Everyone wants to smell good. Popular stores like Bath & Body Works appeal to young girls and women every day with their extensive line of fragrance items. What young girl doesn’t want to smell like Black Raspberry Vanilla, Wild Honeysuckle or Warm Vanilla Sugar?
Even though these “brilliantly named” products sound good enough to eat, their ingredients are far from natural.
And one of the biggest offenders: the innocent sounding ingredient “Fragrance.” It sounds like a simple ingredient, but it’s side effects can include headaches, allergies and asthma.
According the the Environmental Working Group:
The word “fragrance” or “parfum” on the product label represents an undisclosed mixture of various scent chemicals and ingredients used as fragrance dispersants such as diethyl phthalate. Fragrance mixes have been associated with allergies, dermatitis, respiratory distress and potential effects on the reproductive system.
So basically, companies can create any toxic mix of ingredients, label it as fragrance and they don’t have to disclose what those ingredients are. It’s considered a trade secret.
So what does this mean for you?
When reading your labels, be sure to avoid any that contain the ingredients “fragrance” or “parfum.” And unfortunately, this isn’t limited to body sprays and perfumes.
Fragrance can also be found in:
- Body Lotion
- Body Wash
- Baby Wash
- Shaving Cream
- Hair Spray
- Hair Gel
- Air Fresheners
Be leery of anything you find in the store that smells good. Take a good look at the ingredients, and unless it’s an all-natural product, you will probably find the term “fragrance” on the label. Even some products that claim to be all natural include fragrance in their ingredients.
I have never been able to wear conventional perfumes because they give me a headache. So I have just avoided them for years. But having a daughter really pushed me to find natural alternatives to toxic beauty products. At the ripe old age of three, she already wants to paint her nails and wear my makeup. Ahhhh….
Creating non-toxic perfume has become a fun little adventure for us!
Choosing Essential Oils
Essential oil perfume blends are comprised of three parts:
5-20% of the blend. Top notes are the first notes you will smell but they evaporate quickly. (Examples: sweet orange, bergamot, lemon, orange, grapefruit)
50-80% of the blend. Middle notes do not evaporate as quickly as top notes and are the center focus of the blend. (Examples: marjoram, rosemary, mandarin, neroli, ginger)
5-20% of the blend. Base notes give the staying power to your perfume blends. They last much longer than top notes and are usually pretty strong. (Examples: cedarwood, sandalwood, benzoin, myrrh, patchouli)
For a more complete list of top, middle and base notes, click here.
Once you’ve chosen your essential oils, it’s time to start blending. Following the guidelines above, you can easily create a bunch of fun perfume blends.
For me, I love citrus oils! They just make me happy. That’s why I love this fun and fruity essential oil perfume recipe that I’m sharing with you today.
DIY Fun & Fruity Perfume Roll-On Recipe
Author: Mindy Benkert
Making your own non-toxic perfume is so easy. You just need a few ingredients and a roll-on bottle.
- Drop essential oils one by one into a bottle and swirl around to mix.
- Add 3 drops of your essential oil mixture to a 5 ml roller bottle.
- Add your carrier oil (fractionated coconut oil, grapeseed oil, etc)
- Put lid on and roll between hands to mix.
- Roll on to wrists, behind ears to enjoy.
*T=tablespoon and t=teaspoon
A few safety notes
Citrus oils are phototoxic
Citrus oils can be photo-toxic, meaning they can make your skin extra sensitive to the sun. Because perfume oil isn’t really applied to large areas of the skin, this isn’t a huge concern. Just be aware that areas where your perfume is applied may be extra sensitive to the sun. It is recommended to avoid exposure to the sun for 12 hours after applying photo-toxic essential oils.
Learn more about phototoxicity on our sister blog, Scratch Mommy
Check for sensitivities
Check for sensitivities before using new essential oils on your skin by doing a patch test. Add a few drops of a new essential oil to a teaspoon of carrier oil and apply to a small portion of your skin. This will tell you if there is any skin sensitivity or allergy. Look for pain, itchiness, redness or bumps.
No pregnant women or children
This perfume oil is not recommend for pregnant women or children.