This kaleidoscope of color represents one of my absolutely adored vendors. I named HoP my favorite find of 2016 in my year-end recap. Recently celebrating six months in business, House of Phoebe excels in my favorite scent types-earthy, woodsy, masculine, smoky and citrus. The store re-opened last week after a hiatus and I’m eager to check out the new fragrances Casey whips up.
Each carefully wrapped black & cream package with gleaming golden touches presents a gift befitting of royalty, the 1.5 oz. cups inside resemble precious sparkling jewels.
The scent list is extensive and I’ve tried dozens. Because reviewing them all would be impossible, I shared a few of my favorite gems below. The melts run $1.35 and are sprinkled with shimmering glitter. Full-size samples included with every order. The categories featured on the HoP website are organized a bit differently, I grouped mine for broader simplicity.
Baron La Croix-Cuban tobacco, earthy woods, musky sweetness.
Daenerys-Dragons blood, incense, bonfire, and blood orange. There is a quality spectrum of Dragon’s Blood oils, from rich smoky spice to sharper flowery notes. This falls on the good end, with an edge. Imagine descending to the rocky depths of cool cavern air, rivulets run down the walls, when a sharp tinge of smoke creeps up…there be dragons ahead. A burnt offering of incense, fire and blood orange must be made.
Melisandre-Firewood, amber, currant, patchouli. Establishes it’s scent before you realize it, then it’s there, permeating the room with spice and sweet smoke. As beguiling and mysterious as it’s namesake inspiration.
Rebel Rebel-Lord of Misrule type (patchouli, sandalwood, citrus, black pepper) mixed with cedar, earthy moss, woody myrrh, and musky florals.
Third Eye-Saffron, sandalwood, leather, frankincense, and a touch of violets. Feathery wisps of sandalwood lighten rich, resinous frankincense. Aged leather provides a backbone to the powdery essence yet remains supple and tender, so as not to overpower. This fragrance soothed my inner savage beasts as I sought needed solitude to dwell in my own mind’s eye, to speculate on life, growth, change. I need to repurchase this peaceful, calming blend.
Vendetta-Smoky myrrh, scorched earth, a touch of citrus and light florals. The only bitter quarrel I’ll have is with myself if I don’t acquire more of this moody, musky, myrrh-soaked blend. Thank you Casey for fulfilling my sample request on this one, well done!
Bless Her Heart-Sweet iced tea and lemon bars.
Bungalow-A tropical mix of pineapple, citrus fruits, and pomegranate over subtle tones of vanilla.
Mina-White tea leaves and lemon over earthy woods, rose petals, and a mixture of green florals.
Stars Chase the Sun-Orange citrus, bergamot, ginger, cypress, and rosewood.
Sansa-Sweet lemon cakes over notes of cedar and spruce. This was House of Phoebe’s first scent creation, inspired by Game of Thrones. (Character inspired scents related to the character are a must).
Sugared lemon petit fours layered with chiffon cream and laced with delicate fondant served on a gilded tray. If cakes aren’t enough to send a young maiden into rapture in order to gain her secrets, then the clever nuance of stately blue spruce and sturdy cedarwood should do the trick.
On the lighter side, but I’m glad for it as both lemon sugar and cedar oils can be too much in heavy doses. I first received Sansa as a sample last August and adored it ever since. I try to grab it when available because I need this scent in my life.
Forest Fairy-French lavender, lush green earth, sage, and eucalyptus. In love and admittedly confused by this one. I know I smelled a strong green minty tone when melting, and don’t believe I’m confusing eucalyptus with mint because they often pair together. Maybe it’s a more of an herb garden fairy? Either way, it’s fresh and strong.
Frau Holle-A blend of roasted pinecones and fir balsam with hints of apple and vanilla sweetness. A true-to-life fir tree essence enhanced by pinecones crunching underfoot.
Ygritte-Earth and foliage, spruce, and a hint of crackling firewood. Crisp, woody, smoky, warm, it holds every element I love about being outdoors on late fall days. Strong enough throw to melt half a cup.
