Cottage Industries - Sandhya Pooja

Cottage Industries – Sandhya Pooja

Purchased from Padma Store. A pack contains 20 sticks (approx. 30g) and costs €5.25 – that’s 0.26ct per piece. They are longer than usual and burn for around 70 minutes, which is decent for charcoal-based incense sticks. Padma Store explicitly states “Masala Method” as the manufacturing technique, not “Dipped”. But Sandhya Pooja look like dipped incense sticks to me.

I tried them out as soon as I received the package (that was in March) and was totally thrilled, but my euphoria has since worn off.

Raw, the sticks smell spicy, slightly floral and, if you put your nose too close, soapy.
When they are lit, they initially produce a strong smell of charcoal smoke, but this goes away or fades into the background quickly.
Its aroma reminds me of a very specific Amber that I bought at a renaissance fair years ago. It had a wonderfully intoxicating jasmine note – and I say that even though I often dislike jasmine.
So it has a rather heavy, sweet and balsamic smell with a clear floral aspect. I’m not entirely sure if it’s actually (only) jasmine, or what kind, but it’s not the dry, green-smelling jasmine, but a sweet, heady one.

I’m not sure why I liked them so much better at first. Maybe it was the pleasant surprise of encountering a scent again that suddenly took me back to fond memories, and the effect has worn off over time? That may explain the initial, excessive enthusiasm, but not the much lower rating I gave them later on. (In my first note I wrote “upper 4 range”, now I’m in the upper 2 range.)
As well noticeable is that my other, rather negative notes, in which I mention the coal note being very obtrusive and the actual aroma weaker, perfumey and almost too sweet, are from June/July when it was always very hot. Around 26°C indoor temperature with 50-60% humidity.
Today I took them out again because it’s cooler, rainy, 20°C and 70% humidity, probably more like the conditions during March.
I think the temperature affects how I perceive the sweetness of this smell. In oppressive heat, it is intrusive and oversaturating. In the rather cool air, it appears friendly and pleasant.
However, I really feel like they’ve gotten weaker and flatter in a way. The inherent smell of the charcoal base remains noticeable, which, I think, is a shame because it bothers me very fast.

I recently bought a mini fan to experiment with how it affects the smell. For some, I have already noticed that it has a rather negative effect. But here it makes me notice the smell more clearly, and the soot-like smell of the charcoal base indeed disappears completely.

Rating: 2.7

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