Effect of composition of olfactory cues on impressions of personality
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Ninety female undergraduates participated in an experiment investigating whether composition of 3 fragrances (perfumes) influenced impressions of personality traits of people who would wear each fragrance. Analysis of covariance with the variance due to liking of the fragrance (a covariate) removed, revealed that fragrance composition influenced impressions of personality. Impressions made of affiliated fragrances (oriental and chypre) were more closely aligned than impression of the dissimilar (floral) fragrance for the multi-item uninhibited and traditional male factors and single item traits such as aggressive, confident, and assertive according to Tukey’s tests. The floral fragrance produced significantly (p < .05) lower ratings in these instances. The findings suggest that compositional components of fragrances (olfactory cues) were used in formation of impressions. This has implications for research of the role of olfactory cues in social and professional interactions.