We are all increasingly aware of cosmetics and ingredients that we should avoid in order to give us healthier skin and lifestyles. Often we find out (somewhat belatedly) that the substances we have been putting on our skin in the name of beauty have in fact been leaking nasty toxins in to our bodies on the sly! How very cunning!
Whilst education on these issues is becoming much more available it is still difficult to know whether we are making the right choices when it comes to our skincare! Is it good for us? Is it good for the environment? Does it actually work?
For quite some time now you will have seen products labelled as ‘paraben free’. In fact you will see it on many of the products on our website. We generally accept that this means that parabens are bad things for our bodies and suddenly start to hunt out products bearing this label. But what does it actually mean? Are parabens actually bad for us?
What Are Parabens?
Parabens are chemical preservatives that are added to products to give them a much longer shelf life. Whilst they have been around since the 1950’s, they have been under scrutiny over recent years following a number of studies detailing the impact these chemicals can have on our bodies.
Why Are Parabens bad for us?
So here’s the thing … we’re not 100% sure that they are. But we do ‘think’ that they are! Studies show that our bodies absorb parabens when we use cosmetic products. In 2004 a British study found traces of them in the breast tissue of 19 out of 20 women. This research did not however prove that the parabens themselves had any negative impact on the women’s health. Other studies have shown that the parabens disrupt our hormone function by mimicking the effects of oestrogen. Modern medicine tells us that too much oestrogen can trigger an increase in the growth of tumours. This has led many to conclude that parabens can in fact cause cancer. The important thing to note is that this is not definitive. It is in fact impossible at this stage to say that parabens are definitely bad for us!
So why should we use ‘paraben-free’ products?
Our advice is to be on the safe side. Whilst the links between parabens and cancer have not yet definitively been proven … why wait? There are so many cosmetics on the market that are free from parabens that it is easy to make a safer choice.