Étienne De Boray Oak Perfume OilOut of Stock
Lilith among the roots of the Tree of Life. Dappled shadows flickering through Spanish moss, oakmoss, oak twigs, squished mushrooms, pine needles, and lavender buds with beams of Manuka honey sunlight.
#2 Pencil Perfume OilOut of Stock
After the pandemic hit, Lilith started doing almost-nightly horror looks. I think that it’s one of the ways that she’s processing the strain of everything that’s going on in the world, on top of being a new way to express her creativity.
When the shelter in place began, Lilith started showing up to some of her online classes covered in gore. Every day, I was on tenterhooks waiting for an email from one of her teachers asking why Lilith was showing up to class looking like something from a Troma flick. Lilith started 7th grade this year at a new middle school, and one of the first projects in her science class this semester involved her sending a photo of herself to her teacher. Of course, she sent this one.
Honeycrisp apples, jasmine tea, honeycomb, and cedar shavings.
2020 Aesthetic Perfume OilOut of Stock
I have a great video of Lilith pulling off a mask to reveal this look, but I can’t get it to load onto the website, alas. Just picture it in your mind; it was awesome.
Edited to add: Thompson has saved us! The video is up on BPAL’s YouTube now.
Cherry pulp, crushed raspberries, and sugar.
A Demon and Her Unholy Basketball Perfume OilOut of Stock
Last Halloween, Lilith and her best friend decided to dress up as their own interpretations of the meanings of their names. Her best friend dressed up as a warrior queen, and Lil said that dressing up as the First Woman would be too hard to explain. So she dolled up as a demon.
Pumpkin sugar, red musk, and a puff of brimstone.
A Little Piece of Eternity Perfume OilOut of Stock
Don’t you just love those long afternoons in New Orleans when an hour isn’t just an hour – but a little piece of eternity dropped into your hands – and who knows what to do with it? – Tennessee Williams
Lilith’s favorite city in the whole world. Clambering on a tire swing in the Garden District: rain-spattered olive blossom, Spanish moss, oak bark, and orris root.
A Night in the French Quarter Perfume OilOut of Stock
As you all probably know by now, New Orleans is my favorite city, and I love that Lilith shares that love with me. I have never had my tarot cards read in Jackson Square, but Lilith begged me to let her get a reading – and you know that her every wish is my command. The reader was so sweet; she told Lilith all about where the cards say she will be in ten years and who will be important to her. As all Lilith adventures turn out, the reading morphed into more of a conversation, with my daughter talking and telling the woman all sorts of stories.
It made my heart swell with love to know that Lilith will be happy in her life. Lilith, we promise we will always do everything we can to make sure you are safe and happy.
It was a beautiful night in November, and this moment is one of those snapshots in time that I’ll always hold in my heart: indigo skies of bruised violet, osmanthus, French lavender, and black plum, petrichor-wet and lacquered with frankincense and red benzoin.
A Vigilant Eye At Heaven’s Center Perfume OilOut of Stock
When everything was high,
there waited the cold emerald,
the emerald gaze:
it was a vigilant eye
at heaven’s center,
center of the void:
the emerald that looked on:
unique, hard, immensely green,
as if it were an ocean-eye,
an immobile water-eye,
drop of God,
tower of greenness.
– Pablo Neruda
Of all the many colors that Lilith has dyed her hair, I think this is my favorite.
An emerald green, a verdant green, a green that is bursting with life, vitality and joy. This is the wet, bright green of wild growth: tiger fig leaf, coconut palm, neroli, mint chypre, green labdanum, green apple, jungle leaves, white amber, coriander, and tea leaf.
Aoede, Melete, Mneme Perfume OilOut of Stock
Lilith had plans to record a ton of covers this year, but the pandemic put that to a screeching halt. She was able to finish one of the songs that she started before the shelter in place, though; it is a cover of one of her favorite songs by her all-time favorite artist.
She gets so uncomfortable when I play her music at home, but the sound of her singing voice is soul-soothing to me, and I love the way she personalizes every song she sings with an enigmatic somber quality that I can’t quite put my finger on. She has a way of making bright songs grave, light songs gloomy, and sad songs stranger.
