Order via telephone: 0845 544 1938
In recent years there has been a growing trend amongst people to choose natural paraben free skin care products. The role of Parabens in the cosmetics industry became controversial after a 2004 study by Dr Darbre which examined breast tissue that had cancerous tumours and found Parabens within the tissue.
Whilst the study was inconclusive many people linked Parabens and their ability to mimic the female hormone oestrogen with potentially causing cancer. Since the study many have jumped on the bandwagon either way, with the large cosmetic companies who use Parabens publicly stating they are safe, whilst natural and organic companies claiming they are potentially dangerous. As there is still some doubt surrounding parabens we prefer to stay away from them in the products we stock and use ourselves.
A Paraben is a synthetically produced ingredient that is added to a wide variety of products, including skin care products and can also be found as food additives. In fact it is thought that approximately 90% of cosmetic products include Parabens . Parabens are produced by a chemical reaction between para-hydroxybenzoic acid with the appropriate alcohol, such as methanol or ethanol that forms an ester.
There are a number of parabens that find their way into cosmetic products; the most popular are ethylparaben, methylparaben, butylparaben and propylparaben.
So why are parabens used? The main reason Parabens are used in cosmetics is as a preservative system. They are cheap to produce and their efficacy at preserving cosmetic products makes them a choice for many companies. Historically alternative preservative systems haven’t been as effective at preserving formulations and whilst we’re all for natural ingredients, finding mould, fungus or bacteria growing in your creams, gels and lotions is probably something you would want to avoid. Luckily there are now effective alternatives on the market to Parabens that keep products preserved and in a fit state for human use.
At O.N.G we make a conscious effort to avoid Parabens in the products we stock, this is because the evidence is so far inconclusive on their effect on human health and whilst there is any doubt, we’d prefer to simply avoid them in the products we stock and use.
With the development of alternatives, choosing a product without parabens no longer means accepting second best or an inferior product. Leading companies and products such as those from Pai, A’kin skin care & Antipodes amongst others prove this with their delightful range of products, all of which are free from Parabens.
Their use has also been linked to aggravating some skin conditions, especially Rosacea and can even cause contact dermatitis, so even with the great debate on whether they are cancer causing there are plenty of other reasons to avoid this ingredient and choose natural paraben free skin care products.