The air fresheners and fragrances we use can cause the air inside our homes to be more polluted than the outside air! Ditch synthetic fragrances today and replace them with green, safe, and affordable alternatives!
It’s hard to imagine living in a world without fragrances. They are an ever present part of our lives, found in so many products that we expose ourselves and our families to every day.
Or maybe our families are exposed to these fragrances without actually choosing to be. I always knew when my babies had been loved on by some sweet older woman in the church nursery because they came home smelling like her perfume.
But fragrances are not something that we want our family to be exposed to on a regular basis. They are something we want to avoid as much as possible because fragrances can cause some serious health effects.
The problem with fragrances or “parfum” in conventional products today is that these terms are not regulated by the government. According to the EWG, “When you see ‘fragrance’ on a personal care product’s label, read it as ‘hidden chemicals.’ A major loophole in FDA’s federal law lets manufacturers of products like shampoo, lotion, and body wash include nearly any ingredient in their products under the name ‘fragrance’ without actually listing the chemical.”
I don’t know about you, but I don’t like the idea that companies can sneak ingredients and chemicals into our products without telling us what they actually are.
Most fragrances contain phthalates which are known hormone disruptors, and can lead to reduced sperm counts and reproductive malformations. They have also been linked to liver and breast cancers, and fetal exposure has been linked to neurological disorders including autism and ADHD. (source)
So, for our family, we’ve chosen to ditch synthetic and conventional fragrances as much as possible, and replace them with unscented or naturally scented products in our home. Here’s a handy little guide to help your family get started ditching those fragrances too.
7 Synthetic Fragrances to Ditch Today and What to Use Instead
Plug-in Air Fresheners
Get rid of those plug-in air fresheners and use essential oils to help your home smell it’s best instead. There are many different ways you can use essential oils around your home:
- Include them in your homemade cleaning products
- Use a diffuser or just steam them in water on the stove
- Make your own natural gel air fresheners
- Or simply fill a small jar with baking soda, add 20 drops of essential oils, cover and shake. Top with a lid with holes and set it in a discreet place. Replace every week or so.
Our family has ditched the idea that we need to walk around smelling like fake sunshine and fresh mountain breezes all day long. We want our laundry to be naturally clean and scent free, or only very lightly scented. So instead of conventional fabric softeners, we use:
- Homemade Fabric Softener Sheets
- Wool dryer balls to help soften clothes and eliminate static
- All-natural unscented dryer sheets
- Hanging our laundry out on the line as weather permits
Laundry Scent Booster
Okay, I have to admit that this product is a head-scratcher to me. Don’t we already have enough scents in our laundry with scented laundry detergents and fabric softeners? Seems like quite an unnecessary product to me. But, if you’d like a little scent on your laundry and are using natural and unscented detergent and softeners, you can easily, and cheaply, make your own homemade laundry booster with just salt and essential oils.
We’ve talked before about the dangers of conventional paraffin candles, so I just want to encourage you again to ditch your conventional candles. Replace them with safer soy (good) or beeswax (best) candles, either naturally scented or unscented.
Our favorite beeswax candles are from Big Dipper Wax Works, they come in a great variety of sizes, colors, and scents!
Fabric Refresher Sprays
One way to save water and energy on laundry is by wearing clothes a few times before laundering. But sometimes they could use a little freshening up. But Febreeze is not the best choice here. Fortunately, you can simply and affordably make your own fabric refresher spray.
Bathroom Air Fresheners
Oh man, those lovely bathroom scents that we all wish didn’t exist, but unfortunately do. Instead of the typical aerosol air freshener spray can, try one of the ideas under the plug-in air fresheners above, like the homemade gel or the baking soda and essential oils.
You can also try a homemade “No. 2 Spray” to help eliminate odors before they begin, or use a simple and effective homemade air freshener spray that’s certain to keep those unwanted bathroom odors at bay.
Perfume and Cologne
I get that most of us want to smell nice for our significant others or just when we’re out in public. But I’ve become really annoyed by being able to smell other people’s perfume as I simply walk past them in the grocery store or sit across from them in a coffee shop. We don’t want to stink, but we also don’t need to share our preferred perfume scent with everyone around us.
My hubs and I have ditched perfume and cologne all together, and honestly, we don’t miss it at all. We still use lightly and naturally scented soaps, shampoos, and lotions that give us a clean and fresh scent. I also will use just essential oils from time to time, mixed with a little carrier oil, like almond or avocado, and dab it onto my wrists and neck. I’m also eyeing these roll-on natural fragrance oils for when I want something a little stronger and long lasting.
I hope this got you started thinking about how you can ditch the chemical and toxic fragrances around your house and replace them with safer and natural scents that will keep your home smelling good and your family healthy!
How have you ditched synthetic fragrances around your home and what have you replaced them with?
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