Perfume Directory

Alien Man (2018)
by Thierry Mugler

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Alien Man information

Year of Launch2018
GenderMasculine
AvailabilityIn Production
Average Rating
(based on 31 votes)

People and companies

HouseThierry Mugler
Parent CompanyGroupe Clarins

About Alien Man

Alien Man is a masculine fragrance by Thierry Mugler. The scent was launched in 2018

Alien Man fragrance notes

  1. Top Notes
  2. Heart Notes
  3. Base notes

Reviews of Alien Man

Sometimes, strange notes can create unique smells. In the case of Alien Man, no, just no!

The opening is sweet, sugary, syrupy, fruity, gourmand-ish. The dry down smells like wet concrete. For comparisons, it smells like CK Reveal Man meets Narciso Rodriguez for Him. The combination is unbalanced.

However, in the even that this may intrigue you, as it has many of my colleagues here. It does perform pretty well.

I am huge Mugler fan. I own the majority of the A*Men collection, as well as a few others from the brand. But, I think this is just horrible. Buy at your own risk, but I would seriously sample this before committing to blind buying a bottle.
11th October, 2019
This is actually a very nice low-key spicy fragrance for men. It maybe smells more like something from the 90's than today, but that's what makes it sort of refreshing and unique. It's a little tricky to explain how it smells; there's a sweet/fresh smell in the top that seems like it's part anise and mint, and part something else, a little greener and more herbal. I suppose it could be "dill" although it doesn't exactly smell like it, at least not the kind you cook with. But it lends a sweet/herbal/green aspect to the whole and actually plays a pretty significant roll in the overall smell. There's flashes of an herbal, green variety of lavender here as well, but it's quiet, softer, and blends in and out with the anise, mint, and dill. Beneath its sweeter, fresher side, Alien Man shows some soft suede and a cozy, almost-smoky cashmere wood embellished with pepper. While it's not prominent or dominating at a any moment, I get a good dose of pepper in Alien Man, and it seems to be what gives it most of its spicy character. I have to say that the base is very nice. The cashmere wood is soft, and while it's entwined with amber, it's not THAT woody-amber smell that's everywhere (those sort of chemical, scratchy-fuzzy sweet woods). It's much easier on the nose and stays more in the background rather than taking over and dominating as the other kind usually does. The suede is also a nice touch, and it lends a smooth, rounded texture to the base as well its subtle, unique smell. Finally, amber by itself also emerges in the base, and in the beginning this one has a crusty, salt-licked little edge to it that almost suggests an animalic quality or freshly sweaty skin. But it's very low-key and dialed back at the same time, something you might not notice at first, but could if you looked for it. Finally, the amber takes on a more powdery-sweet, white-ish hue and this is the last stage of the fragrance's development. Though it retains traces of what preceded it, in the end it is mostly amber which dominates.

I guess I could have written a much shorter review of Alien Man and said "it's a spicy-fresh, sweet herbal fragrance for men with some soft cashmere wood and suede in the base," and to some extent, that's what it is, but I don't think that would give you any real idea of its smell. I'm still not sure if the description above exactly nails it, but if you can't obtain a sample, it may at least give you a rough idea of what it's like.

One thing Alien Man is not, is generic. I don't know where those comments came from. I haven't smelled one recent release that comes even close to smelling like Alien Man. The sweetness in its top is not some vague fruit concoction, or tonka-laden lavender, or pink pepper/cinnamon blend you could find in a bunch of other fragrances--it's a sort of bizarre but pleasant herbal-green sweetness infused with anise and mint. And the base is a soft, easy-going cushion of gentle woods and suede. It's not bursting at the seams with aroma chemicals; it's not presenting some form of "hyper-fresh" woods, nostril piercing in their tenacity and pitch. If the woods in Alien Man don't exactly smell natural, they at least smell pleasant and approachable.

But I understand the ho-hum reactions to this one. I understand the disappointment. Mugler is a company known for its bombastic, over-the-top creations, beginning with A*Men and ending with whatever was the latest A*Men flanker in a very long line of A*Men flankers. So when it was announced they were releasing a new men's fragrance, everyone's mind naturally went to this big, loud, impressive place. Meanwhile Alien Man went the other way. It went somewhere quiet and understated, opting for finesse and restraint over fireworks and volume. There's no real "wow factor" to Alien Man. It's not going to knock your socks off or blow your mind. But at the same time, it smells really nice. It the type of fragrance that has signature-scent potential. You can wear it everywhere and anywhere, and nobody's going to ask you to leave the room because you stink. In fact, most people will probably react well to it just because it smells so nice. I can't say the same for Ultra Zest or Pure Leather or Pure Malt or Kryptomint. Even though I love many of these scents, wearing them can be a crapshoot. In the end, I think Mugler made the right choice here. By releasing Alien Man they added a versatile, understated, and easy-to-wear option to their lineup. And they've still left plenty of room for Alien Man Intense.

