When I first purchased Devita’s Solar SPF 30+ Facial Protective Moisturizer, I also added the body version to my cart.
Here’s the way larger 6 oz, 180 ml tube of Devita Solar Body Block SPF 30+ (Luxury Solar Body Lotion) [I think I’m verbose, but really, what’s with these long neverending names?]
This came in a box, which I promptly chucked away. It’s an opaque tube with a flip top cap at the base and boy am I loving the size.
This is what Devita says about their Solar Body Block:
Raise Shields to Full Intensity… You are now protected by one of the most effective body moisturizer and sun shield all in one! 100% natural, absorbs quickly and is never oily or greasy. Offers full spectrum UVA/UVB sun protection utilizing pure micronized (not nano sized!) zinc oxide. Titanium Dioxide Free. This is a gentle, soothing physical sun block that is skin-friendly. Also suitable for sensitive skin. Contains our signature Sun Damage Repair System. This strengthening formula helps diminish the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and helps prevent signs of premature aging with skin-defending vitamins. Penetrates deep into your skin giving it back the look and feel of it’s elasticity after just a few applications. Revitalizes, softens and moisturizes skin leaving it with a satin sheen.
Winner! Best Solar Moisturizer 2009 by Natural Solutions Beauty with a Conscience Award
ACTIVE INGREDIENT: Zinc oxide 19% INACTIVE INGREDIENTS: Aloe barbadensis* (aloe vera gel), Water (purified), Camellia sinensis (Japanese green tea) leaf extract, Capric/caprylic triglycerides (derived from coconut oil), Glycerin (vegetable), Butyrospermum parkii (shea butter), Olea europaea (olive) oil, Lecithin phospholipid, Hyaluronic acid (vegan source), Simmondsia chinensis (jojoba) seed oil*, Squalane (olive), Panthenol (vitamin B5), Tocopherol (vitamin E), NaPCA, Rosa moschata (rose hips) oil, Retinol (vitamin A), Centella asiatica (goto kola), Copper gluconate, Magnesium ascorbyl phosphate, Fucus vesiculosis (seaweed) extract, Allantoin, Sodium riboflavin phosphate, Chondrus crispus (Irish moss), Lavandula officinalis (lavender) essential oil, Anthemis nobilis (chamomile) flower essential oil, Vitis vinifera (grape) seed extract. Ingredient labeling adheres to international INCI standards.
The ingredients look mighty good, plenty of natural extracts, Vitamin C, Hyaluronic Acid too and I particularly fancied the 19% zinc oxide.
However, the only thing that got me was retinol (Vitamin A). I’ll talk more about this at the end of the post.
This is unscented and has a lovely light lotion texture. It goes on slightly watery and has fantastic spread. This is not waterproof and should not be used for sports and water activities. Trust me. I had this on and went for an evening jog when the sun was still hot. I came back slightly red, having perspired off the lotion :P
After a bit of light rubbing, the lotion has been fully absorbed by my skin, leaving a matte finish.
Back to Vitamin A (retinol), there are recent concerns about this ingredient being photosensitive. Thus, there have been recommendations made to remove this from sunscreen products. Vitamin A helps with wrinkles and a smoother skin texture, thus it’s frequent inclusions in skin and body care. However, neither the FDA nor any decisive health authority has actually issued an official advisory or note on this issue. Many drugstore sunscreens also contain Vitamin A, such as Banana Boat. It’s up to you to decide whether or not to use a sunscreen product with Vitamin A. However, as it does moot in blocking the sun’s rays, I really see no reason why it should be included. Since it plays no real vital part in sun protection, better to omit imho than to risk it.
I had emailed Devita on 15 Feb 2011 on this ingredient in their Solar Body Block and this is the response I received:
Currently we have no plans to reformulate the DeVita Body Block 30, please see the attached document which discusses this very situation, please understand that our vitamin A is a plant based ingredient (vegan). It is a special bio-engineered vitamin A sourced from synthesized Seaweed Carotenoids. You always need to discover the source of each ingredient.
I hope this helps-
The Best in Natural Health & Beauty,
DeVita Natural Skin Care Systems
Barbara A. Thomas
DeVita Customer Service Director
Devita International Inc.
2401 West Phelps Road, Suite B
Phoenix, AZ 85023
1-877-2-DEVITA toll free
Along with an attached document titled: EWG 2010 Sunscreen Guide REBUTTAL LETTER
June 3, 2010
TO OUR VALUED DEVITA CUSTOMERS CONCERNED BY THE EWG 2010 SUNSCREEN GUIDE ARTICLE STATING THAT RETINYL PALMITATE (A FORM OF VITAMIN A) IN SUNSCREENS IS LINKED TO SKIN CANCER AND TUMOR GROWTH:
We have been getting an alarming number of anxious customers calling about our Solar Body Block 30 which has in the formulation less than 1% vegan sourced Retinol (vitamin A). Please put your fears to rest and understand that our vitamin A is a plant based ingredient (vegan). It is a special bio-engineered vitamin A sourced from synthesized Seaweed Carotenoids.
So in response to the EWG 2010 Sunscreen Guide article stating that retinyl palmitate (a form of vitamin A) in sunscreens is linked to skin cancer and tumor growth, we offer the following from the EWG themselves (Content below is copied directly from the “Notes” section at the bottom of the EWG 2010 Sunscreen Guide article – underlines and bolding added by DeVita for clarity):
“(2) Vitamin A in plant-based ingredients — Some plant-based ingredients contain compounds related to vitamin A, the vast majority of which are carotenes (in a large chemical class called carotenoids) that are converted to Vitamin A in the body. These ingredients include avocado oil, shea butter, carrot oil and other plant-based oils. Some product labels list these ingredients as a source of vitamin A. There is no evidence that these sources of vitamin A present concerns for accelerated development of tumors and lesions that have been demonstrated for retinyl palmitate. In plant oils, levels of these compounds are far lower than the levels of retinyl palmitate tested in the lab, and carotenoids have not been shown to be a concern whether ingested with plant foods (for example, in carrots or avocados) or when applied on the skin.”
While we respect the work the EWG is trying to do, we are also very aware of their limitations in the area of cosmetic chemistry, most pointedly in the complete lack of clarity and consideration for where/how an ingredient is sourced (which is VERY CRITICAL). And while we do not believe the EWG intended to misinform, we do wish they would be more forth coming and try to better qualify their statements, rather than make blanket claims which are not fully substantiated.
As this study does not truly apply to us since we use only plant based sources of vitamin A, we will not go into a detailed debate on where we disagree with the EWG’s findings, but it is important to note that the NTP study the EWG is referencing was not designed to study retinyl palmitate in the presence or absence of sunscreen formulations. Therefore, the EWG reached their conclusion based on preliminary, inconclusive data.
Please visit our new website www.devita.net which has some wonderful ingredient information – we will be discussing the cosmetic confusion and trying to shed some much needed light on that obviously murky subject!
Thank you for your continued support of DeVita Natural Skin Care!
All the Best in Natural Health and Beauty,
Cherylanne DeVita, Ph.D., President/CEO DeVita Natural Skin Care
My thoughts: While I love the texture and the pricepoint, I’d only care to recommend this as a night-time light body moisturiser for now. Until something conclusive on the use of Vitamin A in sunscreens gets released by a decisive authority.
Packaging: 10 (Awesome low-wastage tube. Easy to cut open when you reach the last bits too.)
Overall score: 8.8