* Prices may differ from that shown
Having previously bought Lush's Twilight bath bombs and absolutely loving their scent, I jumped at the chance to buy a bottle of their Twilight fragrance when it featured on a forum special sale a few years ago.
If you're unfamiliar with the smell of Lush''s Twilight range, I would describe it as a heavenly lavender complimented by a deep, sweet maltiness. Forget the lavender sachets your Gran may have kept in her draws; the lavender in this perfume is thoroughly modern and absolutely addictive.
Various lavender scented products that I've used in the past tended to have an issue with longevity, however, this perfume packs a punch on its first spritz which I was thrilled to find out lasted for hours and hours. It''s the type of fragrance that you can spray twice and smell all day long.
On a number of occasions when I've worn this perfume in the past I've received something better than compliments from co-workers and friends alike. Rather than telling me how nice I smell, their first reactions were along the lines of "what are you wearing and where can I buy it?"
Because (for some insane reason) this fragrance is not part of Lush's core range, I now only bring my bottle of Twilight out for special occasions, for fear that I'll run out and won't be unable to purchase a new one.
The one issue I have with this product is that it is quick to leak/spill from the spritzer head if the bottle is knocked over. I always try my best to keep my perfumes upright but sometimes you just can't avoid a knock or two. Admittedly, this has only happened with one of my bottles of Twilight, but it was an annoying discovery to make and I certainly won't be testing my other bottles to see if they have the same weakness!
Words cannot express how much I love this fragrance. I wasn't even that big a fan of the twilight bath bomb, but when it's translated into a fragrance... oh my.. This really is a beautiful scent. It's not your standard lavender scent, it's so much deeper. I'd immediately spray it and feel so calm, it reminds me of summer evenings in a beautiful garden, it smells like the warm feeling you get when with a loved one or in the comforts of your home. I'd literally cover myself in this scent (which is probably why my bottle didn't last very long) and I received endless comments on how beautiful the perfume I was wearing was. It's an unusual and individual scent but it is so appealing and appeasing!!! Aside from the Lavender the Tonka (vanillary) and the ylang ylang blend together so wonderfully, it's not overpoweringly floral or sweet, it's just perfect. If you manage to get hold of a bottle and are a fan of fragrances from lush such as lust or vanillary, don't pass it up! Hoping and praying Lush release this in stores as they'd be minted.
In late 2011, the Lush forum released a number of limited edition fragrances that were available for one weekend only as part of the 'forum party'. As this was my first 'forum party' as a member of the forum, I decided to go ahead and purchase some of these limited edition scents: American Cream, Twilight and Snow Showers. This review discusses my experience of the Twilight fragrance.
***What is Lush?***
Lush is a store that makes toiletries and cosmetics, using natural and organic ingredients where possible and minimising packaging where they can. It started out as a mail order company called Cosmetics to Go, but this failed and the new store, Lush, opened in Poole, Dorset. Later branches of the shop opened in London and beyond, and there are now Lush stores all over the world. As well as in store, you can also buy products from the website, www.lush.co.uk. There are similar websites for many different countries including the USA, Japan and Germany.
Lush buy ingredients only from companies that do not test on animals. All of their products are suitable for vegetarians and many are suitable for vegans.
Lush say: "We believe in happy people making happy soap, putting our faces on our products and making our mums proud.
"We believe in long candlelit baths, sharing showers, massage, filling the world with perfume and in the right to make mistakes, lose everything and start again."
***What's the Lush forum?***
The Lush forum is a series of message boards where Lush fans can register and talk about Lush products. In order to register you have to give your email address and password, and supposedly wait for an activation email: although based on my experience and that of others (from the forum and Lush's Facebook page) this email never materialises, and you simply have to try logging in after a week or so to see if it works.
I've never actually posted on the Lush forum. Partly this is because I don't really have the time, and partly it's because I'd heard that regular and longstanding forum members can be very rude to new people. I must admit I haven't seen much evidence of this: everyone seems very friendly, and if I had more time I'd probably start posting there.
New products and plans for the store are announced on the forum before anywhere else, although someone invariably 'leaks' this information to Facebook anyway within a day or two. The main reason I joined is so that I could take part in 'forum parties'. Basically, these parties involve fun and games on the forum itself, with quizzes, photos and other fun things to pass the time. A number of limited edition items are available to buy, normally via telephone order only. Sometimes these are shower gels or jellies, sometimes they are massage bars or body lotions - and sometimes they have fragrance-only parties.
At the last party, the available fragrances were released for purchase on the website for one weekend only. This was handy for me as I hate using the phone and wasn't looking forward to having to ring up! I bought the perfumes and received them in the post in the usual cardboard box.
