Friday, February 27, 2009

Scent

Individual smells

Our sense of smell is one I believe we far too often overlook. Smell can convey a lot of information to animals about predators or other animals nearby, territory, mating, and whether or not food is good to eat, just to name a few. On humans we don't see to use it for much other than seeking out food, and perhaps letting us know when there's a gas leak.

It's no mystery that smell is closely linked with memory. Evolutionarily speaking this makes sense -- we find out what's good and what's bad through smell and thus are able to determine the best course of action from their. Most often if something smells rancid or rotten, it is, and eating it would probably do us harm. On the other hand, if something smells pleasant there's a good chance it's good for us to eat, or at least not harmful. You get the idea. We can also learn a large amount about someone from their smell; if someone is clean, disease free, and in good health, we'll most likely find their smell pleasant. If they're not well kept, have an infection or some other health issues, there's a good chance they'll emit a less attractive scent; that's not to say it will necessarily be a bad smell, it just won't be a pleasant one.

This brings up the idea of cologne/perfume -- something external we apply to ourselves to make our smell more attractive. There are two main advantages to this: the first being that it makes our smell more pleasant and thus more attractive, giving the impression that we're in good health and thus a good mate, and the second being that it connects that scent to us. If we have a certain scent that is always with us, others will begin to associate that smell with us, presuming that it is not already connected to someone else in their mind. An example of this is Tommy Hilfiger's Tommy Girl perfume: I knew a girl named Megan Hunter when I was 15 who wore it and to this day whenever I smell it memories of her briefly flash through my mind. We never dated or had a relationship, but we were friends and she was the only girl I know who wore/wears it. Almost a decade later, that smell is still tied to her.

I wear cologne occasionally. I picked up a small bottle of Giorgio Armani's Acqua Di Gio and it's been the one I've worn ever since. I haven't worn it for awhile since it is expensive and so daily wear isn't always worth it, and I've known/dated a few girls who are allergic to it which again makes wearing it a bit of a problem. But recently I've decided to wear it again. Most girls tend to give it favorable reviews and I think it works for me.

I am not a lumberjack

While there is something vaguely metrosexual about wearing cologne -- you don't hear about lumberjacks putting on cologne in the morning -- it's more me than anything hyper masculine.

This leads me to the reason for all this: what do you think about perfumes/colognes?

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