The paraben free claim has become a green claim growing in popularity over the years. Consumers associate paraben free cosmetics with natural and organic cosmetics, therefore there is an increasing demand on cosmetic formulators to develop paraben free cosmetic formulations.
Parabens have been the most common cosmetic preservatives because of their low cost and long history of use combined with a good dermatological profile. There have been scientific studies raising question marks regarding their long term effects as hormone disrupters. The Danish government has restricted their use because they got fed up with waiting for more research to clear the concerns about them. So rather than taking the risk, they decided to be cautious and restrict them and ban them on children under the age of three.
This is a new type of safety concern because it puts things in a long time perspective rather than short term irritation which can be easily seen and avoided.
Cosmetic formulators are nervous about replacing parabens because the preservative system is like the body guard fighting against bugs keeping the product safe and suitable for use. Preservatives are also likely to cause formulations instability so a lot of research has to go into the selection and testing of the best preservative/preservatives in a particular product. In fact preservation of natural and organic cosmetics is a real technical challenge with different certification bodies allow different preservatives.
If you would like to know more about how this technical challenge check my course online for paraben free cosmetic formulations on the 1st of July.
Alternatively I also offer a green reformulation service.