The Science Behind Your Scent

Scent is one of the greatest gifts we have of being alive. Our sense of smell enriches our experience of the world around you. Scents invoke a mood, transport us to a space in nature we love, serve as a vessel for self expression, and can be an incredible way to soothe our nervous system and release stress. What we take in from our external environment influences our internal ecosystem too. Essential oil based perfumes tap into our body’s capacity to experience and feel pleasure from our natural world. Certain blends can calm us, invigorate us, etc. Yet the beauty industry has turned a head to the power of scent for some time now. Here are 3 harmful ingredients found in over 75% of perfumes today.

1. Phthalates are a group of petroleum-based chemicals that function as solvents & stabilizers in perfumes. When you see the word “fragrance” on a perfume label, unless indicated as “phthalate-free”, what they are actually referring to are phthalates— plasticizing chemicals designed to make scents last longer. phthalates are well-known as endocrine disruptors and are associated with hormone imbalance, reproductive issues, and long term health problems. Sadly, according to the Environmental Working Group, about 75% of perfumery products contain phthalates.

2. Parabens are another commonly used ingredient in the majority of perfumes today. Parabens are preservatives that prevent the growth of bacteria & mold, yet they are also endocrine disruptors, yielding the same negative hormone imbalances in our bodies. Parabens mimic estrogen by locking on to our cell’s natural estrogen receptors and masking their signals to the rest of our body’s endocrine system.

3. Sulfates are another ingredient used in perfumes that cause skin irritation and trigger an inflammatory response in your skin as they are essentially byproducts of a petrochemical process called ethoxylation which is used to process other chemicals in order to make them less harsh. Sulfates are associated with lung irritation due to our bodies breathing in these chemicals.

It’s crazy to think that this knowledge is one google search away, yet brands continue to push synthetic products to keep their budgets low and profits high. Much like the endocrine disrupters mask our body’s innate capacity to communicate from our system to the next, big names put billions of dollars into clever advertisements that cover up the integrity, or lack there of, of their formulations.

You are no doubt bright, beautiful and brilliant, yet health & beauty are still an industry…so we just need to do our research and let science sway your skin to true health. Feel a desire to tap into and feed your connection to nature? Here’s a bit about the clean fragrance brands we carry at Jones + Co.

Liis fragrances empower and invite you to experience scent as you wish. Worn as a second skin, Liis fragrances befriend your natural pheromones and are made from exceptionally high quality, conscious ingredients from around the world. They are based in a natural grain alcohol farmed in the USA and formulated without preservatives, dyes, phthalates, sulfates. They are cruelty-free, vegan, and allergy tested as well.

BODHA is a meditative fragrance studio founded in 2014 by perfumer Emily L’Ami & designer Fred L'Ami. BODHA explores scents’ unique ability to create moments of connection & calm. Their therapeutic Vibration Perfume Oil Collection offers an elemental energy of Earth, Plants & Air using essential oils. From vegan therapeutic ingredients to sustainable & tactile packaging design, BODHA taps into the ways we can move beyond thought to deepen our experience of life.


Lightbound’s signature scent, Alma, is a handcrafted & genderless perfume oil that embodies the soul. Deep, rich notes of vanilla & dark chocolate anchor this fragrance & smoky notes of elemi, Tunisian frankincense, olibanum, clean sandalwood, patchouli, and a crisp white amber stay on the skin long into the night. Lightbound is based in 100% organic fractionated coconut oil, with a proprietary blend of fragrance & essential oils. They are cruelty-free, paraben-free, phthalate-free & 100% natural.

Osea’s Vagus Nerve Collection is where science meets wellness. Named after the Latin word for “wandering,” the vagus nerve is the longest cranial nerve in the body. The vagus nerve activates the body's relaxation response and helps regulate stress. Osea's Vagus Nerve Bath Oil, Body Oil & Pillow Mist are formulated with a soothing blend of essential oils that activate the parasympathetic nervous system “rest and digest” response for a sense of well-being & serenity.

Shemana’s crystal activated Perfume Elixirs are designed to be reminiscent of the lost art of natural, ritualistic perfumery. They are  jojoba oil based, hand-blended with rare & exotic pure essential oils, and activated with crystal essences. Wearing each scent, one feels an intrinsic connection to love, luxury, mystery, and medicine.

Sisters Body was created by three sisters, Doni, Eva, and Jo Zasloff to nourish themselves, their kids, their friends, and to give back to the planet the non-toxic way As the political climate shifted in 2017, and the threat to defund Planned Parenthood and other women’s health services became a reality, they began to give back to women too. 40% of all profits from Sisters Body are donated to organizations that support women’s health. With the help from their father who is a biochemist and physician, they formulated a nontoxic hair & body line that is good for our bodies and gives back. Earth Tones Scent Oil is an earthy, sensual scent based in coconut oil with undertones of 100% natural sandalwood & musk. It’s chemical fragrance free, phthalate free, paraben free, vegan, gluten free, and animal test free.



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