Hypoallergenic Products, Are They Really Non-allergenic?

By staff

Do you really know what the definition of a hypoallergenic product is?  It just simply means that the manufacturer markets it as the product that will not cause an allergic reaction in most people. Does that mean that you won’t have an allergic reaction if you use the product; not necessarily!

Some manufactures will actually test their so called hypoallergenic products on a test group to see if any allergic reactions will occur. Other manufactures will simply leave out the common fragrances or other ingredients that are known to cause allergies. Then they print the word hypoallergenic on the label.

Is this legal? Yes. In the United States, the FDA (food and drug administration) just expects all manufactures to list the ingredients of their products. If the ingredient is listed and you have an allergic reaction, the manufacturer is not libel, even if the word hypoallergenic is printed on it.

What if the product is listed dermatologist tested? These just means that a dermatologist checked the list of ingredients and pointed out if any of them were highly known to cause allergic reactions. This still does not mean that a product that is labeled hypoallergenic and dermatologist tested still won’t cause an allergic reaction in some people.

How can you avoid an allergic reaction to any product, even those labeled hypoallergenic? You must know the substances or allergens that can cause a reaction for you. Then once you have tracked down what this substance is, you must learn to read labels. If you see your allergen listed, avoid the product, even if it is labeled as hypoallergenic. To you, it won’t be hypoallergenic. It will cause a reaction.

You also need to learn the difference between natural products and synthetic products.  Natural means that they came directly from a plant or an animal. Synthetic means that they were produced.

If you are allergic to a certain flower, for instance the rose. Then you buy a hypoallergenic bath lotion that was naturally made and had the scent of roses. What will happen? You will have an allergic reaction because you have come into contact with roses. Would a product that was processed synthetically and smelled like roses cause the same reaction?  Possibly. You would have to check the list of ingredients. The fragrance used may be actually based with real roses. Not all fragrances are completely broken down into each little molecule used. If it was me, I would avoid anything that smelled like roses whether it was marked hypoallergenic, natural or dermatologist tested.

Hypoallergenic jewelry can be just as bad as hypoallergenic makeups, lotions, etc., depending on what types of allergies you have. If you are allergic to nickel, for instance, most jewelry items will clearly state if they are nickel free. If they just read hypoallergenic, it doesn’t necessarily mean nickel isn’t there.

Should we then avoid using hypoallergenic products all together? No. When making hypoallergenic products, manufactures do try to keep from using common substances that causes allergic reactions, therefore these products are less harsh than most. They also are generally made from substances that are good for sensitive type people.

What you should do is not assume anything. Read the label. If you don’t see anything written on the list of ingredients that you feel would cause an allergic reaction, feel free to use it.

- Linda McCloud

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