Many scents in perfumes are synthesized from the fragrance industry’s 3,100 stock chemical ingredients. The most suspect ingredients include phthalates, octoxynols and nonoxynols which are all proven to be persistent hormone disruptors. Thanks to trade secret laws which protect formulation specifics in the fragrance industry, many companies do not disclose if they include such ingredients in their creations. Adding to the murkiness, the fragrance industry is a self-regulated one and has no government oversight.
Going clean with your scent choices could be the way to go since nearly 60 percent of what we put on our bodies is absorbed via our skin. For the purposes of this article we are defining clean as no parabens, no phthalates, no sulfates, cruelty-free and sustainable-sourced. Summer is a great time to experiment with your scent wardrobe. We’ve rounded up a few fragrances that felt right for the warmer months from companies that strive for ultimate transparency.
Henry Rose is a unisex fragrance brand that is verified and certified by two clean and sustainable organizations, Environmental Working Group and Cradle to Cradle. The brand’s bottles are made from 90% recycled glass, are 100% recyclable and its caps are made from sustainably-sourced and commercially compostable soy. Their latest scent Windows Down features bright grapefruit, bergamot, honeyed neroli and earl grey for a light and fresh finish. Perfect to wear when beach cruising in a convertible.
Started by Bee Shapiro, a New York Times beauty writer for 11 years now, the brand’s latest perfume Bee is pretty complex for summer but still evokes the season with honey, dark rum and notes of vanilla bean, sandalwood and cocoa. The brand ships carbon-neutral whenever possible and offsets their carbon footprint by contributing to the Carbon Fund annually. They also partner with Ecocert and FSC Certified stock suppliers.
Vetiver is highly drought tolerant and doesn’t require a lot of water to grow. This thoughtful brand chose to partner with a company that sources Vetiver from Haiti and gives back to the farming families by providing education resources, health care and safe drinking water. The scent itself is a sparkling watery musk that begs to be worn with a great slip dress and slicked back hair.
Heretic is made from 100% naturally derived botanical ingredients that are blended in organic, non-GMO grape, and sugarcane alcohol. Its composition is clean and non-toxic and doesn’t include any synthetics or chemicals. Heretic Grapefruit is a vibrant citrus featuring juicy pink grapefruit on a bed of wet rose petals. The fragrance is grounded by black tea and green vetiver.
This is an ultra moisturizing blend of coconut, sweet almond, rice bran and jojoba oils that will leave skin glowing. It displays a lush base of salt water tinged with mandarin that smells exactly like having a mimosa at the beach. Wear this to evoke a surfer-girl vibe.
I discovered this woodsy floral scent (a blend of an ancient resin agarwood, neroli and frankincense) at clean beauty emporium Onda Beauty in Sag Harbor, New York and have yet to purchase it, but its uniqueness has stayed with me. Ayu perfume oils are hand blended with attars, essential oils, absolutes, key accords, plant and herbs extracts.