Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Arcana Wildcraft: Layering Note Perfumes


Two very important things had me popping over to Arcana Wildcraft recently: I needed a restock of Filthy Viking and I had to snag Aged Patchouli. 

Filthy Viking is my go-to scent for when I am feeling sick, sad, troubled, stressed or just want to feel comforted in some manner. I have drained two 5ml bottles and my 15ml is almost out. I messaged Julia and asked if I could purchase another 15ml and she posted one for me buy lickety-split. She is the best.

Filthy Viking- Notes: Bracing Norwegian juniper, frigid Icelandic mint, and the hardy wood of a longship. $76 for 15ml or $26 for 5ml

Although I have reviewed this one before (here) I am going to chatter about it a bit here again.

Filthy Viking is a forever favorite because it is a minty fragrance that does something no other mint has done on my skin before... linger. I splashed this on at about 7am yesterday morning as I dressed for work. The cooling effects of peppermint oil and the spiky green bursts of juniper immediately awoke my senses. As the day wore on the mint mellowed in its arctic intensity and the woods slowly came to berth upon the skin, but the crisp essence of the mint remained. The woods of the longboats read like a blending of cedar and sandalwood on my skin, sturdy but not splintering. The freshness of the mint relaxes while the juniper fades into more of a greenery rather than the photorealistic plant that it is in the beginning. There I was sitting in bed, back in my pjs and I could still sniff Filthy Viking on my arm at 6pm, right along the with Icelandic mint. Perfection.

Aged Patchouli- Earthy, spicy, iron-distilled patchouli essential oil in dilution. Very finest quality. Aging since early 2018. $26, on sale for $20

As soon as I sniffed the contents I knew I had made a most excellent choice. I might have to make that choice a few more times as well. This is a top notch patch. It smells smoky and earthen but with nuances of woods and tannins, minerals and cool dark places. On the skin this sings. The cool damp and dark nooks reveal themselves to be warm and inviting. The woods flourish and threads of shimmering minerals abound. I love wearing this patchouli on its own in pure perfection but I know it will be layered with vanillas, mints, lavenders and pretty much anything I can dream up. It is a staple.

Yellow Cake- The scent of a sweet, golden bakery cake. $26, on sale for $20

Speaking of staples, this is one for many Arcana fans. Julia's yellow cake notes is highly favored by gourmand lovers. On the skin it is a buttery vanilla delight. There are tones of bread and perhaps even corn meal at first when sniffed close to the wrist but wafting all about is a fluffy cloud of pillowy yellow cake. Sweet, but not sugary, decadent and vanilla laden. 

Pumpkin Milkshake- Cold vanilla ice cream blended with fresh pumpkin, milk, sugar, and Korintje cinnamon. $26, on sale for $20.

This is a toothsome treat. Pumpkin, vanilla and subtle spice. The vanilla is sugary and sweet and sets itself deliciously against the pumpkin puree. There are hints of caramel within the pumpkin. The cinnamon warms the scent and all in all it is easily one of my favorite pumpkin centric scents, of which I have many. 

Seaweed- A proprietary dilution of seaweed absolute. Briny, oceanic, pungent, and kelp-like. $26, on sale for $20.

Julia was talking about this layering note in the Arcana Addicts group and she mentioned that this was not a perfumer's interpretation of seaweed, but actual seaweed that had been harvested and processed to serve as a truly realistic scent. She suggested layering it with florals and any scent you wanted to add a mermaid flair to. It smells briny and oceanic and all the critters and organisms that go along with that. It is salty, green, a touch fishy and wholly seaweed. Barnacles, wee crabs and all. Once on the skin the dank living bits float up then the scent warms with a tinge of lemony brightness and a whole lot of saltiness. You never forget you are wearing true seaweed and it is a fantastic experience. 

Truffle- A dark chocolate ganache center is dipped in thick, generous layers of milk chocolate and white chocolate. $26, on sale for $20.

This is a lush chocolate scent. A perfect balance between bittersweet and milk chocolate. Melting velvet on your tongue. Hints of coffee, woods and hazelnuts dwell within the chocolate liqueur heart of this scent. I normally don't do chocolate. Julia has made me a believer on more than one occasion and this is another such experience. 

Pollution- Plumes of black smoke rising from coal fires, burnt vetiver, and a slick of motor oil. $26, on sale for $20.

In the vial is it charcoal, liquid smoke and creosote darkness. On the skin is plays out in similar gestures, starting with a raging bonfire where unsuspecting organisms might be roasting. Char, smoke and ash dance in devilish delight. Don't be afraid to try this one out. You may find you will want to layer it with everything you own to give it a kick of bad assery. It is just as effective as a black leather jacket with chains.

Amber Caramel- A dark, sexy blend of blackest amber with Arcana's Caramel (rich toffee, sticky maple, sugar cane, and tonka bean absolute.) $26, on sale for $20.

Amber Caramel pours like liquid resins onto the flesh. Warm, vanillic and with notes of caramelized sugar. I almost get a latte aroma from this blend. Perhaps it is the warmth and sweetness. The toffee really stands out along with the amber. There exists a definite cream aspect. I know this will age beautifully like the rest of Julia's amber accords. I will be keeping this on hand to wear as a whole perfume in and of itself.

Fresh Coconut- A pure, beachy, almost underripe coconut with a light dusting of sugar. $26, on sale for $20. 

This is coconut nirvana. As a child who grew up slathered in tropical sunscreen until adulthood and even now, I can attest to the fact that beachy coconuts reign nostalgic supreme to me. This is a fantastic one. It is lush and slightly sweet, fleshy and not at all dry but does have a hint of the wooden husk. It is the milk, water, flesh and all wrapped into a dulcet bundle. Perfect for beach days, summer evenings, or paired with patchouli, vanilla, seaweed, yellow cake, or more.

Julia has some really lovely layering notes and Halloween releases out right now. Head on over and check it out. Do you do layering notes or do you sometimes enjoy the simplicity of a single scent? It can be quite refreshing.


  1. Seaweed sounds like something I really need to try! Wow!!
    Filthy Viking also sounds like a must have. Divine!!
    Aged Patchouli is always correct. ;)

    I really wanted to partake in the Halloween special deal release, but as a newbie, after researching scents everything I wanted was sold out. I do also wish there was a reliable decanter for Arcana as well. Ok, I'm done with my little salty rant. Lol
    I'm gonna go search the site again and check out all the lovely offerings.. window shopping eye candy is what I need at the moment. :P LOL

    1. It is an incredibly realistic scent, takes me right to the shoreline. I honestly cannot get enough of the simple pureness of Filthy Viking. It is distilled down to a medicine for both my mind and heart.

      I totally understand about the sampling and difficulty in trying some scents from time to time. I think the COVID supply chain issues don't help too much. Julia was offering samples for a while there but then I think as a small one woman operation she got backlogged with orders and didn't have time for samples? But I could be wrong.

      I love how affordable the layering notes are. Please do yourself a solid and pick up an Aged Patch. <3

    2. Yes-- I had noticed the samples offered awhile ago and did partake! I know it's such a labor intensive job to helm, so I'm definitely thankful when there are samples or decants available that I am able to happen upon. <3
      The handful of Arcana scents I've tried are magic. <3