All of us at KINeSYS are happy to see the new sunscreen monograph finalized.
In 1999, when we first read the 1999 sunscreen monograph “draft”, we thought it was right on the mark and decided to move to the US, as KINeSYS was already fully compliant.
It has always been hard to compete with all the “magical” claims of: “All day protection, 8 hour protection, SPF 60, 70, 85, 100++, broad spectrum (when it didn’t have Avobenzone, Zinc Oxide or Titanium Dioxide), Waterproof & Sweat proof, it all sounds good but really? did it work?
KINeSYS has tried to educate and inform the active public about sun safety since 1994, “It was said best to me a few years ago at the American Academy of Dermatology Show, when a top Mohs surgeon said (you make the best product on the market- because my patients will use it and most importantly, reapply it).
The new monograph is a great start in helping to educate the public on sun safety. Additional studies on organic- chemical ingredients and inorganic- mineral (micronized or nanosized) ingredients will continue to be reviewed by the regulatory bodies, companies and public, but we are on the right path.
Enjoy the sun, use common sense and keep protected,
Sunscreens are increasingly marketing themselves as “natural”, “green” or “organic” but much of these claims are misleading. We are faced with the challenge of need to compete in this arms race of green claims, but want to do so with integrity.
In making sunscreen, it is important to consider both the impacts of the product (ingredients of product, recycle/re-usability of packaging) and manufacturing (energy use, waste, and other environmental impact of operations). Many of the claims made about the product (organic, natural, marketing as a “green” product) are a getting a little ahead of themselves, so we’ve considered using packaging to talk about our manufacturing since 1994, such as our commitment to recycling, use of wind power, offsetting, etc.
Maintaining Integrity: the Truth About Sunscreen
We want to maintain the integrity of the KINeSYS brand, which was originally designed as a high performance product to help elite athletes stay healthy in the sun, as opposed to shifting the product to focus on organic, green, and natural, which are all questionable claims, when it comes to any sunscreen. Manipulating “inorganic” zinc or titanium materials at the atomic level is far from being natural or green. In context one nanometer is one billionth of a meter. A piece of paper is 100,000 nanometers thick, minerals don’t come in this size in nature. These ingredients are what protect our skin from the sun, but calling the sunscreen in which they are sold organic is plain and simply greenwashing.
How you can help us (by midnight on Monday)
We want to show our environmental commitment (since inception in 1994). We trademarked earthkind(TM) some years ago as our philosophy, so we’d like to call this out on the packaging, because its part of our original commitment, continues to be, and is necessary to compete with the claims made on other sunscreen products.
Should we chase the direction of the green claims being made, focus on what we do know we can back up (more responsible manufacturing), or use our packaging to take a stand (e.g. “No sunscreen is organic or natural, but we’ve done the best we could.”), similar to what you’d expect from a company many of us admire, Patagonia?
What kinds of things do you care about when purchasing sunscreen or other products that make claims about their “green-ness”? Do you trust what is on the packaging or look deeper?
We have two options to show our earthkind(TM) philosophy (click on the image to enlarge), I’d appreciate your feedback to help shape the way we portray our products.
Each and every fall, thousands of parents assemble at universities across the United States to drop their children off for freshman year in what has become a parental rite of passage. To some this is an exceedingly exciting time, a time when the notion of “leaving the nest” finally comes to fruition. For others, the “college drop-off” is a cumbersome experience, loaded with stress as parents fear what dangers may lay ahead for their unsupervised boy or girl. This fall however, all parents should be feeling a bit apprehensive about what may lie ahead for their son or daughter.
As students flock back to their packed lecture halls, beer-pong games and ever-shrinking dorm rooms, the CDC has noticed a disturbing rise in the number of reported Swine Flu cases on college campuses. The highly contagious H1N1 virus (swine flu) has been springing up across the country at universities big and small, with some schools already boasting more then 150 confirmed cases. As a consequence of the spreading sickness some schools are taking drastic measures to combat the virus, by isolating sick students, dispensing anti-viral pills and giving away free hand-sanitizer.
