A study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology says that sniffing men can relieve stress.
The study, by researchers at the University of British Columbia, involved 100 male/female couples. The men were given a clean t-shirt to wear for 24-hours without any deodorant, cologne, or anything else that could take away from their own natural scent.
After that, the women were given random t-shirts to smell. The shirts given were either belonging to their hubby, a random dude from the study, or were completely clean.
From there, the women went through stress tests. The results found that the subjects who smell their men’s shirts were less stressed and some could even tell their lover’s smell.
Marlise Hofer, the lead author on the study and a grad student at the University of British Columbia’s department of psychology, came up with some of her own guesses as to why the results came out this way.
“Many people wear their partner’s shirt or sleep on their partner’s side of the bed when their partner is away, but may not realize why they engage in these behaviors.”
“Our findings suggest that a partner’s scent alone, even without their physical presence, can be a powerful tool to help reduce stress.”
Plus, Frances Chen, an assistant professor at the school and a partner on the study, said:
“Our research suggests that something as simple as taking an article of clothing that was worn by your loved one could help lower stress levels when you’re far from home.”
But that’s not the end of the story. You see, this is just the follow-up of another study from the early 2000s.
The first study was conducted the same way as this one, with white t-shirts and 24-hours of sweat, but this study was based on relationships in a family.
What they found out was that the parents preferred the smells of their partners. In addition, the fathers were often disgusted by their daughter’s smell (and vice versa). Meanwhile, neither son/daughter or mother felt anything for the other’s smell.
All this research into smelling men is well and good, but we wonder if the results would change if two men were the subjects. Now, all we need is for a third study to do some smell tests for gay partners, and we’d be pretty happy.