Things that you should know about Parabens and Sulfates and why you must avoid them!

You may have noticed how most beauty products these days often highlight words like "Paraben Free" or "Sulfate Free". For most parts, it's easy to just pick products with these words highlighted front and center because, well, it sounds good. 

But here at Zafra, we're not just 'boycotting' these ingredients to jump on the bandwagon; we're striving for education to create long-term changes so that many people can be able to understand the implications of these ingredients, how they are still taken so lightly, and the importance of the natural and organic alternatives.  

'Biggest Bad Guys of Beauty' 

Parabens and Sulfates aren't branded the 'Bad Guys' for minuscule reasons. Beauty and personal care products are supposed to make you look great and feel best. They're supposed to help you target your body's concerns and highlight the great things you already love about yourself. But when things like Parabens and Sulfates are thrown into the mix, these products can only end up doing more bad than good for you. 

So why are many companies resorting to these ingredients in the first place? Parabens are used as preservatives, stopping fungus, bacteria and other microbes from growing in your favorite products, especially in the moist, warm environment of a bathroom. You’ll find them listed on thousands of personal care products such as shampoos, mascara, foundations, and body lotions. Why? Because they are cheap and effective, and therefore, a smart option for bulk production. The varieties of parabens are a mouthful: methylparaben, ethylparaben, propylparaben, butylparaben and isobutylparaben. And just as how difficult the names are to pronounce, so are the complications that they bring to your body. 

Sulfates, on the other hand, are derived from petroleum and are used to create a lather, giving a stronger impression of cleaning power. You’ll mostly find them in everyday cleaning and personal care products. The amount of sulfates in a product depends on the manufacturer, ranging from small amounts to--gulp!--almost 50 percent of the product.

Are parabens and sulfates really THAT bad? 

Here's an alarming fact everyone should know: Parabens have been linked to breast cancer and reproductive issues. They are believed to disrupt hormone function by mimicking oestrogen, and too much of this inside your body can trigger an increase in breast cell division and growth of tumours. One study pointed out that roughly 55 percent of all breast cancer tumors occur in the upper outside portion of the breast, the section closest to the underarm. This may be because of parabens found in lotions and deodorants being applied under the arms or near the breast.

Sulfates are no good either--with long-term use, they can irritate your eyes, skin, and lungs. It may also be contaminated with a substance called 1,4-dioxane, which is known to cause cancer in laboratory animals. In the same way that they are bad for the body, sulfates also have a negative impact on the environment. The biggest concern is the long-term side effects of its production. Petroleum products are associated with climate change, pollution, and greenhouse gases. Sulfates can also be found in some plant products. So imagine how much damage is impacted on the environment with every single time people use a sulfate-filled product. Not only that, many products with sulfates are tested on animals to measure the level of irritation to a person's body. 

Go Paraben and Sulfate-Free today! 

Of course, there's a moral lesson to this. It's pretty loud and clear; ditching products that contain parabens and sulfates is the best way to go. Not sure about which products to start with? You're gonna enjoy looking over Zafra's list of awesome toxin-free beauty and personal care products! Check them out now!