Solstice Scents: Smoky Mountain Mallow

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The scent of woodsmoke easily ranks among my top five all-time favorite scents. In fact, there are times I think it could possibly be the best scent, ever. So when Solstice Scents announced they would be releasing a perfume inspired by woodsmoke and the caramelized sweetness of marshmallows, I thought I had died and gone to heaven. I haven't smelled many woodsmoke perfumes, and most are candles or home fragrance oils that just barely resemble the warmth and comfort instilled by woodsmoke carried in on a cool autumn breeze. The most pleasant one I've tried is the Marshmallow Fireside scent from Slatkin and Co. It leans much more towards marshmallow rather than fireside, and I wish it had just a touch more smokiness to it.

So, this new perfume, Smoky Mountain Mallow. Does it make manifest all my woodsmoke dreams? In a word, yes. But I admit at first I was not so sure. I had a very specific representation of woodsmoke in my mind when I first smelled it, and it was a bit different from what I expected. But over the course of a few days, it has, as most of Angela's scents do, grown on me with relentless tenacity. I just had to set aside what I expected it to be and appreciate it for what it is, which is, per the description:

Woodsmoke, Fossilized Amber Resin, Lapsang Souchong CO2, Guaiacwood, Labdanum, Nutmeg EO, Marshmallow

Simply put, this is a seriously powerful, intensely smoky scent that dries down to a faintly sweet, creamy finish. Whereas scents like Marshmallow Fireside let the marshmallow take center stage, Smoky Mountain Mallow is all about the smoke. The smoked tea is very apparent to me at first, though I don't believe I've ever actually smelled it on its own. The other elements are harder for me to distinguish but they all work together to make a scent that is complex and multi layered, and a real morpher. I honestly don't get as much of a marshmallow scent on the dry down, just a creamy sweetness. It's not exactly a roasted marshmallow scent for me, but more perhaps like plain marshmallows. Other reviews I've read say they smell the toasted marshmallow quite distinctly, so again, maybe I just need more time with it.

I can say that any fears that this will leave you smelling like fake liquid smoke or bacon can be put to rest. I don't get any of that here, which is actually pretty impressive. It would have been so easy for this scent to lean in that direction, but it doesn't.


At first I expected a smoky scent like the kind I smell occasionally around my neighborhood when someone is cooking out or has a bonfire going. It's hard to explain, but this woodsmoke smells older. It smells decidedly rustic, like a frontier fire. Or a sooty stone fireplace that has provided a family generations of warmth. What the difference is specifically, I honestly can't define, but the difference is there for me, all the same. In fact, it smells exactly like a very a specific place to me. I wrote about it once here. Basically it smells like an area park that was turned into a working 1880's living history farm. They have old barns and houses, they work metal in the blacksmith's shed, cook things on the wood stoves, sell penny candy in the general store, wear period clothing, you get the idea. I've gone to this place ever since I was very young so the smell of it is firmly implanted in my mind. The smell of Smoky Mountain Mallow is a spot-on match for the potent, lingering woodsmoke of this place for me.


When I first smelled it, I was reminded of this picture that I used in my post about this place, of a girl in a period dress boiling peanuts over a wood fire for the annual country fair, waving her arms through the smoke.


Smoky Mountain Mallow isn't that overpowering, of course, but it is a very assertive, strong scent, perfect for smoke lovers. I think I will really enjoy this on cold days, especially when I'm outside hiking or anywhere the scent would especially complement the nature around me. I think it may be a bit too strong for me to wear to work, because it really smells literally woodsmoky, and not everyone I work with would understand the appeal of smelling as such. I got the ganache also however, and because of the cocoa butter the sweetness is amped a little, so I think I could layer that with other scents quite easily.

If you have even the slightest affinity towards smoky scents, I would highly recommend trying this one. It is a beautiful, memorable scent!


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12 comments :

  1. Oh my! I am sure I will love it! I want to get a full size of it. Hopefully soon :)

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    1. This was actually the first scent I ever bought a full size of without sampling first!

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  2. Sounds like I will definitely have to sample this one!! It sounds gorgeous!!

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    1. I think this is something you would like :)

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  3. Great review! I really like this scent too. I can see how the ganache would even it out a bit, as I have the ganache in Manor and it adds a different layer of sweetness with the ingredients.

    Have you ever read the novel Choke by Chuck Palahniuk? That novel totally reminds me of that place you described with the woman roasting the peanuts :) Though, that novel isn't for the feint of heart <3

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    1. The ganache is still smoky, just a little more sweet and subtle. I've heard of that book, but ever since reading Fight Club in college I've concluded I'm just not a fan of Palahniuk :(

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  4. I have been going back and forth on whether to get a full bottle or a sample of this ever since I heard about it. In the end I went with a sample added to some Burnishing Glaces I just ordered. I have quite a few smoky scents already and although I love them they don't get a lot of use because I think of them as cold weather scents and it just doesn't get all that cold where I am. Also, it's permanent, I think, so I figure I can always pick up a bottle down the track if I really want one. It does sound amazing - I can't wait to try it.

    (And how fast is SS shipping! I ordered yesterday and got a shipping notice about 4 hours later!)

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    1. I think it's definitely worth a try at least! I can imagine being drawn to this mostly during cold weather myself, which is sort of silly really because don't people have bonfires and roast marshmallows during the summer? lol!
      And yes, Angela's TAT and CS is top notch!

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  5. Hey I was wondering if you could recommend any Solstice Scents male/unisex perfumes? I want to get some samples for my boyfriend, but there are so many choices! He generally likes musky and spicey scents.

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    1. Hi Erin,
      the great thing about Solstice Scents is that most of the scents can qualify as unisex. Not many are what I'd say qualify as totally traditionally feminine. There is a subcategory on the webpage as well that lists masculine/unisex scents. Based on musky and spicy scents, I would suggest giving Sirocco, Gehenna, and Tenebrous Mist a try, but honestly, most of them are pure gold. Hope that helps!

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  6. Awesome I will definitely buy samples of those! What I love about SS is the prices- my bf and I don't have a lot of extra money laying around, so it's nice to see perfumes that are reasonably priced!

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  7. I just ordered some samples from Mirasol Farm off of Etsy, and their Rose Sandalwood turned out to be a great smoky scent. The sandalwoods I've tried in the past have been usually powdery and dirty-smelling, but this one is like a bonfire with freshly cut wood in the background. I had a soap sample in my bathroom and it scented my adjacent bedroom too, I'll be trying their body spray and their other sandalwood scent, Mother Earth, next time I order.

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Please leave me comments if anything strikes your fancy or if you have any helpful suggestions. Remember, I'm no expert and am just sharing my truth. Hopefully you will find something useful to take with you!

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