We Can Determine Personality by Smell
Our ability to judge personality is nothing to sniff at
By Mark Russell, Newser Staff
Posted Dec 5, 2011 9:00 AM CST
People can tell personality by smell, according to a new study.   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – You are what you reek? It turns out that we can tell a lot about someone's personality just by their smell, according to the New York Daily News. Sixty people in Poland wore the same T-shirt for three nights, and did not use soap, smoke, drink, or "eat odorous foods" during the study. Those shirts were then sniffed by 200 lucky volunteers, who were asked to judge the smells based on five personality traits, such as extroversion, neuroticism, and dominance.

The results weren't perfect, but the smellers' predictions about extroversion and neuroticism were about as accurate as those of raters who made their judgments after watching a video. MyHealthNewsDaily notes that the smell-testers did especially well in detecting dominance in members of the opposite sex.

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Showing 3 of 8 comments
Derni
Dec 5, 2011 9:42 AM CST
Perhaps we could smell the t-shirt of a politician before we vote for him or her? or would they all have that fishy smell?
Grandpa_Timbo
Dec 5, 2011 9:20 AM CST
I guess then that if you are an ass, you will smell like one!
professortech
Dec 5, 2011 9:12 AM CST
This should not be a big revelation since every other mammilian, and more importantly, primate group does the exact same thing e.g. use sent to communicate dominance, sexual receptivity, etc. One more chapter in the "Humans are Just Animals" book of redundancies.