| 1st May 2005
Conventional perfumes are cocktails of synthetic chemicals, many of which have been linked to cancers, birth defects and central nervous system disorders. Time to try something more natural

Most contemporary perfumes are complex mixtures of more than 4,000 synthetic chemicals, most of which have never been tested for safety. Yet, the US National Academy of Sciences says that many of these ingredients are capable of causing cancer, birth defects, central nervous system disorders and allergic reactions. Fortunately, you don’t have to risk your health to smell good. The increasing availability of natural perfumes and colognes means it is now a lot easier to enjoy fragrance without any chemical consequences.

Based on the principles of aromatherapy, these simple fragrances use natural essential oils to create their beautiful scents.

Using the pure essence of botanical resins, scents are crafted together to create a harmonious blend of aromas. A single essential oil can be made up of hundreds of different chemical components, each with its own set of properties. Natural perfumes use these properties to create healthy and fabulous scents that not only make you smell good; research shows that they can actually cause changes in areas of the brain that control mood and memory. To experience scent the way it was meant to be, try one of the perfumes listed here.

¦Aubrey Organics colognes can be worn by many people who have allergic reactions to conventional perfumes. Each of the five fragrances is 100 per cent vegan and natural. Choose from the light summery Lemon Blossom, the feminine Angelica, the sultry Musk Splash, the woodsy Elysian Fields or the herbal Wild Wind.

¦ Aveda Pure-Fume Absolutes are unique blends of coconut and essential oils. Available in Aveda salons, spas and stores. These perfumes are custom-made to each customer’s specifications.

¦ Ecco Bella Eau de Parfums have created four hand-crafted scents using only real essential oils from flowers, fruits, herbs and spices. Scents include the sophisticated Bourbon Vanilla, soothing Lavender, crisp, flirty Lemon Verbena and Ambrosia, a flowery yet spicy mix of geranium, lavender, patchouli and vanilla.

¦ Cariad Aromaball don’t just make you smell good; they can give your mood a boost. Available in either a soothing Calm or lively Study blend.

¦ Neal’s Yard Remedies to Roll contain essential oil blends in a handy little bottle perfect for aroma on the go. Slip one of the four scents into your pocket or purse for the ultimate in convenience.

This article first appeared in the Ecologist May 2005


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