Rosegirls Wax: Of pies and plans

With my next small business vendor purchases coming into focus, it’s time to consider the biggin’s, the order I’m planning from a master maker I already love: Rosegirls Wax. Thrilled to be able to grab single scent versions of Jenny’s stuff in order to create my own blends with the extended release of RG’s mini-melters, the only question is which ones to get?20170805_132816If my lack of Rosegirls Wax reviews lead anyone to assume I don’t order or enjoy them, I don’t mean to send the wrong idea. Rosegirls are legends of the wax world for a reason. All the chunky blends vendors create today are owed to RG. I simply haven’t reviewed them because, thus far, I’ve only received one preorder which I split with a friend. The rest I’ve tried were generous gifts sent by others. Rosegirls has been in the wax game a long time and many great bloggers before me have done them justice. What follows is less of a fully fleshed review than a list of likes/dislikes when considering my mini-melter options.

Raspberry Sauce/Mango/Marshmallow Smoothie pie: at first I identified an orange cream note to this blend which I didn’t fall for on cold. Once melted, the ripe mango hiding as orange swells with juice so fresh it may as well be dribbling down my arm, that’s the mango I’m looking for. The mallow smoothie is creamy but subtle, though it’s the overpour. RG’s famous raspberry sauce may be too sweet for me on it’s own, but what an incredible blender scent, thick tangy berry puree that provides a fragrant backbone. From this blend, I plan to order Mango Sorbet and Marshmallow Smoothie, probably times two.

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Peppermint/Coconut/Mallow pie: Peppermint is the star of the show with this strongest of the blends. But like a diva, the mint pushes the other notes to the background and steals the stage. Lot’s of strong, cool peppermint to love, but I’m finding with the pies, one note tends to dominate all others. That’s the reason I’m excited to try mini-melters and have more control over my blends. I’ll be going for the Gilligan’s Brew minis.

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Alice in Slumberland pie: (Honeydew/Cotton Candy/Lavender) whereas, the two pie slices above were gifts from Sandra at Finger Candy, this slab was part of my spring preorder. Since it’s the freshest, it is my favorite. I wish the lavender was more prominent though, the perfumed bud gets lost behind the honeydew note. Don’t get me wrong, I love that dew. Crisp yet with an aqueous quality, more like cubed honeydew in a tall glass with ice, refreshing and not artificial like some melon scents. From Alice, I’ll be grabbing the Herbal Lavender minis and hoping for more, at least I will have the option of adding more to the mix. 

Rockstar/Olive Branch chunk: Olive Branch is my favorite Lush dupe and this version is the most potent I’ve tried with extra musky goodness. Reviewed in this best/worst, I’ll be plucking one or two of these precious-es, though Rockstar on it’s own isn’t an option.

Spearmint/Swizzle Sticks chunk: simple, but perfect. Sent by Julie at The Redolent Mermaid who has a nose for mint blends, she’s never gifted one I haven’t liked. Some spearmint oils smell like full-proof creme de menthe liquor, but this is subtle, with added creamy vanilla. And, I can’t believe I’m saying it, a bubblegum essence that I’m really loving. Peppermint’s on the list but I may get Spearmint instead.

The rest of my wishlist needs narrowed down (this is my second smaller version, help!) I know so many RG lovers have already gotten their mini-melters in between the 48 hour preorders, anything I shouldn’t bother with or must-have I’m missing? Let me know. Update: I’ve placed my order and crossed out the ones I didn’t get, but added Nilla Wafers and Pink Sugar. I’m pumped for these little beauties to arrive!

Limited editions:                 Bodacious Bowser

Lavender Coconut Milk & Chamomile              Singing in the Rain (custom spa blend)

Regular line-up:

American Cream                    Pistachio

Blue Raspberry Slushie        Sandalwood

Cedar & Vanilla                      Shaving Cream

Green Apple                           Sweet Tea

Green Tea                               Swizzle Sticks

Nag Champa                          Vanilla Bean Noel

Peppermint                            Zen

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Wax Lovers’ survey

July has ended and with it my No-Buy July as well. My intended wax ban was for three months, however, I broke it with a pre-order from Handmade in Florida. I was aching to try their stuff and they were offering an earthy wax sampler that I was too weak to resist, besides it won’t be coming for 8-10 weeks! Now that the end of my unofficial wax ban is nearing in mid-August, I wanted to choose my next purchases intentionally, rather than going hog wild ordering from a bunch of vendors as if I’ve been in a wax desert and only they can slake my thirst. Basically, I don’t want to overdo it and I need a little help. 

