Understanding what an ingredient is and why its bad for you and what products it is and how to avoid it shouldn't take the effort of getting a chemistry doctorate at MIT! in our new series, #WhatIsItWednesday we will pick select ingredients, explain why you should be avoiding it and examples of what products it may be lurking in!
This week's culprit - PARABENS.
You hear the names often, see them on some labels, but don't know exactly what they are or why they're bad for you. Parabens are the most widely used chemical preservative in cosmetics. Most often seen as methylparaben, propylparaben, and butylparaben these chemicals have the ability to mimic estrogen in our system and has been found in large quantities in breast tumors, leading many to believe that it is linked to breast cancer. Parabens can also impact male reproductive function by decreasing sperm production.
The tricky part about Parabens, many times the ingredient isn't even listed and are hidden in the ingredient "fragrance" (companies do not need to disclose the ingredients in product scents as these are considered trade secrets). As if being bad for us wasn't enough, parabens also prematurely age you by interact with UVB leading to increased exposure and aging! A beauty product that harms and makes you look older? I'll pass!