Lilith’s cover of Billie Eilish’s Bellyache, produced by Taylor Locke and Paige Stark, engineered by Taylor Locke at Velveteen Laboratory.
Sugared cream, vanilla husk, white sandalwood, and flecks of caramel.
Apocalypse Box Perfume OilOut of Stock
Lilith notified us that this was her Apocalypse Box, and she spent about a week sitting in it on and off. We didn’t ask why; a month and a half into the shelter in place, there really wasn’t much need to ask why.
Cardboard, pajama cotton, tonka beans, and dried lavender buds.
Arlecchina Perfume OilOut of Stock
This spring, Lilith created several Horror Harlequin / Dark Clown looks, and this one is my absolute favorite. It isn’t the most technically challenging of her clown looks, but I love it for its shadowy, smeared simplicity.
Blackberry, black currant, cade, leather, and black musk.
Artist’s Entrance Perfume OilOut of Stock
Last winter, Lilith performed with her chorus at Walt Disney Concert Hall, and seeing her on stage there was one of the most extraordinary moments of my life. The whole concert was glorious – a powerfully moving, uplifting winter choral ensemble.
Of course, Lilith dabbed during the encore.
A soft amber glow illuminating beams of Douglas fir and Alaskan yellow cedar, polished with rosin and warm with leather and burnished steel.
Banana Bread Perfume OilOut of Stock
This is a really blunt and direct name for a BPAL scent, isn’t it? I tried things like the UnBaker, the AntiChef… none of it worked.
Here’s the story: Lilith has always LOVED to cook and she has been obsessed with cooking shows ever since she was a toddler, but she hates eating new things. She is the pickiest eater that I’ve ever known, and whenever she signs up for a cooking class, she ends up just giving whatever she made to me and Ted to eat. She never tries her own cooking unless it’s yellow cake, buttercream frosting, or confetti cupcakes – the rest goes to mom, dad, her uncle, her grandparents, her friends, or whoever happens to be there when she’s done.
Anyway, here’s a perfume dedicated to Lilith making banana bread that she didn’t even taste.
Between Classes Perfume OilOut of Stock
Pandemic schoolin’, 2020: while there are many, many downsides to distance learning, a perk is that Lilith’s time between class periods doesn’t smell like running through halls or fumbling through a stinky, paper wad-filled locker.
Fleece spiderwebs, lavender mist, and pink carnations.
Booboo Eyes Perfume OilOut of Stock
Backstory: it was 10:30 at night, and she wanted to film videos of her skeletons playing with slime. We said no because it’s too damn late and we’re tired, so this is her making booboo eyes with Mr. Skellington to try to convince us otherwise.
An unconvincing saddy face: lavender and bone-white sandalwood with rosewater, lemon peel, and cognac.
Boop Perfume OilOut of Stock
My daughter is most definitely a dog person.
Lavender cream, puppy paws, white patchouli, and honey dust.
Breakfast, or Something Perfume OilOut of Stock
Things started getting really weird around the house about three weeks into the shelter in place.
Neon pink threads of guava cotton candy and strawberry milk.
Cannibal Lady Macbeth Perfume OilOut of Stock
Wherein our heroine combines two things she loves: Shakespeare and horror.
I don’t think she’s too concerned with that damned spot anymore: blood musk, velvet oud, 11-year aged patchouli, and black fig.
Dragon Slide Perfume OilOut of Stock
I love my daughter so very much.
Peppermint candies, white chocolate, and sprinklecake ice cream.
Faster Kittycat? Perfume OilOut of Stock
Lilith’s pandemic makeup experimentation wasn’t limited to SFX. Lilith did cat eyes one night, and I didn’t realize it until I took the photo, but she sometimes bears an uncanny resemblance to Tura Satana.
A sudden sophistication: a sheer white chypre with cashmere amber, orris butter, and patchouli.
Gen Z Feminist CenobiteOut of Stock
Lilith did this look on her lunch break between her history class and literature. When she came out of the bathroom, I thought at first glance that this was a Bowie look.
There is a large, sebaceous, oozing bloody hole under her hair, too, that I failed to capture in the photo.