Please vote which new-to-me vendor you would like me to feature soon. Maybe it’s a brand you love and recommend or one you are curious about as well. I will go with the top result assuming they have a store restocking within the next few weeks after the poll closes-1 week from today on Sun. August 13th.Screenshot 2017-08-13 at 9.18.56 AM

Wax vendors are welcome to vote for their brand, but only one vote per username is allowed. Note, I’ll definitely be ordering from Rose Girls and likely from Dessa’s Homespun Scents too. The above list is specifically for brands I haven’t tried and that are a little smaller, newer businesses. All suggestions are welcome though and thanks for voting! Update: The poll is closed and I’m excited to announce the winner is Dapper Dachshunds. Yay for a smaller, newer vendor! I’ll be purchasing at the upcoming restock next Sun Aug. 20th at 2pm CST. Thanks for the wonderful response and suggestions from everyone who participated, so many vendors to check out in the future.😊

 

 

Band of Bloggers-August

Pop quiz, hotshot: How well do you know your favourite Band of Bloggerette? Sure, we’re all reasonably up to date on each other’s interests, hobbies and the pretty, glittery things that make our hearts go pitter pat, but when it comes to the vitally important markers of a person’s character – favourite band, desert island scent, fight stance in the zombie apocalypse – how well do we truly know our virtual neighbours? 🙂 Let’s delve into 10 deeply random questions and find out, shall we? *Excellent timing, I finally updated my Bio page to reflect a little bit more what I’m about*

1. No really, zombie apocalypse survival strategy: Fight or flight? So happy this question made the cut. In the event of the zombie apocalypse, a rallying point has already been established–Walmart. Think about it, any supply item one could need is available (even wax) and the best part is: many customers already act so much like zombies, that actual zombies would be confused! Cramming up the aisles, ambling in corpse-like fashion with disregard to surroundings, parking a bulky scooter ‘just so’ to block anyone attempting to grab a frozen pizza. To outlast the initial zombie fallout for any length of time, all you’d have to do is adopt the zombiesque nature of typical Walmart shoppers and you’re golden. There you have it, essentially, my survival tactic is to blend in. (If that doesn’t work, there’s always the Winchester Pub.)

2. You’ve been a bad, bad kitty and you have just one final meal coming your way. What’s on your plate? I defer to the Elaine Benes (from Seinfeld) answer to this question: “So you would choose your last meal based on the method of execution?”
Elaine: “Right, right. I mean, if I was getting the chair, I’d go for
something hot and spicy. You know, Thai, maybe Mexican. Lethal injection,
feels like pasta. You know, painless, don’t want anything too heavy.”- excerpt from episode 170 “The Strongbox”   I’d finish it off with a massive hot fudge sundae piled with all the toppings, overindulging to the point of such fullness that the end might bring relief. 

3. Aside from wax (or nail polish, or crafting supplies, or beauty products) what item do you have major multiples of? Luckily (and lazily) for me, I recently posted on this very topic. Anyone curious about my non-wax collections, check here. Aside from books, bookish items and globes, I pick up a pair of Converse Chuck Taylor All-Stars sneaks often enough to have a mini-show of multiples.20170802_113024My love for the iconic skate shoe that anyone can wear emerged back in high school with my first pair of Chucks, the classic parchment color low-tops. Unsure why I identify strongly with this footwear; I’ve never been a skater and the canvas really doesn’t keep one’s feet warm, but they are familiar, casual and will always be a classic.

4. You’ve just won the lottery. Before best friends you didn’t even know you had begin to show up on your doorstep, what’s the first thing you buy without even thinking twice? Ugh, I never not think twice. A vacation home large enough for the whole family?? 

5. Biggest celebrity crush? This can be anybody – an actress, a musician, a fictional character from a favourite movie, book or television show, or maybe even an historical figure. Julie may be the only one who knows that my current celebrity crush is the Freeman, Martin Freeman. Boyish charm, comic nature, wit, thoughtfulness, and those playful facial expressions get all my 100s and heart eyes. Do I even need to mention he was the original Tim, aka Jim from the U.K. Office, Bilbo Baggins and the best Dr. John Watson in Sherlock? 

654d41c44938370126f38f80712e2bb5-martin-freeman-sexy-martin-omalley 530d915b5a16170814db716b2f13135b f6e28896e4b3cc071e98df67f37f017e-sherlock-cumberbatch-sherlock-holmes This question is what I’m most looking forward to seeing answers to, I have a couple of theories…

6. Flats or heels? Or are you running barefoot through life like some sort of hippie? I’m the queen of flats. My tailbone troubles mean heels are killer for me. Also, this recovering germophobe despises going barefoot.

