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Parabens are chemical preservatives that are commonly used in skin care products to keep them fresher for longer and prolong their shelf life. They stop fungus, bacteria and other microbes from growing in your favourite products. In the last few years, some companies have chosen to exclude parabens from their ingredients after many scientists had doubts over how safe they were to use on the skin.

Most skin care and make-up products will detail whether they are paraben-free on the packaging, so look out for these when buying topical skin care.