My Blue Moon Review: Anya’s Garden MoonDance

I’m writing this review on the eve of the blue moon and the new year. This is also the day I decided to try MoonDance from Anya’s Garden for the first time. Coincidence? If it was, it was a subconscious bleary-eyed one this morning. Reaching for my sample I thought I was going to experience a heady tuberose fragrance as I remembered reading on NowSmellThis that MoonDance is an homage to tuberose. Well, there’s tuberose in MoonDance, but not in the way I had expected.

After applying this 100% natural perfume, the scent of violets radiated from my skin. If you’re thinking gentle and sweet violets, then MoonDance will hasten you to rethink your violet notions. We’re talking violets on steriods! The tuberose and jasmine heart of MoonDance supplies our little purple pansies with a hallucinogenic quality, more vivid and intensely sweet than any other violet fragrance in my experience. On my skin, the violet completely took charge of this perfume leaving tuberose and jasmine to lend their indolic fullness in a supporting role. The blend is balanced so harmoniously that the larger-than-life violet doesn’t smell like a tuberosey-violet, rather an amplified version of its inherent components.

MoonDance is a vivacious floral no doubt, but there’s an earthy haylike quality present from chamomile that I adore. The dried grassy aroma tempers MoonDance enough so it doesn’t become cloying or overbearing. After many hours of wear, the violet and white florals settle into a delicate bouquet with just a suggestion of woods. Anya McCoy of Anya’s Flowers isn’t quite satisfied with the use of florals and woods though, even if some of them are rare and exotic. She’s added the peculiar ingredient hyraceum.

I had no idea what this was until I corresponded with her to find out more. I wasn’t expecting to find out that it’s the fosslized pee and poo of the Dr. Seuss-esque named hyrax, pictured here. Apparently tinctured hyraceum has a scent akin to ambergris or oud and can also have a grassy scent due to the hyrax diet. (Who knew fossilized poop as well as chamomile would add that hay note I love so much?) There’s a very informative discussion on Basenotes regarding hyraceum and I encourage you to read it if you have any interest in learning more about it. Since it is fossilized from thousands of years ago, there is no cruelty involved when sourcing these critters’ rock-hard excrement.

(Never did I think I’d end a review with the words “rock-hard excrement”).

Moondance is $125 for 15ml of EdP and $75 for 3.5mls of Parfum Extrait at Anya’s Garden.

Posted by ~Trish

Red Orange Tan and Purple by Mark Rothko

Disclosure: A sample of MoonDance was provided for this review by Anya’s Garden. The opinons in this review are my own. I was not financially compensated for this review or any other.


Anya’s Garden: Rivercali



It’s such a pleasure to experience a perfume without having seen any advertising, marketing, or even peeked at the perfumer’s website. To be able to wear a fragrance relatively free of those associations and without expectations is a rarity these days of media overload. My only prelude to Rivercali was knowing that its creator, Anya McCoy, is a devout natural perfumer from Florida and that her little box of samples was so beautifully packaged that I could hardly stand to open it up. But open it I did, as I clearly had to get to the vials inside. Rivercali was the first one that caught my eye, and I dabbed away.


Rivercali is a lush walk through a dewy oceanside garden, abundantly adorned with citrus blossoms. Neroli and petitgrain waft like an ocean breeze, and make you want to roll up your pant legs and splash in the surf. Rivercali is supported by a rich floral base of Turkish Rose Otto, yet in no way would I label this a rose fragrance. The rose otto offers spice and strength, providing a foundation for the heart, but does not overpower Rivercali’s inherent tropical leafy greenness.


This flirty, citrusy floral continues through to the drydown where just a hint of sandalwood and vanilla show themselves. Only slightly though. Just as this is not a rosy scent, this is also not a woodsy or vanillic one either. It’s a lush blooming fragrance that is heaven for floral lovers. Especially those with a penchant for orange, lemon or lime blossoms.


As I mentioned above, Anya is a natural perfumer and never uses synthetics in her fragrances. She also uses organic, wildcrafted and sustainable essences whenever possible. Additionally, her perfumes are housed in boxes that are made from the sustainable Daphne plant and recycled paper. They are also imbedded with wildflower seeds, so you can plant the box and grow your own garden in a pot or in the ground.


You can also visit the blog I Smell Therefore I Am for a recent review of Anya’s Garden Kaffir fragrance.


Rivercali is available at Anya’s Garden. Also, there’s a deal at Anya’s Garden, take 10% off with coupon code kaffirlime, good through 4/4.

Posted by ~Trish

Photograph of lime blossoms by alasam on flickr