Parfums des Beaux Arts by DSH Mahjoun is a decadent gourmand that is a must have for the honey lover. I love the scent of honey. It’s sweet but raw. This makes it difficult to wear. If you are one of the lucky and confident few out there that could wear a heavy honey based scent then this is a must for you. The fragrance’s website describes Mahjoun as “exotic, sensuous, and delicious“. Oh, it is. And it is based on the Moroccan delicacy (an ancient cannabis confection). I have never traveled to Morocco. Mainly because I love the “exotic” vision that I have of it in my mind and I don’t want to be let down. I want it to always be that “faraway” place. I love to picture the textures and smells of Morocco. I imagine bold spices, dried fruits and flowers, and precious resins. This is what I imagine and this is what Mahjoun delivers. It makes my mouth water. It is much sweeter than what I would imagine the streets of Morocco being like. This is much more dessert and gourmand and intoxicating, as the name implies. I usually can’t (or won’t) wear “sweet” fragrance but I see myself wearing this one frequently. It is sweet but it has so many other things keeping it interesting and “raw” while remaining beautiful. It is so sweet like honey as soon as you put it on. It’s sweet but very musky and sexual. At first spritz, it is a all about the sweetness of raw honey with a heavy dose of bitter almonds and zesty citrus juices. You can pick up a bit of lavender. This makes this is a crisp but sweet scent. Lavender honey is one of my favorite treats, especially in a black tea with a squeeze of lemon. The crispness fades fairly quickly and you are left with the “heart” of this fragrance. The heart is much like a sweet, sweet confection. It is heavy on the honey. It’s rich and golden, syrupy. It is mixed with dried fruits. I pick up on the dried dates and the dried pipe tobacco like aroma of dried figs. It is far from smoky, it just smells like a mix of honey and dried fruit flavored pipe tobacco. It has a dusting of sweet spices like nutmeg. It isn’t really “spicy”. The spices just add to the richness of the honey and sticky dried fruits. They are very understated. The “heart” has a bit of toasty nuttiness. Hazelnut in fact. My favorite. This makes this scent almost masculine/unisex and a must have for the lover of L’Artisan Parfumeur Mechant Loup EDT (my review here). I imagine it as a very intoxicating scent on both males and females. It’s really for anyone who has dreamed of being swept away by Rudolph Valentino as The Sheik. (This fragrance really does embody that Silent Film obsession with “exotic” and “sensual” and “forbidden” Bedouin culture).

The dry-down is less smoky and resiny than I would of imagined/predicted but it is there. It is an oriental blend of “exotic” resins and precious woods. It remains honey-ish but more in a beeswax with honey way with lots of amber, myrhh, sandalwood, frankinsence. It smells of exotic incense. I have to say that this is my all time favorite honey based scent that I have tried throughout my many years of sniffing. It is less “pissy” than L’Occitane Honey & Lemon EDT. It is sweet without sweetness being its soul purpose of existence like Lush Honey I Washed The Kids Solid Perfume.

Notes include the following: bitter almond, cardamom seed, cherry blossom, lavender, lemon, sweet orange, Bulgarian rose, fig, hazelnut, honey, nutmeg, orange blossom, sugar date, amber, atlas cedarwood, cinnamon, clove, frankincense, sandalwood, and Arabian myrrh. Many sizes are available. It’s a rich fragrance that wears for many hours closely to the skin. An 1 ounce EDP spray goes for $65. It is available at the Parfums des Beaux Arts website. I would say to give this one a try if you are a fan of complex honey scents or L’Artisan Mechant Loup, L’Artisan Havana Vanille, Tokyomilk Honey & The Moon EDP, Serge Lutens Chene, Arabie, or Fumerie Turque, Napa Valley Cielo EDP (my review here), just to name a few in the honey oriental genre.

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Since being involved with this 30’s home renovation, I have been obsessed with 30’s everything. If I’m not peeling wallpaper, then I am out at the home salvage places looking for the back of my deco speakeasy. I’ve spent more time paying attention to the 30’s and more than just home trends. This includes 30’s hair and makeup. I must brag that my marcel waves are improving. I absolutely adore this look of bleached blonde turned red head Sybille Schmitz of Vampyr fame. (One of my all time favorite movies and you’ll notice many of my “favorites” in this look).

FACE: Skin is matte and perfect. Apply concealer where needed. A stick concealer usually can do it all and I love the packaging of Paul & Joe Stick Concealer. Apply a powder foundation like MAC Studio Fix, one of my all time favorites. Apply a pinching pink blush to the apples of cheeks with a large fluffy brush or a soft fan brush. NARS Powder Blush in Desire is the perfect color for this look. It is one of my all time favorite blushes for light to medium complexions.