One of the things that really impacts me about Lilith and her experimentation with makeup… as little girls, so many of us are taught not to be gross or weird or funny. I know I was raised to be neat and proper; you must maintain your dignity at all costs! Men were allowed to be vulgar and ridiculous, slapstick and absurd. We’re taught that women aren’t as funny as men, and even in horror we’re often marginalized and sidelined in myriad ways – the femme fatale, the final girl, the masochistic, hypersexualized victim.
Lilith isn’t being weaned to any of this, and she couldn’t give a shit what girls are supposed to do. Lilith doesn’t give a fuck. She’s going to be as gross or glamorous or vulgar or funny or loud or polite or proper as she wants to be. Sometimes she wants to feel beautiful, sometimes she wants to feel monstrous, and sometimes she wants to be both at the same time. Or neither. But everything she does for fashion – or horror – she does for herself and no one else, and I hope that never changes.
Lilith’s gleeful middle finger to gender and beauty standards: a hot pink cherry chypre.
Life, the Sculptor, Moulds Unceasingly Perfume OilOut of Stock
E’en as the sculptor chisels patiently
The marble’s jagged edges, day by day,
Striving to smooth all blemishes away,
Till-when from ev’ry flaw the stone is free,
And naught save perfect contours does he see-
Embodied harmony and beauty may
Atone for all the weary hours’ delay,-
So Life, the sculptor, moulds unceasingly
The soul of man. How often in recoil
The spirit shrinks, nor can through prescience know
Of coming grace and majesty. ‘Tis willed
The scars should deeper be, until the toil
And chiseling are adequate; when lo!
God’s all-unfathomed plan is quite fulfilled.
– Henrietta Cordelia Ray
Lilith has always loved sculpting, but it wasn’t until the shelter in place that she really dove into it.
Not a scent of clay, but of creation: white sandalwood, tulsi, and Mitti attar.
(The sleepmask was a gift from her dad, and it’s so 2020 Appropriate.)
Loaf Perfume OilOut of Stock
All that slime practice is being put to good use. Staying on trend with 2020 Quarantine Culture, we have made a lot of loaves since the shelter in place hit.
The scent of buttered bread, a little caraway, rye seed, rosemary, and salt.
Metal Twins Perfume OilOut of Stock
There is a joke that Beth makes all the time that instead of having a daughter, we just created a new best friend. Lilith is now old enough to joke with, gossip with, and just hang out with. I couldn’t ask for a better friend or daughter. There is no one in the world who means more to me than this little muffin head.
Vanilla cake batter (she only wants the batter!) and flan.
Our Little Crypt Ghoul Perfume OilOut of Stock
Almost every year, Teddy and I used to go to Wicked Lit, a live production that took place in Mountain View cemetery during the Halloween season. We’d been waiting excitedly for the moment that Lilith was old enough to join us, and 2019 was the year. Sadly, it was the last performance of Wicked Lit at the cemetery; they won’t be doing the performances anymore. It’s… bittersweet. I’m so glad we were able to take her at least once, and I’m crushed that it won’t happen again.
Lilith among the graves waiting for the show to start: warm apple cider, wild sage and crushed grass, soft soil, big squirreltail, and dandelions.
Peanut Perfume OilOut of Stock
Just before Thanksgiving 2019, we picked up the newest addition to the Barrial clan: Matilda Barrial. Nicknames in our household come organically and spontaneously, often without rhyme or reason, and somehow she got saddled with the sobriquet “Peanut” weeks before we’d even met her. Once we did meet her, we knew the nickname fit.
Welcome home, Peanut. This is the scent of Lilith’s joy the very first time she held you (minus the barf you splattered all over Lilith on the ride home): honey, warm cinnamon, sweet almond, myrrh, and fig cream.
Perfectly Normal Childhood Perfume OilOut of Stock
One night, I turned around and saw that Lilith was wearing a rubber mask and wielding an aluminum baseball bat. It wasn’t Halloween, it wasn’t anything. It was just a kid in a rubber mask with a baseball bat. I don’t even know where the mask came from.
Sugar and spice and… an aluminum baseball bat. There was no context for her outfit, so there’s no context for this scent: spun sugar, vanilla marshmallows, cardamom, and cake batter.
