Every once in a while, I get a request to test an outdoor product.
If I feel that the product is something I’ll like and can be used for hiking, I’ll say “Yes”. Most times, I never hear from the company again.
But Rocket Pure, which touts Natural Body Care for Athletes, actually sent me a sample of their products to test. You can find various powders, lotions and potions on their website, but I asked for four products.
I took this picture before I opened the containers to make sure that they were pristine. Then I dove in. So my review is not left to right, but from superb to “could use improvements.”
1. The Hand and Foot Balm was superb. That’s even better than awesome. It looks like a version of vaseline but feels so much better. I lather it on my feet after a shower and when I go to bed. I haven’t tried it on my hands yet, because they don’t crack except for the winter.
A few years ago, when I walked the Mountains-to-Sea Trail across North Carolina, I got blisters after the first day in the Coastal Plains. I wrapped my feet in Duct Tape every morning after that. Same problem on Le Chemin de St. Jacques in France.
But when I took this balm to Italy, I could walk on their cobble stone and rocky trails without any foot problems.
2. I used the Anti-Chafe Balm Stick on my feet every morning just before putting on my hiking socks and boots. This prevents rubbing my feet raw on long hikes. It worked well. So I don’t really know if the balm cream or stick did the trick. But when I’m walking over 15 miles a day, every day, I’m not going to question success. I’ll continue to use both.
3. The Sunscreen and lip gloss belongs in the “Could use improvement” category. According to the website, it offers. Broad Spectrum UVA & UVB Protection, Non-Nano Zinc. White Hot Sunscreen With Zinc Oxide by Rocket Pure.
But the sunscreen left white sploshes on my face, a look that I thought went out in the 1970s. I looked up non-nano zinc but I couldn’t really understand it. I’m sure the sunscreen did the trick. When I reapplied the sunscreen on the trail, my husband kept trying to rub the white off my face.
So… take care of your feet and other spots that chafe. I can heartily recommend the hand and foot balm and balm stick. I’m off on another long-distance hiking trip and I’ll take both.
After I wrote this review, Monica Nelson of Zola-PR and the spokesperson for Rocket Pure explained why I got a white face with their sun screen. Here it is unedited:
Rocket Pure (and all natural sunscreens on the market) use zinc oxide to prevent sunburn. (Some also include titanium dioxide, but Rocket Pure does not). The zinc acts as a barrier where chemical sunscreens dissipate the sun’s rays with a chemical reaction. Chemical sunscreen ingredients like oxybenzone and retinyl pamitate are very dangerous and these dangers are written about frequently by the FDA, and here on the independent website EWG. Even the FDA is concerned about many of the chemical sunscreens on the market.
So, with zinc there is a slight whitening effect of the skin. It’s not like the old days where you’d see bright white streaks on lifeguards’ noses, but there is a little bit of this whitening effect. Our sunscreen does rub in, and a little goes a long way.
Making natural body care products is much more difficult than with chemical products, so there are some trade-offs! In the case of sunscreen, some whitening of the skin, is the trade-off for putting cancer-causing and hormone disrupting chemicals on your skin.
As for the term “non-nano,” don’t get too focused on that. There was a scare a while back that nano (very small) minerals were being used in skincare products and those minerals were being absorbed into the skin, and were potentially toxic after absorption. To get around this, mineral suppliers started making the minerals in larger size so it’s not absorbed into the skin. The bottom line, is our zinc oxide isn’t absorbed into the skin.
But chemical sunscreens DO absorb into the skin and DO get into the blood. Their ability to rub in, as well as their absorption — the very process that people like — is actually causing people harm.