Do We Choose the Fabrics We Wear Based On…Hormones?


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A study presented recently by Australia’s Society for Behavioural Endocrinology offers a very weird explanation for how women choose the fabrics they wear — their choices might be based on their prenatal hormone exposure.

The study broke down 3,500 men and women into three categories, based on their overall sensitivity to touch: there were non-vibrators (less sensitive), medium-vibrators, or super-vibrators (the most sensitive). The women from each group tended to have stronger preferences about fabrics they liked or hated.

What the researchers also discovered was that the ladies’ overall sensitivity was directed by hormones — super-vibrators tended to be testosterone-driven and non-vibrators were estrogen-driven.  Medium-vibrators could fall into either camp.

From there, the researchers found that the testosterone-driven women preferred the feel of cotton or linen, whereas their estrogen-driven counterparts favored wool, fur, leather and silk.

We hope this study catches on, because we can’t wait to see how retailers will market one textile over another in an attempt to appeal to their testosterone/estrogen divided customers. Plus, if the study holds any water, it lends some credibility to that neverending promise of smell-able ads, no?