This is day 3 of our 7 day countdown to Valentine’s Day.
Oxytocin – The Love Chemical
Did you know that the feelings of love, trust and commitment can all be traced back to a molecule in your body called Oxytocin? This chemical, a neurotransmitter in your brain, is released at key moments to strengthen feelings of social recognition and bonding with other people. Without oxytocin we’d all be lonely and nearly incapable of maintaining strong relationships.
How does oxytocin work
Oxytocin, first discovered in the 1950s, is a peptide (or protein) made up of 9 key amino acids. It is secreted by the pituitary gland and binds to receptors throughout the body sending warm feelings throughout your body.
It can be released whenever you experience moments of touching or other interactions with people. Some key moments of high oxytocin production include during breastfeeding, during the birth process, and even at the point of orgasm. Both men and women produce oxytocin but men don’t feel the effects as strongly because of interference from testosterone. I love to learn about molecules like this. Who said chemicals were bad?
Oxytocin in cosmetics
So you might wonder if you could just spray oxytocin on you or your partner to change how you feel about each other. Well, there are a couple of companies who sell oxytocin sprays. For example, there is LiquidTrust and OxyCalm. But don’t expect these sprays to do much for you. While oxytocin is a powerful hormone when it’s inside your blood stream, cosmetics are not a great way to get it there. Skin lotions won’t work because it is just too big a molecule to penetrate your skin. And sprays won’t work either because it is not volatile enough to enter the body through your nasal passage.
On the other hand, at least this Beauty Brain thinks that if you’re looking to draw that special someone closer on this Valentine’s Day, a little oxytocin can’t hurt right?