Bae’s really soft skin is an illusion created by your brain during sex
You brain makes it feel softer for intimate moments
Your brain unconsciously makes your sexual partner’s skin feel softer than it really is during intimate situations, according to new research from UCL.
Researchers reporting in the journal Current Biology, found people consistently rated the skin of another person softer than their own, whether it actually was or not.
The paper suggests this phenomenon may exist to enhance sexual relationships through touch.
The academics who carried out the study performed six different experiments to understand why people’s skin feels so soft to the touch.
They found that your brain creates an illusion that another person’s skin is softer, even when it is not.
The illusion came into effect when people touched hairy skin, such as a foream, and when they touched the skin at a slow, stroking speed, similar to how you might stroke bae during Netflix and chill.
The person being stroked feels pleasure because they have sensory cells specifically tuned in to this slow, comforting touch, which causes them to feel a warm, happy feeling.
But, stroking in this intimate way also gives pleasure to the person doing the touching, thanks to the illusion their partner’s skin is silky soft.
The “social softness illusion” in the mind of the toucher is triggered only in certain intimate places and situations.
Dr Katerina Fotopoulou who led the study said: “The illusion reveals a largely automatic and unconscious mechanism by which giving pleasure is receiving pleasure.”
Earlier studies showed that touching soft and smooth things stimulates parts of the brain associated with emotion and reward.
The scientists also suggested that this illusion of other people being softer ensures reaching out and touching another person comes as its own reward, helping us bond and make all types of relationships.