So… initially, I meant to have this post about my favorite Luvmilk Fall scents go up on Thanksgiving night, to coincide with Luvmilk’s Black Friday sale – but my SSHD had other ideas, as it went into a death spiral on Thanksgiving afternoon and just barely allowed me to run enough checks to confirm that yes, it was a disk failure and not something else, before I had to completely reset Windows to be able to get into the OS at all and backup the last few days’ worth of files. And given the state the SSHD was in, resetting Windows? Literally took two full days.
I mean, on the bright side, Black Friday is possibly the best day to suddenly need new computer parts, yeah? But it also pretty much nuked any chance I had of writing this post in time for the sale, since even with the crazy fast shipping I get from Newegg (they have a distribution center ~2 hours away), it was still a Holiday weekend and deliveries were backed up… so I didn’t get to install my replacement SSHD (and my new SSD, since I finally decided to pull the trigger on that as well after “meaning to” buy one for about a year now) until the next Tuesday.
I did also totally forget to put a bracket in my order (weirdly, I definitely looked them up, but for some reason did not add them into my order with the cables. I am smart?) and Amazon Prime saved the day, both by delivering the bracket I needed within an hour as well as a 4-pack of one of my favorite semi-local beers:
I realized I was missing something right as I was all sorted to put in my new ssd and sshd (bracket, even though I totally remember looking it up apparently I didn’t hit add to cart before ordering everything ) so hit up #primenow… and was very pleased to be able to toss in some #kentuckybourbonbarrelale alongside it for my delivery #andalsosomefritostbh #iwontlie #wishtheyhadthevanillatoo
All in all, not the worst turn of events.
So here I am, with my OS on a new SSD and my PC now all zippy because of it – let’s talk about some yummy Fall and Winter indie fragrances!
Luvmilk has grown to become my favorite indie bath and body brand: her body scrubs are luxuriously effective without any drain-clogging ingredients or overly oily texture; her body lotion is moisturizing while being lightweight and quick to absorb; her fragrance sprays are hyper-scented and long-lasting; and her famous milk baths are a fantastic, skin-softening spa treat.
However, all of that would mean very little if her scents were sub-standard or if she was yet another “brand” using the same third-party scent blends (you know who you are, yeah?) – happily, the owner of Luvmilk is extremely talented with fragrance-building and comes up with a ton of unique and delicious scents, both in her main catalog and for her seasonal releases.
In this post, I want to focus on her main catalog scents that I personally feel suit Fall/Winter – fragrances that you can order whenever you’d like, but I think shine the most during the cooler, chillier months of the year.
Now, full disclosure: I have not tried her entire scent catalogue, and there are certainly more scents that could very probably be suited to this list. However, this is not a sponsored post and I purchased everything that I’m reviewing here with my own money, so I did limit my selection to scents that sounded like something I would like enough to wear beyond just testing for a review. Also, as I said, these are main catalogue scents only – as wonderful as Ghost Blush and Baby Bat may be, they’re currently limited edition and may not be back anytime soon, so I’m not going to include them here. I’ll likely do a separate review of the LE scents that I purchased for Halloween as Luvmilk has hinted that some of them may be folded into the permanent scent list next year, but for simplicity’s sake, they are not going to be included in this round-up.
So, with all that said – let’s get to it!
Honey slathered peaches with a hint of spice and vanilla, rounded out with rose and a touch of sweet burning wood.
Aphrodite’s Temple is one of Luvmilk’s top sellers, and for good reason. If you like peach but want to avoid a sugary-sweet, toothache-inducing candied peach, this is probably one of your best bets – from any source. A true peach and smoked spice are the most notable to me, but there’s this layer of vanilla and rosewater below both that cuts through the woodiness of the smoke note, meaning that the scent is extremely well-balanced and no one note gets too loud and overpowering. I love woody/smoky smells, but if they’re too strong they can be irritating to me after awhile – Aphrodite’s Temple gets it right, and I can wear this without any issue.
As a bonus, it pairs very well with her Aphrodite’s Altar flavor of lip balm: a Floral Rose with sweet notes of Raspberry and Honey that also has a (very) faint Rose Gold glitter sheen. Luvmilk’s lip balms are god tier, and Aphrodite’s Altar is tied for my second-favorite scent alongside Sugar Shake (the winner is Comet Crunch – it’s too perfect of a creamy, not-too-strong Snickerdoodle scent to not be my favorite)!
King of Clubs
The King of Clubs is a lot like his older sister in the fact that he is quite spoiled. Anything his heart desires is his; material possessions and people included. He’s learned to be just as authoritative and in control as his father and his dashing good looks make him near impossible to deny. Despite his tough-guy outer shell, though, indulging in a bath is never something he says no to.