This little piggy went to the ER...
Despite these efforts however, many students approach the disease with a complacency that borders on lackadaisical. Indeed it seems as though the vigilance of school administrators and health officials in their approach to H1N1 has overwhelmed students to the point where it’s now easier to disregard the warnings rather than heed to them.
Our advice?—parents don’t contribute to the dozens of emails, etc. kids are getting about H1N1, they’ll likely disregard it because they’re hearing so much about it already. Instead take the subliminal approach to keeping your child healthy; casually remind them to wash their hands before they eat, etc. By simply washing their hands a few times a day, your child can significantly reduce their chances of contracting Swine Flu.
So remember, gentle advice, rather than frantic, panicky parental demands, will be far more effective in keeping your child Swine Flu free for the entirety of their collegiate venture.
At some companies it’s not often that they get a chance to say “thank you” for so much unsolicited praise from their customers, but at KINeSYS, it seems as though it’s our cross to bear—AND WE WELCOME IT!!!
This past week we received a number of emails and blog posts from individuals who tried some of our products and fell in love with them. While we can’t let you guys look at all the emails, we would love for you to take a gander at what some of the bloggers had to say. Feel free to take a peak at any of these praise filled reviews!
Imagine spending the majority of your natural born life in a cage so restrictive that you are incapable of standing up or even lifting your arms to shoulder height. A space that not only restrains you from the most natural of movements, but forces you to abide by the daily regimen of force-fed corn blended with powerful antibiotics, all while wallowing amidst your own excrement. The vast quantities of corn that your captors force you to eat has been grown with the waste of your short-lived ancestors, combined with millions of tons of chemical fertilizer. When you meet your end it will likely be a welcomed fate, releasing you from the prison of the corporate farm to the liberation of the American dinner plate.
Sound pleasant?—didn’t think so. Yet this is the fate of millions of farm animals (mainly pigs and chickens) bred for their meat in the United States of America. A growing portion of America’s livestock lives in these impressively inhospitable conditions, surviving until the animal—be it a chicken, pig or otherwise—has reached a size deemed appropriate for slaughter. That size being a predetermined capitalization point, thereby ensuring maximum profit and turnover for the farm’s ever-increasing bottom line. So what fuels this excessive, inhumane and abusively capitalistic industry?—we do.
Halfway Humane Pig Farm
The American obsession with “cheap meat” has not only brought undue harm to the animals that unwillingly partake in it, but it has done increasingly irrefutable damage to our health and our environment as well. American’s consume the highest-calorie, protein rich diets in the entire world, and while these diets are delicious, they are also deadly. The United States has significantly higher rates of heart disease and obesity than any other nation on the planet. Given that Republicans and Democrats are currently screaming at each other regarding the best way to implement healthcare reform, they might want to pay attention to the fact that the American diet accounts for nearly $150 billion dollars in healthcare expenses annually. By remodeling the American diet around the notion of quality, while simultaneously redirecting government subsidies from the farming of feed-corn to the farming of fruits and vegetables, we could not only save dollars, but save lives.
Obesity - A Growing Risk
An even more frightening scenario comes as doctors across the country bear witness to an increasing number of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. The packed, unsanitary quarters that permeate the world of corporate farming greatly perpetuate the development of disease and infection. As such, animals are—quite literally—pumped full of antibiotics so that they can survive an onslaught of germs until they are ready for slaughter. Yet this overuse of pharmaceuticals in an effort to keep livestock commodities viable has played a major role in the development of the drug-resistant bacteria that are beginning to plague hospitals nationwide.
Immediate health risks aside, a reduction in meat consumption would also vastly aid our environment and help to cap the expenditure of our dwindling natural resources. As it stands today, 19% of the fossil fuel guzzled by the US is done so by the sapping agricultural industry. The emissions released from said fossil fuels, in conjunction with the tons of greenhouse gasses discharged into the atmosphere via our excessive quantities of livestock, make the US’ overarching role in global warming undeniable.
