Tue. Feb 20th, 2024

The Air Up is a hydration machine that smells at you. The water bottle is rather like many different water bottles apart from a melancholy across the gap the place the water comes out. It’s right here, across the spout, that you just snap in a ring-shaped pod infused with a fruity scent. Then, while you take a swig, you additionally take a sniff. The sensations of style and odor are commingled sufficient to trick your mind into considering you’re sipping fruit-flavored water, although the scent puck by no means really flavors the water inside.

If you happen to’ve been on Instagram not too long ago, you’ll have seen one of many 6 billion sponsored advertisements for the Air Up. If these advertisements have made you interested in it, let me prevent some money and time: You possibly can simply recreate the Air Up expertise by sipping some water whereas huffing a lemon-scented Glade Plug-In.

Scent Ya Later

The bottles are available in three sizes (16, 22, and 28 ounces), and also you get a selection between a tough plastic or insulated steel shell. Every bottle prices between $40 and $65, and a few odor pods are included along with your first buy. Extra pods are available in packages of three that value between $8 and $13 every. That is all very costly. Usually, you should buy an excellent water bottle for between $20 and $35.

A bottle with the scented discs.

{Photograph}: Air Up

Air Up’s central shtick is its “patented Scentaste expertise.” It’s based mostly on a neurological phenomenon referred to as retronasal olfaction, which refers to how scent impacts the notion of style behind the mouth. You will have heard the axiom that odor is 80 to 90 % of style. It’s not technically true, however there’s something to the concept, in accordance with Donald Katz, a professor of psychology at Brandeis College in Massachusetts who researches the interaction between scent and style. He says the science Air Up cites is legitimate.

“Style and odor are so intimately linked that analysis in my lab means that we’re making a mistake considering of them as two separate methods,” Katz says.

Air Up is keen to play with that connection. You load the Air Up like so: Pour common unflavored water into the bottle, then connect a silicone lid with a straw threaded by means of the center and a round indent working across the straw. Place certainly one of Air Ups’s proprietary scent pucks excessive of the straw, slide it down, and match it into the rubbery groove within the lid. Once you drink by means of the straw, the in any other case flavorless water shall be supplemented by the simultaneous odor hitting your nostril, tricking your mind into “tasting” the flavour you’re smelling.

That’s the concept, anyway.

Retronasal olfaction can closely affect how one thing tastes. In experiments, Katz says that altering the scent somebody inhales whereas consuming can change how they understand the flavour, even when the stuff of their mouth is in any other case precisely the identical. However whereas scent is a large a part of style, it isn’t a alternative for it.

“Scent modifications style, however style is not simply no matter odor tells it,” Katz says. “You possibly can stuff as a lot raspberry up your nostril as you need, that is not going to make you style raspberry.”

{Photograph}: Air Up

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