Thinking about buying a gift of lotion, perfume, makeup, or even soap this holiday season? Before you make your purchase, be sure to do your homework to find out what you’re really giving.
Many personal care products contain questionable ingredients that are unregulated by the FDA. Some of the specific ingredients to look out for are parabens, which are used as preservatives in many cosmetics. Parabens may appear on a product’s label as methylparaben, propylparaben, isobutylparaben, ethylparaben, or butylparaben.
Parabens mimic estrogen, and at least one study has shown that parabens “support the growth of estrogen-dependent breast cancer cells grown in tissue culture.” Click here for more information about breast cancer and environmental risk factors from Cornell University’s Sprecher Institute for Comparative Cancer Research.
Take a few minutes to watch this video about preservatives in beauty products which aired recently on KING 5 News.
Or check out "Think Before You Pink" (a project of Breast Cancer Action) for a list of paraben-free cosmetic companies.
To check on the safety of a particular product, you can always use the very informative Skin Deep Cosmetic Safety Database, put together by researchers at the Environmental Working Group.
Give safe and healthy gifts this holiday season, and educate your friends and family about the importance of knowing what’s in their personal care products. Let's care for ALL creation--including our own bodies!