Calling out the lack of an ingredient is a brand’s way of showing you it’s safe or clean. You might read “no sulfates” or “no parabens” on your skin and hair products. But, what are sulfates and parabens and why are they bad for us? Here’s everything you need to know about these two ingredients.
What are sulfates?
Sulfates are a group of mineral salts. Some are naturally occurring and some are man-made. The most common sulfates found in beauty products are sodium laureth sulfate (SLES) and sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS). These sulfates are there to bind oil, fat, grease, and dirt and remove them from whatever surface they are on. This means they are often found in things like shampoo and cleansers. Sulfates help to provide the lather we recognize when using these products.
Why are sulfates bad?
Because sulfates are meant to remove build-up on the hair or skin, this means they can often strip away too much moisture leaving your hair or skin dry, irritated, and unhealthy. There is little to no internal health risk when using products with sulfates, but the damage it can do to sensitive skin and red hair is not worth using products that have this unnecessary ingredient included in the formula.
What are parabens?
Parabens are a group of chemicals that are used as a preservative. They can often be found in cosmetic items and will be listed under methylparaben, propylparaben, butylparaben, and ethylparaben. Parabens are added to cosmetics and other beauty items to help reduce the growth of bacteria and mold and increase the shelf life.
Why are parabens bad?
At the surface, bacteria prevention and longer shelf life seem great, but parabens have some negative ways of impacting our skin. One of the main issues with parabens, especially for redheads is that they can cause skin irritation. Another concern is that parabens are believed to impact the hormones in our bodies which could lead to fertility issues and increased risk of cancer. Parabens are not necessary for making beauty products safe for use, so the risk far outweighs the benefits.
Why H2BAR beauty products are sulfate-free, paraben-free & clean:
Because of the above, H2BAR products are clean, Cruelty-free, Leaping Bunny approved, paraben-free, and vegan. They are also made without alcohol, gluten, GMO’s, oil, phthalates, silicones or talc.