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Label-Able: Fragrance Free

Fragrance Free is a term we see a lot on personal hygiene products but is it just good marketing?

Doesn't it seem like everything has a smell, even things that are Fragrance Free? A little confused, yeah me too. To clear up any confusion,

Fragrance Free is a term that is supposed to mean that products labeled with it do not have a fragrance. In reality, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), has claimed that there no standard definition that qualifies the use of the term "fragrance free." So this means that products labeled as "fragrance free" can contain fragrances that are used to cover up the chemical smell of the other ingredients in the product and it is not regulated whatsoever. That seems backwards, doesn't it?

What's the point then? Basically fragrance has been labeled as the #1 culprit when it comes to allergic reactions in personal hygiene products. Get ready for the most ironic part -- In cosmetics, fragrances are considered trade-secrets, therefore manufacturers are not required to list the fragrance so we are not able to see what it is causing the reaction.

Fit's Tip: Is Fragrance Free worth it? It is really up to you whether or not you trust the manufacturer, but at least now you know what it really means. I know people who swear by Fragrance Free so I guess it's a personal thing.

Join The Conversation
JessNess JessNess 10 years
I tend to get sensitive skin lotions because the skin on my legs is soo sensitive specially after shaving. I just dont think the extra smell is necessary. ALthough I do love the smell of cocoa butter lotion
Pinkperfectpixie Pinkperfectpixie 10 years
This is interesting! My daughter suffers from Eczema as well and we use wonders and I swear it has no smell whatsoever.
wynter wynter 10 years
My kids have really bad eczema, and I have to use fragrance free stuff for them all the time - they use Aveeno for baths, All Free & Clear for their laundry, etc... It works for them!
DStirk DStirk 10 years
very interesting... my sister always buys only fragrance free and spends a lot of money in the process but now i have news for her.
ForgetMeNot ForgetMeNot 10 years
I always understood that "fragrance-free" meant that no fragrances were added (though the ingredients themselves could have a naturally-occurring scent), while "unscented" meant that masking scents were added so that the ingredients' scents were covered up and the finished product had no detectable fragrance. I guess if it's all unregulated, though, either label could actually mean anything!
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