A few months ago, I reviewed some indulgent little "body frosting" lotions from Velvet & Sweet Pea Purrfumery. I meant to follow up that post with a review of some fragrances from Velvet & Sweet Pea, but as winter wore on and on, I cocooned myself in my favorite perfumes, and the little pile of new samples on my desk went largely ignored. Now there's finally been a shift in the weather, and I'm feeling more experimental again. Early spring is a good time to try a few new scents, especially natural fragrances like the ones from Velvet & Sweet Pea.
Velvet & Sweet Pea's Mojito Cologne is designed "to capture the nightlife swagger of a mojito in a form you can wear right on your skin," with essences of dark rum, spearmint, and Mexican lime in a base of organic jojoba oil infused with Tahitian vanilla. I always associate mojitos with one of my oldest friends, Joe, who visits New York once or twice a year. We usually end up having long conversations over this particular cocktail at the bar and restaurant Eatery, so for me, it's a drink that evokes the fun of a reunion within the comfort of a long-lasting friendship.
This wearable mojito (do not try to drink it!) starts with a very tart, fizzy burst of lime and mint with a cool, frosty edge. After a half hour of so, Mojito Cologne turns less effervescent and more warm and boozy. The rum note is smooth, and it wears close to the skin. By the dry down, there's just a hint of vanilla from the infused oil base; like the drink, or a chat with a very old friend, Mojito is both sparkling and relaxed. Overall, this fragrance is a clever twist on the classic cologne idea. It would feel especially refreshing in hot weather, and it could be worn by men or women.
Black Cat, another fragrance from Kittylicious line, offers a sense of "mystery and enchantment" while smelling "like fun, sexy, sophisticated candy." Its composition includes essences of cocoa, ylang ylang, blood orange, and a hint of aniseed myrtle in a base of organic grape alcohols infused with Tahitian vanilla. I'm a cat person, so I couldn't resist the vintage-y feline visuals for Black Cat, and the fragrance ended up pleasing me, too. It's a playful take on a gourmand theme, and it begins with a rich orange-cocoa chord, like some fancy organic/artisanal confectionery. It becomes a little earthier in its second phase: I think I smell some patchouli under the cocoa, but I could be mistaken. The ylang ylang becomes more noticeable as the perfume develops, and the base is a soft (and not overly sweet) anise-vanilla that makes a nice "skin scent."
The Kittylicious range is Velvet & Sweet Pea's lower-priced line of fragrances, and the perfumes are packaged in small bottles with roll-on dispensers, tucked into decorative cloth pouches. Like all the fragrances created and sold by Velvet & Sweet Pea, the Kittylicious scents are blended exclusively from natural ingredients. I wish they had a little more tenacity — on me, Mojito fades away in two or three hours, while Black Cat lingers for three or four — but I've come to realize that longevity isn't the strong suit of most natural fragrances, so I'll just enjoy reapplying my samples throughout the day.
Velvet & Sweet Pea Purrfumery Mojito Cologne Eau de Parfum sells for $55 (6 ml) and Black Cat Eau de Parfum sells for $35 (6 ml); both are available though the Velvet & Sweet Pea Purrfumery website.