7. Whether it was created through a customs order or simple pick-and-mix blending at home, what’s the greatest scent blend you’ve ever stumbled upon? I’ve been quite the mix master lately, gleefully experimenting within my stash and creating custom wax. Of the vendor blends, my mix of Briarcliff and Rosemary’s Baby both by Super Tarts got rave reviews. My favorite unintentional blend has to be L3 Waxy Wonders’ Deep Throat (1000 Kisses, shave cream) melted alongside Bath and Body Works’ Black Tea Rose 3-wick. The deep resins and delicate florals mingled harmoniously with the cedar wood creating an undiluted perfect pairing.

8. It’s snack time! Are you reaching for the sweet or the salty? Bring on the bacon, the olives, the guacamole and corn chips, salt + vinegar chips are even better, especially with a craft brew to help wash it down. I have a saline tongue rather than a sweet tooth, though I’ve also never met a cookie I didn’t like. Go figure.

9. What’s a personal style moment you’d never care to re-live? My back-to-school page boy haircut in 8th grade haunts me to this day. Even worse was the poodle-curl perm from 6th? grade, not sure, all photo evidence has been sought out and burned. Man, the 80s were hideous for hair.

10. You are going to live in a biodome beneath the sea for the next three years and have been allotted space for just ONE book (tiny dome!)  What cherished book will keep you entertained for the next 1095 days? Would a Chrome Book be cheating? Probably isn’t the spirit of the question. Okay, there are 171,476 words in the extended Oxford English Dictionary, which means I could read 150+ words a day to finish in 1095 days, and emerge from the dome with a stunning vocabulary. Learning word origins and alternate definitions is already entertaining to me as it is, I only lack the study time. If we’re talking fiction novels, I’d bring The Princess Bride.
If you’d like to play along at home, please feel free to answer these questions in the comment section below, and we hope you’ll visit these Band of Blogger blogs and help support the blogger community!

Amanda at Thrifty Polished

Deb at It’s Always Something

Jaybird at The Candle Enthusiast

Jessica at The Meltdown Blog

Julie at The Redolent Mermaid

Lauren at LoloLovesScents

Liz at Furianne

Sandra at Finger Candy

If you are a blogger and would like to join the Band of Bloggers for our monthly posts, please contact us.

July Superlatives

The bests, worsts, and “mosts” of the month for July.

Most impressed with: No sooner had I posted my mid-year Top 10 melts than I immediately found new scents to love. 20170611_180308

Biggest usurper: Snooze Button Aftershave blend by L3 Waxy Wonders. I popped this little guy in and fell head over heels. Creamy buttermints, sweet lavender, vanilla bean noel paired with a classic clean aftershave. I’ve seen this blend around for awhile but had forgotten about my lil snowman sample. Shall I just say SBA rocked my wax world. Planning future orders of mass quantities with this combo.

Cersei by House of Phoebe Wax. Saving this for the July premiere of Game of Thrones (thanks to our free trial of HBO NOW) means I had no idea what a gorgeous blend I was missing all this time. Sweet white grapes, bergamot, and myrrh. As sweet and airy as Cersei is monstrous and diabolical; yet the wine, masculine edge and sacred oil matches the character distinctly. A new HoP fave.

Newest product to love

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Pacifica is my go to brand for natural beauty products and this recent discovery’s become a fast favorite. Claiming to be a 10-in-1 product, I’m not sure of it’s numerous uses, but as a detangler and hair volumizer it’s highly successful. Specifically formulated for fine hair, like mine, it provides a weightless boost when spritzed at the roots before drying. And it smells divinely of tropical ginger spice. $14.00 for 4oz. of summery texture is worth it to me.

Most annoying: I dropped my tart warmer dish while carrying it out of the freezer and though I have another (I gave my third to my sister) I really love my lighted cream owl burner. Been trying to hold out for a deal on a replacement, meanwhile using my defective tealight warmer hanging dish (which gets really hot) and then I broke THAT one! All this tart warmer tragedy occurring as I was excited to melt my SMT custom wax. I know, first-world problems.