Alien Man's performance is solid, and 5 good sprays seem to do trick and really get it rolling. Projection is moderate, but present, as it should be for a scent like this. It creates a nice smell around its subject but doesn't shout. Longevity is about 8 hours. As far as seasons, I think this could be worn any time of the year save for the hottest months, and as far as occasions it seems to have good range, from the most casual situations to more formal, dressy events. As stated earlier, it's the kind of fragrance that could be used as a signature scent.

In approaching Alien Man I finally followed my New Year's resolution and ordered a sample rather than blind buying a full bottle, but now that my sample has run out, it looks like a bottle is on the horizon. Different enough from anything else I own and something that will be easy and fun to wear, Alien Man gets an overall score of 8 out of 10 and is recommended for sampling. Go into this one with tempered expectations and you may enjoy it.


UPDATE: This is much STRONGER than I'd been lead to believe at first. I get more than above average projection and a solid 8 to 10 hour longevity every time I wear this. It's also taken a bit of a darker turn, losing some of its greenness and resembling more the dark color purple of the flacon. I really, really enjoy this.

12th August, 2019
'Hella' weird...

I drove 2 hours round trip to smell this and it's far worse than I had anticipated. I didn't even need to give this a proper wearing to dissect it. Took all of an hour on the drive home until I did arrive, went directly into the bathroom and scrubba dubbed dubbed.

This is a super discordant opening laid onto your (nowadays) totally synthesized base of your typical, iso e super, cashmeran, cashmere wood, all heavy duty aroma chemicals with insane lasting power and throw. All I was getting on the drive home in my climate controlled environment was an incredibly strong and incredibly overpowering osmanthus flower drenched in a synthetic amber, vanilla, dill and cashmeran. It's an absolute 'horrendous' combination thanks to this weird ass dill note. It was an overpowering sweet fest covered in herbs, icky!

Why in God's name would you pair a yellow floral, strongly mind you because this note needs to be voted waaay up on that scale as in like the first note, with dill! It's disgusting.

The end result is a very feminine perfume that smells like overripe peaches, dill pickles, a syrupy sweet vanillic and synthesized wood accord that projects like crazy. I hate this. I've smelled Alien for Women and that's a stellar perfume, this is garbage. Peaches you ask? Well, freshly blooming osmanthus flowers smell like juicy, overripe peaches and this scent is chocked to the 'hilt' with peach stank.

I'm sorry for the lovers of this which I'm certain are few and far between but this isn't a perfume, it's a strange ass smell that smells anything but masculine.

The kicker to this that ultimately sealed the deal is that there's a skosh of Febreeze floating about here. Whomever created Febreeze should be shot, ran over with a bus numerous times and then set on fire but with matches, so it's a very long time. I loathe Febreeze with my every being.
10th July, 2019
Almost incredible how much this fragrance is excellent and terrible at the same time.

It reminds me of the end of the nineties of the 20. century and the first decade of the 21. century. Smells exactly as "you/we've smelled this before". There's an idea here that gives certain whiffs of Gucci Envy For Men, then a bit of V&R Antidote, also a bit of Givenchy Very Irresistble For Men because of that gourmand note.

It strikes a chord, that is, emotions in me. Emotions of those times from the past decade. Going out, those moving around moments, girls I've dated and all the good and bad moments with them. Friends and acquintances I haven't heard from a long time now.

This is a frag that taps you on the shoulder and says: come on man, remember those times a bit, it's not a sin, it wasn't that bad. Ironic, reminds you of the past times and the fragrance didn't even exist!

Final judgement: very bad and very good at the same time. Becomes harshly synthetic and very dull in the drydown. I can't see myself wearing it and yet I want to give it a shot again and again.

