I recently wrote a blog post on why I’ve started to opt for vegan beauty products after noticing a significant improvement in my skin. On my quest for natural and cleaner ingredients, I’ve also started to learn more of the benefits of choosing paraben-free. Despite the ability to increase a product’s shelf life, parabens can be potentially harmful.
Here’s the lowdown on why I’m switching to paraben-free.
So what exactly are parabens?
Parabens are synthetic chemicals used to preserve beauty products by giving them a longer shelf life. They prevent the growth of fungi and other microorganisms in beauty, food and several hygiene products.
The parabens that are most commonly used in beauty products are Methylparaben, Butylparaben, Isobutylparaben, Isopropylparaben and Ethylparaben.
Are parabens harmful?
In short – potentially.
Parabens can penetrate the skin and make their way into our bodies. Sometimes toxic, these nasty ingredients can remain in the skin’s tissue which some researchers believe could lead to health problems. They are also believed to disrupt hormone function by mimicking oestrogen which can impact fertility.
Parabens aren’t just potentially harmful for humans, they can impact the environment too. Scientific research reported parabens in the bodies of marine mammals and it is likely that these came from used products that have been washed down the drain.
If you have sensitive skin like me, parabens are also more likely to cause irritation.
Actions you can take to become paraben-free
Research ingredients and look out for paraben-free labels. However, be sure to take care when reviewing products, as some brands have been caught out claiming they are paraben-free, when in fact their products still contain other synthetic ingredients.
If you do find parabens in your current regime, don’t panic! It’s important to note that the percentage of preservative in a formulation is generally very small. But if you’re using them day in day out that amount could soon start to add up.
And finally, use this as the perfect excuse to discover new brands and try out some clean products! You can shop some of my favourites below. S x
Shop my favourites
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