Conventional perfumes. They scare the bejesus out of me.

October 31, 2014

(pssst this is a re-post of a newsletter I sent out. HOW COOL ARE MY NEWSLETTERS? I know.)

Seriously. Kids should dress up as bottles of Calvin Klein Infinite Poison or whatever it’s called for Halloween.

In fact, maybe that’s what toddler Z should be dressing up as tonight (he’s not…we’re going to a 90’s Goth theme party tonight, and tomorrow he’s a scuba diver and I’m a lumberjack….actually, a coureur de bois because I’m really into Canadiana.)


Why am I so afraid of “conventional”, department store perfume? Ah, a refresher: Loads and loads of chemicals. Bad ones. Conventional perfume companies do not care about the welfare of animals, humans or the environment, so they use horrific animal testing practices, unsustainable manufacturing practices and have a total disregard of what should be considered not just acceptable but legal for daily exposure to humans (the laws are messed up, as I mentioned before).

Their products are loaded with chemicals known to damage brains, disrupt endocrine (hormone) systems, cause sinus damage, asthma and other respiratory problems, cause mental fatigue and vagueness and can cause horrific rashes and other skin problems. Yet, people still happily pay $200 a bottle for this. Blows. My. Mind. Also? They all smell so weirdly similar. (Well, almost all…I have to admit I have a soft spot for a scent by Maison Martin Margiela…but maybe I’ll just make a better, Stark version SO THERE.)
Yesterday I quietly launched 02, my first born child, err, all-natural perfume. Why quietly? Well, the launch was over a week late, and I was just feeling like “augh it just needs to happen! Send an email! Send it now! But I have nothing clever to say? Who cares! Send it!”. Launch jitters I guess (something my husband/biz partner/bestie talks about in an interview here…don’t let the wailing guitar intro put you off).

Mind you, launching a perfume is  exposing the world (I can only hope) to something very personal, like poetry or a painting, so it’s a little different from what I’m used to. It’s art. (And my writing doesn’t count…I used to write professionally but not, you know, artistically.) Anybody who claims their perfume is NOT art…well, I don’t know what they’re selling. I don’t want to know.

I’m really excited about 02, and I think it’s absolutely fucking delicious. Is it for everyone? I hope not. I’m not really into generic, and you shouldn’t be either. But if the description says something to you, I bet you will love it. (If you’re a sandalwood lover, just put down the mini Coffee-crisp NOW and just buy it before they’re all gone…or before the price goes up!). I can tell you though, if you’re more of a floral person, or want something that’s kind of light and fresh, those perfumes are coming. But 02 is not that. It’s hypnotic. Resinous. Deep, woodsy, deliciously exotic, eerily familiar….oh just read the description already!  (Also, if you’ve bought it and love it, send me your description of it! Scent description is freaking HARD to write!)

So there you are. I hope this Halloween you aren’t tricked by conventional perfume, and you do treat yourself to some all-natural perfume. (See what I did there?)

Nice smelling non-toxic hugs,

PS. Several bottles have been sold, and as I said, there’s really only a few left of this batch… if you want 02, get it now!

Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.

Also in the Stark blog.

The Beauty Interviews: @LizAlaskaBeauty
The Beauty Interviews: @LizAlaskaBeauty

March 20, 2019

 I’m so over beauty trends. My skin is so sensitive now. I partly blame FOMO for that. Wanting to try everything, my face couldn’t take it. I’ve turned down the volume of the whole “what’s new” and stay in my lane. But, those full face LED devices have caught my eye

Continue Reading

The Beauty Interviews: Mercedes of l'Amour et la Musique.
The Beauty Interviews: Mercedes of l'Amour et la Musique.

March 13, 2019

M: As the green beauty/wellness community has changed SO much over the past 5-8 years,I tune out so much of the fear-mongering noise over ingredient/lifestyle perfectionism. I initially fell in love with green beauty because the products were so special, beautiful and unique, not because they upheld some false dichotomized notion of "purity." I do believe we can do better than petrochemicals and endocrine disruptors in products but "clean beauty" doesn't exist in a vacuum and there are many other sociocultural issues at play.

Continue Reading

The Beauty Interviews: Sammie Kolk, Makeup Artist
The Beauty Interviews: Sammie Kolk, Makeup Artist

March 11, 2019

Stark: Do you have memories of some of your earliest beauty splurges or products you couldn't live without in your teen years? Do you have any products or brands you still use from back then?
Sammie: Gosh, do I ever. I loved me some Lip Smackers (remember the Dr. Pepper one?), and I have vivid memories of my aunt selling 

Continue Reading