Fragrance Allergy

Allergic Contact Dermatitis Allergies

Fragrance allergy was one of my first allergens when I was patch tested in January 2006. During that visit, they told me to avoid fragrances. I assumed this diagnosis meant avoiding wearing perfumes, but I was also encouraged to “avoid fragrance-containing” cosmetics and personal care products. That was the instruction. Avoid Fragrance. I had no idea what that meant, and my dr did not give me an explanation. What I didn’t realize at the time was this… A fragrance allergy can be hiding in so many ingredients that sound nothing like fragrance or perfume as some labels contain.

Fragrance Chemicals

Fragrances can be tricky, chemically-sounding names, and avoiding them is your first step in living reaction-free when diagnosed with a fragrance allergy. A recent trend in our culture is using essential oils to treat a vast array of ailments. Those allergic to fragrances will react to essential and botanical oils as the body reads them as fragrances. The body reads natural fragrance chemicals (essential and botanical oils) and chemical fragrance chemicals as identical. Just because something is natural doesn’t mean it is safe for everyone.

Essential Oils

An environment filled with diffused essential oils is hazardous for a person allergic to fragrances. Likewise, if you’re exposing your families and children to diffused essential oils, you could be setting them up for a lifetime of allergic contact dermatitis to fragrance. In fact, research has shown that an ACD allergy begins with recurrent exposure. Daily diffusing of botanical oils puts the fragrance molecules out into the air. They land on the skin, and a reaction can result, such as an eczema rash. Recurrent exposure can set you up to be sensitized and allergic.

FDA Regulation of fragrance

It’s very important to note that the FDA does NOT regulate ingredients in personal care products and XYZ Company can put just about anything they desire into a product. They can label it Safe, Pure, and Natural all while being full of botanical oils and fragrance chemicals that are not safe for the chemically sensitive. Dermatologists agree that fragrance ingredients should not be used on the face and body.

Unscented is not Fragrance-Free

Unscented is a marking that a lot of products contain. This is extremely dangerous. Unscented DOES NOT mean fragrance-free. Masking fragrances, chemicals used to mask the smell of a product, are often added to products labeled Sensitive or Unscented. Someone with a fragrance allergy can cause a dermatitis or eczema rash to appear.

For those allergic to Fragrance Mix I, avoid products that contain or find a comprehensive list here.

For those allergic to Fragrance Mix II, avoid products that contain or find a comprehensive list here.



1 Comment

  1. Carissa
    May 24, 2021 / 9:03 am

    Hi Dannyelle,

    How are you? I recently have been diagnosed with contact dermatitis. I believe the allergen I have is found in fragrance but I’m not sure which fragrance mix on your page it is in.
    It is hydroperoxides of limonene. Was wondering it you had an idea for me.

    Thank you