Ah, January. You're officially the most depressing month of the year. We're all skint, sick and tired of slogging off to work in the dark, and freezing, bitterly, icy cold in our bones despite the extra layer of chub we appear to have developed over Christmas (damn you, advent calendar).
But for those of us whose relationships are in need of a bit of TLC—and indeed those who are hoping 2018 is the year they meet that special someone—there is some good news: the winter months, it seems, may actually be the perfect recipe for love, thanks to all the lovely smells they produce.
Yes, you read that right. A survey has revealed the weird and wonderful scents most likely to get us in the mood for romance, and they belong firmly in the 'winter' camp where olfactory output is concerned.
As you'd expect, perfume and aftershave are among the biggest contenders for smells with aphrodisiac qualities—so make sure you give yourself a liberal squirt of whatever scents you found in your Christmas stocking. But also getting us in the mood for love are the scents of winter itself: log fires, cashmere, leather, rain, vanilla, mulled wine, mixed spices and cinnamon.
If you're trying to inject a little romance into your home life, the best scents to get a-wafting include Sunday roasts, baking bread or cakes, coffee, freshly washed clothes, apple crumble, biscuits and gingerbread.
Dr Lynda Shaw,
cognitive neuroscientist and psychologist, said: "When we inhale a scent it
reaches the olfactory receptor cells at the top of our nose and then travels to
the limbic system in our brains, resulting in chemical and physical
"The limbic system is associated with memory, emotion and mood which therefore explains why our sense of scent plays such a powerful role in physical attraction."
So there you have it - forget detoxing; this January, bake more cakes. All in the name of love, of course.