***Lush Does Fragrance***
Lush has always made a few fragrances - Karma and Vanillary are two that have been around for ages, and the Retro range contained Ginger and Icon from the Lush of old - but recently they have expanded this part of the business under the Gorilla Perfumes umbrella. They are available to buy on the Lush site and as well as the fragrances mentioned above it is possible to purchase some that used to be part of B Never Too Busy to be Beautiful (Lush's cosmetic store which closed a while ago) and some brand new fragrances. Some of these are available in mini tester pots and some are available in store. I have tried several with varying results: I like most of them and love some.
Some of these perfumes are unique scents, but some (including Karma and Vanillary) are designed to smell like other products in the Lush range. This is the idea that helped to create the limited edition forum fragrances: they were each designed to smell like other products Lush sell. For instance, the American Cream perfume smells like the American Cream conditioner, and The Olive Branch fragrance (which I didn't buy) smells like The Olive Branch shower gel. Members of the Lush forum voted on which scents they would like to see turned into a perfume, and the most popular (taking into account availability of ingredients and whether it was in fact possible to turn a particular scent into a liquid perfume) were chosen to be made.
I think Lush fragrances are very reasonably priced at around £20-£30 for a 27g bottle. This particular fragrance cost £25 which I was happy to pay. Most perfumes come in smaller 10g spritzers, mini sample bottles and solids, but the forum specials only come in the full size.
The perfume comes in the usual Gorilla Perfume bottle. This isn't particularly exciting, but it fits in with Lush's aim of making perfume about the scent not about the packaging. Also, the minimalist packaging is better for the environment and the bottles are made from recycled materials.
The bottle is black and tapered out towards the top with a plain black lid. The black and white label reads: "Gorilla Perfume Forum Special" and has the name of the perfume and an ingredients list. The bottle seems opaque but if you hold it up to the light you can see how much liquid you have left inside.
The bottles aren't foolproof: a number of customers complained that their perfume bottles had been leaking. I haven't had any problems with mine as the seal around the lid was securely attached. Lush will replace any damaged or leaking bottles, but obviously it would be better if the problem never occurred at all.
My understanding is that these bottles are an improvement on the glass ones the perfumes previously came in, so that's something!
The Twilight fragrance is based on the lavender and malt Twilight ballistic. This has only been around for a year or two but is very popular and has built up quite a following. The ballistic is designed to be calming and relaxing so I was intrigued by the idea of a perfume with the same scent - would it make me want to go to sleep? I do love the scent though so decided to buy a bottle.
The chief components of this fragrance are lavender, tonka and ylang ylang and they help to create a sweet, malty lavender fragrance. I don't normally copy large lists of ingredients into my reviews, but this one is short enough to do so:
Fair Trade Organic Sesame Oil, DRF Alcohol, Perfume, Lavender Oil, Benzoin Resinoid, Tonka Absolute, Ylang Ylang Oil, *Coumarin, *Linalool, *Benzyl Alcohol, *Benzyl Salicylate, *Eugenol, *Isoeugenol, *Benzyl Benzoate, *Benzyl Cinnamate, *Farnesol, *Limonene
*occurs naturally in essential oils
The perfume is suitable for vegans.
***Using the Fragrance***
On first spraying the fragrance, I found that the lavender scent was dominant. For the first half an hour or so, the perfume smelled of pure lavender. I wasn't too impressed at first - I like lavender but didn't want a pure lavender perfume. However, later on the overpowering lavender wore off a bit and the malt scent came through. This was a calming, relaxing scent with a strong sweetness thanks to the tonka and ylang ylang.
The scent lasted a really long time - I put it on in the morning before work and could still smell it at the end of the day. I was still catching whiffs of it while in the gym - and it must have stuck to my skin not my clothes as I'd got changed (obviously) for my workout. Mind, it lasts on clothes even better - I've smelled it on my cardigan several days after applying.
The scent is a lovely, relaxing and comforting one. The combination of malt (which I normally associate with calming Ovaltine) and lavender makes for a very soothing perfume. I like to wear it when I'm feeling anxious or I know I'm going to have a stressful day. For all it's calming properties, it's a genuine complex perfume, not a remedy like Lush's temple balms. It doesn't scream "aromatherapy" or anything like that - it's a proper scent in its own right.
I love this perfume - it's floral, sweet and sexy while also exuding calmness. When I wear it I feel like I'm armouring myself against the world! It is an accurate representation of the scent of the Twilight ballistic, too. I bet it ends up in another Lush forum party, as it's come top in polls twice in a row - so keep your eyes peeled!