You are looking for a safe, less toxic detergent without perfume and other nasty chemicals. Maybe you are allergic to certain synthetic fragrances or want to... simply make a conscious choice for your health. In this blog we share useful tips for finding perfume-free detergents without dangerous ingredients.
Detergent without perfume
If you have read this blog of ours before, you know that we do not like to find the word 'perfume' or 'aroma' in the ingredients list of a product. Why? Because that one word 'perfume' often conceals dozens to hundreds of chemicals that manufacturers choose not to disclose to us. Thanks to the International Fragrance Association, we know that more than 3,000 ingredients are used to create fragrance combinations. But of the thousands of fragrances on the IFRA list, the law only requires a number of fragrances (about 20) to be listed on the label, to which some people are known to be allergic. So the rest all hides behind the word 'perfume', while we now know that many of those fragrances are not so innocent at all. On the contrary, they often contain hormone disrupting chemicals such as phthalates, which can be very harmful to your health or carcinogens such as benzene derivatives. It is of course not without reason that the Environmental Working Group Skin Deep database gives 'fragrance' an 8 (with 10 being the most toxic).
What does all this have to do with detergents? Well, they very often contain synthetic fragrances (and other nasties , such as dyes and foam enhancers) that, as far as we are concerned, absolutely do not belong in our bodies.
Allergic reaction to detergent
So many detergents contain synthetic fragrances that, despite their pleasant scent (although if you switch to fragrance-free, you will experience an aversion to that synthetic scent after a while), may contain harmful chemicals. Exposure to such nasties can cause true allergic reactions for some people, such as itching, redness or rash. But even if your body does not immediately show these types of allergic symptoms, it is better for your health to choose a detergent without perfume.
In your search for a detergent without perfume, you see a detergent in the supermarket that is promoted as 'natural'. Perhaps it says that 99% of the ingredients are plant-based or that the ingredients are 100% of natural origin. The label only contains the word 'perfume', but fortunately it states that the perfumes are made from plant extracts.
The honest story is that the term 'natural' in the world of fragrances sometimes raises more questions than it provides answers. While it likely means that the ingredients are derived from natural sources, there are currently no strict regulations monitoring these claims. The term 'natural' can therefore have very different meanings for you and the manufacturer.
The fact that we cannot blindly trust these types of claims is also evident from the ISO 9235:2021 standard for 'Aromatic natural raw materials'. On the one hand, the International Fragrance Association sets some guidelines on the meaning of the word natural . At the same time, we see that the IFRA allows synthetic substances (such as solvents and preservatives) in their definition of natural fragrances. In addition, it is also good to realize that a natural ingredient does not automatically mean that it is organic and has been grown without the help of pesticides and herbicides.
Fragrance-free detergent (our favorites)
Now that you are aware of the problems, we would also like to share a few less toxic solutions that we are fans of. Without synthetic fragrances and other misery. In any case, we are very happy with the perfume-free wax flakes from Marius Fabre! Soap nuts also offer an excellent way to wash perfume-free. Not only are they free from fragrances, but also free from other synthetic additives. You really can't get more 'pure nature' than that.
Disclaimer (Do Your Own Research): We are happy to share with you our experiences and knowledge that we have gained in our search for a toxic-free life. At the same time, we would like to emphasize that you are solely responsible for your health (that goes without saying, right?). The information we share here is for general educational purposes and is not personalized medical advice. Everyone is unique, and what works for one person may not work for another.