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We are hopeless at telling when we have goosebumps


Feeling cold, excited or scared can cause us to develop goosebumps and our hair to stand up – but we may not realise it

Bele Olmez/Alamy

You might think you know when something has made your hair stand on end, but a study shows we generally can’t tell whether or not we have goosebumps, or where on our body they are.

Jonathon McPhetres at Durham University, UK, and his colleagues have done several studies looking at goosebumps over the past few years. “There’s very, very little research on them and it’s just fascinating because it’s one of those things that we’re so familiar with,” says …

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