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Wildest: The recent form of recreational activity for my hubby and I…ballroom dancing! Proper dancing may be natural for some couples, but a new venture for us. It’s kind of an introvert’s worst nightmare, but I’m happy we took the plunge and signed up for lessons after accepting an invite to a group dance party. Our instructor is a talented young gentleman from the Ukraine and we couldn’t ask for a better teacher. Smooth sailing while learning all the basic steps, but now, halfway through our lessons and I can barely tell my left foot from my right during the dreaded underarm turns. If I can paint a picture; imagine Jennifer Grey crossing the little bridge in Dirty Dancing while practicing her moves, stamping her feet in frustration and rehearsing over and over during a montage-I only wish I was at that level. Despite my lack of grace, it’s been a fun challenge that gets us up and moving together. I’m pretty proud of us.

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My anniversary card ❤

Luckiest: Me, for the privilege of spending the last 15 years married to the best man I know. “Nothing is more beautiful than the love that has weathered the storms of life…” words by Jerome K. Jerome. We’ve certainly weathered more than our fair share and have grown stronger for it. Best friends and soulmates; he is, in the words of Juno: the cheese to my macaroni, Jim to my Pam, Carl to my Ellie, Tom Sawyer to my Becky Thatcher. In Lost terms: he is my constant, in every sense of the word.

Hope your summer is going along swimmingly friends. August is here and with it, the beginning of the end. I’m bustling off to enjoy it.

Summer in full swing at The Bathing Garden

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If, like me, you secured The Bathing Garden’s summer collections a little late, June instead of May, your package arrived in all it’s vibrant summery glory last week. Evidently, the 6 week turnaround-time for TBG orders will be a thing of the past as Shannon recently announced that she’s transitioning to Ready-to-Ship restocks. More thoughts on that development later, now onto the summer lovin blends. Shannon’s wax is always gorgeous, but her summertime decorations really strike my fancy.

Shannon’s Summer Picks Collection:

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Bee Smitten-sweet lavender, rose, ylang ylang, honey, and citrus. I was hoping for a re-release of Honeyed Toffee, a creamy scent that was part of last summer’s collection, but it didn’t appear, so I substituted with this. Sadly, nowhere near what I hoped. A strange and soapy floral dominates the honey. Beautiful but not for me.

This was a combined order with my sister where we split the samples, got some duplicates and shared the rest. The aqua blue clamshell below is her Pirate’s Punch which I forgot to grab a cube of, whoops, there was a lot of wax exchanging hands.

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Lavender Serenity-Herbal lavender blended with fruity grapes. If I’m going to melt grape wax, it might as well be from The Bathing Garden, at least it’s paired with an authentic herbal lavender. I loathe grape scents. Strike that. I enjoy wine inspired scents, even sparkling white grapes, but the purple ‘grape pop flavor’ is too artificial and never seems to resemble any actual fruit. This is no different, but looks stunning and is pretty inoffensive. Strong thrower, though I desire more fragrant lavender to even out the punchy grape.

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Storybook Mint-Peppermint candies, milk cake, cotton candy, and fluffy spearmint meringue with subtle hints of apple. I love mint chip ice cream and this gives me that same creamy coolness without any of the chocolate or ice. Which I guess would make it more of a custard. Perfect balance of peppermint and spearmint, greatly appreciated as oftentimes, one strong mint overpowers the other. Cotton candy sweetens the pot of syrupy mint and rich milky base. Ladle me up a dish of this and I’d eat it with a spoon. I’ve yet to actually reorder twice from a current TBG collection, but I’m tempted…decisions, decisions.

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Faeire Tears flower tart-Smells of red currant, sandalwood, and vanilla. An unintentional buy, as I realized I still have some from last year. Reminiscent of a less fruity Yankee Candle’s Lake Sunset mashed up with the cherry blossom of Market Blossoms. I liked it before, but my tastes may be changing as I’m finding it a cloying powder. My sis ordered while I was in New York and unfortunately mine got slightly lost in translation-I meant to order another Calypso but she had my original list with this one instead. Wouldn’t you know we received a second one as our free full priced item, a little disappointed to get two of the same product.

Wonderland Collection: (currently unavailable) 

Tea with the Queen of Hearts wax bunnythe Queen of Hearts likes her roses AND her tea red, Roobios Red Tea. Those spangled heart embeds represent my feels for this scent fully. Originally gifted a bunny back in Spring from my friend Finger Candy (who was originally gifted the tart from The Redolent Mermaid-it’s a big, generous wax family) Fresh and mildly fruity with the mouthwatering tang I so enjoy. A tender rosebud appears, but adds to the herbal infusion rather than becoming floral. Not the strongest, I melted the one with months of cure and will likely save my new bunny for next Spring.

