You can now start introducing your significant other as “the lucky schnoz.” A new study out of the University of Bonn has found that a mere sniff of oxytocin can turn a 6.5 into a 10, as long as you’re in love. The so-called cuddle hormone that is released when we kiss or embrace our partners is also a key component in keeping monogamy alive.
During the study, 40 men, who reported being very much in love with their partner, took a whiff of a placebo spray and then an oxytocin spray. They were asked to rate photographs of their partners, acquaintances, and coworkers after each inhalation. Brain scans were given to monitor exactly how much their rewards system lit up with each snapshot of the gals. Turns out, that lady in accounting and your friend Karen’s looks don’t get a boost from oxytocin huffing – only your girlfriend. By and large, the men in the study found their beloveds the fairest of them all.
Which means oxytocin is pretty much Hormonal Photoshop. Companies have jumped on the oxytocin wagon, trying to turn a profit off of the crazy chemical cupid with myriad lotions and perfumes that boast a dose of oxytocin. But it turns out the olfactory senses are hard to con outside of the lab. The nose knows. You can keep lathering on those expensive lotions, but it’s more effective (and cheaper) to have a spooning marathon if it’s a high you’re after.
Image via Veer.