Fragrances (sometimes labeled “Parfum” or “Perfum” on packaging labels) aren’t always as great as they might seem. While they increase the allure of many beauty and cosmetic products, many of them are made with less-than-ideal ingredients. Since fragrance mixtures are considered “trade secrets” and valuable proprietary information, the FDA does not require companies to disclose their specific ingredients or materials (the FDA’s Fair Packaging and Labeling Act talks about this in more detail).
An overwhelming number of fragrance products – perfumes, colognes, air fresheners, etc. – replicate naturally occurring notes & accords with synthetic ingredients, many of them derived from petrochemicals and petroleum (in fact, formaldehyde is often used to extend longevity of fragrance formulas – terrible, we know!). Further, an overwhelming number of fragrances, cosmetics, and even pharmaceutical products have been shown to contain phthalates hiding behind the “Fragrance” ingredient label. The Environmental Working Group and EPA discuss this in detail, and the documentary STINK! on Netflix is an extremely informative watch.
The overwhelming majority of department-store fragrance products use synthetic fragrance oil compounds. The key thing to look out for is the process by which the fragrances are made: natural, essential oils are made through highly labor-intensive processes to extract the parts of various plants that provide certain smells, whereas synthetic fragrance oil production is much, much cheaper.
Another issue with mainstream fragrances is microencapsulation. Many products use encapsulation technology (scents packed into tiny plastic beads) to increase longevity of their scents that have been linked to negative effects on both body and environment. Many of these tiny plastic beads were historically made from plastics that do not degrade naturally.
All of our premium fragrances were developed by world-renowned French perfumer, Cecile Hua, who honed her fragrance skills in Grasse and whose processes are considered a UNESCO World Heritage status. We use natural essential oils, and only essential oils. Nothing synthetic. If companies don’t explicitly speak about their fragrance-making processes, then they are most likely synthetically produced.
At Helmm, we are proud of the way our fragrances were created. Each of our scents lists their respective essential oils, all made by Cecile herself. Order yours today and get started with clean, sophisticated fragrances. Developed with your health, and the health of our planet, in mind.