Walk into any chemist and somewhere in there you'll probably find shelf upon shelf of perfumes. The ones that are 'trendy' at that point in time will have lots of advertising. The ones they want to get rid of will be on special offer. Maybe there's one you'll like... maybe there isn't. But look on the bright side - there IS hope for those of us who don't want to smell like J.Lo Glow...
The Goth Rosary (www.gothrosary.com) prides itself on selling 'uncommon scents for uncommon people'. All the products use all-natural ingredients and are beautifully packaged. Here are a few fragrance descriptions from the website:
Black Clothing & Dark Streets... The smell of clove mixed with patchouli & nag champa.
Delicate, Clean & Sweet... The smell of warm sunlight, fresh cucumber and ripe black berry.
Ivory Blackmoore, hostess of www.gothicgirlzlair.piczo.com. Pic used with permission.
Spicy and Sweet... The smell of Halloween candy, changing leaves & Autumn spices.
Beautiful flowers & sweet memories... The smell of a profusion of blossoms and calming vanilla, Lay gracing the grave of the dearly departed.
Surrounded, Haunting... The smell of moss clinging to a marble Mausoleum.
Blood Red Roses... The smell of unfurled deep crimson petals.
Delightful, huh? These scents and many more are available as solid and liquid perfumes.
The Goth Rosary also stock Disgusting Smells, a range including SEASICK™ ('The motion of the ocean rank with stank'), FROMUNDA™ ('Our tribute to human body cheese') and CHUNDER™ ('a familiar bowl hugging scent'). Uh... yummy...
The Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab (www.blackphoenixalchemylab.com) have over one hundred (if not more) fragrances available. They specialize in formulating body and household blends with a dark, romantic Gothic tone. Some product descriptions from their site:
A midnight scent, evoking images of flickering golden firelight reflecting off the sheen of glistening skin and the jerking shadows of bodies suffused with spiritual ecstasy. A deep, powerful, resonant blend of myrrh, patchouli, vetiver, lime, vanilla, pine, almond and clove.
Lush, creamy vanilla and the honey of the sweetest kiss smeared with the vital throb of husky clove, swollen red cherries, but darkened with the vampiric sensuality of vetiver, soporific poppy and blood red wine, and a skin-light pulse of feral musk.
This is the captured scent of a cold, moonless night, lost deep within the darkest wood. Haunting and desolate, this scent evokes images of fairy tale tragedy and half-remembered nightmares. Thick, viscous pine with ambergris, black musk, juniper and cypress.
An agricultural gargoyle. Though he is the Guardian of the Crops and Keeper of the Fields, his visage is still the stuff of nightmares. The scent of a hot wind blowing through desolate, scorched, barren fields.
Lush parlor rooms draped in thick velvets and gilded in gold, unearthly whispering in the distance, fleeting flashes of wraithlike figures rushing just outside your vision, the chill of a phantom presence brushing by your cheek, the inscrutable knowledge that disembodied eyes are peering at you from darkened corners… this is the essence of Victorian-era spiritualism: rosewood, oak and teak notes with wispy blue lilac, tea rose, dried white rose and ethereal osmanthus.
A thin, sinuous, creeping chill, the scent of glee-filled undeath: white iris, osmanthus, Calla lily, tomb-crawling ivy and a coffin spray of gladiolus, lisianthus and delphinium.
And even in the mainstream stores there may be something to suit the darker tastes... my current perfume is Black XS by Paco Rabanne, pictured below, available from www.passionforperfume.co.uk.
"Black XS is a fragrance for modern-day princesses with sassy rebel chic. Sparkling, unexpected, totally feminine, sensuous and voluptuous. A stunning perfume that may cause addiction… among tough guys with hearts of gold! Full of contrasts, Black XS evolves from fruity to floral to woody notes. Black XS - the baroque'n'roll fragrance for rebel princesses!"
My Goth friend Rosie uses Christina Aguilera fragrance, also available from www.passionforperfume.co.uk... surprisingly, the packaging is gorgeous. Black lace, anyone?
"Sexy, self-confident, classy but provocative. For women who want to feel empowered and in control of their seductive femininity and sexiness.
Top note is Blackcurrant Tea, Heart: Peony and Plum whilst the base is Vanilla."
Searching on www.passionforperfume.co.uk, I found this - Let It Rock by Vivienne Westwood, the First Lady of Punk Couture.
"LET IT ROCK adds a fresh impetus to the anti-conformist Westwood way of life for a generation of modern, confident and casually sexy women. Let It Rock combines luminous amber and sensuous jasmine with zesty bergamot and vibrant patchouli, to recall the “back to basics” soul of Rock and Roll. The sensuous blend is encased in a royal sceptre bottle with Vivienne’s lipstick scrawl - strictly for girls who dare to rock."
On the same website you can find Rock'n'Rose by Valentino (which my friend Maria uses).
"The fragrance is inspired by a new generation of young Valentino women. She is a modern woman, who combines a rock 'n roll attitude with elegance and style. She is a rose on the outside and a rocker in the inside. The fragrance is created as a perfect balance between edgy modernity and Valentino's elegance and tradition."
The names of two fragrances by Jesus Del Pozo caught my attention - In Black and Halloween Kiss (same website as above).
"IN BLACK was launched by Spanish designer Jesus Del Pozo in 2005. This scent possesses a blend of Black Cherry, Black Pepper, Pink Grapefruit, Top Rose, Black Lily, Jasmine, Violet, Black Lily, Jasmine, Violet, Licorice Wood, Madagascan Vanilla, Moroccan Cedar, and Indonesian Patchouli."
"Now in 2008 JDP presents his most seductive and captivating feminine fragrance yet. Halloween KISS is a sensual, oriental infusion encased within a stylised and attractive glass bottle imprinted with pink orchids.
The fragrance is characterised by top notes of blood orange, bubbly coca-cola and cantaloupe melon. At the heart lie the sensuous, rich elements of diamond orchid and peach elixir. At the base are evocative notes of candied praline, tonka bean and vanilla mousse."
Also, recently I discovered a website called www.moxiebeauty.com - Moxie Beauty sells several ranges of alternative perfumes and fragrances, as well as various soaps, soaks and scrubs.
Bitch: merlot, red roses and strawberries
Lolita: sticky & sweet caramelised fruits
Midnight Cowboy: dark resins, cardamom and peppercorns
Dirty Hippie: aged patchouli, frankincense, myrrh & cannabis flower
Absinth: absinthe accord, jasmine, rose & lime
Meltdown: dark & milk chocolate, bourbon vanilla & vetiver
Bollywood: amber, patchouli and exotic spices
and Moxie's infamous Jack, the Halloween-inspired pumpkin fragrance given a new twist each year. Moxie is now on Piczo too, so check out http://www.moxiebeauty.piczo.com/.