The Truth About Parabens Part 2: Parabens Versus Alternatives, How Do They Compare?

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In recent years, due to outstanding concerns about the safety of parabens, many companies have turned to alternative preservatives for use in their personal care products. These alternatives have been chosen for their ability to achieve two primary goals – inhibit the growth of bacteria and fungi in care products, and maintain their safety for use by consumers. Some prevalent alternatives include the following;


This ingredient is one of the most popular alternatives to parabens. It is considered a safer alternative and has been approved by regulatory bodies in Europe and the United States for personal care products. Phenoxyethanol works by disrupting the cell membranes of microorganisms, leading to their death.

Benzyl Alcohol

Benzyl alcohol is another prevalent alternative to parabens. It is a natural ingredient extracted from fruits and flowers, which makes it a more desirable option for those seeking natural alternatives to synthetic preservatives. Experts consider it a broad-spectrum preservative, meaning it can inhibit the growth of several bacteria and fungi. It is also considered a low-risk ingredient and has been approved by several regulatory bodies.

Potassium Sorbate and Sodium Benzoate

These ingredients feature similar characteristics, which makes them ideal alternatives for parabens. They inhibit microorganism growth by altering their cellular pH balance. They are commonly used in food preservation and are also effective preservatives in personal care products. That said, they may not be as effective as parabens against certain types of bacteria and fungi.

While these parabens alternatives are considered safe for personal care products, they may not be as effective as parabens against all types of microorganisms. Additionally, some of these alternatives may be more expensive or difficult to work with, impacting the cost and formulation of personal care products. Ultimately, the choice of preservative used in personal care products will depend on various factors, including price, efficacy, and customer demand for natural or synthetic ingredients.


What We Use At Bee Naturals

At Bee Naturals, we provide pure, practical, high-performance skincare products by also including a blend of alternative preservatives. Aside from some mentioned earlier, we typically use a combination of Caprylyl glycol and Ethylhexylglycerin as preservatives.

Caprylyl Glycol is a multi-functional ingredient derived from coconut oil. It has been shown to have antimicrobial and moisturizing properties, making it a popular choice in skincare products. Furthermore, it enhances the effectiveness of other preservatives, which is why it is often used in combination with other preservatives.

Ethylhexylglycerin, on the other hand, is a synthetic compound often used as a preservative in skincare and cosmetic products. It disrupts the cellular membranes of microorganisms, preventing their growth and proliferation. Like Caprylyl Glycol, EHG also has moisturizing properties and can help improve a product’s overall texture and feel.

Together, these two preservatives work synergistically to effectively prevent bacteria and fungi growth in skincare products while providing moisturizing benefits synonymous with Bee Naturals products. Our decision to use these ingredients as paraben alternatives demonstrate our commitment to providing our customers with safe, and effective, skincare products.

Benefits of Using Caprylyl Glycol EHG Compared To Other Preservatives

Using this mixture as preservatives in skincare products offer several advantages over other options that are more commonly used on the market.

First, this mixture is considered a safer and more effective alternative capable of reducing the risks of endocrine disruption. By using a blend of alternative preservatives, like Caprylyl Glycol EHG, Bee Naturals can offer customers natural products free from potentially harmful chemicals.

Caprylyl Glycol EHG also acts as a moisturizing agent, which can help to hydrate and soothe the skin, compared to other popular alternatives in the market. This characteristic is especially beneficial for individuals with dry or sensitive skin who may be prone to irritation from other preservatives.

In addition, these ingredients also work together to provide a broad-spectrum antimicrobial effect, which helps to ensure that products remain safe for use over an extended period. They are also highly stable and compatible with several skincare ingredients. This means skincare companies can use them in formulations with minimal risk of destabilization or adverse reactions.

Caprylyl Glycol EHG vs. Parabens

Caprylyl glycol and Ethylhexylglycerin have emerged as popular alternatives to parabens in skincare products due to their effectiveness at preventing microbial growth. But how does the Caprylyl Glycol EHG mixture compare to parabens?

One of the key differences between Caprylyl Glycol EHG and parabens is their safety profile. Parabens have been linked to potential health risks, including endocrine disruption and reproductive toxicity. In contrast, Caprylyl Glycol EHG has received Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS) status from the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and has been extensively tested for safety.

Caprylyl Glycol EHG also exhibits more versatility than parabens. They are compatible with a broader range of skincare ingredients and are less likely to cause adverse reactions, making them suitable for individuals with sensitive skin. Their hydrating and soothing properties also make Caprylyl Glycol EHG an ideal option for improving skin texture and appearance.

