The skin is the largest organ of the body. Most of us understand how important it is to rid our bodies of toxins through our skin via sweat, but have you thought about what toxins are entering your body through your skin? We often associate toxins with the food we eat and the air we breathe, but what about the long list of products that we are slathering all over our bodies? From soaps to lotions to shampoos and eye makeup- if you’re not careful, you may be introducing your body to more toxins than you realize. One common, highly toxic ingredient in many of our everyday toiletries is parabens.
It takes less than 30 seconds for the chemicals in your skin care routine to enter into your bloodstream through your skin.
What are Parabens?
Parabens are synthetic preservatives that have often been found in food and pharmaceuticals, but nowadays, they are also commonplace in our cosmetics and personal care products such as shampoo, lotions, sunscreens, body scrubs, eye makeup, deodorant and face cleansers. They are used to prevent the growth of bacteria in these products, increasing their shelf life. This highly toxic ingredient is absorbed through our skin, making its way into our blood stream and digestive system.
Parabens are known to disrupt hormone function, cause neurotoxicity and reproductive issues as well as irritate the skin.
Parabens are known to disrupt hormone function, an effect that is linked to both breast cancer and reproductive toxicity. Parabens mimic estrogen by binding to estrogen receptors on cells and have a negative impact on our endocrine system. They have been linked to allergies, neurotoxicity, immunotoxicity, reproductive issues and skin irritation- just to name a few.
What to Avoid in Your Beauty Products
The most commonly used forms of parabens in cosmetics and personal care products are ethylparaben, butylparaben, propylparaben and methylparaben. Be sure to read the ingredients list before considering any product to be truly safe, keeping a sharp eye out for any ingredient ending in “paraben”. Be aware that products labeled “all natural” can still contain parabens. There is no actual FDA regulation or standards for using the word “natural” in product advertising. Look for products that are labeled “paraben free” and, just like with food, always read the ingredient list to be sure.
I personally love Eminence Organic Skin Care products. They are all natural, organic and completely paraben free. And, they are totally affordable! I buy them through my beloved holistic aesthetician, but you can find them at lots of spas and, of course, online too. Whatever product line you choose to use, with this knowledge, you can rest assured you’ve done your due diligence to keep yourself beautiful, not only on the outside, but on the inside too.