I want to buy a few new fragrance oils and am considering going the phthalate free route. Do phthalate free fragrances perform inferiorly or can they measure up? Are phthalates even that bad for the skin?
The phthalate in fragrance oils (DEP) isn't the one that caused concern; nor is there evidence that it's harmful in fragrance.
According to the FDA: "Based on available safety information, DEP does not pose known risks for human health as it is currently used in cosmetics and fragrances."
So I wouldn't call suppliers who haven't reformulated disreputable.
But consumer perception (driven in this case by conflating all phthalates) drives the market so many suppliers are or have been reformulating without it.
It's a fixative, that's why it was used instead of other solvents... and why the reformulated fo's may not stick as well. Some of the substitutes may also be sensitizers. Always something, eh?