At Bee Naturals, we are committed to using only the highest quality natural ingredients in our formulations, avoiding potentially harmful chemicals like parabens, sulfates, and phthalates. As such, we incorporate Caprylyl Glycol EHG in several of our formulations. Take advantage of our safe and effective formulations and explore healthier skin.

The Truth About Parabens Part 1: Understanding What They Are

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Have you ever heard of parabens? If you happen to be someone who pays attention to the ingredients in your personal care products, then the likelihood is that you’ve come across the term before. Parabens have become a popular subject of discussion in recent years, particularly with growing concerns about their safety and potential health risks.

While some people tend to avoid products containing parabens altogether, others maintain that they are entirely safe to use. So, what is the truth behind parabens? This article explores the science behind parabens and examines the latest research on their safety, effectiveness, and possible alternatives. Prepare to gain a comprehensive insight into parabens and make knowledgeable decisions regarding the products you use daily.

What are Parabens?

Parabens are synthetic preservatives commonly used in personal care products, cosmetics, and pharmaceuticals, from shampoos to lotions, deodorants, makeup, and even food products. These preservatives aim to prolong the shelf life of these products and prevent bacteria and mold growth. Parabens are prevalent in the beauty industry due to their effectiveness, low cost, and ability to protect products from microbial growth.

Typically, parabens are listed on product labels with prefixes such as methyl-, ethyl-, propyl-, and butylparaben. Yet, despite their widespread use, parabens have come under significant scrutiny in recent years due to concerns about their potential health risks, including breast cancer and reproductive issues.

The Study That Sparked Concerns about Parabens

In 2004, a study published in the Journal of Applied Toxicology explicitly linked exposure to environmental chemicals with increased risks of developing breast cancer. Among these chemicals are endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) – exogenous chemicals that tend to interfere with endogenous hormones.

The most common examples of EDCs are dioxins, polychlorinated biphenyls, bisphenol A, and parabens. In the case of parabens, the study found traces in breast tumors, resulting in concerns that they might contribute to breast cancer development. As a result of this study, there was a significant increase in consumer awareness and apprehension, resulting in a demand surge for paraben-free products.

Debunking the Study

While the 2004 study linking parabens to breast cancer sparked concerns and led to a surge in demand for paraben-free products, it was later debunked due to several limitations and flaws in the study design. Some of these limitations included small sample size, the fact that it didn’t explicitly prove causation, and the levels of parabens detected in breast tumors were similar to those found in non-cancerous breast tissues.

Furthermore, the study failed to explore other potential factors that could contribute to breast cancer development. Following the publication of the 2004 study, several subsequent studies have been conducted to investigate the possible link between parabens and breast cancer. However, these studies have yet to be able to replicate the original findings. A systematic review of multiple studies on parabens and breast cancer also concluded that the evidence supporting a causal relationship between the two is weak.

Despite the scientific consensus that parabens are safe to use in personal care products, the concerns surrounding this preservative have already taken root in the mind of consumers. As such, many people began avoiding products containing parabens, leading to a shift in consumer behavior.

Impact of the Study on Industry Standard

The fallout from the 2004 study on parabens significantly impacted the personal care product industry. As a result of customer concerns and shifting preferences, many companies began to offer paraben-free products or reformulate their existing products to exclude parabens. This new pattern in customer demand resulted in changes to industry standards and impacted the products and companies that dominated the market.

Following the study’s publication, several companies in the personal care industry faced significant challenges in meeting the evolving demand of customers. However, the shift towards paraben-free products also presented opportunities for smaller companies to gain market share, resulting in increased competition within the industry.

Furthermore, the effect on industry standards was also significant. Despite parabens being deemed safe by several regulatory bodies, the industry standards continued to shift to accommodate customers’ concerns and meet their demands, with many companies avoiding parabens altogether.

Understanding Parabens: Why They Are Needed and Work So Well

As we’ve seen, parabens represent a class of widely used preservatives used in personal care products for many years. They have proven effective at preventing bacteria and mold growth in care products, which is essential in maintaining their safety and quality. But how exactly do they work?

Parabens disrupt the growth and reproduction of microorganisms in personal care products. They achieve this by interfering with the activity of enzymes vital for bacteria and fungi growth. This process helps to prevent the proliferation of harmful microorganisms that can lead to product spoilage and compromise the safety of personal care products. By inhibiting microorganism growth, parabens help extend personal care products’ shelf life, ensuring that they remain safe and effective for use over an extended period.

Why Are They Needed?

The chemical composition of personal care products is such that they can become contaminated with harmful bacteria and fungi, which could pose a risk to the user’s health. Manufacturers avoid this by implementing parabens to maintain the safety and quality of these care products.

