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This Is Why You Hate The Sound Of Your Own Voice

Inteeeeresting.
PHOTO: Gossip Girl/CW

If there's one thing worse than waking up with a hangover, it's waking up with a hangover to find out that you've posted a 139-second Snapchat story with sound.

No, not because you can't take the flashbacks of some impromptu karaoke session of your barkada, but because you have to listen back to your voice singing along.

And while you might have a pretty decent voice, it's not uncommon for people to dislike the way they sound when they listen to it back. Here's why, according to experts from University College London.


First things first: You hear your voice back entirely differently from how other people hear it. When you hear people talking, sound waves travel through the air and into your ears, vibrating your ear drums. Your brain then turns those vibrations into sound.

On the flip side, when you’re the one talking, your vocal cords and airways also vibrate. That means that you receive two sources of sound: the sound waves that travel into your ears from your own voice, as well as vocal cord vibrations.

Martin Birchall, professor of laryngology (the voice box) at UCL explains: “When we talk, it’s like everyone hears the sound through speakers, but we’re hearing it through a cave complex inside our own heads. The sound is going around our sinuses, all the empty spaces in our heads and the middle part of our ears, which changes the way we hear sounds compared to what other people hear."

So, when you listen to your own voice IRL, it's a combination of both sounds combined—yet when you're listening to a recording, you're only listening to the external stimulus through your ear drums, and you're totally not used to it—which makes you dislike it.

Pretty interesting, right? Maybe give yourself a break the next time you're recoiling at that Instagram story.

This article originally appeared on Cosmopolitan.com/uk. Minor edits have been made by the Cosmo.ph editors.