What is Paraben?


I recently bought a Shampoo and on the back it said paraben free. Which lead me to think… What is Paraben? After some researched I was so shocked by what I was reading.

What is Paraben?
Paraben is basically used to preserve your beauty products. They are most common in products that contain significant amounts of water, such as shampoo, conditioner, lotions, facial and shower cleansers and scrubs. They stop fungus, bacteria and other microbes from growing in your favourite creams and makeup, especially in the moist, warm environment of a bathroom.

What are the health concerns?
Over the past few years, a debate has been building among scientists, product safety regulators and cosmetic manufacturers about whether these ubiquitous chemicals, used for almost 70 years, may actually be harmful to our health. Parabens have actually been found in biopsies from breast tumors, and having a mother who sadly passed away from beast cancer this worries me because although cancer can be genetic, this could be adding to the problem that is cancer.

How do I know if my products contain Paraben?
Parabens are actually several distinct chemicals with a similar molecular structure. Four of these are used frequently in cosmetics: Ethylparaben, butylparaben, methylparaben and propylparaben and other ingredients ending in –paraben. If you look on the ingredients on your product and it has one of these, it contains paraben.

How can I avoid Paraben?
Look for products labeled “paraben-free” and read ingredient lists on labels to avoid products with parabens. Many natural and organic cosmetics manufacturers have found effective alternatives to parabens to prevent microbial growth in personal care products. Some companies have created preservative-free products that have shorter shelf lives than conventional products (six months to a year), but if used daily are likely to be used up before they expire.

Paraben is actually banned in Denmark which makes me think why isn’t it here? I’m not trying to scare anyone, but I’m going to be more careful with that I’m introducing into my beauty regime from now on. Alot of brands still have paraben in there products, but I’m going to try and find alternatives that don’t include them.

what do you think about paraben?


8 thoughts on “What is Paraben?

  1. Pingback: Boots & Superdrug Haul | Clare's Beauty Blog

    • I guess there is an argument for both sides, but because I grew up with a mother that sadly died of breast cancer it makes me really wary. If I can avoid them and buy products that are paraben free I will but I’m not gonna make it my life mission to avoid them if you know what I mean?

  2. There is some hype around parabens and I never knew why either, so your post was actually quite helpful – thanks! I might have to check some of my products now because that’s quite scary and so sorry to hear about your mum xx

    • You’re welcome! It does sound quite scary, some companies have found an alternative to parabens (such as Charles Worthington), but I’m gonna try and cut it out of my beauty routine as much as I can. I think it would be impossible to cut it out completely because it’s cheaper to produce, unless they were to ban it.

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