New Study Shows Fragrances are Bad for Your Health and Your Business

October 31, 2016

According to a new study published in Air Quality, Atmosphere & Health, fragrances found in many common household goods were not only found to be an olfactory nuisance, they were also found to induce various adverse health symptoms (

Many businesses rely upon fragranced products to freshen up stale office air and use scented products for cleaning. The fragrances considered for this study included: air fresheners and room deodorizers, personal care products such as: soap, hand sanitizer, lotion, deodorant, sunscreen and shampoo, cleaning supplies, laundry products, and household products such as: scented candles, toilet paper, trash bags and baby products, along with perfumes and colognes.

Researchers conducted a survey asking over 1000 adults a series of questions regarding fragrances. The study concluded that a whopping 34.7 percent of the population reported health problems, such as migraines and respiratory difficulties, when exposed to fragranced products. Negative health problems brought on by exposure to fragrances decreases overall workplace productivity and costs your business money in sick days and decreased workplace performance.

Survey respondents cited respiratory problems as the number one symptom they experienced when exposed to fragrances. The second most common symptom was migraine headaches, subsequently followed by skin irritation and asthma attacks. All of these adverse health effects of fragrance exposure will end up costing your business money from missed opportunities with potential customers and in decreased productivity from employees suffering from health problems stemming from fragrance exposure.

One of the most startling statistics revealed by this study was that 20.2% of the population reported that if they enter a business and smell air fresheners or some type of fragranced product, they want to leave as quickly as possible. Many business owners light candles, spray room deodorizers, and use air fresheners to make their office more pleasant and welcoming. The truth is that fragrance-heavy products actually have an adverse effect. Don’t miss out on valuable business by offending potential new customers with chemically fragranced products.

As more people gain awareness about office indoor air quality and are seeking out healthier alternatives to chemical fragrances and commercial cleaning products, it is time for your business to take strides towards achieving cleaner air by eliminating any fragranced products and cleaning supplies. There is no substitute for clean fresh air. Consider reapportioning funds spent on masking odors by investing in a highly efficient ventilation system that can help your office to better circulate fresh air throughout the entire space.