What You Need To Know About Preservatives

What You Need to Know About Preservatives
According to the FDA, preservatives are “substances which may be added to cosmetic products for the primary purpose of inhibiting the development of micro-organisms in such products.” Preservative ingredients are, in most cases, intended to maintain the integrity of the product, be it a face cream or mascara, so it’s safe for use. The inclusion of these ingredients in cosmetics is governed by the FDA under the cosmetic provisions of the law.

What About Organic Makeup & Skincare Products?

There are both synthetic preservatives and natural preservatives with antimicrobial properties. Even organic skincare and makeup lines use natural preservatives like Rosemary Extract and Vitamin E to extend the life of their products. Preservative-free products, especially those containing water, are potentially dangerous because they quickly expire.

Common Synthetic Preservatives

Common Natural Preservatives

*Most frequently used in glo minerals mineral makeup and glo therapeutics professional skincare.

Are Preservatives Safe?

There can be no safe or non-toxic cosmetic without preservatives. Skincare and cosmetic items, similar to food, can spoil over time, and contamination can happen quickly through everyday use. For example, when you apply mascara the wand might touch your eye, and when you dip the wand back in the tube those cells are then introduced to the rest of the product. Or, when you dip your fingers into a jar of eye cream, if you haven’t washed your hands directly before use, you could be introducing harmful bacteria to your cream. Without preservatives, the life of your products would be dramatically reduced. Preservatives only make up a very small portion of your products, usually around 0.1% to 1%. It’s all about balance, controlling microbial growth while being non-irritating and non-sensitizing.

Tips to Protect Your Cosmetics from Contamination

In addition to purchasing products with an effective preservative system, there are a few things you can do to prevent the growth of micro-organisms in your beauty supply.