Lavender is generally used in aromatherapy to promote relaxation, and even sleep. And now, a team of researchers have shown that these calming effects can also help boost an important social sentiment: trust. A study has proven that people gave significantly more money when they were exposed to the lavender scent as opposed to peppermint — meaning they felt a greater sense of mutual trust. These findings are interesting for the implications they could have on how we relate to each other. “The smell of lavender may also be helpful in sport psychology to enhance trust and build team spirit, for example in the case of team games such as soccer and volleyball,” said researcher Roberta Sellaro. So stock up those locker rooms with some nice lavender-scented air fresheners—just don’t go overboard! Feeling too relaxed and sleepy is probably not the best game-winning strategy.

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