Rattlecans and SlidersOut of Stock
Lilith has an interesting history with haunts. Ted and I were part of the Halloween crew at her elementary school for six years, Lilith assisted in terrorizing people in several mazes and haunts, and she wandered the mazes of several Midsummer Scream events. She’s wanted to go to one of the major amusement park haunts for ages, but she couldn’t get any of her friends to come with her. Last year, she finally went to Halloween Horror Nights with Kyle and Mika, and she was ecstatic.
Strawberry soft serve, fog machine juice, and cake batter ice cream.
Rose Quartz Bedroom Perfume OilOut of Stock
Some of you might remember this: before Lilith was born, we commissioned pastel Dr. Seuss-themed murals for her bedroom. She’s much older now, and she’d been talking about repainting her room for a couple of years. We didn’t repaint, though, because every few months she’d completely change her mind about how she wanted her bedroom to look. I think she was excited about repainting, but she is also a very sentimental person, and part of her was putting off the change as long as possible.
Lilith entered middle school this fall, and over the summer she decided that it was time to really make the leap. She decided on a rose quartz bedroom in a rose quartz palette with as much rose quartz as you can jam into a room, plus LED lights (she is a tween on TikTok, after all), potted plants, fake vines, and decor in a tarot/palmistry/lunar motif – basically, a chic pastel Kid Witch cave. The week that we spent prepping and painting… I think it was a little hard on all of us. We were leaving a phase of her childhood behind, and even though growth and change is a beautiful thing – it’s still bittersweet.
Painting a room doesn’t seem like it would be a huge event in someone’s life, but it can be. Welcome to adolescence, Lilith. I know you’ll conquer it all with your kindness, your wit, your strength, and your grace.
Sugared vanilla rose with saffron, white musk, and Lilith’s favorite lavender.
Sentence First, Verdict Afterwards Perfume OilOut of Stock
“Hold your tongue!” said the Queen, turning purple.
“I won’t!” said Alice.
“Off with her head!” the Queen shouted at the top of her voice. Nobody moved.
“Who cares for you?” said Alice, (she had grown to her full size by this time.) “You’re nothing but a pack of cards!”
At this the whole pack rose up into the air, and came flying down upon her: she gave a little scream, half of fright and half of anger, and tried to beat them off, and found herself lying on the bank, with her head in the lap of her sister, who was gently brushing away some dead leaves that had fluttered down from the trees upon her face.
Off with her head: white roses, tea roses, climbing roses, blood red roses, and a cluster of thorns, blood-spattered and sword-sharp, with clove bud and tobacco flower.
Shadows and Light Perfume OilOut of Stock
This photo was taken on Mother’s Day, 2020. This photo really struck me: she looks like a child still, but you can see the woman beneath. She looks serious and a little sad, but the set of her chin and and mouth are fixed with a peculiar determination. She has a bit of monster makeup on, but she’s still lovely. To me, the photo holds so much of the ambiguity and conflict that has marked these past few months for us. The plague is terrible and the quarantine can be a very lonely road, but Lilith and I are closer than ever. She’s my child, but she is also now truly my friend. We’ve lost touch with so much of the outside world, but we’re understanding each other so well.
This photo is a snapshot taken on Mother’s Day during a year I could not have imagined; we are living through a collective worldwide crisis on the precipice of unbelievable chaos and upheaval, but at least we’re together. Together in shadow and light.
This scent is white musk, lavender-tinged cognac, and smoke.
Solved Mysteries Perfume OilOut of Stock
We all sat down as a family to watch the new Unsolved Mysteries, and I guess Ted and Lilith tableflipped at the end because the mystery went unsolved and they both refused to watch any more episodes with me.
Sorry, guys; we’ll send in a pitch to HBO for a program called Solved Mysteries and see if they pick it up.
Anyway, Lilith called this look Homicide Re-Enactment, and I think it’s the perfect photo to go with my stupid anecdote.
Skin musk, red musk, pink peppercorn, sandalwood, and orange blossom.
Thrills and Junk Food Perfume OilOut of Stock
There is nothing better than a dad and daughter day riding roller coasters and thrill rides, fueled by popcorn, pretzels, candy and blueberry slushies. The memories we shared that day will not be soon forgotten. I love my little mini me.
A carb and sugar overdose: popcorn, pretzels, fruit punch, and blue cotton candy.
