One Hand Washes The Other is one of the first indie shops I purchased from, and I’ve gone back to them time and time again. I know the owner has stirred up some controversy, but I’m just too in love with the brand to think about cutting myself off. And I honestly don’t know how I could live without the Black Magic scrub, which saves my face on a daily basis. I’ve held off on fall/Halloween reviews because most of their scents were old releases, but they had a ton of new blends up for this holiday! And at the moment almost all of them are discounted in their shop, which makes it the perfect timing for a review.
Snowbound (Blue Spruce, Cypress, Berries, Snow, Fir Needle, Birch, and Wood): This is an interesting scent. In the vial it’s very fruity, but it’s totally different once you apply it. Cool and crisp: there’s definitely a snow/winter element going on here that may be mint in part. But it definitely feels cold! The berries are subdued and fresh, more like not-quite-ripe berry skin (maybe cranberry?), and there’s a blooming background of firs. It’s basically winter in a bottle.
Noel (rich vanilla and peppermint, dusted with sugar and splashed with warm milk): I got this as a sample originally and just HAD to have a full size. Peppermint and vanilla is a simple combination, but it’s both bright and seasonal while being insanely comforting. Putting this on is like wrapping up in a big, comfy blanket. This is probably my favorite OHWTO scent.
Krampus Klaus (Cracked leather, covered in chimney soot. Sticky silver Fir resin, glowing Amber eyes, and a polished wooden sleigh): OHWTO is great at manly leather scents, and this is definitely one of them. The leather is at the forefront, and it’s a note that tends to amp up on me so it’s rather dominant. The fir in the background makes this a more “holiday” kind of masculine blend, which is pretty unique among my leather-based scent collection.
Twinkling Lights (Champagne, Balsam trees, Fruitcakes, Oakmoss): I have this in solid and oil form, and it smells a bit different each way. The oil is more heavy on the champagne, especially in the bottle, while the solid leans more towards the balsam. Oakmoss is nicely balanced in both, and this is a nice light bubbly winter blend. It’s pretty hard to find scents with a really good carbonation smell, but this hits it dead on.
Cookies for Santa (Spicy gingerbread cookies, sweet faces drawn on them with vanilla icing, and a mug of warmed milk): When you ask for OHWTO scent recommendations, most people will probably tell you about their amazing gourmands. But I have almost none from them because… well, I guess other things just catch my eye first. So this is really my first bakery/gourmand from them, and it’s as great as they’re hyped up to be! Super-strong cookie scent, like they’re fresh out of the oven and in your face.
Good Tidings (Warm, buttered oats, caramel cream, and honey): CARAMEL! This is the most realistic caramel scent I’ve tried, it’s so warm and creamy. I think part of that is the fact that it’s got caramel, cream and butter, which make for a really realistic warm, melty caramel smell. It’s hard not to lick my wrists when I have this on, it’s so delicious.
The Airing of Grievances (Fir boughs, musky sandalwood, vanilla, woodland moss, pine needles, ozone, frozen air, and holiday fruits): This reminds me a bit of Snowbound. It’s icy and cold without being overly minty, and the pine is right in the center. But this is more “perfumey” and complex with all the secondary notes like sandalwood and vanilla. Like a fancy woman walking through a pine forest.
Haterade (lime, cucumber, light floral and musk notes): How could I not buy a Gatorade-themed perfume? Especially since this is the lime/cucumber one. I will admit that I ordered this because of nostalgia/hilarity, but it smells SO GOOD. Refreshing without being a “typical” lime/cucumber fresh scent. It’s bright and cheerful with a lovely complex floral background. This is going to be so perfect for spring!
Scarlett (Neroli, Cilantro, rhubarb, raspberry, citrus zests, and blood orange): I expected something brightly citrus from the notes, but it’s quite different on my skin. I think the neroli and raspberry dominate, making this floral, sweet, and a bit powdery. I’m not sure how I feel about it since it’s so far from what I anticipated… honestly, I thought it’d be like Haus of Gloi’s Tonic #4 with blood orange instead of yuzu. Instead, it’s so girlie! There is a definite citrus undertone though.
On a customer service related note, their shipping times have improved dramatically in the past few months. If you’ve purchased from them before you’ll know that the TAT is about a month, which is worth it for what you get, but my last two orders from them shipped out less than 5 days after making them.