Monday, March 11, 2013

The Fragrance Industry 4 Smelly Dirty Secrets

Is it more important to keep a trade secret than consumers healthy? It's the dilemma facing many fragrance companies. They won't voluntarily give away their secret ingredients that goes into the making of the perfumes--there are too much at stake and many imitators. I understand their fear, but I am certain being forthcoming in their labeling, may go a long way for many consumers. And not to forget the government entity that is meant to watch over them, has a bigger fish to fry and they have little teeth.

Some perfume and cologne ingredients are found on product labels, but others hide under the secretive ingredient "fragrance." Due to this trade secrets loophole, nearly half of the ingredients in the products we tested were not listed on labels.

They now have to answer to The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics commissioned an independent lab to test 17 fragrance products. Campaign partner Environmental Working Group assessed data from the tests and the product labels. The analysis reveals that the 17 products contained, on average:
  1. Fourteen secret chemicals not listed on labels due to a loophole in federal law that allows companies to claim fragrances as trade secrets.
  2. Ten sensitizing chemicals associated with allergic reactions such as asthma, wheezing, headaches and contact dermatitis.
  3. Four hormone-disrupting chemicals linked to a range of health effects including sperm damage, thyroid disruption and cancer. 
  4. The majority of chemicals found in this report have never been assessed for safety by any publicly accountable agency, or by the cosmetics industry’s self-policing review panels.
The industry continues to stress that they won't harm their customers, if something bothers you, do not use it. International Fragrance Association - North America has issued a press release , “strong stand behind the safety of their products and complete reject misrepresentations made by a pressure group about fragrance ingredient safety.”

I think it would be much easier to work with the celebrity branded and fragrance endorsers--they tend to listen. 

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