Subliminal messages are simply messages that are sent below the threshold so that we receive them, but do not realize that we received them.

Subliminal messages are sent directly to our subconscious mind, the part of our mind that is developed in very early childhood, that allows us to learn at extremely fast pace, and also governs our feelings, emotions, habits and thoughts.

On the other hand, the job of our conscious mind is to weed out information and decide which of it will be processed by the subconscious mind.

Early Research

In 1897 Dr. E.W.Scripture was the first man that talked about the existence of subliminal messages. In his book he wrote that one man can be subtly persuaded by another, if another used subtle cover messages.

In 1900 Knight Dunlap conducted a first experiment to see if he could influence the opinions people had of the length of an object, simply by subtly playing with shadows. He was successful in proving that he could.

During WWII subliminal messages were used by pilots to recognize enemy planes easier. They were showed flashing images of enemy planes, for a split of a second.

Usage in advertising

After a 1957 experiment where results showed that 20% more people bought popcorn, and 50% more people bought a specific drink in a theatre projection of a movie during which subliminal messages like “Drink More” and “Eat Popcorn” were flashed, there was a log of public outrage.

The outrage culminated in the 1970s, a time when advertisers used subliminal messaging mostly to subtly allude to sex so they could get the people to associate their brand with the positive feelings people have when they are thinking of sex.

The culmination lead to the ban of subliminal messaging in the United States, United Kingdom and Canada.

The 1957 research was conducted again, 50 years after the first one. This time, 81% of delegates of an International Brand Marketing Conference of 2007 chose the brand that was subliminally suggested to them, against another brand that had no subliminal advertising.

Self Help Movement

Today subliminal messages are heavily used by proponents of the self help movement.

People understood that if subliminal messages were capable of influencing their buying decisions, they might as well use them to get rid of different phobias, addictions like smoking or gambling, or just to use subliminals to gain more motivation, confidence, self belief, or perhaps to relax their minds or bodies, or to lose weight.


It is important to note that subliminal messages are not able to make you do something against your will.

For example, if the people at the theatre in 1957 were not thirsty or hungry, subliminal messages could not make them drink more or eat popcorn.

All subliminal messages can do is influence you o drink one type of drink over another drink, or to eat popcorn instead of a candy bar, or a burger, and even then, they do not work the same with all people.

Author's Bio: 

Christopher Montrose is an author featured all over the internet. He writes about benefits of using new age methods for self help, such as subliminal messages, NLP, hypnosis and positive affirmations.

In order to help you try positive subliminal affirmations for yourself, Chris and his company called Real Subliminal offer you a free subliminal audio download.