Sixteen92 Summer 2016


Sixteen92's Summer 2016 collection drops on May 27th, and I have had my mitts on it for a couple weeks since I renewed my Circle subscription. With the 30% off seasonal full sizes and a standing 10% off other items codes, it was just a good deal for me to renew. And I really ended up liking a few of these so that 30% off code will come in handy.

This collection's theme is a throwback to  90's girl rock and the riot grrl movement. I never got into it much, I'm not sure why, but I was and still am a HUGE Fiona Apple fan, and quite like Tori Amos too, though I haven't listened to her as much as Fiona. She was my muse through my tumultuous high school years and as a recreational closet singer she was always my go-to for practicing. Nothing is more cathartic for the tortured soul than belting out some Fiona, people. I highly recommend it.

Anyway! Onto the scents:

Bells For Her (Tori Amos)

Sweet basil, dandelion, star jasmine, green vines, mandarin, ozone, green tea, crushed mint

I pretty much knew going in that this would be a winner for me. It seems like most Sixteen92 collections have some sort of green/earthy/watery/or herbal scent, and they almost always work for me. The Grass Harp, Eternal Return, the Primrose Path, I love all those, and if those work for you I suspect Bells for Her will too. This starts will a blast of sweet, herbal basil, quite like The Grass Harp, but minus the orange blossom that might have been too "cleaning product" for some noses. The jasmine is not heavy or indolic. Overall this scent is very green and dewy, a refreshing garden scent-like ivy winding up the brick walls of a regal estate, supported by subtle florals. I can't quite make out the crushed mint as a separate note, but I suspect it just lends a a cool, uplifted vibe to this, and there is a hint of fresh green tea. I would wear this on hot, humid days to feel clean, dainty, and non-sweaty. Very pretty, and full size for sure.

Bruise Violet (Babes in Toyland)

Red lipstick accord, dusting powder, white iris, violet leaf, Damascus & Bulgarian rose, red grapefruit zest (premium)

How weird! This one smells so nostalgic, it's triggering some sort of memory, though I'm not sure what it is. It's supposed to smell like lipstick, and it really does, but I can't tell if that is the memory it's tapping into. Some other product I used growing up? Not sure, but it makes me happy. It's a creamy, sweet, almost candied rose, iris and violet-powdery but not heavy. It sounds like it could be old fashioned,but there is something edgy about it, like it's lipstick not perfectly applied with a brush, but smeared and venturing defiantly outside the lines, a fuck it kind of lipstick. I suspect the grapefruit adds some punch and lift to this and is what makes it smell both powdery and bright at the same time. Nostalgic yet modern. Liking this one too!

Doll Parts (Hole)

Rhubarb, white cake, white peach, cassis, osmanthus, ginger flower

I was pretty certain this would be a no-go. Sixteen92's stone fruit scents don't really work for me, and I wasn't sure what rhubarb smelled like, but I was pretty sure it wouldn't help matters. But this isn't bad! I don't think I'll get a full size, but I kind of like it. It smells like a combination of super fruity gummi candy, and some kind of medication I might have encountered as a child- a cough syrup but not a traditional cherry one, something else I can't put my finger on but I find strangely compelling. It's an intensely sweet, syrupy, creamy, cakey, peachy scent. I like this most on cold sniff and first applying-after it dries down it starts to do that peachy-body odor thing which is the bane of my perfume existence. But those initial minutes are perversely delicious!

New Radio (Bikini Kill) 

Vanilla milkshake accord, maraschino cherry, pink lemonade, grass clippings, waffle cone

This one drove me crazy folks, because I knew I'd tried something very similar to it before, but I couldn't figure it out. Not a memory of something else, but another perfume. It took me a week or so before I figured out it smelled a lot like Haus of Gloi's Satyr ( Italian blood orange drizzled with blackened vanilla). It was hard to pinpoint because they don't really have anything in common so it wasn't a natural connection, but yeah, this smells so much like Satyr. It's got a creamsicle vibe to that I really like-even though I normally don't like cherry, this is more a general sweet, creamy vibe that keeps it from being sharp or medicinal. It has a festive, carnival-like feel to it- like fair foods. I very occasionally get a faint whiff of grass, but it's very subtle and sometimes I can't pick up on it at all. Another winner!

Rid of Me (PJ Harvey)

 Magnolia, Sambac jasmine, ylang, white pepper, grapefruit blossom, ambrette, satin musk, Oudh (premium)
This reminds me a little of  La Llorona, but instead of being a peppery, citrusy rose, this is a peppery, citrusy white floral. Usually there is a scent in each collection that I'm sort of "meh" about, and this is that one. I don't have strong feelings about it either way. I don't dislike it but it's not moving mountains for me either. But it's perfectly nice if you like white florals with a little pep!

Shadowboxer (Fiona Apple)

Jasmine fleur, May rose, blond sandalwood, mango flower, praline (premium)

 I had high hopes for this considering the inspiration, but this is the one that just didn't work for me at all. There is something very acetone-like upon cold sniff, like sharp, alcohol-y nail polish remover. Upon application, it's like nuts steeping in nail polish remover. A few minutes after that, I get more of a pungent, bordering on too-indolic jasmine and woodsy scent with something fruity? It morphs a lot and once it finally dries down it's almost manageable, but the journey with this is too fraught with peril for my blood.

To recap!

Love: Bells for Her, Bruise Violet, New Radio
Like: Doll Parts
Meh: Rid of Me
Nope: Shadowboxer

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