Belly Button Lint

I never saw any real belly button lint until today – I can’t say anything else. Great news girls, we suffer from less belly button lint than men! That is so comforting to know! See other wiki info below:

Navel lint, or more commonly belly button lint, belly button fluff, navel fluff, or miff miff, is an accumulation of fluffy fibres in one’s navel.

Many people find that, at the beginning and end of the day, a small lump of fluff has appeared in the navel cavity. The reasons for this have been the subject of idle speculation for many years but in 2001, Dr. Karl Kruszelnicki of theUniversity of Sydney, Australia, undertook a systematic survey to determine the ins and outs of navel lint. His primary findings were as follows:[1]

  • Navel lint consists primarily of stray fibers from one’s clothing, mixed with some dead skin cells and strands of body hair.
  • Contrary to expectations, navel lint appears to migrate upwards from underwear rather than downwards from shirts or tops. The migration process is the result of the frictional drag of body hair on underwear, which drags stray fibers up into the navel.
  • Women experience less navel lint because of their finer and shorter body hairs. Conversely, older men experience it more because of their coarser and more numerous hairs.
  • Navel lint’s color appears in a characteristic bluegray. The color is most likely an average of all clothing colors worn.[2]
  • The existence of navel lint is entirely harmless, and requires no corrective action.

Dr. Kruszelnicki was awarded the Ig Nobel Prize for Interdisciplinary Research in 2002.[3]

Graham Barker of Perth, Western Australia, is in the Guinness Book of Records as the record holder for collecting navel lint. He has been collecting navel lint almost every day for over 20 years since 17 January 1984. He collects about 3.03mg per day. Contrary to the research of Dr. Kruszelnicki, his lint was in a particular shade of red[4] for six years and then turned green, correlating with a change of his bath towels from red to green[5].

Austrian scientist Georg Steinhauser has also researched on the subject.[6][7]

 

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