A Flaw in My Plan

A while back, I vowed to stop using products containing parabens.  Although I have no family history of breast cancer, even the slightest increase in my risk of getting it kind of freaks me out.  Better safe than sorry, right?  OK, maybe I’m being a little overly-cautious.  However, I think if there’s any indication that something even MIGHT cause cancer, it’s probably not something that’s good for you anyway.  So, no more products with parabens.  Easy, right?  Yeah, not so much…

A Few of My Favorite Things:  Stuff I really, really love contains parabens.  These are items I consider almost irreplaceable in my beauty regimen, including:  Aveeno Positively Radiant Facial Mositurizer, Too Faced Absolutely Invisible Pressed Powder, Benefit Erase Paste, Maybelline “Colossal” waterproof mascara, and Jack Black Lip Balm.  To be fair, the Jack Black products are technically designed for men, so there’s probably not a big concern over the possibility of ingredients causing breast cancer.  However, this is the product I’m most upset about.  Mainly, because the Sephora website listed it as NOT containing parabens, and I based my review (and continued use) of it partially on this information.  When I received my most recent tube of the lip balm for Christmas, I noticed the parabens in the ingredients.  I updated my review and noticed the Sephora website has been corrected as well.


There’s Still Hope:  I’ve noticed more and more companies seem to be offering “paraben-free” products.  Some are even re-formulating products to remove the parabens.   On Urban Decay’s website, many items are clearly labeled “Paraben-Free” as soon as they’re shown on the site.  (I wish all companies would do this and save me the hassle of clicking on each item and finding the ingredients list!)

At a Loss:  I’m still not sure what to do about these items.  In every case, finding items I liked as much as these was a very difficult, rather expensive process.  I have absolutely no desire to go through that process again.  So, can I justify using a few items that contain parabens?  Well, I’m probably going to have to – at least until they’re re-formulated or I happen to stumble across a replacement item that I love just as much.

Leave a comment


  1. My guess is, parabens are not as bad as people think they are. But that’s just my opinion, based on what little I’ve sought out to read about it.

    • That may be true. But I’m taking a “better safe than sorry” stance on these ingredients. (at the very least, they’re artificial preservatives, which aren’t good for you, anyway) Since companies seem to be moving away from using them, I guess it might work out for me.

  2. Yeah, I agree. I would also prefer paraben free just to be on the safe side. But I’ve also read that a problem when parabens get taken out is that sometimes even worse ingredients are used as a substitute. It’s important to keep this type of conversation going and get to the bottom of things because there’s such a slew of contradicting information out there.


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