Consumption of cosmetic and toiletry products has been increasing steadily. The variety of cosmetics has also become much more complex. Thousands of chemicals and essential oils are used to prepare the fragrances for cosmetic products today. There are approximately 200 kinds of essential oils and over 3,000 chemicals used as fragrance ingredients. Recently, however, some problems have arisen in the use of some of these chemicals and oils which appear to cause skin irritations. In this study, we tested chemicals and oils commonly used in fragrances for cosmetics by the “closed patch method” in order to investigate the safety of each material.
All chemicals and essential oils used in this study were obtained commercially and used without further treatment. 270,000 closed patch tests of fragrance materials were made on a pool of approximately 200 volunteers employed by Ogawa & Co., Ltd., over the last eight years. Ten materials were tested on each person at one time.