Greenhouse Gas Emmisions
Furthermore, current methods of “corporate farming” are simply not sustainable in the long term. Not only have we nearly drained some of the Mid-West’s major aquifers, but years of excessive tilling have eroded a significant portion of the United States’ workable soil. Given the steady decline of fertile ground, farmers have been forced to supplement their lands with tons of industrially produced, nitrogen-rich fertilizers. Aside from the fact that these fertilizers cannot supplement the loss of fertile ground forever, they also have a dramatic (and often disregarded) impact on local ecosystems. Whenever the fields become excessively saturated (by the farmer or by Mother Nature) these fertilizers—and their concentrated nitrogen—run into local waterways asphyxiating any aquatic wildlife caught in the runoff.
At the end of the day, the global demand for farm-raised meat is expected to increase 25% over the next two years and the United States needs to start looking at farming options that can support our booming population, rather than our demand for meat. As a social and economic world leader, the United States can pave the way for a global progression towards the sustainable cultivation of foodstuffs. For instance, we can start this process by socially and federally discouraging “corporate farms” while encouraging “small business farms”. Only by supporting these smaller, local farmers can a viable movement away from excess planting, harvesting and ranching take place. Undoubtedly the average American would experience an initial spike in the price of meats and produce, but the ultimate payoff would significantly outweigh any early struggles.
America must rid itself of the fatuitous and gluttonous lifestyle it has promoted since the end of World War II. Now more than ever, we must make the sacrifices necessary to remain relevant as a nation in a world that wishes to rapidly pass us by. Hopefully we can take the first of many steps in that direction by redefining the way we eat, farm and—ultimately—live.
I’d like you to do something for me; board a boat in San Francisco, CA, sail through the beautiful Golden Gate and head southwest towards Hawaii. At first all you may notice is the pristine blue water, perhaps the Faralon Islands, and the occasional containership passing by. But after a while your eyes will perceive something so unbelievable that it will force you to do a double-take. Approximately 1,000 miles off of the western coast of the United States is the largest manmade structure the world has ever seen. Occupying a space nearly twice the size of Texas
That's THIS Big!
and weighing nearly 3.5 million tons (although some reports have it weighting as much as 100 million tons) is a floating island of garbage known as the “Great Pacific Garbage Patch”.
Most people have never heard of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, and for good reason: very few of the major media outlets have given it coverage and world governments have, for all intents and purposes, ignored its existence. Forming gradually over time this amalgamation of rubbish has become trapped by the North Pacific Gyre, a massive rotating ocean current that stretches from North America to Asia. The Gyre funnels in pollutants from across the ocean, trapping them in its spherical rotation where this island of refuse remains relatively stationary so that trash can come in, but it cannot go out. As a consequence of this “one way street” the patch has experienced steady growth since its discovery in the 1980′s and, as of right now, shows no signs of slowing its development.
Thanks to humanity’s rampant consumption and improper disposal of plastics, the world’s oceans have been flooded with our waste, and an estimated 85% of that waste comes from plastic. It should come as no surprise then that just over 80% of the Garbage Patch is comprised entirely of plastic. This plastic breaks down via photodegradation, becoming so small that the molecular pieces of polymer can be ingested by the smallest of aquatic organisms. These organisms form the foundation of the oceanic food chain and their contamination results in the eventual contamination of the entire ecosystem. What’s worse?-the unrestricted flow of plastics allows for invasive species to travel thousands of miles to new, predator-free environments where they can destroy natural bionetworks.
Here at KINeSYS our love of the environment obliges us to emphasize how important it is that we clean up this mess! Believe us when we say that every little bit helps, from writing your local news agency, to blogging about the subject–hell–even picking up a stray plastic bag blowing along the sidewalk makes an impact! We can all do our part to shrink this massive blemish humanity has left upon the ocean. However, if you’re looking to make a more DIRECT impact, you can help sponsor people like this woman Lindsey Hoshaw, who’s fundraising for a trip to the Great Pacific Garbage Patch (http://www.spot.us/pitches/238). Lindsey’s trip will give her first hand experience with the patch, so that she may document what she sees in an effort to write what we’re sure will be a masterful expose for the New York Times.
