Objectives  The primary objective of this study was to investigate the feasibility of using niosomes as a delivery vehicle for the dermal administration in vitro of black tea extract (BTE) as a sunscreen.

Methods  Multi-lamellar niosomes were obtained by means of a previously reported method of lipid hydration films. In vitro penetration experiments through nude mouse skin were carried out to evaluate the potential of niosomes as a dermal formulation. The nude mouse skin membrane allowed the effects of penetration with a niosome formulation to be evaluated. Penetration rates of caffeine- and gallic acid-loaded niosomes in a steady state were higher than dispersion in aqueous solutions.

Results  For skin permeation, higher transdermal absorption rates were seen with solutions of caffeine and gallic acid.

Conclusions  In the near future, BTE as a sunscreen agent will be dermally delivered by niosomes.