Why do babies smell so good?
The science behind that newborn scent.
By Livia Gamble
November 21 2018
It’s a fact that’s often joked about, but does anyone really know why babies smell so good?
While some have put it down to baby powders and lotions, it turns out there's a scientific reason behind their unique scent.
According to SciShow, the host Michael Aranda explains the smell could be due to a whitish fluid - the vernix caseosa — which coats the baby’s skin as they leave the birth canal. While it's washed off immediately, the smell may linger.
Agreeing with this theory, George Preti, Ph.D., an analytical chemist at the Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia told Women’s Health another possibility is to do with a baby’s sweat glands and metabolism, which change once the bub begins eating and drinking.
Another reason for the smell could be evolution's way of ensuring babies are nurtured and loved.
Helen Fisher, Ph.D., a biological anthropologist and professor at Rutgers University in New Jersey told the publication: “Big eyes, a rosy glow, rolls of fat—our brains are hard-wired to recognise these features as appealing, compelling us to become attached to newborns and want to help them survive."