Is body sweat the key to compatibility?

Is body sweat the key to compatibility?

  • Read Time 2 min read
  • Date Feb 14, 2022
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Be honest: do you secretly love the scent of your partner’s sweaty gym kit or how they smell after a heavy work out? It’s not a weird fetish. Our sense of smell plays a big part in determining who we find attractive.
In New York, there’s an innovative dating company called Smell Dating that has ripped up the typical algorithms used by the classic matchmaking apps & works primarily through scent matching, going straight to the physical response & animal attraction that makes us tick. Applicants are sent a T-shirt that they must wear for a few days and then return to the company, who then send back swatches from suitable sweaty suitors for review.
In an interview in 2016, the founder of Smell Dating, Tega Brain, told The Guardian that “generally the people who smell better to you are genetically different to you.” Which makes sense when you think about it; it’s one of nature’s many clever ways of widening the gene pool to help produce strong, healthy offspring that have a better chance of reaching maturity. Who knew that passion could be so practical?
When it comes to dating & relationships, here are some helpful hints about how smell can impact our ability to sniff out the right partner.

On a first date? Don’t overdo it on the fragrance or aftershave

You’d think from all the glossy adverts that dosing yourself in a designer scent is a sure fire way to increase your sexiness, but overdoing the perfume or aftershave can be counterproductive to your pulling power by drowning out your own intoxicating aroma. Play it down in the early days to give your partner more chance to sniff out the real you.

Women are more sensitive to bodily aromas

When it comes to choosing a prospective partner, scientific studies have shown that women, regardless of sexuality, are more in tune with body odour & find it more sexually arousing compared with men, who tend to be more visually oriented. So, if you like dating women, how you perform in the pit department is going to impact on potential dates.

Contraception can alter your sense of smell

Turns out, you can’t sniff out Mr. Right when you’re the pill. Studies have shown hormonal birth control can alter a woman’s sense of smell, potentially steering her towards a genetically similar mate and lead to less fireworks in the bedroom over time. At the start of a new relationship it might be worth using other forms of prophylactics, like condoms, to make sure that the chemistry is definitely right.


Worse smells = waning attraction

On paper, someone might seem like the perfect match. However, if you’re finding their personal scent a turn off, it’s a red flag. we don’t habituate to repellent smells, meaning it’s not something that you will learn to like, so trust your gut & move on. Finding your current partner’s body aroma less appealing? It can be an indication that the relationship is running out of steam, especially as the knock on effect is often less intimacy.