The Simple Thing That Makes You Sexier, According To Science

You might appear younger, too.

sexy woman with finger on lip getty

Every day, we are exposed to thousands of advertisements, all telling us that buying this certain product will change our lives forever.

And while we don't typically believe in those claims, sometimes they hold true.

We've seen thousands of perfume commercials over the years that feature young models and actresses claiming that a certain perfume makes women sexy. They promise that you can seduce someone just with a few spritzes on your sensual zones — your neck, your wrists, your torso, and other areas.


But does perfume actually make you seem like that seductress instantly? Or does it actually turn people off?

RELATED: These 20 Scents Are Scientifically Proven To Turn Men On

After all, we do know those people who are actually allergic to perfumes that promise to attract rather than repel.

As it turns out, pleasant odors make women appear more attractive.

According to one study, the dazzling perfume commercials aren't lying to you. That little bottle can make you appear sexier and more attractive, and, for some ladies, younger.

Monell Chemical Senses Center released a study, finding that women's faces are more attractive when accompanied with pleasant odors.


Cognitive neuroscientist Janina Seubert believes that this may show a common site of neural processing in the brain.

It is, however, not clear whether scent can influence real visual perception of facial features or how we evaluate the face emotionally in the brain.

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"Odor pleasantness and facial attractiveness integrate into one joint emotional evaluation. This may indicate a common site of neural processing in the brain," researchers concluded.

The study surveyed 18 young adults, and included both male and female participants.

Researchers found that things like wrinkles and blemishes along with perfume actually made a woman's face be perceived as being older, while a younger woman who sprayed on perfume seemed younger.


In addition to these findings, researchers also found that when both age groups wore something with an unpleasant smell, they seemed similar in age. 

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"Visual age cues strongly influenced age perception during pleasant odor stimulation, making older faces look older and younger faces look younger," the study said. "This effect was weakened in the presence of unpleasant odors, so that younger and older faces were perceived to be more similar in age."


Added Jean-Marc Dessirier, co-author of the study and Lead Scientist at Unilever, "These findings have fascinating implications in terms of how pleasant smells may help enhance natural appearance within social settings. The next step will be to see if the findings extend to evaluation of male facial attractiveness."

It will certainly be interesting to see if the same effect applies to men when accompanied by pleasant- or foul-smelling odors. Because it shouldn't just be women who are rated based on attractiveness.

And in the meantime, we can all be happy that our investment in our favorite perfume is a good one after all.


RELATED: Can This Fragrance Make Men Fall In Love?

Nicole Weaver is a senior writer for Showbiz Cheat Sheet whose work has been featured in New York Magazine, Teen Vogue, and more.

Editor's Note: This article was originally posted on April 6, 2015 and was updated with the latest information.