Found in: shampoos, commercial moisturizers, shaving gels, personal lubricants
Health Risks: Parabens are hormone disruptors. Parabens are chemicals with estrogen-like properties (estrogenic activity in the body is associated with certain forms of breast cancer) that are added to countless cosmetics and personal care products as preservatives and to inhibit bacterial growth. They have been detected in 99 percent of breast cancer tumors tested, with 60 percent of the tumors containing five or more parabens.5 Research has also shown that higher concentrations of parabens appear in the upper quadrants of the breast, close to where antiperspirants are applied.
Parabens are the most widely used preservatives in cosmetics, and single products typically contain multiple types of parabens, such as methylparaben, propylparaben, butylparaben, or benzylparaben.