The Scent Of Love: How Smells Affect Attraction In Humans And Animals
Israeli researchers performed an experiment where women watched a sad movie scene, and collected the resulting tears. When they wafted the sad-tainted tears under the noses of some male subjects, the response wasn’t, as they expected, a surge in empathy, but a decline in testosterone levels and sexual arousal.
And pair bonds may increase our sensitivity to a partner’s scent. Researchers collected sweat from volunteers to capture their body odor while they were in a neutral mood, or in a variety of heightened states – fear, happiness or arousal. Then they gave the sweat samples to another person – either a stranger to the first subject, or a romantic partner. Though participants couldn’t distinguish between specific emotions conveyed through sweat, they could distinguish between neutral and moody odors – and the romantic partners were able to do it better than strangers, with those in the longest-term relationships performing the best.
Zookeepers and biologists have discovered that tigers, cheetahs, jaguars and other big cats go wild for the smell of Calvin Klein’s Obsession for Men. ­­In one Bronx Zoo experiment, cheetahs stuck around sniffing Obsession-sprayed objects for more than 11 minutes – longer than they usually linger over a meal, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Obsession is “a combination of this lickable vanilla heart married to this fresh green top note — it creates tension,” fragrance designer Ann Gottlieb, who created the Calvin Klein scent, told the WSJ in 2010. But the key kitty-attracting component may be a synthetic replica of the musk produced by the cat-like civet.
“It sparks curiosity with humans and, apparently, animals,” Gottlieb said.
Edited from Roxanne Palmer –