Elegantly Eco

Eco-Friendly Beauty, Fashion, Reviews, and Info

What are parabens and why you should avoid them


I had a request from a blog reader to talk about some toxic ingredients. So here is the first post! I hope this comes in handy for those who are transitioning to green beauty products.

What they are:

Parabens are a preservative that is widely used in cosmetic products due to its low cost as well as anti-bacterial and anti-fungus properties. You’ll often find parabens in shampoo, moisturizers, self-tanners, shaving gels and even toothpaste. The most common parabens found in cosmetic use are: methylparaben, benzylparaben, butylparaben, propylparaben, isobutylparaben, and ethylparaben.

Why you should avoid them:

While parabens don’t sound that hazardous to some, I would argue that there are some other factors to consider. Monona Rossol makes a good case about toxic burden in her book which I reviewed. Basically if all the products you use contain parabens and other possibly toxic ingredients, over time these chemicals accumulate in your body. Your organs can only detoxify so much foreign material from your body. In my mind it would be common sense to try and help your body out by keeping your exposure to toxic ingredients to the absolute minimum.

This would be even more important to individuals who have a history of cancer in their families. Using products with toxic ingredients means you might have an increased risk of getting cancer if you don’t take care of your body. This risk can be managed by the normal pillars of health: good nutrition, activity, and an awareness of what you put on your body. Your skin is the largest organ of your body. Whatever you put on your skin for 60 seconds get absorbed into the whole glorious system that is the human body. Just some food for thought.

Further reading:

Endocrine disruptors in cosmetics and food

Looking for healthy products – webmd



Author: Hazel

Former green beauty blogger Elegantly Eco. Writer, reiki master, singer, artist who loves making a contribution to the positivity of people and the world in general. Now plotting my new adventure in with reiki infused art. Please check out https://radiantreiki.org

5 thoughts on “What are parabens and why you should avoid them

  1. Love this post! Sometimes I find it hard to convince people that ingredients are bad, some people just don’t want to believe it!

  2. Thanks Hazel! I was the one who requested further information on parabens. I don’t know how I missed this post in December but I’m glad I came across it today. It’s been challenging for me to replace products I like with paraben-free products but I feel better knowing I am limiting my exposure to toxic ingredients. Thanks again for the post and the references.

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