We know that vitamin E is a powerful nutrient that is essential for our health and well-being but how does vitamin E affect our skin? If you’re looking to give your skin a fresh healthy glow, it’s time to start looking at vitamin E and the benefits your skin can reap from ensuring that you get enough of this amazing vitamin as well as starting to add it to your skincare regimen.
Why Vitamin E?
Vitamin E is important because not only does it work to keep our immune system healthy, vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that keeps free radicals from breaking down cells in our body. This means that vitamin E is essential in maintaining many parts of our body ensuring our cells are healthy enough to ward off illnesses and ailments. Free radicals are something we are exposed to every day, from indoor and outdoor air pollution, air conditioning, smoking, and UV rays. Thankfully, vitamin E is an easy vitamin to get as it is found in plenty of foods, from dark leafy greens, nuts, seeds, some seafood, and oils.
In terms of our skin, vitamin E works to neutralize these environmental stressors that destroy collagen, which is the main structural protein found in our skin and other connective tissues. Protecting collagen cells keeps the skin healthy and leads to supple and youthful skin. This makes vitamin E a popular ingredient in many skincare products, namely in its stable form of tocopherol.
Benefits of Vitamin for the Skin
In its topical form, either as an oil, cream, or added ingredient to moisturiser or serum, vitamin E can help to brighten skin tone, minimise free radical damage, and boost collagen production which can lead to smoother and firmer skin. Vitamin E also works best in tandem with vitamin C, either topically or when ingested, to ensure effectiveness. Further, vitamin E offers a variety of benefits for our skin:
Effective treatment for dry skin. Vitamin E oils and lotions are highly moisturising and can help to treat dry, itchy, irritated or sunburnt skin.
Vitamin E is a photo-protectant. When used with sunscreen, vitamin E can fend off sun damage more efficiently.
May help to heal wounds and prevent scarring. There is some evidence that suggests that vitamin E supplements may help promote the healing of wounds. Topical vitamin E may also help with healing and its moisturising properties may also help in scar reduction.
May help with psoriasis. In one study, a topical vitamin E lotion helped to improve psoriasis symptoms.
Can help with eczema. In one study, eczema suffers saw a marked improvement or remission in their condition when taking a vitamin E supplement.
Helps to prevent fine lines and wrinkles. As vitamin E prevents collagen from breaking down, applying vitamin E topically may help stop signs of ageing in the skin.
Who Should Use Vitamin E?
As vitamin E is fat-soluble, supplements should only be taken after advice from a doctor to reduce the risk of toxicity. In terms of applying vitamin E topically, there is a small chance for an allergic reaction which will irritate the skin. Those who have a history of allergic reactions, when trying a topical, should do a patch test on a small area of the skin first. Further, for those with acne-prone skin, vitamin E oils might be too heavy so it’s best to look for lighter moisturisers that have vitamin E added to them and then to use the products only at night time.