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Image / Editorial

Cuddlr: New App for Spooning with Strangers


by IMAGE
25th Sep 2014
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Natalie Portman and Ashton Kutcher cuddling in bed.

If there’s one thing we could all do with more of, whether we’d like to admit it or not, it’s hugs. All of the snuggles, we want it now. As will soon be the case for your every human desire, there’s now an app for that. While Tinder seeks to find you a date or a romantic mate, Cuddlr satisfies your want for just that, a big cuddle.

The sad thing, however, is the idea that people would have to recruit total strangers to satisfy this need, when you’d like to imagine a friend or family member could do the deed. While we might give a casual hug to someone we’ve just met as we introduce ourselves, the standard idea of cosy snuggles, when you’re little spoon and they’re big spoon, tends to remain within the realm of intimate relationships. Unless you’re the kind of person who hands out free hugs on the street. If so, fair play to you, keep up the good work.

Apparently, this isn’t a romantic or a sexual thing at all, it’s not about pairing up single cuddlers with other available cuddlers in the hopes that a life full of cuddling lies before them; you simply hug them and leave them. And this is supposed to make you feel better.
Interestingly, you’ll soon get an idea of just how good a cuddler you are, as your profile will tot up your best ratings from previous folk who’ve had the pleasure of getting cosy with you. Per profile, you’ll get their name, their location, their cuddling track record and their photo. Good luck weeding out the creeps.

Why is it, though, that we all love to cuddle so much? As science has told us before, hugging others, even in a ?non sexual way, can increase our serotonin and dopamine levels which are the goodies when it comes to your mood. Person to person contact also reduces your stress levels as the cortisol your body produces – the less than savoury hormone, responsible for all baddies including anxiety – lowers with their touch.

Speaking with Salon, the app’s founder explains how it started as a joke before growing into what could potentially be a very lucrative business idea:

“The app idea came from our designer, Jeff Kulak. We talked about it initially as a joke, the name being a play on the common ?-r? trope for apps. But then we both quickly decided that there’s a real need for this, that we’d both actually use that app if it existed, and that it was technically feasible for us to make it happen. I sketched out some screen flow ideas and shared an early demo with Jeff. He gave it the design look that you see, and then it was all about fit and finish, and making sure people could go from downloading the app to finding people to actually cuddling with them as seamlessly as possible.”

Like us here at IMAGE, you’re probably wondering how it will work, will it not be the most awkward thing? Charlie Williams tells Salon:?For a first-time cuddle you’ll probably want to start by saying hello, introducing yourselves and having a little talk about what you’d like from the cuddle: length, location, sitting or lying down, and so on. It’s possible that you’ll discover a mismatch here – both people only want to be the little spoon, say – in which case you can compromise or call off the cuddle. Nearly all the time, though, I’d hope people can find some form of contact that will work for both of them. If you meet the person and anything feels uncomfortable or ?off,? we of course don’t recommend you continue with the cuddle. It’s OK to politely decline if you feel in any way unsafe or creeped out, although if it’s something the other person might be unaware of you may find a diplomatic way to let them know without hurting their feelings.

Would you be into it? Is your life lacking in spoonage?

@CarolineForan

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