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Alice in Lavenderland-French lavender with vanilla extract and marshmallow cream. Bold, stunning and perfect blend of herbal woody lavender and fluffy mallow. I can’t pass up Shannon’s lavender blends and though my sis grabbed Lavender Vanilla Custard, I prefer Alice’s version, less metallic in tone.

It’s Always Tea Time-Sweet black tea, honey crystals, tart lemon, a drop of cardamom. I should love this scent but though I find it a perfectly pleasant and fragrant tea aroma, there are one too many squeezes of lemon (which I rarely add to tea) and as with many TBG scents, a floral aftertone sneaks in.

Take Me to The Sea collection:

20170723_100819Turquoise Loves Coconut-Tart lime, water, and fresh breeze notes blended with tropical coconut. Luscious coconut pulp sends me to creamy nirvana, and just when it appears one-note, zesty lime adds a splash of tangy citrus. The fresh breeze comes through as green leaf, gentle palm fronds waving in the wind, yet adding serious depth. A fresh scent lover’s dream island scent.

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Widow’s Walk-Violet, clove, and cedar wood. I remember Julie at The Redolent Mermaid rhapsodizing over this scent last summer, so I was sure to grab one. Clove is the most unmistakable full-flavored spice, perfumed with delicate ethereal violets and the sturdiness of earthy cedar wood. A haunting aroma, perfect perfume for a widow to wear while pining for her love lost at sea. Dreamy.

Samples:

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Coconut Sugar Ice LolliesFresh shredded coconut is dusted with sugar and topped with candied frozen lollies. Very candy-like, reminiscent of Pixy Sticks, the sugary powder-filled candy in the paper straws. Happily bestowed this sample to our niece, who loves TBG’s sweets, but never melts them because they’re too pretty.

Blackberry Jam Lemon Curd-Tart, ripe blackberry is layered with delicious London Lemon Curd. Powerful lemon but not harsh as some curds are to my nose. Sweet enough to be a fruity marmalade with a kick.

Calyspo- reviewed back in May. I wish for more of this beachy blend.

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Cemetery Keys-Vanilla tonka bean, lime citrus, and sugary sweet white floral. Utterly infatuated by this wicked black pumpkin, but on the fence over the scent. A popular limited edition Lush scent dupe. I’m all for tonka and citrus, but ooh that white floral, possibly ylang-ylang, scares me off.

Haunted Hayride-Tart granny smith apples, caramel, cinnamon, pumpkin, and hints of hay. Simple blend of cinnamon apples elevated by a few hay stalks pitched in. Nice.

Illusions of the Labyrinth-Mandarin, musk, sugar, and a woodsy violet. Fresh, light and airy, I’m not sure this scent reads fall. Still, a pleasant mix of sweetened mandarin and woods to be found in this labyrinth, I’m considering ordering but fear it may be too light.

Pumpkin Pie Spice-With last year’s fall samples, I received a similar spiced pumpkin pudding that I don’t think made it into the scent line-up. This is a unique PPS version, with a deep, dark spice bouquet, it’s rare to find a savory pumpkin scent rather than sweet. No description available, but certainly nutmeg, ginger and a pinch of cinnamon are ingredients.

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Toxic Earth-Coffee, whiskey, caramel, cake, and lightly of beer…sprinkled with candy bones. Hmm, this is a strong Cuban-style coffee with a glug of whiskey to awaken the senses. No beer hops on cold but there’s almost a chocolate note, interesting. I prefer caramely Coffee Sprinkles to this brew however.

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Vampire Blood-Strawberries, persimmon, raspberry jam, pomegranate, cranberry, fig, and crushed vanilla beans with a sprinkle of brown sugar. I usually shy away from wax shaped as vital organs, but this sparkly cortex is perfectly detailed and such a shiny pink that it captures more of a kooky mad scientist vibe than zombie meal. I wouldn’t expect anything less from the queen of elaborate wax design. The scent transmits a muddled fruit, similar to The Sweetest Thing without the floral.

Any thoughts on The Bathing Garden’s planned switch to announced RTS restocks? When I first heard the news, thanks to an IG friend’s posting, my knee-jerk reaction was “Oh please no!” Not a battle for products, a lá Hunger Games style, not with TBG, one of the few vendors one can count on getting what they want. Upon further thought, this could be happy news if it means getting my tarts faster, assuming I can get them. Shannon’s assured she will replenish the stock at least once per collection. It sounds similar to Super Tart’s current releases, with Shannon’s being seasonally based. My hope is the restocks won’t be during the middle of my workday as with so many brands. In a public service job, hanging out on my phone or computer ordering wax is out of the question. Though I don’t like change, I am hoping for the best. What’s your opinion on the news and will you be ordering any summer blends before the change occurs?

