (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salo_(food)) Luckily it was pretty short lived.