Alongside the conscious consumer wave that’s changing the way people make purchasing decisions, names and phrases have been popping up that are furrowing brows.

Parabens, SLES and Sulfates have found their way into our vocabularies, despite there still being confusion about what they are and what they do. More importantly, there’s confusion around what risks they actually pose. So let’s break it down.

Parabens are chemicals that have been used in cosmetics and personal care products since the 1950s. They’re used as preservatives to stop fungus and bacteria growing in products that are kept in warm and damp environments, eg. your bathroom. Parabens have been around for such a long time because they are highly effective, and cheap to come by.

Sulfates are used in personal care products to produce a lather, or ‘foam’. They’re used in everything from shampoos to toothpaste, and are popular for only one reason; they create that foamy affect we all love when lathering up in the shower. SLS or Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, is another term to refer to the foaming sulfates used in certain products.

Parabens have been under fire recently because of an alleged link between their ability to mimic estrogen, and the fact they have been found in breast tumors. Though the research and science behind the idea that they are carcinogenic is currently shaky, the fact that the chemical spreads so quickly to the blood stream is worrying. A recent study showed that just one hour after applying skin lotion with parabens, the chemical was detected in urine samples of test subjects.

The biggest issue that parabens raise is the fact that they can build up in the body, and with so many products containing them, skin specialists worry what an accumulation of parabens in the body could do.

Sulfates are a little meaner. Though they have no scientifically proven relationship with cancer, they are a known irritant and can cause problems when used on the hair. The chemicals are harsh on follicles, and dries out and damages the hair because it strips it of all natural oils. Whilst cleaning the hair of oils and dirt from the day is important, natural oils play a vital role in healthy hair.

So why should you look for paraben and sulfate free products? Almost everything we eat, and put on our skin, is treated with chemicals. It’s almost impossible to live a completely, chemical free lifestyle, so it’s important to cut harmful ones out wherever possible. Thanks to conscious consumers like you, more and more companies are offering sulfate and paraben free products.

Goodwash is not just our name it is our ethos. We believe in using only the finest products sourced from our land and sea. Our products are 100% sulphate, paraben and SLES free, better for you, better for the significant animal in your life and far better for our planet. Choose to have one….. 

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