Why You Should Avoid Synthetic Fragrances & How to Get Rid of Them

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Avoiding toxic synthetic fragrances and removing them from your home has never been more important. Synthetic fragrances are becoming increasingly prevalent, with almost every product you use including a synthetic scent.

From dish soap to bathroom spray, laundry detergent, cosmetics and more...synthetic fragrances are in almost everything these days.

And these chemical fragrances are more dangerous than you might realise.

Even the “clean, fresh” scent of certain products is completely synthetic and many toxic ingredients are used to create them. These hidden chemicals are often overlooked on product labels, and so most people blindly use them every single day in their homes and on their bodies without realising the harm being done.

Everything from respiratory problems, allergies, immunity disruption and skin irritations are all compounded by chemical synthetic fragrances that you put on your body and use in and around your home and workplace.

The goods news is that there are safe, natural alternatives that won't cost you the earth - in fact will save you money from expensive synthetic options once you make the switch.

It’s time to ditch the synthetic fragrances for good and to embrace more health conscious and earth friendly alternatives that work just as well, but that protect and enhance your long term health and wellness.

1. Toxic Ingredients

The ingredients in most synthetic fragrances are simply a mystery. Why? Because companies are required to disclose the ingredients that fall under the word “fragrance” or “parfum” on a label, in order to protect their formula. 

But what this dated loophole unfortunately leads to are companies hiding thousands of dangerous and toxic chemicals under the guise of “fragrance”, and the average consumer is none the wiser. Synthetic fragrances are made using petrochemicals, which include phthalates and other known cancer-causing toxins. 

The side effects of these toxic ingredients are serious and well known. Not only can they induce instant headaches for some, they worsen asthma and allergies, disrupt our endocrine system, and can even lead to birth defects, nervous-system disorders, liver and kidney damage, and dis-eases like cancer. 

Companies continue to use these toxic ingredients to create scents because of how much cheaper they are versus natural scents. People also naturally prefer scented products, so by adding in chemicals that create an appealing scent, you’re more likely to buy and use their product. 

By using synthetic fragrances every day in a variety of ways, you’re exposing yourself constantly to toxins that can have serious and health-altering effects on your body.

Learn more in What Are Endocrine Disruptors & How They Destroy Health. 

2. How to Avoid Synthetic Fragrances

Avoiding these synthetic fragrances is tricky, because it’s not always easy to find out what’s in a product. By hiding toxins behind the word “fragrance” on an ingredient list, companies make understanding what’s in the product’s you’re using very difficult. 

Some may choose to avoid products completely if the list of ingredients aren’t spelled out. High quality products often have nothing to hide in their ingredients list and so you’ll have no trouble understanding what you’re using. 

Synthetic fragrances are in so many different products that you might not realise. Everything from air fresheners to body lotion have synthetic fragrances in them. More products you might not have realised use synthetic fragrances are:

  • Laundry detergent and dryer sheets
  • Perfume
  • Face creams and serums
  • Car air fresheners
  • Shampoo 
  • Scented candles
  • Soap 
  • Deodorant
  • Sunscreen
  • Cosmetics 
  • Cleaning products

The list is endless and can be alarming. Even products that use the words “natural” or “organic” on their packaging can still be hiding toxic ingredients under the fragrances. Essential oils can often also be a culprit, as they are often made using impure oils and aren’t tested, so make sure you opt for a quality brand. 

These toxins are surrounding us all day long, from hiding in the clothes we are to the products we apply to our skin. We’re absorbing these toxic ingredients and allowing them to affect our health, without even realising it. 

Learn more in The Ugly Truth About Synthetic Skin Care Products. 

3. What to Use Instead

When it comes to fragrances for household, air purifying, cosmetic use, nothing beats pure essential oils.  In fact, you can completely transform and simplify your skin care, personal care and house cleaning routine with essential oils and in the process save hundreds - if not thousands of dollars - a year in the process. 

Remember, essential oils are pure plant extracts that support not destroy your health and every oil carries an abundance of beautiful natural fragrance as well.  They can be combined with carrier oils and other simple natural ingredients to take care of most personal care and household cleaning use cases.  You just need to get started.

The problem with most man-made fragrances is that they have been modified from their natural state, chemically tweaked and over commercialised by big companies for profit. But the good news is that once you become more conscious of this reality, you can easily make better choices for you, your family and your household. 

To start, learn to read labels more carefully. Never buy a product if you don’t completely understand the ingredient. Also, a good rule of thumb is that the fewer ingredients a product has, the better it likely is for you.

Interestingly, many people often read food labels before buying certain products, but neglect to do the same things when purchasing items for personal care or household use.

Switch out all of your personal care products for more natural, safer options, like the tox-free handcrafted options in our store.

There are a number of wholesome natural products on the market these days, so you won’t be short of alternatives if you're conscious about where you shop and what you buy.

Also, don't be afraid of doing the odd bit of DIY product creation at home using earth made ingredients like sea salt, bi carb soda, and essential oils.  A couple of great examples of what you can create include DIY laundry soap and deodorant

Adopt a mindset of having fewer fragrances in your life. Rather than masking odours with cheap scents, use a handful of high quality fragrances from essential oils and natural purifiers like baking soda, lemon and vinegar.

When you all of a sudden realise that the vast majority of products on your supermarket shelf are laden with toxic chemicals that sublimate harmful chemicals into your linen, clothes, skin, kitchen ware, floors and bench tops, it becomes a lot harder to justify their use. 

More tips for avoiding toxic synthetic fragrances:

  • Use pure essential oils in diffusers and room sprays, like the doTERRA brand that uses only pure and quality essential oils 
  • Place more potted plants and herbs around the house, especially air-cleaning plants like aloe vera, spider plants, English ivy, snake plants, and more
  • Opt for fragrance-free and unscented products whenever possible
  • Switch to beeswax candles
  • Go back to basics with cleaning products and use mostly vinegar and baking soda

Keep in mind that babies, children, and pregnant women are most vulnerable to the dangers of synthetic fragrances, so it’s especially important to keep them away from products with them.

It’s also important to note that we can quickly build up a tolerance to synthetic fragrances, which makes them harder to notice and avoid. Once you remove them from your home and your personal care routine, you may become much more sensitive to them and to other smells. This is a natural effect of the detox process and one that should be welcomed because it means your body has purged itself of these toxic ingredients. 

Learn more in Health Benefits & Healing Properties of Essential Oils

Modern cleaning products and self care products are convenient options that tend to work a lot more quickly or effectively than their natural alternatives, but there’s a reason for this. They’re choc full of chemicals that have no business being anywhere near your body or living quarters. 

Your health and wellness are worth more than these products and the cheap synthetic fragrances they contain.  Be more conscious and self care aware and give yourself the gift and health benefits of smelling real nature-made fragrances. 

Tolman Self Care.

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