Earlier this year northern California based line – Sonoma Scent Studio, introduced a new collection of all natural perfumes. Its name – Sonoma Naturals. At the moment there are two fragrances called Cocoa Sandalwood and Spiced Citrus Vetiver. This collection will grow bigger once formulaes for more all natural perfumes are perfectly mastered and finished. Amber Incense shall be next.
In a short email talk with Laurie Erickson she told me she had all natural perfumes on her mind for several years. She said “I love naturals and felt it would be fun to do some blends that focused on them without any synthetic base or blending notes.” This new project makes Laurie’s creative process fresh and she just wanted to give it a try. The idea of blending natural fragrances was also influenced by Sonoma Scent Studio customers who wanted to experience more natural things in the line-up. She also wanted to appeal to locals of northern California who adore natural products.
Cocoa Sandalwood begins with a delicious and smooth cocoa note which carries a feeling of dark chocolate, approximately 80% of cocoa. Very quickly the woody smell of New Caledonia sandalwood appears. It smells different comparing to Mysore sandalwood used in Spiced Citrus Vetiver. In Cocoa Sandalwood it is less smooth and more edgy and unpolished. The smell is slightly rough but that’s the way it was meant to be. It smells really attractive in this form. Along with sandalwood some spicy notes appear. It’s really hard for me what spices are included in the blend but I’m sure of one thing – they make the scent drier. After 40 minutes a peach accord bloomed in the middle of Cocoa Sandalwood. It’s juicy, bringing some moist to the dried woodsy tones. The aroma is quite appetizing, like a plate of sweet slices of peach for a dessert. In the drydown one can recognize some roses, their style is vintage and their petals are dark red. Ambrette makes a soft, mellow base that makes Cocoa Sandalwood stay on my skin for almost entire day. This perfume is an effervescent gourmand that should satisfy chocomaniacs and fans of foody scents. Want a bite?
Spiced Citrus Vetiver has an opening that smells of citrus. Bloody orange has that happy, zesty and lemony quality. For a first few seconds it’s tart but then it turns milder and slightly sweet actually. It’s the juicy orange pulp, not just a fruit rind. After a while Spiced Citrus Vetiver becomes warm and dry at the same time. I could smell some grassy, hay-like vetiver with it’s aroma blended with the smell of tiny osmanthus flowers. The osmanthus seemed to raise the vetiver scent. The smell was quite earthy but it wasn’t dirty. 30 minutes from the moment of application Spiced Citrus Vetiver has some mingling citrus traces on the woody base of mysore sandalwood. The wood is more smooth than sharp and combined with vanilla it gains a creamy consistency that smells very pretty and alluring. All the way through the scent spicy tones mark they presence in a quiet, non-offensive way. I think I get some pepper, cardamom, maybe coriander as well. Spices are rather light in Spiced Citrus Vetiver but I have no doubt they’re here because I notice them. It’s just hard to tell what kind of spices I exactly smell. In the drydown on the creamy sandalwood bed lays a bunch of jasmine flowers. They’re very subtle and elegant, disappearing and reappearing once in a while. It’s sheer transparency make for a great perfume ending. Spiced Citrus Vetiver is a gorgeous thing.
From the two Sonoma Scent Studio naturals Spiced Citrus Vetiver really smells more like my kind of thing. Both it and Cocoa Sandalwood deserve appreciation and I highly recommend you to sample these natural beauties, especially if you’re a fan of natural perfumery. These two fragrances have moderate sillage and I noticed their longevity is slightly lower (around 2 hours less) than other Sonoma Scent Studio fragrances from the regular line but still they last for 6-8 hours which is great taking into consideration that natural perfume essences are not as long-lasting as synthetic ones.
I love most of Laurie’s perfumes so I know that Cocoa Sandalwood will probably be a winner for me. I know I should sample but I could see myself blind buying this one someday.
They’re both worth buying and I think they’re not such risky choices for a blond buy.
Thanks for the review. I am thinking a small decant of the vetiver to try…
I say go for it, I liked Spiced Citrus Vetiver more than Cocoa Sandalwood 🙂
I can’t decide from this review if I would like Cocoa Sandalwood. You keep referencing all the spices and how they make the perfume dry, but your end line about chocoholics and fans of foody scents…. Hm. You know my tastes by now and how I do NOT like very sweet things, let alone dessert-y, foodie fragrances (though I did love Arquiste’s Anima Dulcis because of how the spices impacted the chocolate and how it wasn’t a real gourmand fragrance in some ways). So, do you think I’d like this, Lucas?
As for the Spiced Citrus Vetiver, I like the smell of blood oranges but I’m not so much into light, citrus fragrances, so I think the other one intrigues me a little more. At least, the spice part. I’m still uncertain about the foody part. lol. 🙂 Intriguing review, Lucas. I suspect that I’ll be reading this one a few times.
