Is smell dating the next trend?

This new dating service matches couples solely on their BO…

couple landscape .jpg

This new dating service matches couples solely on their BO…

We thought that we had seen every dating trend imaginable, from eye gazing parties to matchmaking apps exclusively for gluten free users, and then along came Smell Dating: the World’s first mail odour dating service.

The New York based dating service matches couples based on their natural odour (please don’t sign us up), arguing that scent plays a more important role in romance than we might necessarily think.

While most matchmaking services would require you to submit a photo, bio and at the very least your gender or sexual preference, Smell Dating only requires one thing: a t-shirt that smells of you.

Confused and a little creeped out? Don’t panic. Here’s how it works: After signing up online and paying a £17 fee, the potential daters are each sent a brand new t-shirt in the post that they are instructed to wear for three days straight. Perfumes and deodorants are discouraged as they may overpower your natural smell but cigarette smoke and other scents that reflect your lifestyle choices are allowed.

Three days later, once your t-shirt is sufficiently grubby and smells of your natural odour, it is sent back to the company and in return you will receive 10 equally smelly t-shirts (yay!), each belonging to a potential suitor.

After giving each t-shirt a whiff and carefully selecting your favourite, you must wait to see if the feelings are mutual and if your scent is as attractive as you hope. If there is a match and you both feel that it is love at first sniff, you will be given each other’s phone numbers and voila. Job done. If not, better luck next time.

Created by the quirky digital group ‘Useless Press’, Smell Dating is still in experimental stages and currently only limited to 100 people. The idea however has promise and is very exciting, showcasing the link between scent and sexual attraction.

Studies show the strong impact that scent has on attraction, with going on to explain that 'we love how other people smell when their immune systems are different from ours – they smell sexier'.

Scent is important, there’s no doubt about it, but does it trump kindness, looks or humour? We’re going to need some convincing.

Jenny Proudfoot
Features Editor

Jenny Proudfoot is an award-winning journalist, specialising in lifestyle, culture, entertainment, international development and politics. She has worked at Marie Claire UK for seven years, rising from intern to Features Editor and is now the most published Marie Claire writer of all time. She was made a 30 under 30 award-winner last year and named a rising star in journalism by the Professional Publishers Association.