Friday, August 3, 2012

Indecent Perfume Exposure

I want to do something a little bit different today and get something off of my chest. It's no secret that I'm sensitive to fragrance, or as I like to so cleverly call it - scentsitive. yes, I have the nose of a bloodhound (I can tell if you have eaten Italian food, or anything else really, in the past 72 hours) but I also have an illness, and part of that illness is chemical and fragrance sensitivity.

 Before I get too deep into this rant, I want to say that I am in no way trying to attack any of you who wear perfume or scented products. I know many of you love, use and wear perfume or other scented products like lotions and shower gels on a daily basis and even though I'm complaining about public perfume usage I want you to know that wearing fragrance in moderation is 100% acceptable.

Last week I went to see a new doctor who sends out fliers to all new patients asking them not to wear any cologne, perfume, or fragranced products while in their office. While sitting in the waiting room, an older gentleman walked in wearing so much cologne I can only imagine that he doused himself with an entire bottle of the same scent he's been wearing for the past 40 years. He literally had me gagging. It's not exactly the scent that was bothering me (although it wasn't the most pleasant odor); it was the amount.

This has happened to me numerous times throughout my life. I feel as though men and women become used to their fragrance of choice and can no longer smell it so they spray four times the recommend amount on their bodies to compensate for their adjusted noses. If you can't smell yourself, it doesn't mean the rest of the world can't smell you.

Another ridiculous story I want to share involves a mall and the beauty department inside of one of my favorite department stores. Upon walking into the store you cross the fragrance section to get to any other section. A sales associate approached my Mom and I and asked if we wanted to try the newest, hottest perfume on the shelf. We politely declined and the woman spritzed us anyway. She seriously sprayed the perfume directly onto me and my skin which sent me into an allergy and migraine induced stupor. This happened several years ago and it still appalls me to this day. Why in the world would she spray (awful smelling, by the way) perfume on a person who specifically said no. I forgot to mention that after I said no the first time she asked me if I was sure, to which I replied, "yes, I'm sure. I don't want to try this perfume. Thank you though." Spritz, spritz.
And don't even get me started on teenage boys and Axe or girls and their misuse of body spray.

I guess the whole point of this rambling and ranting is that when you are getting ready to go about your day in the morning or about to go out for a night on the town just take into consideration that there are people out in the world who are extremely sensitive to fragrance. Before you spritz that extra spray or two of perfume or cologne ask yourself if it's too much and be aware that you can set some people off in a flare up of their condition.

Has anything like this ever happened to you? I'd love to hear your odorific tales.


  1. Robin @ toxicbeautyblog.comAugust 3, 2012 at 4:44 PM

    I never used to be sensitive to smells before I went organic in my cosmetics and personal care products. Now I can barely stand to walk down the detergent aisle. Once when I went to the movies, a lady who'd put 1/2 a bottle of perfume on sat by me. Needless to say, I didn't enjoy that movie as much as I could have.

    Regardless of the fact that perfumes are hormone disrupting poisons, people really should take a clue that they're putting on WAY TOO MUCH and that if you say no I don't want any, don't freaking spray it on you! Sorry.

    I think this was a great post for you...we have these blogs and should use them as a means to get our feelings across and you sure did that! Good job!

  2. I've definitely gotten whiffs of people who power through their scented products like maniacs. I'm just grateful that I'm not that sensitive - it must be awful for you. I'm super sensitive to smoke though, and I hate it when people smoke in non-designated areas.

    The only scents I use are what come in my lotions, but I just got some Lotus Wei mists in my Yuzen subscription box and they're lovely! I'll definitely make sure to use them sparingly to make sure I don't get so used to the smell that I overdo it. Totally wish there was some sort of forum for public service announcements like this, so people could be educated.

  3. Thank you both for your comments! And thank you for your kind words Robin! I'm really sensitive to smoke as well Mary and I just hate that people do it at all in public. I feel like smoking is something that should be done in the privacy of your own home! Which Lotus Wei Mist is your favorite?

  4. I also have an illness, and part of that illness is having MCS (multiple chemical sensitivity) it is hard having this because we live in a world of chemicals. I know your pain.. believe me! Some people really don't care either. Like some of my family members are well aware that I have this and get VERY sick (neurologically) when around chemicals, and they will still wear them around me... sigh....


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