Thunk Perfume OilOut of Stock
Lilith’s 2019-2020 season was full of firsts – some good, some bad. On the up side, this was the first year that she ever tossed a throwing knife (the kid sure does love pre-Industrial projectile weapons!).
On the down side… well, there were a lot of distinctly ungood firsts throughout most of 2020 – Baby’s First Pandemic being the most ungood of all.
This scent is inspired by the resonant THUNK sound that an unwieldy Ren Faire throwing knife makes when it splats into a wooden board: teakwood, tobacco, iron, and pine tar.
Two Frames Perfume OilOut of Stock
Two photos shot back-to-back: one is a touching scene of a girl and her dog, the other is a touching scene of a girl moments after her dog farted.
This perfume does not smell like farts: buttercream-frosted sprinkle cupcakes and a sprig of lavender.
Velut Luna Statu Variabilis Perfume OilOut of Stock
This photo was taken on the night of Lilith’s first choir rehearsal. She was so happy and so proud, and she was so thrilled to be part of such a talented group of artists.
A blush-warm mist of ylang ylang, pink vanilla, carnation chypre, and red benzoin.
WaitingOut of Stock
There are a few places in New Orleans that we love to go eat breakfast, but this out of the way place is one of Lilith’s favorite places to get waffles. I love that Lilith still wants to spend time with us, and I will cherish every minute of it.
Since this photo is from November of 2019, we decided to make this a pumpkin and gingerbread waffle scent washed down with coffee and hot chocolate.
Walking My Daughter to Class Perfume OilOut of Stock
Every year, Beth photographs me walking hand in hand with Lilith on the first day of school, but (months ago before the pandemic hit) I wasn’t sure if this year would be different due to my daughter going to middle school: I was scared that she might feel like she is too old to walk with me.
It made me so happy that when we started up the stairs on the first day of distance learning, she reached out and held my hand.
Dorian-misted lavender, French oakmoss, Italian bergamot, and bourbon vanilla.
You Are Not Alone Perfume OilOut of Stock
This photo is full of complex feelings for me. I initially chose it because I treasure the quiet moments I can grab with Lilith when we’re both sitting on the couch reading together. She’s a tween and can be difficult to pin down; since the shelter in place hit, she’s often either locked in the bathroom putting on horror makeup or up in her room doing Tween Things. When I was drafting the scent, I tried to remember what she was reading in this photo. I think it was Matilda by Roald Dahl, which is not only one of her favorite books, but also her absolute favorite musical. She first saw it in London, then New York, and then the traveling production in Los Angeles. The first time she saw it she was so excited when everyone was taking a bow that she darted out of her seat and down the aisle towards the performers. I swear, I thought she was going to run on stage for a moment, but she just wanted to get closer to give them a standing ovation.
I was a little older than Lilith is now when Matilda was published – 8th or 9th grade? – so I didn’t read it until we were reading it to Lilith. I hadn’t thought this passage had struck me all that hard until I thought about it now, during plague time, and then it slammed me straight in the heart: “So Matilda’s strong young mind continued to grow, nurtured by the voices of all those authors who had sent their books out into the world like ships on the sea. These books gave Matilda a hopeful and comforting message: You are not alone.”
2020 has been a terrifying, terrible year, and I think one of the most painful of the underlying currents for all of us all over the world is the loneliness-the separation from your friends, your loved ones, your community. Being able to see and hear, but not touch. I cannot imagine how the loneliness of this year is going to shape Generation Z, kids who have already lived their whole lives with the spectre of the catastrophes of gun violence and climate change hanging over their heads. I worry for my child. I worry for all of us.
Hope will prevail, though, and if you reach out, there will be a (virtual) hand that will lift you up. We can find comfort in one another, and we can reach out towards the story-built ships in this dark, uncertain sea: you are not alone. Stories weave who we are; stories are a light in the darkness; stories are a comfort in our grief and fear and sorrow. It seems so right that the first book that Lilith sat down to reread when the plague hit was Matilda; these books gave Lilith a hopeful and comforting message: You are not alone.
A dribble of lavender oil running along the cracked spine of a well-loved mass market paperback enveloped in a snuggly oversized hoodie.