There seems to be a lot of controversy these days about parabens in skin care products. Parabens, used as a preservative, can be found in cosmetics, moisturizers, deodorants, shampoos, tanning products and so much more.
Parabens fight against bacteria and fungus. It’s also been widely chosen because it is so cost effective for the manufacturer.
Over time, there’s been a lot of heated discussion as to whether or not parabens are causing negative side effects to its users. While some reports claim there are potential serious health connections others are conveying quite the opposite.
This controversy has sparked some skin care and cosmetic manufacturers to produce paraben free products.
At Skin Care Heaven, an e-commerce skin care store in San Diego, they actually have a section purely dedicated to paraben free skin care items. Some of these best sellers are from manufacturers such as Revision, LashFood, and Dermalogica.
There are many types of parabens on the market but the most prominent ones in skin care and cosmetics include:
More times than not more than one paraben will be in a product.
While some research indicates that this preservative can negatively affect the endocrine system, other data is showing how it may faintly imitate estrogen. This has caused estrogen concern because this is the hormone linked to breast cancer.
To date, it’s important to note that there has been no reported correlation between parabens and cancer.
A visit to the United States Food & Drug Administration actually has a page for consumers regarding parabens in products.
One portion of it reads, “FDA believes that at the present time there is no reason for consumers to be concerned about the use of cosmetics containing parabens.”
It goes on to say that if this viewpoint changes, it will move forward to protect the health and welfare of its consumers.
Generally, parabens used in cosmetics fluctuate from 0.01 to 0.3 percent. According to the Cosmetic Ingredient Review, up to 25 percent of methylparaben, propylparaben, and butylparaben are deemed safe for usage.
Despite these number and statistics, there are consumers out there that refuse to purchase skin care products and cosmetics with paraben ingredients. They just don’t want to take the risk.
Another interesting paraben controversial twist has been in anti-aging product world.
A research program conducted by the Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine in Japan discovered that the methylparabens in anti-aging products had the ability to “accelerate skin aging.” According to this research group, skin exposed to methyl was more sensitive to ultra violet rays and more skin cells were perishing at a faster rate.
Finding out if parabens are in a cosmetic is fairly easy. Since there are so many variations of this manmade chemical, the word “paraben” will always follow at the end of the word in the ingredients.
Another great online research resource place to visit is the EWG Skin Deep Cosmetic Database. They have large database with paraben information on numerous products.
Although the paraben issue in cosmetics and skin care products is still very much two-sided, the good news is that everyone has the ability to educate themselves on what is best for their own lifestyle choices. And top of the line skin care manufacturers have created products for any paraben free “wish list.”