Friday, October 14, 2011

BPAL Bordello: New vs Aged

Bordello 2010 vs 2004
Ars Amatoria 
Love Potions
General Catalogue
"A decadent, deep perfume, lusty and luxuriant. The scent evokes images of velvet-lined Old West cathouses, tightly laced corsets, rustling petticoats and coquettish snarls of pleasure. Bawdy plum with amaretto, burgundy wine and black currant."

It is generally believed that perfume oils get better with age, something like wine. I've heard that people buy oils just to age them so that they wear well. I have seen aged oils sell for higher prices on eBay. All you have to do to age them is just leave them alone, store in a cool dark place.

In my experience, I have definitely found that the perfume oils in my collection that are older smell different. By different I mean, they do retain all the goodness but smell more rounded and softer as they age. For example, Patchouli smells better when aged. As it ages, it becomes less of a 'head shop' smell. The quality improves. I have a bottle of pure Patchouli oil that I have been ageing since 3 years. Another one I can think of is BPAL's Snake Oil. It is a lot sharper when it is fresh. As it ages, it loses the sharpness and becomes this powdery, soft perfume. I'm craving for a bottle of fresh Snake Oil like crazy. I feel an order coming! 

Most of the oils I have are one offs and the comparison of aged vs new is just by memory. But I'm a little too excited to have got my hands on a stash of BPAL Tarted Imps which are well aged perfume oils. Now I can compare a few of them side by side. So putting the theory of ageing oils to test, here goes my comparison of new versus aged.

The new Bordello imp is of 2010. It was in my very first BPAL order. I remember buying Bordello just for the amaretto note. Quoting myself from a year ago 
"Really lovely plums and berries in almond liqueur, it is sweet, soft, creamy and very edible! The black currants are very juicy and unmissable.  It is a wonderful fragrance" 
I feel exactly the same about it now. The plum, black currant and wine make a fruity concoction which is soft, but not sharp. I don't have much luck with the fruity notes of the Lab but this is really good. The almond liqueur is awesome and goes very well with the fruits making them boozier than fruity. 

Tarted Imp of Bordello had about 1/4th of a ml left in the it, just enough to test.  It is aged 7 years + That should make some changes to the oil. All the tarted imps I got are well preserved. They are not 'off' or rancid due to the age. So is Bordello. I can smell that it is old, in a good way. Fits the description of velvet and dustiness very well. The amaretto is not boozy at all. The almond is mild and present just in the background.  The fruits and wine are so well mixed that I can't tell them apart, making Bordello rounder and fruitier. I do miss the amaretto note in the aged one. Overall effect is more perfume-y than foody, very surprising. I prefer the new one for the ameretto note and the aged for the wearability.

The differences between new vs aged are very noticeable. Some notes maybe more 'volatile' than others, which are lost with ageing and some mix and merge with each other beautifully. Now I'm eager to age like never before!


  1. I found the bordello imp I tried a little too ripe/fruity, so I might like the aged one! :)

  2. I wish people aged so beautifully ;)

  3. Interesting......didn't know about the aging aspect of perfume oils.

  4. This is so interesting! Do you find perfume oils to be not as strong? The only one I have has a very light scent :)

  5. Ki, if you find it anywhere give it a go. I think you'll appreciate the change.

    Larie, I wish I did!

    Harshleen, yes, makes me wonder too!

    Vintage, I think the strength depends on the kind of perfume oil. Some have different ingredients (essential oils, base blends), some are more diluted (with carrier oils). Some perfume oils are "whoa" strong :D some not so much :) If they are not stored properly, the good stuff can evaporate leaving it weak :)

  6. I haven't experimented much with perfume oils but love the idea that they get better with age and not worse!