I know you hate that feeling when your man is not around. The loneliness sometimes can be so overwhelming. However, I have some good news for you. According to a recent study, wearing your boyfriend’s clothes proves to be good for your mental health. After all, what could be more soothing than slipping into the clothes of someone you love. His over-sized hoodie or favorite sweatshirt that smells just like him is actually good for your mental health.
The University of British Colombia conducted this study. It was based on data that was collected from 96 heterosexual couples. The men were asked to put on new t-shirts for a day without any cologne or eating certain foods that could potentially alter the way they smelled naturally. The t-shirts were then frozen to maintain the scents and later on given to the women randomly to smell. This meant that it wasn’t always their partner.
The secret is in the scent.
According to researchers, getting close and personal with your partner’s smell by putting on his clothes lowers the amount of stress hormone cortisol in the brain. Interestingly, women who smelled a stranger’s t-shirt were even more stressed as the level of cortisol hormone went up. The most logical explanation could be the stranger’s shirt made them even more depressed by the fact that their man wasn’t around. This could potentially make them feel more alone.
The findings encouraged the researchers even more.
The UBC department of psychology grad student, who was also the lead author, Malise Hofer, stated that the study further revealed that many people put on their partner’s t-shirt and even slept on their partner’s side of the bed when he was not around. They mostly do so while unconscious of the fact that it actually soothed them. The research findings also revealed that a partner’s scent alone and not just their physical presence was enough to reduce stress.
Evolution definitely plays a role in the outcome.
Our inner fear of the unknown is what Hoffer believes explains the outcome of this study. Most people even from a young age fear strangers, especially of strangers of the male gender. It triggers the flight response which leads to high levels of cortisol or the stress hormone. This she says could happen without you being fully aware of it.
This could be the solution if you are in a long-distance kind of relationship.
The findings of the study reveal that just the scent of the person you love is enough to reduce stress levels and any negative emotions. This, therefore, could be just what you need if you have to be away from your partner for an extended period or you are in a long-distance relationship. Feeling their presence by wearing their t-shirt could greatly improve your moods and release your stress.
In a nutshell, the bottom line is that wearing your man’s over-sized clothes could actually be a good thing. According to this study, this reduces the levels of stress hormones and could yield good results for the general well-being of your mental health. Go ahead and give it a shot!