Mystery: Goose Bumps

Have you ever been listening to a great piece of music and felt a chill run up your spine? Or goose bumps tickle your arms and shoulders?

The experience is called frisson (pronounced free-sawn), a French term meaning “aesthetic chills,” and it feels like waves of pleasure running all over your skin. Some researchers have even dubbed it a “skin orgasm.”

goose bumps legs

What are they?

Each hair follicle has a tiny muscle attached to it. When those muscles contract, they make their hair stand upright while stimultaneously pulling down the skin around each hair. So the bumps themselves aren’t exactly popping out the rest of your skin is tugged down.

What’s the cause?

The hormone adrenaline, which our bodies release when we are cold, scared, or otherwise emotional.

What’s the point?

Many animals fight cold by puffing their hair out to trap a warm layer of air. But humans are no longer hairy enough to feel that effect.

Listeners who experienced frisson also scored high for a personality trait: “openness to experience.”

Now you don’t have to be ashamed from the reaction of goose bumps, right? So next time when you are feeling cold or listening to your favorite song, just kick back and let the goose bumps do their job!

Source: Women’s Health

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