Dermatologist and perfume manufacturers debate use of ingredients that cause allergic reactions
For allergy sufferers, perfume and other scents can be more than just an olfactory ambush. In fact, cosmetic dermatologist Dr. Sam Bunting recently told Daily Mail that fragrances are the most common cause of allergies in cosmetics, producing symptoms such as redness, itching, swelling and burning.
While U.S. companies are banning scented products in the workplace, Dr. Ian White, dermatologist and chair of the EU Scientific Committee on Consumer Protection, told Independent Online that he wants to restrict perfume manufacturers from including certain ingredients, following a three-year investigation and subsequent 334-page report on the toxic chemicals used in fragrances.
Perfume manufacturers are speaking out against Dr. White's statements, saying that if the restrictions and bans are put into place, they could radically change the scent of classic perfumes and potentially hurt revenues in the industry. But according to Dr. White, there are ways around this, and manufacturers have even funded research to find alternatives to tree moss, an extreme allergen found in many perfumes.
Dr. White explained that the call for these restrictions and bans is important, not only to protect people who currently have allergies, but to prevent others from developing them
"This is not a trivial problem," Dr. White said to Independent Online. "After nickel, fragrances are the most important cause of allergy. Most things applied to the skin contain fragrances of one sort or another: deodorants, hand creams, body sprays."
It's difficult to find cosmetics that are truly fragrance-free, Daily Mail reports, so the publication suggests reading the fine print on the bottles and looking for the word "parfum," which implies that fragrance is used, even if you can't smell it. If you're trying to find allergy-free cosmetics, Allergy Be Gone has some lotions and hand sanitizers that may work for you, as well as products like the whole house air purifier which can help with other common seasonal allergies.
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