Harmful Effects of Artificial Fragrances

Everyday natural aromas fill our lives. The smell of the sea, your mother’s food and the smell of the body. These smells provoke emotions in the depths of us and connect us with our past or ignite a new feeling. These natural scents are a daily part of our lives, but so are other scents like our laundry detergents or commercial cleaners. Manufacturers add artificial synthetic fragrances to everything from cleansers to hair products and even food packaging, and fragrance production and use continues to rise dramatically around the world.

Unfortunately, that’s not necessarily a good thing. Expert concerns about the proliferation of fragrances have to do with their potential effects on our health: with more than 3,000 chemicals, mostly synthetic, estimated to be used in the manufacture of artificial fragrances, repeated exposure is causing that our bodies are toxic. Most chemicals are unregulated and untested, and we are left to be our own advocates for our health.

The most common adverse effect of these chemicals is skin allergies. Dermatology researchers state that synthetic fragrance is among the top five allergens. The effects of repeated exposure can be very harmful. These synthetic fragrances can worsen an existing asthma condition and cause immune, reproductive, and central nervous system problems.

The men in your life may be used to wearing men’s colognes and deodorants that often contain synthetic musks that have been linked to cancer. Many of the chemicals in these synthetic fragrances are stored in our bodies over time and have been found in breast milk. These musks do not biodegrade, which is why they are found in everything from plants to our water supply to animals.

Another group of chemicals known as phthalates are used in fragrances to allow the scent to last longer and are linked to interference with the reproductive and endocrine systems, as well as the kidneys and adrenal glands.

It’s outrageous that these ingredients don’t have to be listed on labels, especially in household products like cleaners and laundry detergents. While personal care product companies may conveniently label their ingredients to mention a general “fragrance” term.

The manufacturers of most of these products are virtually unregulated. The FDA has banned only a few ingredients in personal care products as a result of outrage from informed consumers. The FDA often leaves it up to manufacturers to tell them if a chemical can be considered “harmful.” Does that make any sense when the FDA is the one to regulate these manufacturers?

This is the time for you, as a consumer, to have the power to ensure that you invest your penny and effort in truly green companies that are dedicated to making non-toxic products. Many of these companies voluntarily disclose their ingredients, even when they are not required to, so that consumers know they are using safe ingredients.

The power of using certain essential oils is tremendously beneficial and you can create many products on your own using essential oils. Just the smell of lavender or rose oil can be de-stressing. I add rose or jasmine essential oil to some water in a spray bottle and use it as a natural perfume all the time. It smells amazing.

There are hundreds of natural plant scents that can ignite feelings of relaxation, being uplifted, or energized. Lavender, sandalwood and rose oils can help reduce stress and relax, while eucalyptus and peppermint oil can help to awaken and energize.

Start by understanding which products may be harmful and look to replace them with alternatives.

Related Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *