Good Chemistry: Green Tips for Better Health, from Planned Parenthood of Northern New England

Fragrances Stink–Especially While Pregnant

The birth of a child is a highly anticipated moment.  It’s the culmination of months of preparation, patience, and dare I say it, resisting temptation. Everything from coloring your hair, to eating sushi, to drinking alcohol is put on hold the moment you find out you’re pregnant. Here’s another “no-no” to add to your list: artificial fragrances.

Synthetic chemicals found in umbilical cord blood of American newborns.A study by the Environmental Working Group revealed 232 contaminants in the umbilical cord blood of 10 newborn American babies. Synthetic musks, common components of fragrance, were found in 7 of the blood samples.

These results are significant because artificial fragrances are toxic and have been linked to developmental illness, infertility, even birth defects and cancer.

What’s even more disturbing is due to labeling laws, the ingredients in fragrance products are considered “trade secrets,”  and do not need to be disclosed.

If you’re pregnant –or planning on it—here are some precautionary measures you can take:

  • Choose products free of synthetic fragrance.
  • Make your own cosmetics.  The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics has great recipes.
  • Be proactive. Contact the manufactures of your favorite lotions, perfumes, and lip balms, and encourage them to use non-toxic ingredients and to fully disclose this information on labels.

As wonderful as it is to look and smell nice, consider the risks of the products you’re using and their effect on your newborn.  By forgoing those toxic perfumes, you’ll be able to enjoy that new baby smell even more.

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This entry was posted on Tuesday, December 29th, 2009 at 10:45 am and is filed under Cosmetics, For parents. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.


3 Responses to “Fragrances Stink–Especially While Pregnant”

  1. I Wilkerson Says:

    I just finished reading the chapter on phthalates in fragrances (and other things) in Slow Death by Rubber Duck, which is great information for those looking for more. This book might be a good addition for your book list–it is informative, well-documented and an entertaining read. Wish there had been more information on this when my kids were babies, but now that they are teens, they still use a lot of products!

  2. Val Vass Says:

    That is an excellent book. We’ll be sure to add it to our list of recommendations. Thanks for the suggestion and thanks for reading the blog!

  3. Marianna Says:

    Recipes on safecosmetics are really good :-)

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