4 Ways Artificial Fragrances Are Harming Your Health

This article originally appeared on LoveTheAlchemist.com

Image via British Vogue

Image via British Vogue


Did you know that “95 percent of chemicals used in fragrances are synthetic compounds [that are] capable of causing cancer, birth defects, central nervous system disorders and allergic reactions?” And that in 1991, headaches caused by these chemical compounds resulted in a $50 billion cost to consumers due to medical expenses and lost productivity?

Sound startling? It is, and what is more startling is that you may have been spritzing yourself with chemical concoctions on the daily (whether you know it or not).

Although fragrance ads—whether they are for perfume, or freshening the scent of your clothes—may look refreshing and the scents may smell beautiful, but there are major side effects that stem from synthetics, here's what you need to know:  


1. Wearing perfume fragrance can cause allergy-like symptoms
It’s true, your latest allergy symptoms may be linked to your perfume. According to research conducted in the UK, the second most common cause of allergies is perfume. Symptoms include watery eyes, runny nose, and irritated skin.

Before you go blaming your allergies on the dust in the air or the change in seasons, try going two weeks without wearing synthetic perfumes. You may feel like you’ve found your allergy cure.

2. Artificial fragrances has been linked to causing cancer
According to an article posted on the David Suzuki Foundation’s website, fragrance ingredients have been linked to negative health effects such as cancer and neurotoxicity.

When you spritz with synthetic fragrances, you’re introducing foreign chemicals into your body. Your body has no way to get rid of these chemicals, which can lead to toxic build-up causing illnesses like cancer.

3. Artificial fragrances disrupt hormonal balance and bodily functions
Artificial fragrances are packed with phthalates, which help the scent linger for longer periods of time. But what effect do phthalates have on your body?

They are linked with causing early puberty in girls, complicated pregnancy in women, and reduced sperm count in men. Aside from hormonal issues, phthalates are harmful to your lungs, liver, and kidney functions. Keep the spray away!

4. Artificial fragrances are linked to feelings of depression and lethargy
Artificial fragrances do not have the same benefits as traditional aromatherapy. Traditional aromatherapy uses natural plant and flower fragrances to uplift your mood, not artificial fragrances. A key chemical found in artificial fragrances is linalool. Linalool causes depression and lethargy—which is quite the opposite from the beneficial effects of plant-based aromatherapy.

Linalool isn’t just found in perfume fragrances, it’s also found in household air freshener, such as Febreeze. So, switch out your Febreeze for something that has a natural, plant-based scent!

But what if you love perfume fragrances?
Look for certified organic perfumes made by brands such as Tsi La, Red Flower, or Strange Invisible Perfumes. 

Into something a little more personal? Try Eyewalker Element’s Custom Scent Alchemy – it’s a natural scent derived from flowers and natural oils that is customized to you. Ooh-la-la.

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