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A Fragrance Free Manifesto

This article originally posted July 2, 2014 on our tumblr blog

Why reading labels and avoiding this one ingredient will make you healthier, wealthier, smarter, better looking, and awesome

If you read the full ingredient list of any common household product, chances are you’ll be amazed at how many different substances are included.  Even if you don’t recognize what any of them are, you can look each one up, read what other people and organizations have to say, and decide whether you think you are dealing with a miracle product or you need to don gloves and a respirator to immediately remove it from your home. However, there is one ingredient you will come across that is an exception to this rule.


It is the mystery meat of our household products.  US federal law doesn’t require labeling of the chemicals that companies use in their fragrance mixtures.  As a result, they can add thousands (really!) of different possible ingredients to your cosmetics and cleaning products, and you don’t even know what they are.  According to the Environmental Working Group, they can contain hormone disruptors and are among the top 5 allergens in the world. 

WTF, companies? Why not just list what you’re actually using? Then at least we can have a conversation about it, and people that are sensitive to chemicals have a shot at learning what products to avoid and which ones are A-OK.  Instead, we get a mysterious product, where you know what’s in it and you want us to use it, no questions asked.  

Even if you are trying to reduce the number of nasty chemicals you encounter, you can still run into fragrance. Even some companies that claim to be ‘green’ use this term on their ingredient lists.

We can argue (and we might) about whether other ingredients are dangerous or bad for the environment: Sodium Laureth Sulfate, glycerin, and scores of others are great cause for debate and research.  At least there we can identify the subject and talk about it openly.  With fragrance, the actual ingredients are a mystery and may a combination of substances, many of which could be harmful.  If we are going to take control of our products and make them safer for our families and the environment, it’s critical that we understand exactly what is in those products.

That’s why Meliora K will never use fragrance as an ingredient and is committed to disclosing 100% of our ingredients, along with other companies involved in the No Secrets campaign by Women’s Voices for the Earth. Transparency is the founding value of our company (we even disclose the full recipes used in our products!) so we can make products that help you reduce your exposure to unwanted chemicals.