Allergens found in essential oils sold in Korea

By Won Ho-jung
  • Published : Dec 6, 2017 - 17:35
  • Updated : Dec 6, 2017 - 17:35
Essential oils used in aromatherapy currently sold in Korea have been found to contain allergens, according to the Korea Consumer Agency Wednesday.

The consumer rights agency tested twenty essential oils including 13 used in air fresheners, two used in cosmetics and five used for hand-made cosmetics. All twenty showed traces of allergens d-limonene and linalool, which can cause allergic reactions when they come into contact with the skin or eyes. 


Under current regulations, it is not required for air fresheners to indicate levels of allergens, and it is recommended for cosmetics to indicate potential allergens on labels. None of the tested essential oils for air fresheners or handmade cosmetics had labels indicating the potential risks associated with allergens.

The Korea Consumer Agency said that it plans to request the Environment Ministry to develop guidelines for labeling air fresheners with levels of allergens present, and to recommend that the Ministry of Food and Drug Safety make it mandatory for cosmetics to indicate the presence of allergens on their labels. 

By Won Ho-jung (