Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Marilyn Miglin: Pheromone for Men

Lately, Marilyn Miglin, electronic peddler extraordinaire, has been making the media rounds, chatting up her newest fragrance, Sixth Sense. Don't ask me what any of this means, but Miglin has apparently joined forces with Human Pheromone Sciences, Inc. (whoever that is) to create yet another line of fragrances to be hawked on television. The HPS press release announcing this collaboration scales new heights in idiocy, even for perfume copy:

"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.


Tania said...

I don't normally resort to LOL, but in this case.... ;-) This is hilarious, Brian!

"Brave in the face of danger (snakes, scorpions, tigers, sand pits).."
For some reason, now I can see Indy yelling, 'Snakes! Why'd it have to be snakes?!?'

I've never seen this woman, now I want to, just out of curiosity. Well, at least the people who fall for the sales pitch are getting a decent product. Even if they do have unrealistic expectations of it!

By the way Brian, when you reviewed J'ai Ose it sounded like something I would enjoy, so I got some of the parfum. It's lovely! If I sniffed this blind, and was told it was a modern niche fragrance, I'd believe it. Why is this not more well-known? Oh well, more for us.... ;-)

Marko said...

you're only have Ewoks under your mattress - I have a slew of Storm Troopers and Jabba the Hutt under mine.

Pheromone sounds it similar to Michel Germain's Séxual pour Homme?

Anonymous said...

LOL! I confess to getting a kick out of watching Marilyn when she comes on HSN. In fact my auto-record has her set for next week!

My personal favorite of Marilyn's is Destiny. A very unsual fragrance -- something between old-fashioned mens shaving cream mixed with vanilla and musk. But, I dig it!

Pheromone for Women I cannot stand! But, I once tried a sample of Pheromone for Men and it's much better than the womens version.

You've piqued my interest now in her newest addition to her ever growing fragrance line (Pheromone, Destiny, Magic, Mystic, Goddess, I Love You, Encryption, Nirvana, Duke, M, Sandalwood for Men, Provoke, 112, Pyjama Lily, Calalily, Pheromone Musk, Pheromone Breeze, Pheromone Gold) ......I now await 6th Sense!

Anonymous said...

Gosh, not to be burdensome, but for any that are interested in ALL of Marilyn Miglin' womens fragrances, this just went up on HSN. Not a bad deal to try all these --|139&prev=hp!sf!139&ccm=BS|139

Brian said...

Marko, I've never tried Sexual pour Homme. But I love Sexual pour Femme. Another good Sophia Grojsman. I would be terrified of Jabba under my bed. The Ewoks are noisy but lovable. They mean well.

Ok, so Brownie, now I must have that deal you linked to. Something like a dozen 1oz perfumes for 50 bucks! Has anyone ever smelled Destiny or the others?

Tania I wish I could send you a photo. There really aren't tons online, strangely. I am THRILLED you like J'ai Ose. How would you describe it? Took me a while to realize, duh, this is sort of a leather.

pheromone men said...

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