The FDA is a government entity that is meant to keep citizens safe from harm. Here are their official stands Whenever the safety of perfumes and fragrances is questioned, the fragrance industry's standard reply is that perfumes are regulated by the FDA. This statement is true, as perfumes do come under the regulation of the FDA. By law, personal care products ingredients must be listed on a label but there are a few exceptions to their labeling mandate. Of course those exceptions are to benefit the big corporations.
Fragrance formulas are considered trade secrets and so the ingredients in fragrances are not required to be published. Therefore, the word “fragrance” must be put on any product that has ingredients added to give the product an odor, but may represent many ingredients. Shampoo, lotions perfumes, makeup and many more items often have this label on them. The fragrance industry does come under the regulation of the FDA, but the regulation is extremely limited. Many of the ingredients used in fragrances have little to no safety testing done on them.
Consumers, need to be in the dark to trade secrets must be protected. The FDA specifically band about ten chemicals from use in cosmetics and fragrances—the EU panel just proposed a 100 more items to be banned. Since “unscented” and “fragrance” have no legal definition these words can be used any way any company chooses. It is up to left to the consumer to do their own research—good luck. Of if something does not agree with you stop using it. To be fair, perfume companies would not do anything to harm their customers—a bad business practice. But a bit of transparency may go a long way.
Due to the amount of time, research, and expense involved in legally banning an ingredient, the FDA depends on the fragrance industry's voluntary agreement to eliminate or limit certain ingredients that have been shown to cause irritation, allergies, and other skin problems. Trade organizations in the fragrance industry make recommendations as to the safety of the use of certain ingredients; however, individual manufacturers are not bound by these recommendations or law.