You find “paraben-free” products everywhere, it might triggers the question What are parabens? Why it is so bad for the skin and hair? In today’s world where we are so concerned about what we eat and drink, no wonder we should be equally aware of the ingredients which we use in our skincare and haircare products which directly comes in contact with your skin.
What are Parabens?
Parabens are preservatives used in beauty and hair care products to extend shelf life by inhibiting the growth of mould and bacteria within them. It was first used back in 1950. There are many alternative preservatives now available in the market which are as effective, but parabens are the cheaper ones hence used widely.
Products containing Parabens
Various makeup, beauty and hair care products contain parabens.
- Moisturizers, Creams, Lotions
- lipsticks, Makeup items
The above list is just to name a few.
Initially, it was safe to use parabens as it gets ejected through sweat and urine. But later studies found parabens can mimic estrogen, which leads to breast tumors and causes cancer.
It is also said to upsets the normal hormonal cycle in women which also leads to reproductive issues. Impacts on Brain functionating and girls hitting early puberty are also few of the concerns listed.
In males, it causes low sperm count and testicular cancer.
Impacts on the environment
Parabens have not only impacted humans, but have also disturbed the environment. Marine mammals have shown parabens in their body, researchers believe that it has come from products that get washed into the sewage system and found its way into the environment.
Parabens are Harmful is not proved yet
The above-mentioned risks are not proven as no evidence is available. It claims to be safe if used in moderation quantity and if they are properly rinsed off from the skin.
Is it worth taking the Risk?
Parabens are easily absorbed and enter your body through the skin. The impacts are a lot more dangerous and plus there are alternatives available so it would be best to avoid parabens totally.
What to look for in your ingredients list to avoid?
Many of the products do not mention parabens directly so avoid following names in the ingredients list .
- Alkyl parahydroxy benzoates
Beware of products which claim to be paraben-free
Many companies are adopting a marketing strategy to increase sales by claiming “paraben-free” products, when in fact they use other synthetic ingredients which may cause harm to your skin. So do check your ingredient list very carefully before picking up any “paraben-free” products.
What are the alternatives to look for?
If products are skipping parabens, then look for an alternative ingredient such as ethylhexylglycerin which is plant-derived or phenoxyethanol, a naturally derived ether alcohol.
In today’s era, we are surrounded by toxic and harmful chemical all around us, it’s really important for us to have a basic awareness about beauty products available. Stop choosing products merely based on trends and start looking into the ingredients list to choose wisely.
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Till then Be Safe and Stay Beautiful! 😊
Disclaimer: All the above information has been collated from different sources for a better understanding.