King of Clubs: Coconut milk, pumpkin spice, Tonka bean and soft sandalwood.
*Milky’s Note: This is a really soft pumpkin scent, not so much pumpkin pie as you’d think. The sandalwood lends a slight masculine quality to this without being overbearing. Foody without being overly gourmand.
King of Clubs is fantastic in the bottle and on my hair, but one that I have to be careful not to spray on my skin. My skin has a weird tendency to amp up any coconut note to an absolutely astounding degree – it’s something that’s been consistent since I was a teenager (that, and aquatic notes eventually go “celery” on me if applied to my wrists) and sadly, it’s no different here. I say this is sad, because while it’s not a fake, gross coconut, I really love the combination of tonka bean and pumpkin spice and wish that was what came through the most for me in this blend! Upon first spritz, though, this is really lovely – the coconut is strong and definitely the top note, but the pumpkin and tonka are definitely present, soooo goood. I think the sandalwood gives more of a creamy undertone than being obviously present, to my nose at least.
For someone without my skin chemistry’s desire to go all in on coconut (or someone who really likes the sound of that, haha), this could be great. However, it’s probably my least favorite of this list just because of that specific issue.
King of Hearts
The King of Hearts simply wants his Queen to live happily. He would do anything for her and has no qualms about living up to that expectation she has of him. Though he is not quite as cold and callous as his dear Queen can be, the King of Hearts has his moments. Still, you’d be hard pressed to find him passing up the chance at a relaxing bath that smells like his darling’s favourite cookies.
King of Hearts: Fresh cinnamon, malted sugar, sugared pistachio, amaretto, and warm buttered cookies.
*Milky’s Note: The amaretto is the most obvious note to my nose but then the cinnamon, pistachio and butter cookies all begin to unfold!
Most of the scents in this post were from the same order – the only exceptions are Aphrodite’s Temple and Slumber Party. I note this because it makes this context easier to understand: this one, alongside Magical Girl, is already almost gone. It is so good, you guys! If you like nutty scents, this will be your jam. This honestly reminds me of a big bag of roasted pistachios and almonds that have been tossed in a mix of sugar, cinnamon, and amaretto. It’s extremely evocative of winter to me, and a great example of someone using both cinnamon and amaretto in a fragrance without either becoming the overpowering note. It’s just delicious, warm, nutty yumminess.
King of Diamonds
The King of Diamonds knew he was meant to wear the crown from a very early age. With the weight of responsibility always looming over him, when it was finally placed upon his shoulders he found it a much harder task than he anticipated. Still, despite this, with the Queen of Diamonds at his side, there is nothing he cannot overcome–and having a nice bath to relax has always helped too.
King of Diamonds: Crunchy granola, vanilla bean, plum, bourbon, and a hint of jasmine.
*Milky’s Note: The delicious granola comes in strong waves for me but the plum and bourbon are present too. It’s like a grown up’s bowl of oatmeal.
If you want a scent that isn’t hit-you-over-the-head winter or fall notes but still could easily suit those seasons, King of Diamonds is a good pick. I mostly get some warming notes from the granola alongside a fruity-but-not-too-sweet plum, with a sort of powdery floral from the jasmine and the vanilla bean and bourbon warming the baseline. It’s very pleasant and probably one of the most unique scents that I’ve tried from Luvmilk so far – honestly, how many fragrances can you think of that use granola as a note?
Queen of Spades
The Queen of Spades is a spoiled one. Though the Queen works hard to keep all subjects safe and happy, that doesn’t mean happiness isn’t their number one priority for themselves either. Draped in decadence, this Queen knows what they want and how to get it.
Queen of Spades: Ripe pear drenched in caramel, honey, and a smidge of vanilla, with touches of clove, sandalwood, cinnamon, and soft maple butter.
*Milky’s Note: Ripe pear is met with blooming spices and warmth. If you enjoy pear scents this is a good one to give a try. The spices are subtle but make this a very warm and pleasant but unique scent.
If you want a good, true pear scent, you owe it to yourself to grab Queen of Spades. The top and primary note is a true, juicy pear – it really smells just like you’ve bitten into a nice, ripe pear. The caramel is the secondary note for me, with the vanilla and warming spices next – truly, it reminds me of when I’ve baked pears in a similar mix of spices and how amazing the house always smelled afterwards. This is positively edible.
Knave of Hearts
The Knave of Hearts is easily the most self sacrificing Card of them all. With no hesitation he will give all of himself in order to protect those around him, no matter their opinion of him. Hard on himself and unable to consider himself as anything other than a monster, he hopes to repent for his mysterious past by doing good now. This sharp toothed Knave doesn’t know the meaning of giving up and will always get back up no matter how many times he may be knocked down.