Sniff My Tarts-Custom order #1

My first in a pair of SMT custom orders has landed and put me right over the moon! I split my numerous blends into two separate lineups, the first being more summery and apparently minty than the second. Speedily submitting this order within four minutes of the shop’s opening for customs meant it arrived in just two months, I’m very happy with that timing.

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There’s actually a funny story regarding this delivery. In July, my husband and I planned a mini-trip when we’d be out of town for just two days. One of those days turned out to be the delivery date for this custom order; out of six possible months delivery happened to fall when we wouldn’t be home AND it was predicted to be 93 degrees no less! After receiving my shipping update I panicked and recruited family to pick up my package as close to mail delivery as possible. Which my dad did and even brought back to his house fearing mine would be too warm with no one home. I’m guessing the wax spent less than an hour outside on our covered deck, which led to a few melty bits on the edges of the chunks. All things considered, it doesn’t seem any worse for wear. Thanks Dad, sometimes it takes a wax village.

8 oz. no fuss chunks: $10.52 (Scents in color, my name for the blend in italics)

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Sun-ripened Raspberry overpour, Basil and Spearmint chunks-Secret Summer Garden

I can’t begin to express my nervousness at how this blend would turn out. Knowing I wanted basil, I collaborated with a friend on possible additions. She suggested spearmint and I thought a berry would complement it well. When I sniffed a Sun-Ripened Raspberry shower gel during Bath and Body Works’ semi-sale however, the perfumery floral was so intense I thought I had inadvertently ruined my custom blend with it. I’m relieved to report that SMT’s dupe, if it is one, is much nicer. No harsh, phony floral tone just a light fresh fruit. In fact, though I am happy with this blend, I wish it had more berry. The aromatic basil leaves evoke a shaded herb garden, lovely and not pungent or bitter as some basil can be. The finish is a blast of cool spearmint, offering a refreshing respite from the heat. Overall, a stimulating blend with medium-strong throw. Of the 3 notes, I’d try the basil again, maybe with a blackberry…

Salty Sea Air overpour, Barbershop and Sandalwood chunks-Beach Boyfriend

What I want my man to smell like during the summer, maybe I can find a similar cologne. Considering it is the overpour, I hoped for a strong, breezy sea air note, but I can’t detect it on cold or warm. No ozone, no salt, no sea. I’ll update after awhile of cure time to see if it improves. Warmer and cozier than I expected, the barbershop appears foremost, revealing a classic musk, overlaid with spicy bay (hinting at eucalyptus here). Heart notes of amber and rum surface making a strapping shave cream scent, just the way I like it. A powdery sandalwood essence emerges but I wish the sandalwood was stronger. Light strength performance altogether. If I try SSA in future, it might need paired with a weaker scent to hold up. I would totally do more Barbershop, which is a good thing because I have, plus more coming in order #2. 

9 oz. mini chunk muffins: $11.52 I’m ecstatic to have a 4 fragrance option with these muffins, I believe it was the first time 4 oil blends were offered.

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Blue Raspberry Candy overpour, Cotton Candy, Rosemary Mint, Sweet Lavender chunksTook the Chevy to the Levee

These little muffins take the cake as far as each note being represented. At the last moment, I changed Blue Rasp Slush to the candy version and I think I made the right move. The Raspberry Candy (jolly-rancher?) is crystal clear sugar with a hint of tang that I love. Often, I judge a foodie scent’s success on whether it provides that tangy feeling in the back of the throat and sure enough, it’s here. Bursting with an oh so minty green rosemary mint, sweetened with soft sugar strawberry candy and whispering of downy sweet lavender, the little buds providing decoration more than aroma. Medium scent strength in which the whopping mint is toned down by the other three scents. I would re-blend with each of these, a favorite.

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8 oz. chunky pie: $10.24 

Barbershop overpour, Rosemary Mint, Pink Sugar chunksJay’s Blend

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That’s right, I came up with this custom blend, and I love it! Combining my scent crushes of Pink Sugar and the Barbershop described above with the woody herbaceous Aveda Rosemary Mint creates a relaxing spa fragrance. Layered with the honeyed musk of Pink Sugar, this is my fave of the mint blends I’ve tried. A delicate comforting clean aroma with the barest hint of peppermint. Gorgeous. I’m delighted to have such a large quantity and don’t know how the entire pie can only equal a half pound. It feels much more substantial, likely getting 3 melts from each slice.

