Natural Beauty Toxic Chemicals: Fragrance

Published on January 13th, 2014 | by Becky Striepe

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Toxic Chemicals: Fragrance in Beauty Products (and how to avoid it)

Toxic Chemicals: Fragrance

It’s just one little ingredient on the back of the bottle but fragrance or parfum often means toxic chemicals lurking in your beauty products.

The tricky part? Companies can hide any number of ingredients behind the word fragrance, because they’re not required to disclose these trade secrets on beauty labels.

Fragrance or parfum can actually refer to any number of additives, some innocuous and some that are toxic chemicals. Added fragrance in beauty products can be as innocuous as essential oils, of course, but most companies seem list essential oils separately on the bottle. When you see fragrance or parfum, chances are you’re really looking at a cocktail of chemicals ranging from allergens and skin irritants to carcinogens.

Even “unscented” and “free and clear” products sometimes contain fragrance, so make sure you read the back of that bottle.

Don’t fret just yet! It just takes some careful label-reading to suss out which beauty products in your home contain fragrance. Shop round, read those labels, and you’ll find that there are truly fragrance-free brands out there! If you’re a little bit overwhelmed with label-reading, though, you can also avoid toxic chemicals in your beauty routine by going the DIY beauty route.

Avoiding Toxic Chemicals: DIY Fragrance

Of course, the best way to make sure you know what’s in your beauty products is to make your own! Here are some tutorials on making your own scented beauty products using healthy essential oils instead of toxic chemicals:

Do you have any favorite DIY beauty recipes to help you avoid the toxic chemicals in fragrance or parfum? I’d love to hear your suggestions in the comments!

Image Credit: Perfume photo via Shutterstock


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About the Author

Hi there! I'm Becky Striepe, a green crafter and vegan foodie living in Atlanta, Georgia with my husband and two cats. My mission is to make eco-friendly crafts and vegan food accessible to anyone who wants to give them a go. If you like my work, you can also find me on Twitter, Facebook, and .



6 Responses to Toxic Chemicals: Fragrance in Beauty Products (and how to avoid it)

  1. Lindsay says:

    Thanks for sharing, really great info. Toxic perfume is one the first things I tell people to ditch when trying to avoid toxic chemicals.

  2. Thank you for writing such a helpful blog. It seems like beauty products are ripe with toxic chemicals and it is great to know that there are alternatives. But at the end of the day we need #RealReform of our toxic chemical laws.

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