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The Toxicity of Synthetic Fragrances in Personal Care Products

The word “fragrance” has the potential to be dozens, sometimes even hundreds, of chemicals on product labels. Many common household and personal care products contain synthetic fragrances to achieve their appealing scents.  Examples of daily products that contain synthetic fragrances include candles, soap, face wash, and your favorite perfumes. While it is common to see synthetic fragrances on the ingredient list, these ingredients are harmful to your health.

What are synthetic fragrances? 

Synthetic fragrances are chemically created and usually derived from petroleum or started as a natural element then changed through chemical modification. These synthetic fragrances contain chemicals that are man-made and not of a natural origin. By contrast, natural fragrances are of natural origin containing only plant based ingredients.

Why does the wellness and beauty industry use synthetic fragrances?

Rather than sourcing the notes through nature, synthetic scents replicate natural fragrances. This is mainly an issue of cost, it is less expensive to make synthetic fragrances because pure compounds are often labor-intensive and more expensive to come by. 

What are the dangers of synthetic fragrances? 

Synthetic fragrances are highly unregulated, this allows for your favorite products to list 'Fragrance' or 'Parfum' in their ingredient list and not disclose what chemicals make up these scents. 'Fragrances' or 'Parfums' have the potential to be over 300 undisclosed chemicals. 

Many of these undisclosed chemicals have been linked to endocrine disruption, cancer, and neurotoxicity. These man-made chemicals in fragrances are petroleum-based and can be harmful to human health. Chemicals found in fragrances include phthalates, which are endocrine disruptors, and carcinogens benzophenone and styrene.

What can you do to avoid synthetic fragrances? 

There are a sufficient amount of natural alternatives that can be used to create delicious smells. Search for brands that don’t rely on artificial fragrances in their products and are transparent about the fragrances used. 

At Detox Babe, we formulate our bath soaks with essential oils, plant and flower extracts to create natural scents.View our bath soaks that are free of Sulphates (SLS), Parabens, Synthetic Dyes, Artificial fragrances and Cruelty Free.



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