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Lavanila Vanilla Blackberry Healthy Fragrance — A Juicy Juice Story


Since the 1800s, vanilla has been trumpeted as a natural aphrodisiac due to its inviting, sweet, creamy aroma. Perhaps due to its sensual qualities, vanilla has figured among the most common fragrance notes, often accompanying patchouli, musk, amber, sandalwood and cedar at the base of scents, lingering long past the splashier citrus and floral top and heart notes. But unlike other fragrance companies that have relegated vanilla to the backdrop, to play the oak tree in the school play, Lavanila Laboratories has specialized in eco-friendly scents, body butters, candles, deodorants, lip conditioners, sunscreens, and body washes that position vanilla as the star player in their formulas.

In addition to the original Pure Vanilla edition, Lavanila’s fragrance family includes calming, floral-tinged scents like Vanilla Blossom and Vanilla Lavender, as well as tropical scents like Vanilla Coconut and Vanilla Passion Fruit, and the sparkling, invigorating, citrus-tinged scent Vanilla Grapefruit. For Fall 2011, Lavanila has further expanded its roster with the succulent Vanilla Blackberry scent.

Like its predecessors, the Lavanila Healthy Fragrance in Vanilla Blackberry ($58 for 1.7 oz. bottle or $19 for 10ml roller ball at Sephora.com) does not contain any alcohol, petrochemicals, silicones, mineral oils, phtalates, sulfates, parabens, or synthetic fillers but, rather, relies on all-natural essential oils and botanical extracts. The Vanilla Blackberry fragrance contains the following notes: ripe blackberry, juicy raspberry, velvet iris, warm Madagascar vanilla, goji berry and kakadu plum.

As soon as you apply the fragrance, you’ll delight in its juiciness, its vine-ripened berry quality. But unlike other scents with berry notes, the tart and slightly sour elements of the raspberry and blackberry notes save this scent from being overly sweet. The iris note, meanwhile, adds a subtle, powdery quality, while the goji berry adds a rootsy, earthy, almost musky scent. Last, when the kakadu plum mixes with the vanilla note, it yields a special unexpected scent, reminiscent of nutmeg .

The Lavanila Vanilla Blackberry Healthy Fragrance, then, smells delightfully intriguing — it’s probably the most effective aromatic blend in the entire family as all the notes work together harmoniously, making it difficult to isolate each single element (which, after all, is what makes fragrance formulas so exciting). Once the initial berry scent dissipates a bit, the fragrance feels way more subtle and discreet, moist, juicy, and sweet with grape-y overtones, and yet simultaneously creamy and milky thanks to the warm and sensual vanilla.

Though I’ve long favored the Vanilla Coconut scent above all others, this one actually bumped the Vanilla Coconut to second best. Turns out the saying “the blacker the berry, the sweeter the juice” fits perfectly in this context!

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