Graham was recognized in November 2000 by the Guinness Book of Records as the record holder for collecting navel lint. Graham collects about 3.03 mg per day of belly button lint. "Some people gaze into their navel for inspiration. I look into mine and see navel fluff," says Barker, whose aim is to collect enough navel pickings to stuff a pillow.
Graham found that his navel fluff changed over time starting with a green tinge, then red and more recently blue. He attributed this color variation to changes over time in bath towel colors.
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Reasons for belly button fluff have been speculated about for years until Dr. Karl Kruszelnicki of the University of Sydney, Australia surveyed 5000 people in his navel lint survey. He found that:
- Navel lint consists primarily of stray fibres from one's clothing, mixed with some dead skin cells and strands of body hair.
- Contrary to expectations, navel lint appears to migrate upwards from underwear rather than downwards from shirts or tops. The migration process is the result of the frictional drag of body hair on underwear, which drags stray fibres up into the navel.
- Women experience less navel lint because of their finer and shorter body hairs. Conversely, older men experience it more because of their coarser and more numerous hairs.
- Navel lint's color appears in a characteristic blue-grey. The color is most likely an average of all clothing colors worn.
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