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Human pheromones work by effecting hormones that affect behavior

Posted on November 3, 2010 by jim.

Despite the evidence that pheromones effect testosterone levels and sexual arousal in mammals — including non-human primates — some researchers continue to insist that human pheromones do not exist. Marketers correctly tell you that human pheromones exist, but typically they do not tell you what pheromones are contained in the products they are trying to sell you, or why their products work — if they do. Personally, I have been too caught up in the science of human pheromones to pay much attention to marketing. But from time to time, I intend to better inform others via posts to this domain that help to explain why the pheromones marketed on this site work.

Here, I am responding to the number of relatively uninformed people who are writing essays that tell others about how pheromones work, but who fail to provide any evidence for their claims. In this case, I’ve included citations to research that helps to detail how copulins work. The citations support a scientific approach to marketing human pheromone-enhanced products, like The Scent of Eros products that I formulated.

Copulins are olfactory/pheromonal stimuli from women (human pheromones) that appear to condition increased testosterone and sexual arousal in men. Male marmosets are aroused by the olfactory/pheromonal stimuli from novel peri-ovulatory females; they exhibit increased rates of sniffing and erections and a significant elevation of serum testosterone levels (Ziegler et al., 2005). Men also show this elevation of serum testosterone levels when exposed to olfactory/pheromonal stimuli associated with ovulatory-phase women. This testosterone increase is associated with increases in the favorable assessment of photographs of women. (Jutte & Grammer, 1997). Simply put, the ovulatory-phase olfactory/pheromonal input makes the women look better to men.

Kohl (2007), noted that this testosterone response to olfactory/pheromonal input has been repeatedly indicated or reported in findings from non-human animal studies and from human studies.  In mammals, short-term exposure of males to females is linked to a testosterone increase in men, as well as in rats, mice, rabbits, bulls, rams, and monkeys.  The testosterone increase in non-human mammals is believed to be due to the effect of olfactory/pheromonal conditioning of a luteinizing hormone response that precedes the testosterone increase (Graham & Desjardins, 1980).

Jutte A & Grammer, K (1997). Female pheromones modify men’s physiology and assessments of women. International Symposium on Olfaction and Taste XII and AchemS XIX. San Diego, California.



Retired medical laboratory scientist

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James Kohl owns, and he has published books and award-winning research journal articles about human pheromones. With colleagues he was the first to show that a mixture of human pheromones increases the flirtatious behaviors of women, and increases their level of attraction to the man wearing the mixture - during a real-life social circumstance lasting 15 minutes.

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What is the vomeronasal organ (VNO)?

The vomeronasal organ (VNO) is a cone-shaped organ in the nasal cavity, which is believed to be one of the body's receptors of pheromones. More, specifically, the VNO, which is part of the accessory olfactory system in the nose, does not respond to normal scents, but may detect odorless, barely perceptible pheromones.

Other schools of thought believe that it is not the VNO but rather cells in our main olfactory system and their affects on hormones secreted by the hypothalamus that are responsible for the affects of pheromones.

Learn more about the science behind pheromones here.

What are optimized pheromones?

Optimized pheromones are lab-certified pheromone formulations that have the optimum concentration of biologically active pheromones scientifically proven to produce behavior-altering results -- particularly as sexual attractants. Optimized pheromone formulations do not necessarily contain the maximum level of pheromones available on the market, but rather contain the greatest degree (and combination)of human pheromones that trigger a conditioned biological response in humans that, in turn, dictate their sexual behavior. Optimized pheromones also release neurotransmitters that directly modify the behavior of the opposite sex, such as triggering sexual excitement. For example:

Optimized pheromones for men are scientifically proven to bring about an increase in the luteinizing hormone (LH) in women, thereby causing a woman to have a heightened sexual responsiveness to a man. This LH surge elevates a woman's predisposition towards sexual activity.

Optimized pheromones for women are scientifically proven to bring about a biochemical surge in men, thereby causing a man to have a heightened sexual responsiveness to a woman. This biochemical surge is what makes a man fiercely determined to copulate.