Universities and schools nationwide are steeling themselves for poor results following reports that more students than ever are relying on lucky underwear to see them through their examinations.
Several major clothing retailers have also posted "exam season" profit warnings following plummeting sales for undergarments lacking universally acknowledged special properties such as "loose at the seams", "worn through on the left cheek" or "having that unidentifiable stain", with only Primark holding their own thanks to a policy of instantly restocking returned items.
Revision expert Dominic Wilson says that lucky charms should not become a substitute for a proper study programme. "It's no surprise to find many students turning to superstitious mumbo jumbo after such a piss-poor education," he said, "but I'm confident that those following my revision scheme will fare much better - touch wood."
Reports suggest that some students are even ignoring peer advice to commence luckifying their unmentionables at least ten weeks before their examinations, with some panic-wearing the same smalls for just a few days in the approach to their first exam. "Those amateurs. They're simply unprepared and don't stand a chance without some properly lucky grots," said Mark Roberts, a student preparing for his finals at Cardiff University. "I've been brewing mine for years."
Those recently turning to luck are being advised to avoid handling mirrors, salt cellars or using beds with more than one accessible side. Mark also suggests that first-time users of lucky underwear should pack a spare pair: "Partly in case the stress gets a bit ... much," he laughed, "and partly in case they find the smell too distracting."