How To Smell Good Without a Chemical Perfume

We all want to smell delicious, but many chemical perfumes contain compounds that can irritate the skin and increase our exposure to endocrine disruptors. Fortunately, there are many simple and enjoyable ways to smell good and stay healthy at the same time.

Problems with chemical perfumes

The ingredients in chemical-perfumes are largely unregulated, and loopholes in regulations allow perfume manufacturers to hide unspecified ingredients in their products.

These ingredients can cause allergic reactions, and some are believed to be endocrine disruptors, which can increase the risk of developing diseases such as cancer in the long term. 

There are a number of organizations actively working to promote tougher standards for fragrance-containing products at the governmental level in countries around the world.

However, until that happens, it is recommended that you take a defensive strategy for yourself and learn to choose products that — by virtue of containing only naturally-derived ingredients — do not contain harmful chemicals.

Eliminating allergy-causing and toxic chemicals from your daily routine is a useful part of any health plan because it reduces the input of chemicals that will eventually have to be detoxified by the skin, liver, and lymphatic system. Learning how to use non-toxic and non-chemical scents and fragrances so that you can stay healthy and smell delicious is a skill that will serve you for a lifetime.

So here are my-favorite ways to get it there. These strategies take the guesswork out of your signature scent selection process and reduce your exposure to potentially harmful ingredients.

How to smell great naturally.

Plant-scented shampoos and conditioners

Often times when we go up to greet someone with a hug, we smell what we think is perfume. But in fact, it is the conditioner that has left a pleasant scent on the hair. You can choose shampoos and conditioners that specifically leave you with a long-lasting natural scent that you can wear as a perfume throughout the day.

To achieve this effect, take a shower in the morning and/or apply some no-rinse conditioner to your hair before leaving the house. Try to choose hair products that do not contain ingredients that are listed as “perfume” or “fragrance” and instead contain naturally aromatic plants such as coconut or mango, flowers such as hibiscus and lavender, or herbs like neem.

Essential oils as a natural perfume

Before studying botanical medicine, I didn’t understand that essential oils were basically concentrated forms of herbal tea. Yes, you read that right! Essential oils are produced through two methods: distillation and cold-press extraction, both of which are a lot like boiling a cup of tea and then capturing the small amount of oil that escapes in the steam as the plant continues to soak in the boiling water.

In part, this is the reason why essential oils have a very low number of chemical components; These are basically a cup of tea that has been concentrated without all the extra water. 

Essential oils can be mild and make a wonderful complement to the regular oil or body lotion that you use to hydrate your skin. To produce a body oil infused with essential oils, simply place a small amount of lotion or oil in the palm of your hand. Add a drop of essential oil. Mix well and then apply to your skin.

You should always patch test essential oil-infused lotions or oils before using them on your entire body because your skin may be sensitive to certain types of essential oils. To perform the patch test, simply apply a small amount of lotion or oil mixed with essential oil to an area the size of a dime on your skin. Wait 24 hours. If you do not develop redness, burning, or a rash, then it is most likely safe to use it on larger parts of your body.

You know your body better than anyone, so if you start to suspect that a certain type of essential oil is irritating your skin, discontinue use and try other methods of smelling good mentioned in this article or switch to another essential oil.

Among the types of essential oils that are a great complement to body oils and lotions are the following:

  • Rose petal essential oil
  • Peppermint leaves essential oil.
  • Orange essential oil
  • Lavender flower essential oil
  • Cedar essential oil
  • Vanilla essential oil

Body lotions can be used as perfume.

Many natural body lotions are naturally scented with essential oils. Choosing a body lotion with essential oils saves you the trouble of mixing them yourself! 

Hydrolats as natural sprays for the body

If the essential oils are the evaporated oils from herbal tea, then the hydrolats are the steam. Hydrolats are made from water vapor that evaporates from herbal teas and adheres to the lid of the container, then condenses and drips into a collecting container; what we end up with after this process is water with a floral scent that can be used as a spray bottle. Many people use rose water for-their beauty routines because it is astringent and because it can act as a color harmonizer, just as other types of natural face sprays do. 

Deodorants can be used as natural perfumes.

Many natural deodorants contain strong smelling flowers and herbs that not only mask body odor but also emit a pleasant fragrance of their own. Look for a deodorant that contains herbs or flowers that add an extra scent to its powerful protective scent. 

Dryer Wipes

Have you ever smelled a certain brand of detergent, and it reminded you of someone you knew? This is because scents from laundry detergents and dryer sheets remain on our clothes even after washing and drying. The I Herb blog has many articles on choosing non-toxic products to clean at home, including the laundry products you use. For our purposes, choose a natural laundry detergent and compostable dryer sheets that contain scents that you truly love so you can leave out chemical perfumes and still smell great. 

Avoid scents that you need to hide.

Many people use perfumes to disguise scents such as cigarette smoke, vaping scents, pet scents, stale aromas from the closet or basement, and more. It is much better to eliminate stenches than to hide them. If you smoke, stop it. If you can’t quit completely, at least wear a jacket while smoking so you can take it off and wash your hands and face with natural soap before engaging in social situations.

Clean with a suitable HEPA-filtered, animal-scale vacuum to reduce pet hair and shedding on surfaces in your home and car that could adhere to your clothing. Make sure to clean your pets on a regular basis (as often as your vet recommends) using a pet gel natural. Use a dehumidifier in spaces that often have a musty odor, allow air to circulate, and spray natural air fresheners in rooms where clothing or jackets that tend to have a musty odor are kept.

If you follow these tips, you-should notice that it smells amazing without having to wear any perfume or chemical fragrances.