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Christmas and Carey - a match made in heaven © Getty Images

The ultimate Christmas earworm playlist

Published: 21st December, 2016 at 14:00
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The sleigh bells are ringing and the jingles are jangling over and over again in our heads – find out which song you voted as the ultimate Christmas earworm.

Christmas comes but once a year, but unfortunately that also means the never-ending repetition of Christmas jingles going around-and-around-and-around in your head until well into the new year.


We asked the readers of Science Focus to cast their votes in an epic battle between the merry Christmases, the Jingle bells and the halls decked with holly so that we could find out which tune you can’t get out of your head.

It was a close contest, with the lead shifting all the time between favourites from Slade and the Pogues, to traditional classics like Jingle Bells, but the song you voted as the ultimate Christmas earworm is Mariah Carey’s All I Want For Christmas Is You.

It turns out that the American singer’s 1994 global smash has been worming its way through our brains for the more than 20 years now and shows no signs dropping from our collective memory.

So why do we get earworms and what makes them so difficult to shift from our head? We explained the science behind earworms in the Christmas issue of BBC Focus magazine, and you can read the whole article online here. Speaking of Christmas, if you're looking for (what we think) would be the most amazing present ever, why not get them a subscription to the UK's best-selling science and technology magazine.


You can also check out the full playlist of our Christmas earworms ranked in earworminess (is that a word?) at our YouTube page, but if you are more All I Want For Christmas Is A New Earworm rather than All I Want For Christmas Is More Mariah, check out these top tips on how to get rid of an earworm.


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