London, Feb 28 (ANI): A scientist has solved the 'mystery' behind belly button fluff after gazing at his own navel for three years!
Georg Steinhauser, a chemist, has discovered a type of body hair that traps stray pieces of lint and draws them into the navel.
After studying 503 pieces of fluff from his own belly button, the expert reached the conclusion.
Chemical analysis revealed the pieces of fluff were not solely composed of cotton from clothing.
Instead, wrapped up in the lint were dead pieces of skin, fat, sweat and dust.
Steinhauser's observations showed that 'small pieces of fluff first form in the hair and then end up in the navel at the end of the day'.
Writing in the journal Medical Hypotheses, he said the scaly structure of the hair enhances the 'abrasion of minuscule fibres from the shirt' and directs the lint towards the belly button.
"The hair's scales act like a kind of barbed hooks," The Telegraph quoted him, as saying.
"Abdominal hair often seems to grow in concentric circles around the navel," he added.
Steinhauser established that shaving one's belly will result in a fluff-free navel - but only until the hairs grow back.
Steinhauser said: "The question of the nature of navel fluff seems to concern more people than one would think at first glance.
"We hope we have been able to provide information for doctors when they are next confronted with the simple question of 'why some belly buttons collect so much lint and others do not'." (ANI)