beauty

BPAL Snake Oil vs. Boomslang

Wow, September was a month and a half! It was a whirlwind of events, some good, others less so. I needed to take some time for myself and focus on other areas in my life. Now I’m back to reviewing indie scents.

This post is all about Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab, or BPAL for short. You’ve probably seen it mentioned on my blog in the past. This post, however, focuses on Snake Oil — what I believe is one of their oldest and most popular offerings — and its snakey spin-off, Boomslang. Let’s get on with the reviews!

BPAL Snake Oil review bunnyechoes

BPAL Snake Oil review

Old description: By far, our most popular scent! Magnetic, mysterious, and exceedingly sexual in nature. A blend of exotic Indonesian oils sugared with vanilla.
New description: Our signature scent, our first perfume: deep, rich earthy notes swirled with vegetal musks, sugared vanilla bean, and dark spices.

As you can see, there are two different notes lists; you can find the new one on BPAL’s website, where Snake Oil can be purchased for $19.75 (5 ml). The old description is from ~2016 when I purchased my bottle.

Snake Oil is an enigmatic blend that I can’t describe so easily. A lot of people say they smell patchouli and vanilla, but when it comes to these two, I can detect only the latter note. Combined with woody and musky notes, this perfume isn’t really foody on me. It’s more like a dark, mahogany wood brushed by vanilla extract.

As time goes on, Snake Oil becomes a bit boozy and chocolatey. Something powdery comes to the fore but it quickly gives way to the vanilla and spices, which serve to emphasise the dark vibe of the perfume. Whatever juiciness there was at the beginning, it’s now gone in favour of the dusty, spicy woods.

Snake Oil doesn’t have a lot of throw but it has impressive longevity. It easily lasts me all day, sometimes even until the next morning.

BPAL Boomslang review

Snake Oil with cocoa, teakwood, and rice milk.

The Carnaval Diabolique collection is limited-edition but Boomslang persists and is still available for purchase here for $28.00.

On first sniff from the bottle, Boomslang teases with lovely licks of cocoa, intermingled with vanilla and rice milk.

BPAL Boomslang review bunnyechoes

Applied to skin, it starts off as a very concentrated cocoa liquid (it’s rather sticky, too!). The oil itself is chocolate brown. I get some spiciness, possibly from those Indonesian oils, whatever they might be. The rice milk gives it a lot of creaminess so that the perfume becomes foodier, as well as smoother, than its older cousin Snake Oil.

After the dry down, it doesn’t morph too much but it does become less sweet as time moves along. The cocoa is present throughout the experience but the rice milk goes away in favour of teakwood. It gives off a polished, warm quality. However, this wood doesn’t have a homely scent; it’s rather dark and mysterious. Like that big wardrobe in your strange uncle’s house in which he stores various peculiar items. It’s sort of odd but it works with the cocoa rather nicely.

Snake Oil or Boomslang – which perfume oil is your favourite? It’s hard for me to say which one I like more but I think I’ll go with the classic Snake Oil.