Ok so this post may not be all that fun, but I have made it a mission of mine to do in depth posts on common toxic ingredients found in our cosmetics and it is that time again!! Since I’ve already covered parabens and petroleum, I thought fragrance was the perfect ingredient to cover next, since I find fragrance to be one of the more difficult things for people to give up! In fact, even when you think you are doing good by buying “unscented” or “all natural” items, fragrance is that one ingredient that is very sneaky and can be lurking in between the lines. What do I mean?
Well first lets cover what synthetic fragrances are. So synthetic means fake, and many of these lovely “scents” that you are smelling from your candles, body wash, shampoo, lotions, lipstick, perfume, etc. are all FAKE FAKE FAKE scents. Unless that scent is derived from an all natural essential oil from a plant, herb, flower, etc. OR plant based oils, then that scent is not real, not natural, and NOT safe!! Like I said before, fragrance can be found in almost anything from body care, cosmetics, laundry detergent all the way to car fresheners and household cleaning products.
So why is it bad for you? Fragrance is known to trigger allergies, asthma, birth defects, central nervous system disorders, migraines and have also been found in breast milk. Certain types of fragrances are known to be hormone disruptors which can lead to cancer or other serious health issues. Not only do synthetic fragrances cause health issues but they cause environmental issues as well proving to increase air and water pollution significantly, indoors and outdoors. So what should you be looking out for on the ingredient list? Typically fragrance will be listed as “fragrance” of “parfum” or sometimes even “natural fragrance” which is not natural at all! Now don’t worry, you don’t have to give up the wonderful world of beautiful scents when you make the nontoxic switch, you want to see completely natural ingredients like, “calendula officinalis flower extraxt, aloe barbadensis leaf extract, and olea europaea fruit oil). In my personal opinion, essential oils and flower extracts provide the most amazing scents that take aromatherapy to a completely other level!! Below I have included a list of my got-to basics to help you filter out the fragrance of some of your most commonly used essentials!!
The Honest Company Bar Soaps: ($4.95): Made with organic shea butter, triple milled, cold-pressed organic coconut, palm, olive and argan oils. My entire family likes these bar soaps! They are super affordable and a wonderful option to siwtch out that yucky body wash. They offer lovely scents like tangerine vanilla and juniper sage (all from extracts and essential oils)!! http://www.honest.com
PF Candle Company: ($18)($11): This is a small batch, hand poured candle company based out of Los Angeles. Their candles are soy wax and they use oils for scent! You don’t have to give up candles!! With scents like fig & jasmine and gardenia & coconut you can’t go wrong! http://www.pfcandleco.com
Beautycounter Hydrate Body Lotion: ($22) This is bit pricy for a lotion but SO worth it. The scent is citrus-mint and it’s amazing! It also hydrates really well. This is definitely a pampering type of lotion and worth every penny! http://www.laurenvanloo.beautycounter.com
DoTerra Oils & Diffuser: ($44.95 for diffuser) (oils vary in price) Getting a batch of essential oils is something I highly recommend for everybody! We use them for almost everything in my household! We use them topically to heal, in diffusers for aromatherapy, and on the babies for calming. Just make sure the oils you are using are therapuetic grade which means they are the real deal and not laced with anything synthetic!! I recommend Doterra personally!! You can find a nice diffuser on amazon also!! http://www.amazon.com http://www.doterra.com
Rahua Shampoo & Conditioner: ($32-shampoo) ($34-conditioner) Rahua offers high quality hair care and body products that are nontoxic. I’m not much of a hair girl but these products work well for me, keep my hair soft and healthy and I love their signature scent, a gorgeous mix of leaf extracts and seed oils!! http://www.rahua.com
Lurk Perfume Oils: ($55-$225) These are a wonderful option for a natural perfume!! Each scent is hand blended and poured using only pure essential oils in a base of organic jojoba. My good friend Molly just wrote an amazing post on her blog http://www.maisonpur.com about this product line and it also features an interview with the owner! It’s a must read, you must check it out!! http://www.lurkmade.com
Ilia Beauty Lipstick: ($26) Now many of you know there are a lot of toxins in mainstream lipstick brands and one of them is fragrance! Many times lipstick will have a strong smell coming from it that may seem appealing, but you really don’t want those hidden toxics on your lips!! Ilia is a beautiful option compromised of organic beeswax, organic oils and extracts and it performs just as good, if not better, then the lipstick your used to!! http://www.spiritbeautylounge.com
So there you have it! Hopefully this helps you navigate your way around synthetic fragrances and into the natural world of oils and extracts!! And what an amazing world it is!! Please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with any additional ingredient questions!! Additional information can be found at http://www.ewg.org, http://www.beautycounter.com and http://www.safecosmetics.org.