Remember guys, KINeSYS isn’t just about sunscreen, its about making our world a better, cleaner, greener place!
Take care of yourselves this weekend, and each other!!
Well, we promised you an update later in the week on Jeff’s adventure to Southern California and—just as we promised—here…..it….is!!!
Let’s begin with the specific goal of the trip: Whole Foods. As most of you know, KINeSYS was recently welcomed into the Whole Foods Southwestern Region (Arizona, Nevada, SoCal and Hawaii). However, much to our chagrin, not all the stores in the region wanted to bring us in. As a show of good faith, our CEO Jeff Kletter drove down the California coast with his entrepreneurial spirit and a box full of product in an attempt to win over the store managers sitting on the fence. AND WIN THEM OVER HE DID!!!
With a sweeping display of salesmanship, Jeff launched a blitzkrieg, getting KINeSYS into EVERY SINGLE Whole Foods in Southern California (sans Woodland Hills and Westwood). So as long as you don’t shop at the Westwood or Woodland Hills WF, you can flock to Whole Foods to pick up any of KINeSYS’ superior line of performance sunscreens.
Regarding Tiki Oasis—let me break it down to you like this: awesome food—check, cocktails a-flowing—check, GREAT music—check, warm weather—check, eclectic array of patrons—check, plenty of KINeSYS Performance Sunscreen—a BIG check.
So in a nutshell, yes, it went quite well.
TIKI OASIS 2009!
As for what the coming weekend holds, we can’t really speak to that. There’s been so much going on here in the last few weeks that we might just take it easy to be honest. But you never know, something might spring up at the last minute and KINeSYS could be right around the corner…
Stay Tuned, The KINeSYS Team
PS—if you’ll be at the JOGATHON for Donaldson Way Elementary School in the Napa Valley on September 25th, KINeSYS will be there!!!
As the days of summer draw to a close many of you may venture out into your local wilderness for that last epic hike or camping trip before the cooling winds of fall set in. Regrettably, it’s on these carefree, “summer’s end” endeavors that you’re most likely to forget about the perpetual nuisances of poison oak and poison ivy.
For those of you who are unaware, poison ivy and poison oak are two of the biggest problems for lovers of the outdoors. While you’ll likely only encounter one or the other depending on your geographic location (if you’re on the east coast beware of ivy, west coast oak) both plants have a similar effect on the human body.
When coming into contact with either poison-ivy or poison-oak, 75-85% of the population will develop a reaction called “contact dermatitis” in which a red rash appears on the skin. The rash is triggered by a resin found on both the plants called urushiol. The irritation doesn’t appear immediately, but rather develops 24-48 hours after contact. Initially only red lines will emerge on the afflicted area, however, itchy red bumps will become visible soon thereafter, plaguing the exposed regions from anywhere between 14 and 21 days.
If an unfortunate encounter with either poison oak or ivy does occur, RELAX, there are measures to take in an effort to minimize the ill effects. First and foremost, washing with soap and COLD water can remove much if not all of the resin. Be aware, however, that time IS very much a factor. Only 50% of the resin can be removed after 10 minutes and as little as 30% after a half an hour. Once the rash has set in, topical and oral anti-histamines (like Benadryl) can be utilized to minimize the itching, but these treatments do not shorten the timetable for recovery. In SEVERE cases when the rash is rampant or has developed on the face, a doctor can prescribe oral steroids which can trigger rapid improvement to the afflicted regions.