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4 oz. wax cookies: $5.12 each, limit of 5. Perfect for trying small quantities of custom blends, I adore these rather large pretties.

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Japanese Cherry Blossom, Pink Grapefruit, Cotton Candy FrostingPink to the 3rd Power

Loving this. Bright sunny grapefruit becomes candied in “strawberry, raspberry, plum, sugary crystals and sweet vanilla frosting.” Japanese Cherry Blossom (blend of cherry blossoms, crisp pears, mimosa petals & sweet sandalwood) accentuates the fruitiness without overpowering. Grapefruit is such a versatile blender, I recommend anyone try it for an elegant sparkling scent.

Blueberry Vanilla Bean NoelSugared Violets, Vanilla Bean Noel-Blueberry Picnic (Liz’s Blend from Furianne)

My memory is fuzzy, but I believe one can choose the percentage of each fragrance in their wax cookies. For the other blends, I chose equal thirds, but blueberry makes me nervous-when too sweet. I think I chose the VBN to star here. Creamy as all get out with glistening marshmallow glazed sugar cookies. Sugared violets peek in faintly, but the Blueberry noel has so much depth and a little spice that I have to stop myself taking a bite of this cookie confection. Great creation Liz, and much more complex than expected.

Angel Food Cake, Sweet Lavender, ApricotSpring is in the Air Cake

You simply couldn’t find a more spring-like blend. Angel food cake makes a light and fluffy bed for the ripe apricots, tempered by lovely sweet lavender. A fruity dessert with a fresh bouncy finish. Without a doubt, I would reorder each of these cookie creations.

Single scent piped hearts: $3.84 each 

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I was looking forward to these beauties but they arrived slightly smushed without any extra padding or protection from the heavier chunks and pies sliding in the box.

Vanilla Baby Powder-What a pleasant surprise this turned out to be. Fresh, without any soapiness and not overdone on the talcum. Recognizable as baby powder, but only just. The addition of rich vanilla creates a thick, velvety smooth aroma. Again, a soothing comfort fragrance, perfect for drifting off to sleep. I will custom blend with Vanilla BP in the future, it might pair nicely with Barbershop.

Pink Coconut– an SMT blend that’s ultra creamy, with a perfumed air about it. Coconut doesn’t come forth but an exotic fruit scent does. Upon first sniff, I recognized a floral tone, but on repeated whiffs it gets ever sweeter. I enjoy this, but wouldn’t quite know what blend to create with it.

Lavender Coconut Milk– the only scent I didn’t like at first sniff. The description, lavender with silky French vanilla infused with rich coconut milk and hints of musk, sounds wonderful. However, something within is off-putting to my nose. I typically love sugar milk scents, but this coconut milk version has a sourness at odds with the other notes. Wouldn’t reorder, but my family loved it so I will split it up for them.

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Samples: Pistachio Pudding/Amaretto/Marshmallow Cake– The Amaretto is pungent, making me dizzy with the cherry laden pistachio. Passing this melt along to someone who’ll enjoy it better.

Salty Sea Air/Toasted Marshmallow/Vanilla Lace/Graham Cracker-a combo I could have created myself. On cold, I pick up more SSA and I’m thrilled to try the powdery Vanilla Lace. Willing myself to let it cure before melting.

I don’t want to be too hasty and call this my favorite wax haul of the year, but the successful creations made me extremely happy. Plus shipping was an affordable $7.00! Because my full custom list doubles this one, I hadn’t realized I ordered such a slew of mint until I sniffed the heaps and mounds of it present here. Though each blend has a slightly different version, I’m set on the mints for a bit. This could be usurped by my upcoming second order, placed quite a bit after this, it should arrive in fall. After that it could be time for another exciting custom opening. If you can’t wait quite so long, Dream Boxes and Mystery Grab bags are available at Sniff My Tarts right now. Big heartfelt thanks to Donna and her SMT team, if you do order, her blending skills are so good you can’t go wrong.

Mixin’ it up

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Inspired by a conversation with Kari, one of the sweet Yankee Candle Sisters, I’m showing off some mixology I’ve been melting this month. My endless stash of Yankee Candle tarts have nearly been forgotten since discovering vendor wax, but what else is a girl to do when she’s on a wax ban and isn’t sure when her customs and pre-orders are arriving? She returns to her wax roots, in my case, Yankee Candle. Kari mentioned experimenting with mostly bakery blends, while I gravitate to the fresher end of the spectrum. I aimed to challenge myself with a few and am mostly happy with the results.

