- 25th November, 2019
Why Vitamin E Is Great For Your Skin
By Girish Desai Pharmacist (GPhC 2019217)
Vitamin oil has been featured in many beauty products, particularly moisturisers and other skin care solutions. But why is vitamin E so good for your skin and are there better/worse ways of including this vital vitamin in your diet and skincare routine? We look at what actually makes vitamin E a valuable nutrient in your body, how it benefits your skin and whether vitamin E oil is actually worth using.
What Is Vitamin E?
Vitamin E is a fat soluble compound that is used to support a healthy immune system, skin and eyes. Unlike some vitamins and minerals, it is rare to have a deficiency in vitamin E, unless you have another condition that prevents your ability to absorb vitamin E, such as Crohn's disease or cystic fibrosis.
Getting Vitamin E In Your Diet
Vitamin E is readily found in plant oils, nuts and seeds and is considered to be quite easy to get into a balanced diet. However, not everyone is getting vitamin E into their diet in the best way. For example, spinach contains good amounts of vitamin E but it doesn’t have as much of a fat as oils or nuts. Since vitamin E is fat soluble, it is thought that consuming better sources of vitamin E, which include fats, helps with absorption.
Additionally, vitamin E can be stored in the body, so you don’t need a daily dose, only a regular intake. This can help you to get the most out of your vitamin E intake, even if you are not eating high fat sources of vitamin E but are getting it fats into your balanced diet through other foods.
Benefits Of Vitamin E For Your Skin
Vitamin E does a lot in your body, but particularly for your skin.
‘Antioxidants are substances that may protect your cells against the effects of free radicals’. Vitamin E and vitamin C are both powerful antioxidants which are key to protecting your body from the damage that is caused by free radicals.
Free radicals can affect our skin in many ways, from the inside and out. Sources include: fast foods, tobacco cigarettes, alcohol, pesticides and pollution. What sources you come into contact with and how much will differ based on your lifestyle. For example, if you are eating a balanced, healthy diet but live in a city then pollution in the air might be affecting your skin from the outside. If you are based in the countryside or a seaside town but drink and smoke then what you are ingesting will be your main sources of free radicals.
With antioxidants, your body will be able to deal with free radicals as your system comes into contact with them and avoid damage being done to your body. Vitamin E protecting your skin is just one valuable way of doing this.
Soothes By Hydrating & Healing
Vitamin E protects the skin from damage by strengthening it, and it does this while hydrating your skin. It is also an anti-inflammatory and is considered to be valuable for repairing skin damage and assisting in the healing process of your skin.
Those with dry skin or sensitive skin may find that a lack of vitamin E is contributing to the condition, and preventing their skin from dealing with the dryness effectively. This is where you might want to look into vitamin E supplements or vitamin E oils.
Using Vitamin E Oil For Skincare: A Word Of Caution
You can get vitamin E from foods, but you might also choose to use supplements. Vitamin E supplements are available in tablet and liquid form, but also as an oil which can be applied directly onto the skin. There are many different varieties of vitamin E oil, which have become a popular topic of discussion in the beauty community, and each uses a different combination of ingredients.
Some vitamin E oils have vitamin E as an ingredient, combining it with floral and fruit oils, others feature oils which contain vitamin E, like nut and seed oils. This is important to note if you have allergies, such as to soy which is used within some vitamin E oils, as well as for a better understanding of what you are appling onto your skin.
If you have sensitive or dry skin then you may find that applying vitamin E oil will allow your skin to stay hydrated and stop dryness leading to cracked skin. But that doesn’t mean applying vitamin E oil to your skin is always a good idea. Vitamin E oil isn’t a cure all for skin ailments, and in fact could make some conditions, like acne, worse. Those with naturally oily skin should avoid applying vitamin E oil topically.
The Best Vitamin E Oils Are Paired With Vitamin C
Vitamin C is another antioxidant and is hugely important for your body when repairing skin damage. Vitamin E and vitamin C are often combined in skincare products and supplements as they serve slightly different but complementary functions when it comes to fortifying your skin and healing it.
Best Vitamin E Supplements
We would recommend the following vitamin E supplements to anyone who is looking to ensure they are getting enough vitamin E – though we would also advise that you consult a doctor before taking multiple supplements or if you are hoping to use it to treat a condition.