Interference with Pheromones

Below I've provided some information regarding ingredients in self-care products and pheromones. For those of us less familiar with the role pheromones play, I'd like to bring an example to underline their importance in our relationships and health.

When women take hormonal birth control, it alters hormonal balance to mimic pregnancy. A side-effect of that is that when pregnant, women naturally seek out safety, finding pheromones that most closely indicate family. Makes sense, family equals safety. However, when looking for a mate (without synthetic interference), women seek pheromones which indicate greater DNA diversity by which to strengthen immunity and resistance to disease in their offspring. That means that if we are on hormonal birth control and we are seeking a mate, most likely, we will choose pheromones that indicate a brother instead of a lover, which over time can create sexual disinterest within the relationship and a potential poor DNA choice if choosing to procreate.

Reference:
https://www.cell.com/trends/ecology-evolution/fulltext/S0169-5347(09)00263-8?_returnURL=http://linkinghub.elsevier.com%2Fretrieve%2Fpii%2FS0169534709002638%3Fshowall%3Dtrue&cc=y=

Now that we got that out of the way!

Some studies suggest that synthetic fragrances could potentially impact pheromone reception. However, it's important to note that the specific effects may vary depending on the individual and the particular fragrance ingredients involved. Here's an overview with some related sources:

  1. Potential Interference of Synthetic Fragrances with Pheromones:

    • Synthetic fragrances in perfumes and other personal care products may contain chemicals that could potentially interfere with the reception of natural pheromones.
    • Some fragrance ingredients, such as phthalates, have been associated with disruptions in hormone balance, which could indirectly affect pheromone production or reception.
    • However, more research is needed to understand the specific mechanisms by which synthetic fragrances might interact with pheromones and how this may impact human behaviour and physiology.
  2. Limited Research on the Topic:

    • While there are studies examining the effects of synthetic fragrances on hormone balance and health, there is a lack of specific research directly addressing their interaction with pheromones.
    • Most studies on pheromones and human behaviour focus on natural pheromones and their role in mate attraction, social bonding, and other aspects of reproductive biology.
  3. Individual Sensitivity and Variation:

    • Individual sensitivity to synthetic fragrances may vary, and some people may be more affected by their presence than others.
    • Factors such as genetic differences, hormone levels, and prior exposure to fragrance chemicals could influence how individuals perceive and respond to synthetic fragrances and their potential effects on pheromone reception.

The following studies provide valuable insights and information on the potential health effects of synthetic fragrances and their ingredients: 

  • "Fragrance Contact Allergy: A 4-Year Retrospective Study" by Lina Hagvall et al. (2014) - Discusses the prevalence and characteristics of fragrance contact allergy.
  • "Endocrine Disruption and Human Health: Could Low-Dose Exposures Contribute to the Development of Health Effects?" by Laura N. Vandenberg et al. (2012) - Examines the potential health effects of endocrine-disrupting chemicals, some of which may be found in synthetic fragrances.
  • "Fragrance Mix II Allergic Contact Dermatitis: A Retrospective Study" by R. Ramya et al. (2019) - Investigates allergic contact dermatitis caused by fragrance mix II, a common allergen found in perfumes and cosmetics.
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