Steady on the perfume or aftershave spray!

December 9, 2008

To my mind, perfume adds a great deal of pleasure to life – but like most things a little moderation is not a bad idea – and the fact I have one for each day of the week seems pretty moderate to me. However, we have probably all suffered in the proximity of someone who has overdone it and extends the wearing of it to everyone in a 6 foot radius. I was working in London at the time Christian Dior launched his perfume Poison, and my daily journey up the escalator at Green Park was an exercise in holding my breath and trying not to feel faint at the overpowering waves it that surrounded me.

It’s not pleasant for the passive receiver, but it may actually legally constitute at health hazard – it has just been found guilty in the USA and a case is going forward as we speak. A Judge in Detroit heard a case where city planner Susan McBride alleged that perfume from a co-worker was so overwhelming she couldn’t breathe properly. This she claims created a hazardous work environment and actually prevented her from working properly.

The city council went to court to have the claim dismissed, but the Judge agreed with McBride that her breathing difficulties had a legitimate basis and so qualified for protection under federal laws that protect the disabled from workplace discrimination. I don’t know what the court case is based on, but certainly synthetic perfume chemicals have been linked to asthma, infertility and cancer. Because they are applied directly to the skin they are absorbed into the bloodstream and then have to be processed by the liver, where they can do damage.

We are already exposed to a number of toxic chemicals in our everyday environment from air fresheners to hairspray, and the day might come when perfume in the workplace might be banned on health grounds in the same way that smoking was. You might also wonder why it went to court and they didn’t just have a quiet word with the offender, but maybe – as is often the case when wearing perfume – she (or perhaps he for all I know) was just immune to the smell and kept putting on more.

If you want to be sure you are not poisoning the atmosphere, what about switching to natural perfumes with no nasty chemicals?

Tsi~La (pronounced chee-la), is a collection of delicate, sophisticated, 100% natural perfumes with no alcohol, preservatives, artificial fragrances or colourings. Just pure, natural perfumes made from the world’s finest essential oils and plant botanicals, and if you were wondering, the name means “flower” in Cherokee.

You have a choice of six different and distinctive scents, you just have to decide which is the most appropriate – though for most women buying at least two for our varying moods would be a good idea. You will know what will suit them best: Fiori d’Arancio (flirtatious), Fleur Sauvage (alluring), Ilang Ilang (exotic), Kesu (mysterious), Kizes (spontaneous) and Saqui (sensual). Personally, as a woman of many and diverse moods, I am asking Santa for the Tsi-La mini collection because a) I get four of them, and b) they come in a handy roll on so no spillage in the dark cavernous recesses of my handbag. To have a look at these, and other wonderful natural fragrances, visit


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