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April 19, 2018  |  Login
Parabens are the most common preservatives used in cosmetics such as hair care products, makeup, shaving products, moisturizers and a few brands of antiperspirant. They are also used as preservatives in pharmaceuticals, toothpaste, and some food items. Parabens come in many forms and are recognizable on product ingredient lists as any word ending in “–paraben.”

There is controversy over the use of parabens because of a study, conducted in 2004, that found parabens in breast cancer tumors. Parabens have been proven to act somewhat like estrogen in the human body, and estrogen is associated with breast cancer. However, both the FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration) and the American Cancer Society maintain that parabens do not pose a threat at the low doses that are present in cosmetics. There are no current regulations or warnings regarding the use of paraben-containing products, although many people prefer to avoid them for the sake of being cautious. There are many organic companies that sell paraben-free cosmetics.

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