Cuffing Season Relationships Happen Because Of Your Body's Hormonal Response To Winter

Ah, cuffing season. A time for cuddling, kissing under mistletoe, and watching wintery romantic comedies on repeat. (Or, in my case, a time for seeking out cuffing-season mates who are down to re-enact Olympic ice skating routines with me.) But I wondered — just because people crave companionship when the temperatures drop, does that mean they're actually more likely to get into a relationship during cuffing season? The short answer: yes, yes you are. Research even says so.

Several studies have been conducted around why you are literally so ~warm for his (or her) form~ during the winter months, and the evidence is pretty fascinating. Not only are you less likely to break up during cuffing season (despite the fact that the Turkey Dump is very, very real), you're also more likely to seek out a relationship when the temperature drops. In a study of its users, dating app Hinge even found that men are 15 percent more likely to be looking for some sort of relationship during winter than any other time of year.

Here are three explanations for the phenomenon that is cuffing season, and three excuses to lock your new beau down for the next several months.

Breaking Up Is (Literally) Hard to Do

Statistically speaking, couples are less likely to break up (or, at least less likely to report their breakups) during the holidays. On December 25 specifically, Facebook reports that there are generally 34 percent more new relationships than breakups reported to the site. While there's not a ton of info explaining why breakups decrease around this time, I think it's safe to say that no one wants to be the person who dumped their S.O. right around Christmas. That, and the fact that Mariah Carey's "All I Want For Christmas Is You" is playing in virtually every department store probably doesn't hurt.

That said, there is often an increase in breakups around New Year's Day — so be sure to double-check BAE's gift wish list and pop a few mints before your New Year's kiss, I guess? Just to be on the safe side.

You Need the Extra Warmth

Snuggling up to someone during a snow storm sounds great, right? I agree, and so do researchers. Apparently, the colder it gets, the more likely we are to seek out psychological warmth — whether that comes in the form of a sappy Nicholas Sparks novel or a huggable stranger.

If you go with the latter and kick off a new romance, your body will also start producing more oxytocin (adorably referred to as the "cuddling hormone"), putting you in a more positive emotional state.

Your Hormones Are Egging You On

Research shows that both men and women experience increases in their testosterone levels during fall and winter, meaning everyone is a little more DTF than usual this time of year.

Studies have also shown that men literally find women's bodies more attractive in winter than in summer, which begs the questions — why do I ever stress about "bikini body" workout routines, and should I be drinking eggnog all year long? I think both answers are yes. Hard yes.

All in all, it's safe to say that the easiest season to catch the flu is also the easiest season to catch feels.

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