Parabens and antimicrobial compounds in conventional and "green" personal care products
|Year of publication
|Article in Periodical
|Magazine / Source
|MU Faculty or unit
|Cosmetics; Human health; Greenwashing; Endocrine disruptors; Parabens; Triclosan
|The personal care product (PCP) industry is a worldwide multi-billion-dollar industry. Several synthetic com-pounds like parabens and antimicrobial agents triclosan (TCS) and triclocarban (TCC) are ingredients in many PCPs. Due to growing public awareness of potential risks associated with parabens and other synthetic com-pounds, more PCPs are being marketed as "green," "alternative," or "natural." We analyzed 19 green and 34 conventional PCP products obtained from a European store for seven parabens, TCC, and TCS. We found no statistically significant difference in the concentrations between green and conventional products. Only four products mentioned parabens in the list of ingredients; however, parabens were detected in 43 products, and at mu g/g levels in seven PCPs. Methylparaben was typically present at the highest concentration, and one mascara exceeded the European legal concentration limit of methylparaben. Low concentrations of isopropyl-, isobutyl-, and benzylparabens, which are banned in the EU, were detected in 70% of PCPs. The cumulative estimated daily intake of parabens is an order of magnitude higher for people using only conventional products than those using green products exclusively. We propose that legislation be developed with more explicit rules on when a product can be advertised as "green" to aid consumers' choices.