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Physiol Behav. 2002 Mar;75(3):367-75.

Pheromonal influences on sociosexual behavior in young women.

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1
Department of Psychology, San Francisco State University, San Francisco, CA 94132-4168, USA. mccoy@sfsu.edu

Abstract

A double-blind, placebo-controlled study of a synthesized putative female pheromone was conducted with regularly menstruating, university women (N=36, mean age=27.8). The pheromone formula was derived from earlier work investigating the underarm secretions of fertile, sexually active, heterosexual women. A vial of either synthesized pheromone or placebo was selected blindly and added to a subject's perfume. Subjects recorded seven sociosexual behaviors and reported them weekly across three menstrual cycles. Beginning with Day 8 of each cycle, the first cycle contained a 2-week baseline period followed by an experimental period of as many as 3 weeks each from the next two cycles for a maximum of 6 weeks. The 19 pheromone and 17 placebo subjects did not differ significantly in age, weight, body mass index, dating status or ethnicity nor in reported accuracy, back-filling data, perception of a positive effect or perfume use. Placebo subjects were significantly taller than pheromone subjects. Except for male approaches, subjects did not differ significantly at baseline in average weekly sociosexual behaviors. A significantly greater proportion of pheromone users compared with placebo users increased over baseline in frequency of sexual intercourse, sleeping next to a partner, formal dates and petting/affection/kissing but not in frequency of male approaches, informal dates or masturbation. Three or more sociosexual behaviors increased over baseline for 74% of pheromone users compared with 23% of placebo users. We conclude that this synthesized pheromone formula acted as a sex attractant pheromone and increased the sexual attractiveness of women to men.

PMID:
11897264
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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