Knave of Hearts: Roasted peaches dipped in maple syrup and garnished with black amber, clove, vanilla bean, and nutmeg.
*Milky’s Note: I unabashedly admit this is my favourite of the four; delicious and peachy, rich from the maple syrup and vanilla but spicy because of the black amber, clove, and nutmeg. Try if you’re looking for something different but still masculine!
Okay, given my domain name, is there any surprise that I’ve selected two peach scents for this list? While peaches may not be traditionally associated with the colder seasons, Knave of Hearts pairs a sweet peach with so many warming spices and more winter-ish notes like maple and amber that you may start considering peaches a winter treat after all!
I would say that the peach and maple are the stars here; but the nutmeg and vanilla are also quite assertive. I think that – quite smartly – the amber and clove linger more towards the bottom of the blend, so that they can’t overpower everything else as those two notes are prone to do if used too generously.
I have this one in a sugar scrub, and it makes me remember the time my cousin tried to eat my apple sugar scrub because he thought it smelled too delicious – I’m pretty sure that Knave of Hearts would not be safe from him D:
Sweet, toasted marshmallow.
Absolutely the best marshmallow scent out there. It’s a rich, roasty-toasty, vanilla marshmallow creme. Does marshmallow liqueur exist? Because that’s what this smells like to me – it’s so luxurious that it’s almost a bit boozy, if that makes sense. I’ve been loving mixing it with other fragrances because it gives such a nice creaminess to everything, but wearing even Magical Girl on its own is… well, magical.
Apple, honey, and pear blended with fresh tonka bean.
Another scent for pear lovers! This one is primarily pear and apple, with the honey and tonka bean bringing up the rear. The apple and pear are both quite true, not candy sweet but smelling like the actual fruits, so the honey can add its own sweet notes without becoming overkill. This is actually one of my favorites for blending with Magical Girl to get a feeling of roasted apples and pears with toasted marshmallows on top!
Rich milk chocolate with just the right blend of vanilla, brown sugar, and salted caramel; hints of coconut milk and a pinch of cayenne pepper.
Ahhh, Slumber Party. This is absolutely my favorite scent that I’ve tried from Milky, and it’s the one I selected for my conditioner since it’s the one I reach for almost daily anyway. The chocolate is the star note here for sure, but it’s softened and sort of “creamed out” by the brown sugar and vanilla considerably. The cayenne actually makes this smell a lot like Abuelita’s hot cocoa tablets – which of course appeals to me as I used to sneakily break off triangles from those discs and just straight up eat them because I loved the blend of cocoa, cinnamon and chili and crunchy sugar so much! While Slumber Party doesn’t have cinnamon, the coconut milk and the aforementioned vanilla and brown sugar do bring in the creaminess that you’d get from the hot milk/sugar crystals in Abuelita, so all in all – this is an extremely nostalgic scent for me.
Also worth noting: I’ve actually been stopped while out wearing this because people think it smells so good that they have to ask me what I’m wearing. It’s also made some dates go pretty crazy, so… be forewarned 😉
Macintosh apple, warm cinnamon and clove, and touches of fresh milk, honey, and vanilla.
Christmas in a bottle, flat out. Star Prayer actually smells, to me, like a mix of your traditional spiced, roasted apples blended with Royal Milk Tea – I’m assuming that association is just the milk, vanilla and honey combination, since there is no tea note listed. This is once again a very nostalgic scent for me, since as a child I was treated for “Cambric” tea (basically just warm milk with a touch of tea and honey) in the cold months when I wanted to have a “grown up” and warm drink like my tea-addict mother. If Luvmilk ever expanded into home fragrance, this would probably be one of my first purchases, but for now – it’s still a lovely scent and I’m planning on buying it in a body scrub in my next order as I think it would be absolutely blissful in the shower.
So there you have it – once again, I want to reiterate that this is absolutely not a complete list: Luvmilk has many other scents that could easily make this list, I just haven’t personally tried them and as such can’t exactly review them in good faith, you know! But I did want to post this before the Luvmilk Winter Limited Edition collection is gone (barring any changes, it will be available until December 31st or until supplies last, with a small shop closure from Dec 20-25th as per this Facebook post) so that people could potentially use my thoughts to help narrow down any permanent collection scents that they were considering.
- Luvmilk Etsy Shop
- Winter/Holiday Collection 2018 Non-Milk Bath Items Listing
- Winter/Holiday 2017 Collection Milk Bath Listing
- My eBates Referral Code – because they offer Etsy Cashback
- Luvmilk Facebook Page
Thank you all for reading, and please feel free to comment with your own thoughts and reviews on Luvmilk scents that you think would suit the Fall and Winter seasons (or that you just think I’d like based on my thoughts here!) – I’d love to read everyone else’s opinions!