I don’t even remember how I first stumbled onto The Magick Cabinet, but their Carnelian Perfume Oil immediately grabbed my attention. I resolved to buy it once autumn hit, as the notes seemed a bit more cool-weather, and when eBates decided to do an unprecedented 12% cash back for Etsy in mid-September, you can bet I jumped at the opportunity! So today, here’s my Magick Cabinet Carnelian Perfume Oil review, for anyone else who was intrigued by this scent but hadn’t yet pulled the trigger themselves.
Carnelian has long been one of my favorite gemstones. My dad was a sort of geology hobbyist – he loved to read about different gemstones and rocks as well as craft geode-inlaid wooden boxes or tumbled/shaped gemstones to sell at the front desk of the motel he managed. He had an uncanny ability to spot geodes in the wild, too – I remember him one time stopping the car and getting out, grabbing a kind of large, lumpy rock, and when we got home he split it open to reveal that it was, in fact, opal. We’d often go visit “rock shops” that completely dazzled me with their bins and bins of beautiful stones of all shapes and sizes. While most of my favorites were probably kind of predictable for a young girl – pink rose quartz, shiny purple amethyst – I always loved the soft, almost milky reds and oranges that could be found in polished carnelian stones.
So when I saw The Magick Cabinet Carnelian Perfume Oil, its appeal to me was threefold: one, the notes sounded lovely; two, I liked the overall idea of fragrance oils inspired by gemstones that actually included said gemstones within the oil; and three: the perfume was inspired by and named for my beloved carnelian.
But enough of my waxing nostalgic – let’s get down to business so you can actually read my The Magick Cabinet Carnelian Perfume Oil review.
The scent description for The Magick Cabinet Carnelian Perfume Oil is as follows:
Bright citrus and clove bud are deepened with vanilla, almond and vetiver. A beautiful, deep, sexy new scent from The Magick Cabinet.
Upon reading this, I was expecting a darker, spicier, creamier scent due to the clove and vanilla. I was also thinking that perhaps the citrus and clove would combine to make this a rather wintery, Christmas-esque perfume oil.
However, in reality, I was so far off! This is not a dark or heavy scent at all. I believe it’s due to the almond and vetiver, but Carnelian is, in actuality, a very clean – almost soapy – fragrance. The vetiver used is a more floral version (I believe this means it’s likely sourced to Haiti, rather than Java) and as such pings as more ‘clean’ to me than some other vetiver fragrances that have a more earthy, smokey feel. The clove bud is more of a whispered basenote, adding an underlying depth, rather than the star. Likewise, the citrus is so light that it’s almost undetectable to my nose. The vanilla is definitely present, adding in a definite sweet note alongside the almond, but the vetiver keeps Carnelian from being anywhere near gourmand.
That said, I don’t dislike Carnelian at all. Not even a little bit. Sure, there was a serious expectations versus reality mismatch here, but Carnelian still stands strong on its own merit. It’s a lovely, clean scent without being too artificially soapy – an issue that I have with many “clean” perfumes – they’re so sharp that I feel like I’ve rubbed myself in a cleaning product! Carnelian retains that sort of ‘skin’ scent via the vanilla and the clove, so it doesn’t get too crisp or clinical.
I did not find Carnelian to be a scent that had any significant evolutions as it dried down. The vetiver remained the strongest note to my nose, with perhaps the almond and vanilla coming into focus slightly more over time, but not so much as to make it a particularly different scent throughout its wear time. The clove remained subtle, and I never really did get any strong citrus element at any point in time.
I find that a single swipe of Carnelian on each wrist lasts about four to five hours. After that, I stop being able to smell it at all. For a roll-on perfume oil, I think that’s actually quite a solid lifespan. There are so many fragrances that I wish were sold in spray/mist form – so as to perfume my hair instead of my skin – because they evaporate on skin far too quickly to be practical.
The Magick Cabinet uses a simple formula with a coconut oil base, so do be aware if you’re sensitive to coconut derivatives. The specific fragrance and essential oils that are used in each perfume are not listed, as per usual for unique fragrances.
Ingredients: MCT – Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride (Coconut) Oil, Fragrance and Essential Oils, gemstones
I’d personally give The Magick Cabinet Carnelian Perfume Oil about a 4/5. The lasting power is great, the packaging is simple, secure, and charming – I especially love the visual effect of including the tumbled carnelian stones inside the bottle. I can see myself using this perfume during spring or fall, as it’s a warm clean – like fresh laundry out of the dryer – rather than a particularly bright or light clean that I’d see as more summery. I also don’t find it to be quite what I look for in winter scents; I tend to prefer a bit more of a gourmand, deeper, or spicier scent during the colder months.
I’m taking off a point just because, to my nose, the citrus is almost entirely absent and as such the perfume does come off much simpler than expected. I know that it’s kind of strange to say “the absence of this ONE note out of the five listed makes this scent feel a bit sparse”, but somehow, it does. I think because the clove is so subtle and the almond and vanilla are so well-blended, Carnelian feels like it’s more of a sweetened, feminine vetiver than anything else. Perhaps on someone else’s skin one of the other notes would be more amplified, but my experience leads me to confidently say that if you don’t like vetiver or almond, you probably won’t like Carnelian; however, if the idea of a clean-but-sweet vetiver fragrance sounds good to you, I’d definitely recommend giving Carnelian a shot.
WHERE TO BUY
Carnelian is available via both The Magick Cabinet’s standalone website and their Etsy shop. They do offer scent sample packs, though currently it does not seem that Carnelian is available as one of your selections.
I have no affiliation with The Magick Cabinet or Etsy. All items in this review were purchased by me, with my own money, for my own personal use.