Forget love, it's BOGOF that sets the heart racing: Brits become more excited over bagging a bargain than finding the one

Bagging a bargain now gets us more excited than love at first sight, according to a new scientific study.

It seems the economic crisis and increased commercialism means its shopping opportunities rather than romance that sets our pulses racing.

The scientific experiment, carried out by neuropsychologists, found Brits respond with greatest excitement when shown discounted products.

A number of results confounded expectations, such as women preferring 150 off a washing machine to the heart throb Ryan Gosling.

Excitement levels hit their highest when participants in a study spotted a good bargain compared to an array of other stimulants and luxury goods

Excitement levels
hit their highest when participants in a study spotted a good bargain compared to
an array of other stimulants and luxury goods

Watching football was found to produce an average heart rate 14 per cent lower than being shown a 'buy one get one free' deal.

And one female participant's heartbeat reached a staggering 187 beats per minute while looking at a deal to save 85p on shower gel – higher than riding a roller coaster.

The consumer behavioural study was carried out by leading neuropsychologist Dr David Lewis to see how Brits respond to the different price discounts and product offers commonly used by retailers.

It was commissioned by T-Mobile to coincide with its new 'Giving Britain what Britain loves' TV ad.

In the experiment, carried out over three days, six men and six women were attached to chest monitors, skin conductors and eye tracking equipment.

These recorded the physiological signs of excitement generated by the body.

Results showed that excitement levels hit their highest when participants spotted a good bargain compared to an array of other stimulants and luxury goods.

These included the opposite sex, designer clothes, fashion accessories, expensive jewellery and sports cars.

Ryan Gosling

Women prefer 150 off a washing machine to actor Ryan Gosling, who was voted one of the sexiest men alive

Dr Lewis said: 'We've measured excitement in all kinds of various situations from the build-up to a big sports match to driving a fast car.

'Yet when it came to getting a good deal, those were some of the highest levels we have seen.

'Bagging a bargain was routinely shown to be more exciting than love at first sight – an experience that typically causes a peak in the physical symptoms of excitement shown in both men and women.'

Products marked half price or available on a 'BOGOF' deal generated the greatest level of excitement in men, quickening the pulse to nearly 90 beats per minute, more than any other offer.

Incredibly football was to be found well down the excitement list in comparison, registering an average heart rate 14 per cent lower.

The prospect of a beer didn't come close, with heart rates barely rising above the average resting rate of 75 beats per minute.

For women, the offer of Christian Louboutin shoes, Mulberry handbags and even a holiday with the girls couldn't match the levels of excitement from getting a discount.

The offer of 150 pounds off a 400 pounds washing machine generated the greatest response.

Even heartthrob Ryan Gosling, recently voted one of the sexiest men alive, couldn't get hearts racing – with pulses registering lower than the prospect of getting 50 per cent off a basket of shopping.

Dr Lewis added: 'These results show just how much Brits now love a good bargain – it seems we're fast becoming a nation of BOGOF-rodisiacs.'

Deals also caught the eye of participants more than any other stimuli.

Women spent an average of 3.9 seconds paying attention to a 50 per cent dishwasher tablet deal, compared to just 1.4 seconds looking at an image of 'Twilight' star Robert Pattinson.

Men, meanwhile, spent 4.6 seconds viewing a buy one get one free CD deal, compared to 1.7 seconds on a brand new Hugo Boss suit.

Skin conductance, a reliable measure of excitement which forms part of a standard lie detector test, showed that a '10 for the price of 4' deal was the most exciting for both sexes.

Spencer McHugh, of mobile network operator Everything Everywhere, said: 'We're well and truly a nation of bargain lovers.

'This is what we've tried to capture in our new T-Mobile ad campaign – giving Britain what Britain loves, to help them celebrate something else they love – a good bargain.'