Have you ever tried a fragrance and thought to yourself, “Wow, this smells awful?” Then you wonder why and how anyone would ever enjoy that smell. Just like our sense of taste, smells are based on preference. For example, your friend may like the smell of corpse flowers (the worst-smelling flower in the world) and burnt hair while you like the smell of roses and bonfires.
“Most people assume we all like the smell of roses and hate the smell of skunk… with the exception of irritating odors, smell is something we come to know from personal and cultural experiences.” noted lead researcher Rachel Herz, PhD, in a 2005 Brown University study.
Alan R Hirsch, the founder and neurological director of the Smell and Taste Treatment & Research Foundation, explained to NPR that “the factors that influence our sense of smell are actually a combination of cultural, genetic, and environmental factors.”
There are certain smells that almost everyone loves. From the new car smell (which may not be good for you) and freshly baked bread to Sharpies and gasoline. People enjoy a variety of aromas and find some more pleasant than others. The scents we smell can change our moods and emotions. Sometimes, it can even bring us back to long-forgotten events and memories.
Here are 10 unusual smells most people enjoy.