Yesterday was warm enough to eat lunch ouside for the first time this year and I got to thinking about sunscreen. I was coated, of course, in Anna's very fine recommendation of Devita and remembered that readers have suggested several others worthy of trying and went off to hunt them down. t was with little hesitation that I ordered Keys Solar RX.

And I mean that quite literally. There was a little hesitation. I had a vague idea that there was some controversy around nano zinc oxide. Over the last decade there have been periodic flurries of press attention about nanotechnology and cosmetics and there has been particular concern over sunscreens delivering nano particles of sunscreen actives into our bodies. For several years, the Australians (the world's sunscreen officionados) said that the jury was out as to whether they would penetrate and, if they did, cause harm.

Eventually, in 2006, the Environmental Working Group gave nano zinc oxide the all clear. It examined the evidence of 15 peer-reviewed studies on skin absorption, nearly all showing no absorption of small-scale zinc and titanium sunscreen ingredients through healthy skin.

Furthermore, the EWG cited studies that showed that chemical sunscreens such as oxybenzone and octinoxate are definitely absorbed into healthy skin — in large amounts according to some studies — and act like estrogens in the body, raising risks for breast cancer, and showing effects like hormone-driven uterine damage in other studies.

In conclusion, EWG researchers "found that zinc and titanium-based formulations are among the safest, most effective sunscreens on the market." (Source)

Having dealt with the nano debate, I found plenty of reasons to want to take Keys Solar out for a test drive. It offers broad spectrum UVA and UVB protection. There are antioxidants and vitamins from shea, avocado and cumin, while the preservative is non-chemical, non-carcinogenic rosemary extract.

Ingredients in Keys Solar RX

Nano zinc oxide (18.5%), shea butter (10%), avocado oil, carrot seed oil, black cumin oil, essential oil blend, purified water, vegetable glycerin, vegetable wax, rosemary extract.