You don't need us to remind you that your period impacts everything from your mood to your skin. While many of the negative side effects that come with your time of the month have been well-documented, there's one small thing you may not know: your period actually influences the type of scents you're attracted to.
"Our cycle has more to do with what kind of scents and fragrances that we're attracted to than we might think," said Dr. Belisa Vranich, clinical psychologist and author of The Breathing Class. This is because when you're ovulating before your period, you're attracted to people who have high levels of testosterone. The way testosterone smells will vary, though, depending on who's doing the sniffing. For instance, one person might deem it musky while another thinks it's sweet. On the opposite end of the spectrum, your period might also repel you from certain smells. "During your period, certain scents that might normally not bother you can come off as revolting or way too strong," said Dr. Vranich. Studies have shown that women's senses of smell are especially heightened when they're on their period, implying that our olfactory sense might be closely related to the reproductive cycle. Interestingly, being on birth control might help keep your senses in check; in one study, women who were on the pill were less bothered by musk aromas and male pheromones than those who were cycling naturally. Who knew?