Common Oak/Ivy Rash
Overall, prevention is the best method for dealing with these troublesome plants and, fortunately, both poison ivy and oak have characteristics that make them readily identifiable in the wild (so keep your eyes peeled!!!). If you’ve ever heard the phrase “leaves of three, let them be” then you’re already on the right track. The leaves of poison ivy and poison oak are divided into three leaflets, making them somewhat unique amidst the surrounding foliage. The serrated leaves of poison oak actually resemble the leaves of a true oak, ranging in color from bright green in the spring to bright red in the fall. The leaves of the ivy do not actually resemble traditional English Ivy, but the plant grows in much the same way, spreading with vines in a virulent fashion to overtake surrounding vegetation. During spring, the ivy leaves have a slight reddish hue, turning to a vibrant green in the summer and then to a deep reddish-orange pigment in the fall.
Remember!!!—if you’re not comfortable identifying these plants in the wild, do the same think you’d do if you didn’t trust your sunscreen—SWITCH TO KINeSYS!!!—just kidding, wear long sleeved shirts and pants. That way the resin will never actually come into contact with your skin.
Well, the Appel and Frank show may not have been as productive as we had hoped, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t an unsuccessful outing. We still got to broadcast the KINeSYS name to several hundred ladies (and a few of their male counterparts as well!) and answer an array of questions from curious visitors. It didn’t help that our table was located right next to the DJ’s speakers but what can you do?—life must simply go on.
While KINeSYS was the only product of its kind at the show, there were a number of really wonderful clothing and accessory designers. Although some designers were undoubtedly better than others, we recommend checking out the show when it comes to your area or (if you’re an SF resident) waiting until they come back to the Regency Center in 2010!!!
Unfortunately, we haven’t heard back from Jeff who was representing KINeSYS down at Tiki Oasis in San Diego this weekend. However, given the fact that Tiki Oasis was held in Southern California, we have high hopes that the event went swimmingly as sunscreen should be a popular product in a mecca for sunshine!
As for what’s “On Tap” this week, stay tuned! We’ll be back in the blogosphere sometime tomorrow or Thursday for more exciting info and details!
What an exciting week it has been for all of us here at KINeSYS!!! We’ve been traveling up and down the coast of California, meeting with clients, running product demonstrations and simply spreading the GOOD WORD about KINeSYS as the days of summer begin to draw to a close. Still there is more than a solid chance you could get burned in the NEXT FEW WEEKS, so be sure to cover up with some sunscreen, even if it isn’t ours. We want our brothers and sisters to be as safe as POSSIBLE!
Having said that, we want to remind everyone that KINeSYS will be at the Appel and Frank “Chic Summer Soiree Shopping Event” this evening (8/13) from 5PM to 9PM at the Hyatt Regency Center (1270 Sutter st.@ Van Ness) in B-E-A-UTIFUL San Francisco.
There will be more than 65 vendors there selling everything from designer clothing and accessories, to jewelry, to—you guessed it—sunscreen! And even if you don’t feel like doing any buying, you can still come and indulge in complimentary wine, beauty services and Appel and Frank gift bags!!! Not a raw deal if you ask us! Tickets are 2 for $10 if you buy them online (AppelandFrank.com), or $10 per person at the door. If you’re buying them online however, be sure to our coupon code DESIGNERSF for an additional discount of….FREE ADMISSION!!! (or at least that’s what they told us!) Entering that code should get you placed on the OFFICIAL Appel and Frank guest list!
Save Crucial Cash!
Beyond that, this is A FINAL REMINDER to use our beloved 20% off coupon code (ONLY GOOD ON KINeSYS.COM) before it expires!!!The code (FANDF20) is good through Friday (tomorrow 8.14.2009) and will get you 20% off of your purchase PLUS FREE SHIPPING on all orders of $45 dollars or more (after discount). This is an AMAZING opportunity to get normally pricey KINeSYS goods at majorly discounted prices. Even if you don’t feel like you need any more sunscreen for 2009, REMEMBER—KINeSYS sunscreens HAVE A 3 YEAR SHELF LIFE!!!!—SO EVEN IF ITS NOT FOR 2009, STOCK UP FOR 2010 or 2011!!!!
That’s all we have for you know. Take care of yourselves and each other!!!