Have you ever heard of a substance called paraben? It’s really no surprise if you have not. Rarely do you bother to look into the labels of cosmetics before making a purchase. Had you read the labels however, you would have come across this chemical which is one of the chief ingredients of most of the cosmetics you use. Does knowing about paraben free products make any difference at all? Yes, it does. Products containing paraben can lead to several problems of your skin, hair and body. The more the concentration of paraben, the more acute is the consequence.
Mild irregularities like skin and hair irritation, to severe ailments like neurological disorders, endocrine disruptions, autism and even Breast Cancer have been reported as an aftermath of excessive paraben intake or exposure. Paraben free products on the other hand have shown vastly different effects on the human body, leading us to believe that the chemical is certainly not as safe as it is made out to be. It is also known to react with UV rays, which leads to skin ageing and weakening of your DNA structure. Methyl paraben is also reported to decompose under suitable conditions to form methanol, a potentially toxic element.
The most lethal cosmetics however, which contains this chemical, are deodorants and under-arm shaving lotions. In a research conducted, out of 20 women with breast cancer, 18 carried high doses of paraben in their body. It was suspected that the presence of high levels of paraben in their body was primarily due to the use of deodorants and under-arm shaving lotions. Paraben, like the surfactant SLS, mimics the activities of the hormone estrogen, which is the reason why it can cause breast cancer in women. No wonder, despite the fact that it is branded a harmless chemical if used in low doses, cosmetics manufacturers are fast looking to switch to paraben free products.
The reason why parabens are so widely used is because they are said to be effective preservatives and thus are used in various types of shampoos, moisturizers, personal lubricants, pharmaceutical products, spray tanning solution and toothpaste. Paraben is also used in food additives. Its efficacy as a preservative and also the inefficacy of alternative preservatives like grapefruit extracts makes it almost indispensable.
But by and large, other applications of preservatives are being discovered to manufacture paraben free cosmetics, which can wipe this hazard out of the market. You should exercise caution and restraint while purchasing such harmful products, especially when other risk-free alternatives are available.