EYES: Fill in brows with a brow pencil. 1930’s brows always had a bit of a waxy look. Apply a stiff pencil like Maybelline Expert Eyes Twin Brow Pencil in a shade darker than your hair if you are going for a genuine 30’s look. Apply a subtle champagne shimmer shadow to the entire lid from lash line to brows. I like Clinique Colour Surge Soft Shimmer Eye Shadow in Champagne. A warm brown shadow should be applied to the crease. L’Oreal Wear Infinite Eye Shadow Single in Brushed Suede is a nice rich, warm brown. Apply to the crease. Apply more of the champagne to closed lids and apply where the pupil would be if your eyes were open. This will add some light. Take the brown shade and apply to the bottom lash line with a smudger brush. This will make the lashes appear thicker. Apply a soft, dark brown kohl liner to top lash line. Don’t wing out and stay close to the lash line. Apply a shade like MAC Eye Kohl in Costa Riche. Whimsy false lashes are a must for this look. There are many out there with a variety of price points. I like the look of Laura Mercier Full Faux Lashes for this look. Apply mascara to top and bottom lashes.

LIPS: Lips are pink and pretty simple. Try a color like Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-In-Place Lipstick in Stay Pink. Apply a tiny dab of Smith’s Rosebud Salve (another favorite) to lips to keep them looking healthy and moist. And that’s it. Well, those finger waves, I’m saving that for another day.


I have a thing for dark lipstick. It is a bit tricky and intimidating but that is why I love it. It’s dramatic. I would like to say that I wear it during the cooler months but to be honest, I like to be taboo and sport it in the warmer months as well. I love a deep, dark, berry stained pout. I love to feel vampy like Theda Bara’s image. I like to feel a bit “runway”. And frankly, I am a closet goth. This is my way of saying I’m OK with the cruel, cruel world.

Dark lipsticks and lip colors are so tricky because of skintone. However, I think that anybody can get away with it if you possess enough attitude. I don’t care if you are dark with gold undertones or ghostly pale with a visible vein road map. It works. It just takes some playing around and lots of confidence. Dark lips create a “harsh” look and you must be able to deal. It does show more imperfections. Lips must be smooth and healthy. Dark lipsticks will cling to dry spots resulting in an unattractive splotchy look. So keep lips moisturized. It is good for them anyways. I’m not going to create any other rules with the rest of the makeup when you wear darks. I like it with a perfectly matte face, sheer nude eyes with or without mascara. I like it with kohl rimmed eyes like Miss Bara’s. I like it with dewey cheeks or matte cheeks. It just doesn’t matter. Just make sure lips are moisturized.

For the Ballsy: I’m talking deep, dark, and dramatic. These colors are rarely for the meek. These are the colors for maximum drama. I’m talking you would wear black lipstick. None of this YSL glamour black gloss. I’m talking something like NYX Lipstick in Penelope, a rich angsty shock your Christian mother black. It retails for $3.50 so that you will even have enough money left to purchase black nail polish and a pentagram necklace 🙂 from Hot Topic. Lips need to be smooth. Coat this stuff on, a lip primer does help from keeping this stuff smooth. NYX also has a wonderful deep burgundy called Almost Black. It has a bit more depth than the straight up black stuff. I also like Egg Plant for a dark purple look. All retail for $3.50. MAC has a nice Lipstick in Cyber which is a black purple with a satin finish. It is a bit hard to work with because it has too much “slip”. It retails for $14. Make Up For Ever has a lovely glimmery navy lipstick in Pearly Blue Black and it retails for $19. I also like their Blueberry which is a deep berry. Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in Black Cherry is a deep blood wine lipstick with a bit of sheen. It retails for $7.99.

For the Closet Goth: For a deep lip with a bit of color, try YSL Rouge Volupte Silky Sensual Lipstick in Forbidden Burgundy, a rich deep berry. Plus, the packaging will make you feel like a queen. As it should with its $34 price tag. One of my favorites is MAC Viva Glam III which is a matte deep plum. It is dark but it looks “classic” and not a bit like a purple crushed velvet cape. It retails for $14. Another one that is nice is the new Revlon Matte Collection Lipstick in Wine Not. It is a deep, classic matte wine that retails for $7.99. Max Factor Lipfinity 3D Maxwear Lipcolor in Violet Vamp is a nice medium wine with a purple shimmer topcoat that retails for $8.99 (no longer available in the US). Lipstick Queen Wine Sinner Lipstick is one of my favorite blackberry wine shades. It retails for $18. Also I love Chanel Creme Lipstick in Vamp which retails for $28.

For the Wusses: Go for something dark but really sheer. It makes you feel edgy without getting strange stares from your co-workers. I like Urban Decay Apocalypse which is a sheer blackberry in killer packaging. It has a soft vanilla fragrance and retails for $22. One of the best for this category is Clinique Almost Lipstick in Black Honey. It’s so popular for its edge but wearable factor. It feels great on the lips and retails for $14. Black Radiance has a sheer deep-red  brown Radiant Lip Gloss in Mocha Madness. It retails for $2.99 and looks great over other colors to “deepen” them. A lip stain is always a way to get color without harshness. Try something like Urban Decay Lip Envy in Greedy which retails for $17. Lipstick Queen Big Bang Theory Lip Gloss in Black Hole is a lovely deep wine shimmer. It is buildable for more or less drama. It retails for $20. Or for the daring, wouldn’t you love to bust out a black lipstick during a board meeting or something? Try Lipstick Queen Black Tie Optional Lipstick for $18. It is super sheer, and yes black. It just adds a tiny bit of darkness.