Following the 2004 study, parabens have been extensively studied and are considered safe for personal care products in concentrations up to 0.4%. This finding is according to regulatory bodies such as the European Union and the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Despite some controversy surrounding their use, the scientific evidence supports their safety and efficacy in personal care products. Parabens have been used in personal care products for many years and remain an essential component in maintaining the safety and quality of many personal care products.

Understanding Rosacea: Symptoms, Triggers, and Treatment Options

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Did you know that rosacea affects over 16 million people in the United States alone? Yet, despite its prevalence, this skin condition remains largely misunderstood, leaving many people struggling to manage their symptoms and maintain their quality of life. Typically, rosacea is characterized by persistent redness, flushing, and visible blood vessels on the face, as well as papules and pustules that can resemble acne.

While rosacea is not life-threatening, its impact on a person’s self-esteem, social life, and even career can be significant. Therefore, as part of rosacea awareness month, we’ve created an article that delves into the complexities of rosacea, exploring its symptoms, causes, and the latest treatment options available to help those affected by this condition.

What Is Rosacea

Rosacea is a frequently occurring, long-term skin condition mainly affecting the face. It is marked by a consistent reddish hue, flushing, and noticeable blood vessels on various facial areas, from the nose to cheeks, chin, and forehead. 

Additionally, individuals with rosacea may encounter small, pimple-like bumps known as papules and pustules, similar to acne. Sometimes, these bumps can be accompanied by discomfort from a burning or stinging sensation. Dry and irritated eyes are also another physical effect of this condition.

Types of Rosacea

This complex condition presents itself in four subtypes, each with its unique symptoms and manifestation. These subtypes often require different approaches to managing symptoms; understanding the differences is crucial in developing an effective treatment plan.

  • Erythematotelangiectatic Rosacea

Also known as subtype-1 rosacea, this condition is characterized by persistent facial redness, flushing, and visible blood vessels on the cheeks, nose, chin, and forehead. For some individuals, the skin may appear swollen and inflamed; in most cases, small bumps and pimples may develop on the face.

The prevalent symptoms of erythematotelangiectatic rosacea include persistent facial redness that may worsen with physical activity or emotional stress, dry and flaky skin, a burning or stinging sensation and visible blood vessels on the face.

  • Papulopustular rosacea

The subtype-2 rosacea is characterized by acne-like breakouts on the face, often accompanied by persistent facial redness and visible blood vessels. Like other types of rosacea, papules and pustules may develop on the cheeks, nose, chin, and forehead. It’s common to experience burning and stinging sensations, often triggered by stress, alcohol, and spicy foods.

  • Phymatous rosacea 

This rosacea subtype primarily affects the nose, chin, cheeks, forehead, and ear skin. It’s often identified by thickened skin and irregular surface nodules on the affected areas. These areas may also become swollen, and the skin may appear greasy. Other symptoms of Phymatous rosacea may include persistent facial redness, visible blood vessels, and a burning or stinging sensation.

  • Ocular rosacea

As the name suggests, people with ocular rosacea experience dry, irritated eyes and redness and inflammation of the eyelids. It can also cause various symptoms associated with the eyes, from light sensitivity to blurred vision, bloodshot and watery eyes, and crusting on the eyelids. Spicy foods, alcohol, and sunlight can also trigger it.

Causes and Risk Factors of Rosacea

The precise causes of rosacea are not fully understood; however, it is believed to be a combination of genetic and environmental factors. Medical professionals link rosacea with a heightened immune system response, which can lead to inflammation and skin irritation. Abnormalities in the blood vessels in the skin are also possible causes of rosacea, which can cause redness and flushing.

Genetics has also been linked to rosacea, particularly the HLA gene. Typically, the HLA gene is involved in the immune system’s response to foreign invaders. Any mutation in this gene can make an individual more prone to developing inflammatory conditions like rosacea. Variations in the genes that regulate blood vessel functions and those that control the skin’s barrier function and response to environmental stressors can also contribute to rosacea development.

Demodex mites and environmental factors can also trigger or worsen rosacea symptoms. Some factors include sunlight, wind, hot or cold temperatures, spicy foods, alcohol, and stress.

Aside from the causes, several factors can increase the risk of developing this condition. While rosacea affects people of all ages and ethnicity, it is most commonly diagnosed in individuals over 30, particularly those with fair skin and light eyes. Women are also more likely to be diagnosed with rosacea, although men may experience more severe symptoms.

Signs and Symptoms

The signs and symptoms of rosacea can vary based on the individual and the condition’s subtype. However, some common ones include:

Flushing and persistent redness

The initial manifestation of rosacea typically presents as a persistent reddening and flushing of the skin, which can resemble a mild sunburn or a blush that does not subside. This symptom may occur in discrete episodes or persist over time and, in some cases, is accompanied by a warm, tender, or sensitive feeling in the affected area.

