By MC Milker
The Not Quite Crunchy Parent
And while we’re on the subject of clean air which I wrote about here, let me tackle the problem with commercial air fresheners.
This from a recently released report from The Natural Resources Defense Council.
A recent investigation of 14 common air fresheners by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) found phthalates in 12 products, hazardous chemicals known to cause hormonal abnormalities, birth defects and reproductive problems.The offending products included some fresheners marketed as “all-natural” and “unscented.” None of the air fresheners listed phthalates on their labels.
You may be familiar with phthalates, a plasticizer used to soften hard plastic and used in many children’s products including pacifiers, baby bottle nipples and rubber duckies. Phthalates have been connected to developmental disorders and, can be more toxic in children due to their lower body weight.
The recent “Made in China” toy scares brought this issue to the forefront…now we have another reason to worry about this toxic chemical. The NRCD tested a variety of aerosol sprays, liquids and solids and found most of them, whether marketed a pure and natural or not, contained trace elements of phthalates.
Walgreens Scented Bouquet topped the charts with 7300 parts per million of the phthalate DEP (and has since been reformulated). The only two products that tested entirely free of phthalates were Febreze Air Effects and Renuzit Subtle Effects, both sprays.
The September 2007 study also recommended:
To protect consumers, government action to conduct more thorough tests and enact basic measures to limit exposure to phthalates is urgently needed.
I guess so!
In the meantime, I’ll stick with more natural options:
– Opening the windows
– Baking soda
– Displaying bowls of natural herbs like rosemary, ginger or cinnamon
– Dipping cotton balls in extracts such as vanilla or almond
And of course, I’ll carefully tend my living air cleaners, my house plants.
Related Posts: Clean Air With Plants – A New Look at an Old Favorite
Green SAHM says
Makes me so glad I don’t use air fresheners like that. I don’t like their smell, as a rule, most houses don’t stink that bad if you take care of them, and there are, as you said, natural ways to take care of it.
REBECCA SMITH says
HELLO: Several months ago I purchased ‘NILOTRON’ odor counteractant. (Have many cats and dogs.) After about a week, I became very ill (I never get sick!)and almost nauseous. My breathing was labored and throat irritations & pains, sick to my stomach, body pains, headaches, etc. I finally noticed…. the air freshners were ‘thick smelling’ and I became suspicous that they were the culprits making me feel so bad. Let me tell you what is in this stuff!!”RIGHT TO KNOW”
“Diethylene Glucol Monoethtyl Ether; 2-Propanone; Petroleum Distillate; Propane, Butane.” “Meets new VOC regulations!” I am in shock that they would allow this on the market for consumers! I would be interested in to whomever else I can report this to. If you can advise me, I’d appreciate it. I am still coughing from this horrible purchase. Many thanks, Rebecca Smith Jacksonville, FL