By Beauty & Skincare Expert: Ruby Chehade

Parabens, Mineral Oil, etc……


In the past 10 years there has been a lot of talk about “paraben” in cosmetics and skin care. Everyone seems to be advertising “Paraben free”, “Chemical Free”, “Fragrance Free”, “Talc Free”, “Mineral Oil Free”, etc. But what do we know about all of these ingredients that have been used for years in Makeup  Skincare Shampoos, conditioners, etc? Firstly you need to look closely at the ingredients and understand why certain ingredients are used in the first place and what the alternatives are.


Lets talk about what “Parabens” are they may also be called “methylparaben”, “propylparaben”, “butylparaben” and “isobutylparaben” and the main reason they are used in these products is to preserve them and to stop bacteria and other microbes from growing in them whilst they are sitting nicely in your bathroom in the right conditions for bacteria to multiply (I bet you are all going to be moving your skincare and makeup out of the bathroom after reading this). If parabens are doing a good thing why are we against them one may ask.


In recent years some theories nothing has actually been proven but certain theories seem to have a link with Parabens and cancer. An oncology researcher detected parabens in 18 of 20 samples of tissue from breast tumour biopsies, whilst the study didn’t prove parabens caused cancer only that they were easily detected amongst cancer cells. This study was criticized for not comparing paraben levels in normal tissue, regardless after this initial study it called for more studies. Another study showed that parabens were detected in the blood and urine of healthy young make volunteers a few hours after lotions were applied to their skin. The conclusion here was that if chemicals could be absorbed, metabolized and excreted they could potentially contribute to adverse health risks.


As for Mineral Oil it comes from petroleum and I cringe every time I hear the word “Sorbolene” as it is made from Mineral Oil firstly it’s molecular structure is far too big to be penetrated into the skin and it has absolutely no benefits to the skin other than congesting the skin. As for “Talc” whilst it has a purpose to absorb moisture in makeup it is used as a filler and may congest the skin. When it comes to “Fragrance Free” this is a grey area as a lot of reputable skincare companies will use natural fragrance for their products, I have worked with many that don’t use fragrance in their range but they still smell nice or have some form of scent these are still fragrance free. Whilst there are cheap products that use fragrance that are all round bad for your skin there are many products that use the right fragrance that cause no harm to your skin. As I always say you will not purchase a perfume from the supermarket to spray on yourself neither should you purchase skincare or makeup from a supermarket to place on your face.


Last but not least “Chemical Free” this could be referring to “Sulphates” “Sodium Laureth Sulphate”, “Ammonium Laureth Sulphate”, “Polyethylene”, “Cocamide” or “DEA” or “MEA” these are all foaming or thickening agents that have been linked to cell damage and some studies show that long term use can be drying with regards to shampoos and conditioners they can strip your hair colour.


Many companies are now advertising:

No Mineral Oils; No Petrochemicals; No talc; No fillers; No parabens; No artificial fragrances and No harmful preservatives.


They are more than likely still using natural fragrances and preservatives. Unless if you are going to keep everything in your fridge to prevent your skincare, makeup and fragrances from going off there will be some form of preservative in your products. Next week I will go over with you some Mineral Makeup brands that are available without the nasties everyone is talking about.


If you have any questions feel free to send me an email:


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