Have you ever opened an innocent-looking skin product only to be overpowered by a strong, unnatural perfume? Most of us have probably experienced this. If we decide to use it, the fragrance can hang around on the skin, and even clothes, for hours.
Sometimes, though, a fragrance-free alternative is not as enticing. It may be good for your skin and of great quality. Disappointingly, it can lack that sensual boost you get from an uplifting fragrance.
Thankfully, Poko skincare is 100% natural, and any fragrance comes from exquisite plant-based ingredients.
Why do so many products have a fragrance?
Cosmetic companies know only too well that a fragrance can sell a product. And it’s a natural instinct to smell something before we buy. Who hasn’t taken a sniff of a hand cream, a candle, even a washing up liquid, before buying?
That’s why so many cosmetic companies add fragrance to their products. It creates a sensual reaction and lasts much longer than natural fragrances. If something smells good we are more likely to buy it and enjoy it.
But just because a product smells of roses or orchards, doesn’t mean that’s where the ingredients come from. Many fragrances begin life in a laboratory. And these synthetic fragrances can cause our skin all sorts of trouble.
Fragrance-free may not smell so good
Some products that are fragrance-free can be the opposite. They might smell of nothing, but often a fragrance is used to mask the unpleasant aroma of other ingredients. Some of the baseline components in skincare don’t smell great. But a product can become fragrance-free by adding a neutralising aroma.
What’s wrong with synthetic fragrances?
Synthetic fragrances, apart from being unnatural, can cause irritation to the skin, allergic reactions and headaches. However, it can be hard to identify which item in your skin product is causing the problem. The label does not have to clearly list all the ingredients. And we are none the wiser if something is just listed as ‘fragrance’, or the catch-all ‘parfum’.
The terms ‘fragrance’ and ‘parfum’ can be any of around 3000 compounds, naturally derived or artificially manufactured. It’s unlikely that we’d choose to put many of these directly on our skin. But many popular brands contain unknown quantities of synthetic fragrances and we can’t be certain what we’re using.
These artificial fragrances can be particularly harmful to sensitive skin, or skin that’s already red and sore. They are commonly found to be the root cause of skin irritation or rashes in all skin types.
Even if you use a product without any reaction, synthetics may be causing damage under the surface. It could be a long time until you’re aware of any problem it might have caused.
Natural fragrances can cause problems, too
Fragrance in a product labelled as ‘natural’ will often come from an essential oil. Precious plant extracts have been used in health, healing and beauty for thousands of years. Some of them are very familiar and we probably have bottles of them at home for relaxation, massage or diffusion. These are very familiar aromas such as lavender, rose, and peppermint.
Many essential oils and plant extracts are actively good for the skin. It’s fine to apply patchouli, neroli or ylang-ylang directly to the skin without harsh results.
But there are other oils that are still beneficial to the skin but should never be applied undiluted. Lemongrass, rosemary and tea tree oils are examples. Bergamot and chamomile oils can also cause skin irritation when applied directly. Smelling good doesn’t always mean good for the skin.
It's fine to include natural essential oils in skincare. However, to pose no risk they must be diluted. Only then can their benefits for skin or fragrance be captured and utilised.
Many natural ingredients smell amazing and are skin-friendly
The world is full of delicious and wonderful-smelling ingredients that are kind to the skin. For instance, the Pharaohs used olive oil as skincare and for general health. Its antioxidant properties can protect against the signs of ageing and may even prevent damage from UV rays. It’s also full of skin-loving vitamins.
The Egyptians also loved using perfumes such as myrrh and frankincense in rituals of cleanliness and vitality.
There are so many other plant-based compounds that smell amazing and benefit the skin. This makes them ideal for high quality, natural products. Just reading their names instantly conjures up the aromas: coconut, shea butter, almond, aloe vera, cocoa butter, cucumber, and melon.
Poko skincare products incorporate a number of these. Plus, they also contain gorgeous ingredients such as pomegranate and green tea extracts. They include oils from avocados, apricot kernels, olives, sea buckthorn, moringa, and sunflower seeds. Then there are ingredients such as argan oil and oatmeal. It’s a natural feast of goodness and fragrance.
Saying no to synthetic fragrances benefits the environment
Once we’ve used a big brand shampoo or shower gel it goes down the drain. It doesn’t stay on us. Therefore, we are releasing all those chemical ingredients and molecules of artificial fragrance into the water system. Eventually, this makes its way back to us as drinking water.
Fully synthetic fragrances are developed using by-products from the petroleum industry. They come to you directly from the lab and have nothing to do with nature. So by continuing to buy products with synthetic fragrances, consumers are supporting the petrochemical industry. Ultimately, they are giving a green light to environmental pollution.
Not all synthetics are bad
The growth in demand for natural or ‘clean’ products has been huge in recent years. This has ultimately led to deforestation in order to cultivate ‘natural’ sandalwood and rosewood. And local workers growing these plants are often exploited by being overworked and underpaid.
Some synthetic fragrances are a direct replica of natural ones. Sometimes it may be more beneficial to manufacture an aroma like linalool, which is derived from lavender oil. This can prevent overproduction by mainstream grower and reduce the use of pesticides and fertilisers.
How do I know my skincare product has natural fragrance?
To make sure your products contain natural fragrances, choose a quality brand that prides itself on using pure ingredients. The Poko skincare range is vegan and certified by the Vegan Society. Therefore, none of the ingredients are animal-based or have been tested on animals.
Poko proudly steers clear of synthetic fragrances and non-natural scents. They have chosen the best quality ingredients that are kind to your skin and smell amazing. Your skin deserves only the best and these products leave your skin fresh, pampered and hydrated.
If a Poko product has a fragrance, that aroma will come from a natural, preferably organic plant source.
Products that are suitable for all skin types and for everyone are created by combining natural ingredients. Poko are proud to list their ingredients and are transparent about labelling.
Natural is the way to go
If you can’t be sure about what is in your skincare, maybe it’s time to reconsider your choice? Your face is precious - it’s what you present to the world and it’s what the world sees first about you.
Our skin deserves to be treated with care and kindness. We think carefully about what we put in our bodies by eating well. We try to keep ourselves healthy with exercise and fitness. Mindfulness and wellbeing are important goals. Surely we should think in the same way about our skin?
If customers demand kinder, more natural, plant-based skincare, with traceable products, manufacturers will respond. If we turn away from artificial, overly-perfumed skin creams, companies will soon take note. And we can always turn to naturally beautiful skincare alternatives for everyone from the likes of Poko.