Originality: 6/10
Scent: 7/10
Longevity: 9/10
Projection: 7/10
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11th May, 2019 (last edited: 12th May, 2019)
Frankly I'm slightly disappointed by this brand new male Mugler's creation quite unable to live up to the woman-Alien's fame and its bombastic uncompromising sensuality. Tested this one twice on skin and to bè honest I don't really see the point. Mugler Alien Man opens weirdly with a fleeting synth watery amberish tonkinian accord plus a huge dose of yet up emerging cashmeran wood (overall averagely sweet, cinnamonic, dry and cedary a la Montblanc Legend Night) combined with top herbal, anisic (anise, dill), leafy floral (grassy bitter geranium) and aromatic elements balancing the synth ambery/spicy mildness and barely anchoring by soon the juice to a more classic aromatic/fougere tradition. Bitter herbs, hints of suedish leather and kind of pencil shavings smoked woods (a la Montblanc Legend) characterize the woody/leathery/herbal (darker and drier) dry down. Tonka, musk, geranium, lavender, aromatic herbs and dry woods "recall" the fruitier Montblanc Legend's woody-aromatic aura under my profane nose. Whereas Legend is fruitier and more sparkling (citric) in its top and central stage Alien Man is more focused on smoked woods, peppery spices and mild tonka. Leather, bitter herbs, a tad of rubber and smoked/pencil shavings woods provide a quite dry/woody final mark. Finally the persistence is really short on my skin.
10th February, 2019
Thierry Mugler Alien Man (2018) was a long time coming, with the original Alien (2005) having been released more than a decade prior. In the years between, there was a lot of hype and whispering about what the scent would be, since A*Men (1996) was still carrying the brand as the flagship for men for more than twenty years with a host of flankers before this first major pillar successor finally showed up. Was Alien Man to be as daring and challenging as the original A*Men was decades before it? Well... sorta yes and sorta no. I don't think perfumer Jean-Christophe Herault was trying to replicate the same vibe as A*Men with Alien Man, or even the same vibe as the original feminine Alien perfume had, but definitely borrowed DNA from both for this novel composition. Alien Man is part daring, part comfort, part genderbend, part safety through conventional design, but all good in the end. Alien Man is a chimera to wear, as there are a few gourmand notes in Alien Man, but this is no pure gourmand, and likewise some classic 90's "fresh fougère" notes run through Alien Man as well, drawing some comparison to Montblanc Legend (2011). There is even a bit of floral oriental "floriental" play here, making this similar in ever-so-slight ways to Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb (2005). Whatever is going on in Alien Man, it is nothing like what anyone else is doing in the men's sector, giving me hope that designers haven't fully resigned themselves to aromachemical cocktails with no real distinction after the creative rut of the 2010's. The construction of Alien Man is based around three "vibrations", which are really just the top, heart, and base under new names to give the stuff the usual "Mugler weirdness" effect, but it works.

The "electric vibrations" top is anise, dill, and smoked beach wood. Nothing about that top sounds even remotely conventional, and while I can't confirm what that "smoked beach wood" is made of, I get some birch tar, slight vetiver smoke, and mandarin that burns off pretty quick. The dill note is detectable, and very interesting but not off-putting. No, the opening of Alien Man does not smell like pickles, since there is no vinegar next to that dill, but the very unique smell of this herb is softened some by the anise to make an unorthodox but befitting aromatic introduction. Cashmeran comes in a like a body pillow in the heart, flanked by a sweet osmanthus that could destroy the composition in a ball of apricot-like sweetness if not for cedar and leather that follow. The osmanthus combines with this suede-like leather to produce a toned-down version of the main vibe found in Auphorie Miyako (2015), which is a niche artisinal perfume connection I would never dream of making with a designer masculine. The genderbending here is a ballet of trading soft blows, and the "sensual vibrations" of the heart is aptly named. Base notes or "magnetic vibrations", consist of deftly-handled orcanox, which is a softer/finer shade of the ambroxide molecule usually abused to great degree in other 2010's masculines, but plays only a background role alongside patchouli, tonka, and synthetic oakmoss smell in the form of evernyl to complete a late-stage fougère-like accord thanks to the anise in the top. Smooth, complex, blended, and very hard to grasp, Alien Man is less confrontational than the classic A*Men, but no less disorienting upon first sniff. Wear time is adequate and sillage is more moderate than you might expect, but the problem is where this fits in a wardrobe. Part of me wants to call the smell of Alien Man office safe, but part of me doesn't since that osmanthus and leather is still very lurid despite having some counterbalances like the cashmeran and cedar. Curiouser and curiouser...

Likewise, the familiar fougère finish is just that, and not the bulk of the wear, which transforms from smokey-sweet gourmand to "fruity floriental" in the heart, before finally settling on that very 90's "fresh fougère" end point, making an appropriately "alien" experience for you and anyone around you smelling what you're wearing. I guess this is a sleeper romantic scent with some office-safe aspects but too much flirt in its step to be taken around strangers. The rich nature of Alien Man makes it a cooler weather scent, as it sits in a nexus between the gourmand/oriental/floral/fougère categories, feeling abstractly fresh but a warm scent at the same time, insufficient for hot weather. Alien Man is not for folks who hate sweetness, or any form of ambroxide/ambroxan/orcanox/ambrox super, since the stuff is still here even if handled deftly. Alien Man took a year to hit US stores after being released in Europe and I can see why: this is a very risky scent and risky scents don't usually make it into designer realms anymore outside of maybe Gucci Guilty Absolute Pour Homme (2017) or Dunhill Icon (2015), which were risky only because they're both stylistic throwbacks. Whatever you want to make of Alien Man, you can't deny its creativity (even if it tries a little too hard), and I rather enjoy the scent so I give it a thumbs up, but it will require some time from you before drawing any conclusions. One thing's for sure: Alien Man is proof positive why the house of Thierry Mugler gets so much talk in perfume circles, regardless of gender or age, and why they are seen more by enthusiasts as perfume art rather than just another "symbol of refinement" luxury good like so many other brands out there in the world. Weird but good stuff!
10th February, 2019

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