I haven’t tried Anima Dulcis so I can’t do a comparison for you how Cocoa Sandalwood refers to it. All I can say is that it’s cocoa and peach that are dominant, spices are just the addition but they add that dry quality.
I think you might not ‘love it’ but ‘like it’ – yes.
Spiced Citrus Vetiver is stunning, the name says it all
When you are ready to try let me know…already have a fb of the cocoa and will have an fb of the vetiver when she releases it.
You’ve got some great SSS scents in your collection Brie
Lucasai- In case you don’t already know I am Laurie’s number one fan-LOL! In my book Sonoma Scent Studio surpasses all great perfume houses (and given that I have been wearing perfume for over 40 years I have tried them all!).
I am so happy that you have been able to get your hands on some of Laurie’s masterpieces 😀 !!! Have you tried Jour Ensolielle? That is my all time favorite (FB is on its way to me as we speak!). That is the one fragrance I would want with me were I ever stranded on a deserted island….I don’t even have to wear it…just sniffing it makes me so ridiculously happy!
Sorry for being so verbose…but I just love SSS!
Wow! Laurie’s lucky to have such a fan!
Glad you find her creation better than everything else, they really are some fragrant gems.
Of course I’ve tried Jour Ensoleille, it’s one of my favourites in the line
maybe a review from you one day…pretty please?
Sure, Jour Ensoleille will definitely appear on my blog some time later.
I just ordered a sample of Cocoa Sandalwood and Champagne de Bois from this line. You’ve made it sound quite enticing and I am glad to hear the longevity is good.
Good luck sampling then 🙂 Hope you like them. As I said, naturals don’t last as long as others but they last a lot and their sillage is smaller too.
I was hoping for Cocoa Sandalwood to lean more woody than gourmand, but it doesnt sound like that is the case.
How would you compare the Spiced Citrus Vetiver to something like Guerlain Vetiver or Tom Ford Grey Vetiver?
Spiced Citrus Vetiver is definitely more vibrant that Grey Vetiver (which I find kind of ashy)
[…] two new natural scents, Cocoa Sandalwood and Spiced Citrus Vetiver, are reviewed today on Chemist In A Bottle. Lucas had a pre-release sample of Spiced Citrus Vetiver. I’ve sent a few of those out; if […]
thank you for sharing my article with your fans
Great review, Lucas! Also, your photos have been looking great.
Thank you 🙂 Glad you liked the photo, it adds some personal touch to the article
I hope this means that you will be reviewing more of Laurie’s fragrances 😀 !!!
Nice review, Lucas. I have a sample of the Cocoa Sandalwood and it smells divine from the vial!
Have you tried it on skin yet?
Not yet…I don’t have enough in the vial to make a spray worthwhile. Once I acquire another sample, I will certainly try it on skin!
Lucas, very nice you are writing about SSS are they sold in Europe ? They were in Munich but not any more. Do you know where they can be bought ?
Unfortunately they’re not sold in Europe. Suendhaft had them in the past but they don’t carry the line anymore.
I guess the only place to buy is directly from Laurie which is terrible because one can’t send perfume from the USA…
Despite the dryness added by the spices I think the gourmand would be too much for me.
However a slightly vanilic vetiver does sound wonderful, so that is definitely another one for The Dandy to try.
The Perfumed Dandy
Maybe you’re right about the spicy gourmand but I think the Vetiver would suit you.
Thanks to darling Brie, I have gotten to try Cocoa Sandalwood. It took a while to grow on me (the lactonic peach is sooooo buttery!), but I have to say that I am seriously considering a fb because it is an AWESOME sleep scent! Great review, Lucas! And I love your photos. I saw the one that Birgit put up on her blog of the sun through the trees. Gorgeous, my friend!
Ah yes, the peach is very smooth and creamy in Cocoa Sandalwood. I think it’s really a fb worthy my dear.
Glad you liked the photos.
You’ve seen that one at Birgit’s? Awesome. It’s one of my best shots ever
Agree with Daisy…that photo is amazing! I want more!
When I do some shooting (and that never is planned) I will share some more 🙂
I loved it. I tried to take a photo of the setting sun the other day and gave up because yours was much better 🙂 Keep it up! You take beautiful photos!
Thank you dear, I’ll try my best
Let me know if you need another sample vial to hold you over until that FB!
What a great offer 🙂
Aw! You are a dear! Will do!
Dear Lucas, just dropping in to say that I think your photographs for this post are lovely! I do indeed want to bite into that chocolate 😉
Thank you Ari, so sweet of you! How are you doing?
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