"Marilyn Miglin's Sixth Sense is a groundbreaking new essence, an intriguing marriage of sensuality and empowerment that delivers a new sensory experience. The wearer is more confident and radiant with her presence heightened to all those around her.
"The fragrance is a unique addition to Marilyn Miglin's highly successful portfolio of fragrances with a sensory-dynamic quality that enhances allurement and self assurance, offering a truly new experience in fragrance."
Miglin's saleslady persona, her hard sell disguised as soft pedal, has always fascinated me. Several years ago, Home Shopping Network started digitally retouching her face on its live broadcasts, resulting in a sort of new age soft focus filter which reduced her features to a gelatinous mush. Somewhere along the line, her face stopped moving. Sometimes, watching her now, I wonder if maybe her expressions are actually the work of animators. Her voice certainly has the sound of something out of a cartoon, like one of the little animals who twitter and flutter around Snow White, cooing affably. Miglin's appearance is something of a cautionary tale, her televised descriptions extreme parodies of the language and logic used by the cosmetic and fragrance industry at large, yet she seems to sell the heck out of her product.
I wish I could tell you Pheromone for Men sucks, because I find Miglin's persona silly and annoying, however good for a laugh, but I actually rather like it. As Miglin stated in a recent New York Times article puffing up Sixth Sense, Pheromone doesn't actually contain any, but violet fragrances don't really contain violet either, so we can probably let Marilyn off the hook. Pheromone for Men is remarkably similar to its feminine counterpart. They could easily be mistaken for one another. Both have a sharp, camphoraceous opening I attribute to a motherlode of galbanum, though none is listed in the accompanying literature. Women has an underlying focus on florals, whereas Men retains an almost minty quality, with what smells like incense presiding over the dry down but is probably the pissy astringency of honey. Both are very green, referencing everything from Givenchy III to Lancome Trophee.
Supposedly, Miglin ventured to Egypt in her quest for the rarest, the most precious ingredients. Picture her in Khaki safari gear, one of those explorer hats, her face diffused naturally by steam and atmospheric whatnot. She beats away branches with her stick. Brave in the face of danger (snakes, scorpions, tigers, sand pits) she travels all the way to the pyramids. There, "Miglin examine[s] unearthed jars, which once contained cherished essences and [finds] that traces of fragrance remain after 5,000 years."
And as I write this, I am hovering over the bed in Luke Skywalker's landcruiser, hiding from the pack of Ewoks under the mattress. "Flower essences, wild grasses, exotic barks, seeds, rare wine resins." Who knows what to believe. Pheromone for Women smells good in a cheerful, impossibly bright way. "Jasmine, ambrette seed, tonka, orange blossom." Trying to identify any one ingredient is a hopeless endeavor, though I wouldn't say Pheromone is necessarily well blended. It's hard to make out the words when someone shouts in your ear. I happen to like this kind of scent, if done well or accidentally the right way, and both Pheromones seem to have been. We can at least be thankful that no real pheromones were harmed in the making of these fragrances.