one way to get over the bath and body works habit

March 12th, 2008

One Way To Get Over the Bath and Body Works Habit

Suddenly develop an allergic reaction to one of their products.

So no, this won’t work for everyone, or even most people.   But sadly, it may work for me.

I’ve always had sensitive skin, from the time I was a baby.  And I’ve always had a propensity for allergic reactions to things.  I am one of those people that if modern medicine hadn’t affected the course of natural selection, I wouldn’t have made it to adulthood.  I have a life-threatening allergy to strawberries, a host of other more minor allergies to everything from dust to mosquitoes, and a number of different cleaning products give me severe hives.  Trust me, you don’t want to find out you’re allergic to fabric softener when wearing underwear washed in it.  Just trust me.

Bath and Body Works things have never bothered me at all, which is one of the reasons I have collected so many of them.  I’m more prone to hives in the winter when my skin is generally drier, and when I started to itch a few days ago, I chalked it up to winter and cursed my sensitive skin.  I was using a Bath and Body Works lotion that I hadn’t used in a while, but I had used before, and I didn’t make a connection between the hives and the lotion.  Until I realized that the more lotion I used, the worse the hives got.   I stopped using that lotion and switched to a different one – the hives went away.  I did a little test spot a few days later of the original lotion – big ugly red hives.

The funny thing is, the lotion I switched to in between is also Bath and Body Works, so it must be a fragrance additive that I am having the reaction to.  This has happened to me before with the aforementioned fabric softeners (although now I just use plain white vinegar because I never want to repeat that experience), I would have a reaction to one scent and not another.  This is also why we use non-allergenic laundry detergent.

So I don’t think I will be buying any more Bath and Body Works lotions.  I will use up the one that I didn’t react to, and probably do some testing of other fragrances I already have, but I really hate hives, and don’t want to tempt fate any more than I already am.  Ugh.  I will miss the pretty smells.

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15 Responses to “One Way To Get Over the Bath and Body Works Habit”

  1. Oh that’s too bad :-( I love their stuff, especially the Temptations line…

  2. Randy Peterman Says:

    March 12th, 2008 at 8:19 pm

    it is also worth noting that the common ‘sterilizing agent’ in most anti-bacterial soaps is not as effective as bacteria grow immune to it, it doesn’t bio degrade, its count per million is going up in water source tests, and it is showing up in fish. I have chosen for our family to dump anti-bacterial for some of the natural alternatives, or non-anti-bacterial soaps available at stores like Target.

    We’ve got pretty sensitive skin, too and I am allergic to several foods as well, its a bummer when your body reacts to different things in intense ways.

  3. That’s awful! I’m allergic to a common sunscreen ingredient, though fortunately they make hypoallergenic ones. At least that’s a good motivation never to get sucked in there again.

  4. A bummer and a blessing in disguise, huh? I have sensitive skin too and always use dye/perfume free detergents and soaps too. Although I’ve never had a reaction, I just figured I didn’t need to traumatize my skin unnecessarily. :)

  5. I am allergic to everything too. A lucky trait I was able to pass onto my children and my husband has it too! ;)
    Try the Bath and Body works body sprays. I use it like a perfume and spray it on myself after I am dressed. It works like Febreeze too, use it in the car, etc…

  6. Bath and Bodyworks will let you return items that you are allergic to. Ask me how I know.

  7. Oooooh Dana! Thanks for mentioning that! I wonder if I can though, it’s several years old and I have no idea if they even make it anymore. I am going to look into it. I could trade it for another bottle of the one I’ve been using that I am not reacting to. Hmm….

  8. The product probably went bad on you if it’s old. You’re probably not having an allergic reaction to it, it should be thrown out. Lotions have a shelf life just like makeup products do. Hope this helps!

  9. @wendy – well, I did indeed have an allergic reaction ;) but it is good to know it may not be related to the product in its original form but because it is older. Thanks!

  10. Thanks for participating in this week’s Carnival of Family Life: St. Patrick’s Day Edition at Colloquium! The Carnival will be live at midnight (Pacific time) on March 17, 2008, so drop by and check out all of the wonderful submissions included this week! Happy St. Patrick’s Day to you!

  11. The exact same thing just started happening to me! I’m rather addicted to the Bath and Body Works signature collection lotions and I have been using them on and off for years. I recently started putting it on every day due to severely dry winter skin and now my arms and legs are covered in awful, itchy hives.

    Oh, and about the product being old: I just bought mine not more than three days ago.

    It happens with all different kinds of scents, too, because I’ve rotated them to see if I get the same reaction.


  12. Thanks so much for posting this. I’ve had an awful reaction to BBW’s lotion too. I used it once and then next day I had itchy red hives on my legs and arms. Not fun at all! I’m hoping that I can use some of their other lotions. I’m glad to know I’m not the only one with that reaction.


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