Fails: Of course, not every combo is a winner.

Coconut Beach + Coastal Breeze

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I wish I’d tried Coconut Beach before mixing to judge it’s throw, combined with this, I only got a hint of perfumed coconut. The Coastal Breeze was a little old and may have lost it’s aroma, making this combo as pale in scent as it looked. My hoped for combo of Salty sea air/Coconut was a dud.

Black Sand Beach+Oceanside=Midnight Beach (Did I mention I love naming my creations?)

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I enjoy both of these especially having a patchouli heavy summer option with an added driftwood note in Black Sand Beach. This combo failed because the BSB simply overpowered my beloved Oceanside. Though, a watery marine note did enhance the patchouli, there wasn’t enough of a balance to be a proper mix. I think I’ll take the remaining half of Oceanside and mix with the leftover Coconut Beach and see what happens instead.

Successes:

Macintosh+Juicy Peach=Summer Jam. Inspired by Yankee’s retired MacIntosh & Peach candle which I never got a chance to try.

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Macintosh is a most beloved scent but doesn’t do anything for me on it’s own. Mixed with a summer fruit, it creates a punch of tart tangy apple and golden sweet peaches. Sugary, but not overly so, the combo becomes reminiscent of a fruit jam. It is a winner. Unfortunately, I don’t think Yankee offers a straight peach scent in their current lineup, but I believe this would also work with Mango Peach Salsa. I love this enough to get the candle if it ever makes a return appearance.

Lavender Vanilla+Stormwatch=The Calm before the Storm

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I’m not sure how often I’d mix these two but the lavender brought out the floral note in Stormwatch and the rich vanilla softened it’s somewhat soapy aspect. As they’re both singly wonderful I was surprised to find they were improved upon when combined. The result is a strong fresh floral perfume.

Dreamy Summer Nights+Golden Sands+Beachwood=I dream of summer

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Beach Wood dominates and is enhanced by the powdery vanilla of DSN and cool musk of Golden Sands. The GS is honestly too subtle and gets lost, but the triple blend makes for a more exciting beach fragrance as I’ve always found the woody note to be on the bland side. A soft, soothing blend for a cool summer night.

Peach Cobbler+White Gardenia=Southern Charm*

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Here’s an example of two scents I wouldn’t melt in wax on their own, the gardenia being too strong of a floral and the cobbler too sweet of a bakery fragrance. However, put together the combo is a revelation. Intoxicating gardenia blossoms become toned down by the syrupy nectar of brown sugar, peach juice and crumbly crust. This would make a stunning perfume or body mist.

*I’ve had success melting votives in my Yankee Scenterpiece warmer, but when using tarts, which have harder wax, it takes much longer to liquefy. I recommend using a few small bite-size tart pieces, but votives are better yet.

Fresh Mint+Juicy Grapefruit=Pink Julep

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Oooh, I adore this blend. The tangy grapefruit carries an earthy tone which blended with mint leaf becomes a vibrant cocktail of mouthwatering refreshment. Sparkling citrus and crisp mint make a crowd-pleasing combo. Yankee should create this fragrance!

Granny Smith+Sugar and Spice=Granny’s Pantry

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My goal with this blend was to find a complementary scent for green apple that didn’t involve caramel. I don’t care for overly caramel scents, but am also dreaming up combos for my green-apple-scent-loving niece, who is very finicky with her preferences. She likes apple, buttercream, vanilla, marshmallow, watermelon and pumpkin. I almost grabbed my French Vanilla or Merry Marshmallow until spotting S+S. Succulent green apples are drizzled with golden butter, warm tonka bean, brown sugar and spices of nutmeg, cinnamon and cardamom. Not your standard spice mix, there is an additional toasted nutty flavor in which I can almost taste the crunchy note. I’m pleased as punch that I gave this combo a try and can’t wait to share it with her this fall.

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Now, I’ll spill a secret…I used to dream up scent combos all the time as a YC employee. We were tasked with offering a ‘complementary scent’ with customers’ candle choices and I favored matching a fragrance with a companion. I even kept scent pairing lists. It’s been fun trying out some ideas with the stash I have, not quite as many as offered in store, but close. As a vendor wax customer I’m much more inspired nowadays, thanks to the innovative blends vendors are brewing up. I plan to return to my YC roots again with a festive mixology version later this year.

Do you practice mixology? Are there any appealing combos above, or some favorite blends of your own? Nothing’s too far out there for me to pair up.