Bumps and pimples

Rosacea can generate small and pustular bumps on the skin, which can be mistaken for acne. These bumps are a characteristic feature of this condition and tend to be tender, red, and itchy. While they look very similar to acne, it’s essential to differentiate between them to provide appropriate treatment and management.

Visible blood vessels

Rosacea can also manifest as small, discernible blood vessels that become visible in the skin, particularly in areas surrounding the nose and cheeks. Some medical professionals call this telangiectasia, which occurs due to the dilation of blood vessels close to the skin’s surface.

Eye Irritation

Eye irritation is primarily indicative of ocular rosacea. This subtype of rosacea affects the eyes and the eyelids and can cause them to swell and sometimes lead to more serious eye problems if left untreated. Other symptoms include redness, dryness, itching, burning, sensitivity to light, and blurred vision.

Burning or Stinging

These are common symptoms of rosacea. Many people with this condition experience burning, stinging, or itching sensations on their faces, especially when exposed to some of the triggers we’ve highlighted earlier. In some cases, individuals may also experience thickened skin in the affected areas. 

Treatment Options for Rosacea

There is no precise cure for rosacea; however, several treatment options are available to manage symptoms and improve quality of life. These may include topical or oral medications, light-based therapies, and lifestyle modifications to avoid triggers. 

Topical medications are the prevalent treatment options for long-term rosacea management. This is because they incorporate some ingredients that significantly help to manage the condition. We’ll look into three ingredients; Azelaic Acid, Bakuchiol, and Fullerene, each with unique characteristics and benefits for managing rosacea.

Azelaic Acid

Azelaic acid is a topical medication for treating several skin conditions, including rosacea. It is a dicarboxylic acid in some whole grains like wheat and barley.

Azelaic acid is believed to work by reducing inflammation and killing the bacteria that contribute to the development of rosacea. It also helps to unclog pores and reduce the formation of pimples and blackheads. Additionally, azelaic acid inhibits the production of abnormal melanocytes, which can help reduce the appearance of hyperpigmentation and other skin discoloration issues.

Various formulations of azelaic acid are obtainable as prescribed medication, such as creams, gels, and foams, to treat skin conditions. One very effective product is Bee Naturals’ Azelaic 10% serum. This serum features hydrating, moisturizing, and exfoliating components alongside ingredients known to soothe and manage rosacea symptoms and create a luminous complexion.

The affected skin areas are usually treated twice daily with this medication, and it may take a few weeks to observe the full therapeutic effects. Typically, azelaic acid has mild adverse reactions, including skin irritation, dryness, and itching.


Bakuchiol is a plant-based ingredient derived from the seeds and leaves of the Babchi plant.

It’s increasingly used in skincare products as a natural and effective alternative to retinol due to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that are beneficial for treating various skin conditions, including rosacea.

Bakuchiol addresses rosacea by reducing inflammation and calming the skin. It has also proven effective in reducing redness and improving the skin’s texture and tone without causing irritation or sensitivity.

It also has the added benefit of being much gentler on the skin than retinol, which can sometimes cause dryness, peeling, and sensitive reactions, especially in people with rosacea. Bakuchiol can be used as a standalone ingredient or in combination with other anti-inflammatory and soothing ingredients to help manage rosacea symptoms.


Unlike the other two ingredients, fullerene is a molecule composed entirely of carbon atoms and arranged in a unique pattern resembling a soccer ball.

 It has been found to have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that make it a promising ingredient in skincare products, particularly in treating rosacea.

As you would expect, the properties of fullerene make it ideal for reducing inflammation and protecting the skin from oxidative damage caused by environmental triggers, such as ultraviolet radiation, pollution, and free radicals. Fullerene also inhibits the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines and enhances the skin’s barrier function, improving its ability to retain moisture and protect itself from external irritants.

All these ingredients provide soothing and comprehensive relief from the symptoms of rosacea. And while most of them can be used with other products, it’s best to consult a professional or do so under prescription.

In conclusion, rosacea is a complex skin condition that can significantly impact one’s quality of life. According to surveys by the National Rosacea Society (NRS), nearly 90 percent of rosacea patients reported having low self-confidence and self-esteem. This statistic highlights the need to identify and avoid triggers or develop a consistent skincare routine to address the disorder before it becomes increasingly severe and intrusive in your daily life.

With the right approach, managing rosacea can be achievable, and individuals can feel confident and comfortable in their skin. More importantly, individuals with rosacea do not have to face this condition alone. Numerous support groups and foundations, like the National Rosacea Society and Rosacea Support Group, help provide guidance, education, and emotional support for those struggling with rosacea. These groups offer a sense of community and can help you feel understood and validated.