Mini Review: Sixteen92 Supercell


To me, one of the best smells in the world is rain-drenched earth. That electric, heavy smell in the air when everything feels vibrantly, unabashedly alive. I'm always on the look out for scents that claim to bottle that amazing scent. Sixteen92 is definitely one of my favorite newer indie perfumeries, and their limited edition (and sadly, now sold-out) scent, Supercell, was on my must-buy list. I feel a little bad reviewing scents that may not return, but hope does spring eternal, so on with the review!

This scent is intended to be an atmospheric, sensory journey through the course of a thunderstorm: the unsettled air, grass, the wind, damp florals, soaked broken branches, the whole experience. You might not think such a scent could be wearable, but I found it to be easily so, and most interestingly, found that each stage that owner Claire outlines are distinct and detectable.

☾ The Calm Before (Top Notes) ☽
Electric ozone, sharp green grasses, asphalt

☾ The Storm (Middle Notes) ☽

Petrichor, windblown hay, damp florals

☾ The Aftermath (Base Notes) ☽

Crushed stems, soaked earth, cracked branches

The first thing I smell is a sharp, almost peppery grassy scent, with hints of cool stone. It does feel unsettled- on the precipice of something big! I'm reminded of some of Darling Clandestine's super green scents- Fisticuffs, Curiosities' Ball, La La La All Right, among others. I'm also reminded of one of my favorite green, earthy, Sweet Anthem scents, Walden, with notes of Petit Grain, White Pepper, Vintage Florals, Ambergris, and Oakmoss. If you like such green scents, this is one for you.

After a few moments I get more wetness and earth, which must be the petrichor. This does morph quickly for me. Most Sixteen92 scents don't last a very long time on me, but I believe Claire is changing her carrier oil formula to increase longevity. There is a freshness to it, and an unexpected lightness. The floral notes go a long way in making this a wearable scent. There is nothing identifiable really, no particular flower, just a sense of a garden being windswept and ravaged by rain. The drydown is more grounded in woodsy notes, a little green and wet still, but more tranquil and skin-hugging. This makes me think of scents like Solstice Scents Hand of Darkness, which utilizes an interesting contrast between murky, dank wet note and warm wood uplifted by a tangy lime note rather than florals- the calm after the storm.

I've worn this on stormy,rainy days, and while it's not an exact replica of my area's weather, it is wonderfully evocative and it is probably the closest I've found to really bringing to life that wet earth and ozone smell. 

For a small consolation prize since Supercell is not available, here is another Sixteen92 scent that I am loving this spring, and it IS still available: The Grass Harp. This is just the happiest scent to me, and perfectly embodies spring. It makes me think of cute pudgy puppies rolling down verdant, clover-covered hills, soaking in sunshine. In more literal terms, it's super fresh and intensely orange blossom without being actually orange-y, or worse, turning into bitter baby aspirin. This is the floral orange blossom I love, combined with grassy notes and hints of green, spicy herbals.

☾ Notes: ☽
Orange blossom, clover, hyacinth, ruby red grapefruit, sweet basil

Grapefruit is one of my least favorite notes, but it's not really detectable on its own- it's just adding to the bright, invigorating quality of the blend, maybe adding a hint of tartness but nothing too strong. Without any heavy base notes that I can see, this one wears closer to the skin and only lasts maybe a couple hours on me, but I don't mind reapplying. I have seen this one described as both hotel soap and cleaning products, but to me this is just all spring, all the time. 

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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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