To preserve or not to preserve... THAT is the question.

Today, there are many concerns about preservatives and other additives and their effects on our sensitivities, allergies and/or if they are carcinogenic. And as the season changes from summer into fall, the cooler weather contributes to the skin's dryness. So I will be ramping up production of my lotions and balms. So I thought I would give my perspective on the use of preservatives.

Since I have eczema I prefer to use products that only have ingredients that are derived from nature. But for the public, I reluctantly use a paraben-free preservative in my lotions to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria. I feel that it is the proper thing to do for the safety of my customers. Since I haven't found proven data on how effective natural preservatives are, I choose not to use them.

In my research, I have concluded that I only need to use them in products that contain water. So the only product that contains a preservative is my lotion. I make my lotion under sterile conditions and I also a paraben-free preservative to prevent harmful bacteria growth and to extend the shelf life. I only use the recommended amount (0.1-0.5% by weight) and I list all of the ingredients on the label.

I believe that honesty is the best policy when running a business and wanted to be transparent about this issue so that my consumers can make informed decision about my products. As I said early, lotions are the only product at this time that contains a preservative. So my soaps, butters, lipbalms, bath fizzies, etc. are free of preservatives!

Where do you stand on the issue of preservatives in cosmetics?