Well guys, perfume may not be a bad choice for a Valentine’s gift.  Several scientific studies have indicated that women have a better sense of smell than men.  Findings also indicate that women consider smell the single most important variable in mate choice.

Certainly odour is a key factor when it comes to romance in the insect and animal kingdom.  Both animals and insects use chemicals called pheromones to send signals that stimulate romantic interest.  The chemical signals emitted by some species of male mice are powerful enough to actually promote sexual development in nearby female mice.  A male cockroach is so turned on by female cockroach pheromones that he will actually try to mate with a pheromone-treated glass rod!

While humans hopefully approach matters of the heart in a more thoughtful way, considering the moral and spiritual aspects as well as the physical, research indicates that in our case too, certain odours arouse interest more than others.  In one experiment it was claimed that men were more aroused by the smell of lavender combined with pumpkin pie, while women went wild over liquorice and cucumber.  While men were not turned off by any particular smell, there were certain odours that definitely seemed a turnoff for women. Barbecue smoke was one such scent.

So next time you’re planning a romantic Valentine’s Day strategy, remember there may be a scientific basis for choosing perfume over steak.