Cleanliness IS Next to Godliness, Says New Study

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windex

Or at least a good way to get strangers to trust each other. ScienceDaily is reporting a new study, "The Smell of Virtue" which finds that subjects become more generous in standard trust games when a room has been spritzed with Windex. No, really. Here's the summary:

The first experiment evaluated fairness.

As a test of whether clean scents would enhance reciprocity, participants played a classic "trust game." Subjects received $12 of real money (allegedly sent by an anonymous partner in another room). They had to decide how much of it to either keep or return to their partners who had trusted them to divide it fairly. Subjects in clean-scented rooms were less likely to exploit the trust of their partners, returning a significantly higher share of the money.

  • The average amount of cash given back by the people in the "normal" room was $2.81. But the people in the clean-scented room gave back an average of $5.33.

The second experiment evaluated whether clean scents would encourage charitable behavior.

Subjects indicated their interest in volunteering with a campus organization for a Habitat for Humanity service project and their interest in donating funds to the cause.

  • Participants surveyed in a Windex-ed room were significantly more interested in volunteering (4.21 on a 7-point scale) than those in a normal room (3.29). 
  • 22 percent of Windex-ed room participants said they'd like to donate money, compared to only 6 percent of those in a normal room.

Who needs oxytocin when you can wow the ladies with Windex? Coming soon: Windex pour homme. Rebottled to compete against Armani's Attitude or Calvin Klein's MAN? 

Whole ScienceDaily recap here.

NEXT: Seven Years for Bong Water

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  1. Who needs oxytocin wneh you can wow the ladies with Windex?

    Typo, Ron.

  2. Anyway, all that comes to mind is Annette Bening stripping down in American Beauty and frantically cleaning before the open house.

    1. You like being nailed by the king!

  3. So this is why I have the scented candles and chicks stay over longer when my place is all spiffy clean? Pretty much happens only right after I have moved to a new place.

    1. It also helps if you cover-up the scent of Steve Smith. Women have evolved a useful fear response to his spore.

      1. When the hell was he in there? I need more ammo.

    2. So, I got the Yankee Candle ad to come up. Now where is the ammunition ad?

  4. SugarFree: Thanks. Fixed.

    1. You capitalized Godliness too. Thought that was a no-no in these parts?

    2. No problemo. And other 1990s catchphrases.

  5. They say that cleanliness is next to Godliness, but at our house…it’s next to impossible.

  6. JESUS SAVES!

    PASSES TO NOAH!

    HE SHOOTS…HE SCORES!!!!!

  7. STEVE SMITH NOT ABLE HELP SMELL! IS GLANDULAR ISSUE, LIKE TONY’S FAT HAUNCHES! ARRGHH SMASH NUTRASWEET FOR INSENSITIVITY!

    1. STEVE SMITH NEED ANAL GLANDS EXPRESSED REGULARLY!

  8. making the godliness comparison was mandatory… the study was done at Brigham Young University.

  9. Mormon Mom Pin-up Calendar

    From the creators of the popular Men on a Mission Calendar comes this hot addition fresh from the oven: Hot Mormon Muffins: A Taste of Motherhood. The debut 2010 edition features twelve beautiful Mormon mothers posing in kitschy vintage pin-up style. Much like the missionary men before them, these sexy moms have dared to step into the spotlight to breakdown stereotypes and extend a hand of friendship beyond religious and social boundaries. Shot in a centerfold format with oversized imagery, the calendar features the ladies’ favorite muffin recipes with a portion of the proceeds going to Breast Cancer research.

    1. So they’re MMILFs? Are they in their special magic underwear?

  10. I’d be curious to find out whether this owrkd the same way in India, or some other country where body odor is not considered inappropriate.

    It could be culture specific. I.e. people are more likelt to trust members of the same cultural group. In North America, body odor is a signifier of low social status. In other cultures it isn’t.

  11. This really shouldn’t be that surprising. If the room was made to resemble, say, the environment of an Indian slum, I’d wager you’d register a substantial decline in the observed altruism.

  12. This means I am an atheist; (which I am).

  13. This was all treated and discussed in My Big Fat Greek Wedding.

    http://www.ew.com/ew/article/0,,331424,00.html#

  14. Well, that’s good and all, but what if your particular deity is not particularly trustworthy? Then this means cleanliness is the opposite of godliness. On that note,

    BLOOD FOR THE BLOOD GOD! SKULLS FOR THE SKULL THRONE!

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