Monday, April 09, 2012

All about fragrance: Are unscented products safer?

Many household and personal care
products contain harmful chemicals.
“Fragrance” is a common ingredient in household and personal care products, and manufacturers use the term to describe any combination of natural and synthetic chemicals that they may use.

They don’t have to reveal the exact chemical make-up of these fragrances because the information is regarded as a highly guarded trade secret.

But many commonly used chemicals have been linked to human health effects, so not knowing what is in a product leaves customers unaware about the chemicals and possible toxins they may be exposed to.

Tests have shown that the average fragrance product contains 14 secret chemicals that did not have to be listed on the label. Some components of fragrances, including phthalates and DEP are known hormone disruptors; others can cause reactions in sensitized people.

People suffering from asthma seem to be especially sensitive to fragrance-containing products.

The first reaction may be to opt for fragrance-free products – but are those really safer? The jury is still out. In many cases, fragrance-free does not mean safer because of a number of factors:

  • There is no legal definition for fragrance-free
  • Some chemicals in the products may be used to mask scents
  • Many of these products still contain chemicals that pose health risks

Still, checking for product safety on websites such as the Skin Deep database and generally checking the product’s ingredient list will help make better and more informed decisions.

Using less fragrance-containing products will also help reduce exposure.

Source: Healthy Child Organization

Filter out unwanted odors and scents with air purifiers

No matter how smart we shop, chances are we still are exposed to some airborne chemicals and odors in our home due to personal care and cleaning products, furniture and building materials and other reasons.

But better indoor air quality is achievable with source control, ventilation and air cleaning.

The right air purifier will draw the air through a deep-bed activated carbon filter, a HEPA filter, an optional UV lamp and pre-filters to remove the widest range of indoor air contaminants.

AllerAir offers air purifiers with the deepest carbon beds and the most relevant filtration media for general purpose air cleaning as well as specific IAQ concerns such as allergy and asthma, mold, tobacco smoke and MCS.

Contact AllerAir for more information.