Parabens are widely used as preservatives by cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries.

Parabens are used to prevent the growth of microbes in cosmetics products and can be absorbed through skin, blood and the digestive system. Parabens have been found in biopsies from breast tumors at concentrations similar to those found in consumer products. Parabens may be found in a wide variety of products including shampoos, lotions, deodorants, scrubs and eye makeup, and are found in nearly all urine samples from U.S. adults regardless of ethnic, socioeconomic or geographic backgrounds. Adolescents and adult females had higher levels of methylparaben and propylparaben in their urine than did males of similar ages.

Sources: Wikipedia; Campaign for Safe Cosmetics

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