*Better Call Saul-Cocobolo wood and boozy tobacco. (not pictured) An eye-opening experience, as if relaxing in a zen spa setting, a steam room outfitted in coastal cocobolo wood and tropical teak. My first cocobolo scent, but hopefully not my last. A HoP favorite, must repurchase.
Arya-Freshly fallen snow, warm hay, leather
Asha-Driftwood, sage, aquatic florals, sea moss, and rum.
The Bear and the Maiden Fair: Brienne (Clean citrus, rain water, mountain air) x Penny Dreadful (Herbal tincture of poppy and lavender)
Brienne-Clean citrus, rain water, mountain air. One of HoP’s most popular fragrances. It’s SUPER FRESH. If that’s not your happy scent place, it will likely overwhelm.
I’ll let you in on a secret to why I think this scent is beloved…it smells exactly like a swimming pool. One sniff reminds me of long ago summer moments; padding gingerly across hot concrete, peeking over the edge for that glimpse of crystal clear, shimmering water, first wading, then jumping into the bracing coolness. It also carries the tangy note I enjoy from aquatic plants and greenery. Not chemical, or crisp, but misty and potent.
Outlaw-Vanilla liqueur, oak, leather, cherry tobacco
Amaterasu-Fresh bamboo, sweet lemongrass, coriander, and sandalwood
Earthling-Lavender and pink sugar.
Margaery-Crisp summer fruits over a bed of roses. My favorite rose scent ever. More rosewatered than fresh rose. Imagine a bowl of stewed fruits and dark berries just leaching their juice, layered with sugar and sprinkled with rose petals. It’s soft, summery, and special.
Penny Dreadful-Herbal tincture of poppy and lavender
Cersei– Sweet white grapes, bergamot, and myrrh, the perfect mix of sweet and sunny fruits and smoky darkness. Saving this for July’s Game of Thrones season premiere.
Delilah – A mix of vanilla, amber, heliotrope, tuberose, and birch. No explicit fruit notes, but on cold it gave a ripened fruity sweetness. Upon melting, the most decadent vanilla I’ve smelled flowed forth into creamy, gourmand heaven. No floral appears, just divine velvety cream with hints of golden fruits and amber. At risk of repeating myself, I need to repurchase Delilah soon.
Screen Door in a Hurricane-Rich coconut, vanilla absolute, and tiare flower with a touch of lavender
Violet-Sugared lemons and blueberries, jasmine, violets, vanilla and cedar. One of the few HoP misses for me. A very muddled note smelled off immediately, the blueberry was the strange smelling culprit, I think. Wouldn’t repurchase.
Decadent and Depraved-Candy cigarettes frosted in vanilla buttercream and pink sugar. Who conjures candy cigarettes scents? Maybe I’ll try this when I have the kids visit, as I don’t think candy cigarettes are widely available anymore.
It’s Good to Be Queen-Rich black tea steeping next to fluffy white cake. Casey represents the classic blends well too, like this tea and cakes.
Outliers: scents which don’t easily fit into a category
Aristides-Mint Julep; bourbon and mint with a hint of powdered sugar. Brimming with a cool freshness, but thought it too minty sharp and boozy for my nose. My sister ordered some and raved about it, however.
Lonely Girl-Tea rose, cardamom, vanilla, currant, and peach
Bastet-A rich blend of Egyptian amber, rich patchouli, jasmine, citrus, and musk. An unexpected surprise due to its subtle cold throw. Bastet, an Egyptian goddess, transports me to a balmy southern clime where smoky smudge pots of incense alight a green orange grove at dusk. The aroma of night blooming jasmine mingles with sacred oils. Misty amber clouds envelop the crisp night air beneath a perfumed veil. Stunning.
Why do I love House of Phoebe so? The artistic blends ALL created in-house, affordable luxury, courteous customer service and the gorgeously saturated wax pools aren’t bad either. If I could suggest any future endeavors for HoP, I’d love to see clamshells make an appearance. They store easily and I know Casey would decorate them beautifully; it’s high praise, but this brand already shows glimpses of a young The Bathing Garden vibe. I wish House of Phoebe such luck and a long waxy future.