New study on fragrance chemicals
The study analyzed household products including laundry detergents, cosmetics and air fresheners by placing a sample of each product into a sealed container, and then examining the surrounding air for chemicals.
Researchers found that 25 scented household products (all best-selling,) emitted on average 17 chemicals each; a quarter of the 133 different chemicals detected are classified as toxic under at least one federal law. Worryingly, half of the products tested marketed themselves as “green organic or natural.” Over one-third of the products emitted at least one carcinogen, for which there are no safe exposure levels.
Not surprisingly, of the collectively emitted 420 chemicals, almost none of them were disclosed on product labels or anywhere else, for that matter.
While the Household Product Labeling Act (which would require companies to list ingredients and fragrance mixtures on labels) is being reviewed by the Senate now, it is unclear whether or not the Act will move forward. For right now, researchers suggest cleaning with baking soda and vinegar and avoiding fragranced products.