Franken-Fragrance: Even if it’s Engineered to Smell Nice, We Think it Stinks!

At Mood Food, we (obviously) love a great smelling essential oil. It’s pretty much what our business is built on. But what we can’t stand are chemically created fragrances – especially when they’re trying to pass themselves off as “coming from nature.” We’ve walked into other people’s houses and unplugged ‘plug-ins,’ thrown tantrums when family members brought scented garbage bags into the house (.. um, sorry about that, it would have been so much nicer to just quietly donate them) and changed seats in waiting rooms when a nearby person’s clothes reek of overly scented fabric softener.

So many of the products we use daily and bring into our homes are full of “fragrance.” Scent has become a selling point in mass marketing. Think of laundry detergents and fabric softeners that boast about their long lasting and lingering aromas, shampoos that advertise how good they smell, and so many more. When you add in all the lotions and potions we rub into our skin, it’s pretty overwhelming.

And it’s impossible to fully understand exactly which chemicals are being used in these fragrances, because the FDA allows the word, “fragrance” to be treated as a trade secret, which means that companies don’t have to disclose how the fragrance is created and what chemicals it contains.

Here are a few things that we keep an eye out for on labels when it comes to fragrance:

  • Always buy the unscented version of common household products or look for a greener or more natural option. There are so many great ones available these days. 
  • New, and caring, brands (Hello, 9 Elements!), that are more conscious of this are now listing the components included in their fragrances individually or calling out that they are only scented with essential oils rather than chemically created scents.
  • We are so in love with companies like Credo who are tackling the fragrance deception in beauty products and make up head on, by creating a Fragrance Transparency Policy where by beauty brands can classify their fragrances into these categories: Fragrance Free, Essential Oils, Certified Organic, Natural, Naturally-Derived and Synthetic.
  • Does the product have a California Prop 65 Warning on the label? This is a red flag, especially if the chemicals being called out on the warning are phthalates, as these are hormone disrupting chemicals that are often used in chemical fragrances.

Here’s a great podcast from functional medical nutritionist, Erin Holt, where she digs deeper into why chemically derived fragrances are not the best choice for our bodies.

As for those of us at Mood Food, essential oils are the way to go when we need a little bit of a fragrant pick me up.

 

 

*This article is for informational purposes only. It is not, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment and should never be relied upon for specific medical advice.

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Mood Food products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

 

 

 

 


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