BPAL Haunted oil and Amber & Patchouli Hair Gloss – review

Macbeth, The Art of Dying, and the Girly-girl

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I’m not a witches and sorcerers kind of gal, always preferring superheroes to Harry Potter types. I never did the Goth-thing (even in high school), preferring bright, sparkly things to the black and morose. I did date a Goth once, though, and I do love a yearly turkey leg at the Renaissance faire. Brooding Victorian literature has always been a favorite, too, and Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab has always enchanted me.

Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab aka BPAL is the perfumery that caters to not only the Goth crowd, but the scent obsessed, with conceptual blends of unique magickal scents. Magik, mythology and paganism meet the stories and poetry of the Medieval, Renaissance and Victorian ages, resulting in allegoric aromatherapy to dazzle the senses.

Hand blended oils stored in amber vials decorated with painstaking artistry, each with a story, are the cornerstone of BPAL. While the perfume oils are the cornerstones, but there are many bricks to their castle, including hair, body and home products. Most recently, I sampled a cornerstone, Haunted perfume oil, and a brick, Amber and Patchouli Hair Gloss. (That’s right – a hair gloss!)

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Haunted ($17.50) is a perfume oil blend from the Ars Moriendi “The Art of Dying” collection. This collection is an homage to the revelry of dying as relayed through dance and darkness of all ages, with a nod to the Black Plague, zombies and vampires. With that in mind, I drew my first whiff of Haunted.

Haunted is definitely the joy of death – part of the dance, not the disease. The scent is quite sweet – warm and vanilla with spicy wood is my takeaway. The sweet part is very feminine, but the earthiness lends a masculine quality. There is a memory here of something I can’t put my finger on, something perhaps from my childhood. Haunted indeed.

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Huanted – A mournful, poignant scent, thick with foreboding. Soft golden amber darkened with a touch of murky black musk.

Upon reading the fragrance notes I am surprised to find that Haunted is simply golden amber and murky black musk. Bright florals and sweet spices were always my tastes. Individually, these two scents were never favorites but combined, two of my wrongs have turned so right. This is a definite “do” for my body chemistry. I’m constantly surprised by the BPAL fragrances I most like and advise you to purchase a sample (Imp Ear) if available.

Now for some exciting news, BPAL has recently released a new line of hand-made hair glosses that are available through their sister site the Black Phoenix Trading Post.

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Keeping with the Amber scented theme, I tested the Amber & Patchouli Hair Gloss ($30), which was full of good surprises for me as well. Patchouli is one of those fragrances I always equate as a cover-up for natural human muskiness, and I am not usually a fan. While there is no disguising the easily identifiable scent, this is an amazing performer.

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Tahitian monoi, camelina oil, the oft-touted anti-aging argan oil, and karanja oils along with Vitamin E work together in this ultra fine-misted spray to condition and gloss hair without weighing it down. And for you animal lovers, keep in mind that BPAL is a cruelty-fre company and their hair glosses are paraben and sulfate free, without petro-chemicals, GMOs or triclosan.

I have superfine, naturally oily hair and a couple spritzes on the ends, massaged throughout (avoiding the scalp) makes my hair soft and shiny, eradicating my split ends with zero greasiness. I love this so much that I don’t even mind the patchouli scent (tempered with the amber) anymore.

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Next time around I will try one of their other scented glosses (all containing the same base oils mentioned above) next time around. Honey, White Tea and Sage or Coconut, Vanilla Bean and Tiare Hair Glosses all have my nose twitching in a Bewitching way.

Double, double toil and trouble, do these brews bewitch you too?

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Sherri is co-author of What Would You Do With This Room?%name BPAL Haunted oil and Amber & Patchouli Hair Gloss   review My 10 Foolproof Commandments to Great Interior Design, and of course, a wht writer!

Disclosure: This review includes products that were provided by the manufacturer/PR firm for our consideration. For more info, or any questions, please see our disclosure policy.

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Written by sherrishera


  1. Profile photo of irene

    Tahitian MONOI!! YUM. Camelina oil, the oft-touted anti-aging argan oil, and karanja oils along with Vitamin E! You got me there! This company is awesome!! I’m so with you with the Honey, White Tea and Sage.. But being a coconut freakoid the , Coconut, Vanilla Bean and Tiare Hair Glosses really have my number dialed in! Talk about casting a magic spell! Nice review @sherrishera! Ohhhh, the smell!

  2. Profile photo of amity

    Bewitching and beguiling review! I had proud gothy tendencies in high school and, truth be told, definitely still cater to my “inner goth.” So I am all about the Haunted oil! The hair gloss sounds magical, too.

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