Perfume Chemicals May Cause Allergy and Sensitivity Reactions

Posted on Jul 25, 2010 in Uncategorized

May 13, 2010 Victoria Anisman-Reiner


Perfume Chemical Sensitivity or Allergies – RonnieB

Chemical fragrances are everywhere, and a new study pinpoints hidden toxins in perfume that may trigger perfume allergies and reactions like asthma.

With smoking forbidden in many restaurants, and peanuts banned from schools, daycares, and children’s centers, will perfume be the next to go? If the research is heeded, it may soon be unacceptable to wear perfumes and scented products in public places, where they can trigger allergic reactions in people with chemical sensitivities.

Study Says Perfume Chemicals Trigger Allergies, Disrupt Hormones

Two consumer protection groups, one in Canada and one in the U.S., have recently teamed up to examine the ingredients of 17 of the most popular fragrances. They found over three dozen chemicals in them that weren’t listed on the ingredients – many of them known to cause allergies and disrupt hormones.

Together, the Environmental Defense and the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics are now highlighting the dangers of current scent regulations, which allow fragrance ingredients to be lumped together as “fragrances” or “parfum” and kept a proprietary “trade secret” by their

Although cosmetic manufacturers claim that the hidden ingredients – on average, 14 per fragrance product, and a total of 38 unique chemicals in those 17 products alone – are present in only small quantities that do not pose a threat, perfume allergy sufferers say otherwise. People who experience migraines, asthma attacks and other symptoms as a result of exposure to chemical scents are becoming more outspoken about how dangerous these chemicals can be – for them, and for those who aren’t as sensitive, as well.

Perfume Allergy and Sensitivity

Asthma and allergy sufferers have complained about perfumes for years, but until now there has been little research into the effects of the fragrant chemicals in perfume products. Some people with chemical sensitivity avoid malls and stores for fear of an intense reaction, while others are wary in public places where anyone could walk by drenched in a scent.

Some of the most common perfume allergy symptoms include:

Read on

The Allergy Threshold

Many allergies are not constant; they are caused by repeated use of common foods (wheat, milk, corn, sugar, nuts) or inhalation allergens, which increase sensitivity.

* skin rashes, acne, hives, eczema

* headaches, migraines

* asthma attacks

* mental fog, disorientation

* dizziness

* nausea

* anger, irritability, mood swings and even psychiatric symptoms such as brain allergies

The list of perfumes researched by the two consumer groups included American Eagle Seventy Seven (24 unlisted chemicals), Old Spice After Hours Body Spray for Men (16), AXE Body Spray for Men Shock (10), Calvin Klein Eternity (for men – 15, for women – 14), Chanel Coco Mademoiselle (18), Britney Spears Curious (17), Hannah Montana Secret Celebrity (13), and Jennifer Lopez JLO Glow (11).


Javed, Noor, “Hidden Chemicals Found in Perfumes,” The Toronto Star, 12 May 2010.

Read more at Suite101: Perfume Chemicals May Cause Allergy and Sensitivity Reactions