Parabens are a group of preservatives that are commonly used in cosmetics and personal care products to prevent the growth of bacteria, mold, and yeast. They are often used in conjunction with other preservatives to provide a broad-spectrum preservation system. The most commonly used parabens in cosmetics and personal care products are methylparaben, propylparaben, butylparaben, and ethylparaben. Parabens are widely used in various personal care products, including makeup, lotions, shampoos, deodorants, and toothpaste. They are also used in some food and pharmaceutical products as a preservative. Parabens have been used for more than 80 years, and are considered safe for use in cosmetics and personal care products by health and regulatory authorities around the world, including the US FDA, European Union, and Health Canada. However, some studies have suggested that parabens can mimic estrogen, a hormone that plays a role in the development of breast cancer and other health issues.
Phthalates are a group of chemicals commonly used to increase the flexibility and durability of plastics and other materials. They are used in a wide range of products including, but not limited to, toys, food packaging, cosmetics, personal care products, cleaning supplies, and building materials. Phthalates are used as plasticizers, which means that they are added to plastic to make it more flexible and durable. They are also used as solvents, which means that they can help other ingredients dissolve in a product. Some studies have suggested that phthalates may have negative health effects, such as reproductive and developmental problems, as well as liver and kidney damage. However, the evidence is inconclusive and more research is needed to fully understand the risks associated with phthalates.
Due to concerns about the safety of phthalates, some consumers are choosing to use products that are labeled as “phthalate-free” or “free of harmful phthalates”.
While parabens and phthalates are considered safe by regulatory authorities, it is essential to read labels and be aware of the ingredients in the products you use and make an informed decision based on your personal preferences and values.