Zinc oxide is a widely used compound in the rubber industry due to the excellent properties that it shows as activator, and consequently, its role in the mechanism of accelerated sulfur vulcanization has been extensively studied. Due to the increased concern about its environmental effects, several research studies have been carried out in order to substitute it with different metal oxides such us MgO. The effect of the activator system in order to minimize the environmental impact of the rubber goods has been explored. The work developed is presented in two parts. In Part 1, the influence of different mixtures of ZnO and MgO on the vulcanization of natural rubber has been investigated. In Part 2, model compound vulcanization has been used to study the role of MgO on the mechanism to gain a better understanding of the differences shown in Part 1.