Is vitamin E good for skin? What are the benefits of using vitamin E for skin? Using vitamin E for your skin offers rich nourishing and healing properties. Find out more on the natural sources, benefits and how to use vitamin e and vitamin e oil for skin.
Vitamin E for Skin
Having great skin is one of the major goals for both men and women across the globe. People spend millions in surgery, diets, and cosmetics just to have the “perfect flawless skin “which very often tends to backfire. The skin protects from harmful substances and excess water, regulates body temperature, transfers information through nerves, combines chemicals required by the body and absorbs substances beneficial to the body.
Proper diet has been proved to be one of the best natural ways of having flawless skin. The issue, however, has been that there are many myths surrounding the correct diets and especially on fat consumption.
The fats or lipids in the human body are important as they assist in digestion and absorption of food which gives energy and promotes the production of estrogen, progesterone and testosterone hormones. However excessive consumption of fats has been associated with obesity and heart complications.
The body has natural ways of converting the lipids into cells that greatly assist the skin. It makes special use of Vitamin E which is mainly known for its antioxidant properties that prevent damage to the skin and slows aging.
Internationally recommended Vitamin E daily dosage for men and women is 15 mg and 19mg for breastfeeding women. Children should receive a dosage of 6-11 mg per day depending on age. However, there are situations where Vitamin E may be deficient for example in pre- mature babies, malnourished children, persons with cystic fibroids and digestive problems and may require a higher dosage recommended by a doctor the through use of supplements or diet.
Is Vitamin E Good for Skin?
It is a fat-soluble naturally existing vitamin made up of eight chemical compounds that exist in two groups of tocopherol or tocotrienol. This further subdivides into four subgroups of alpha, delta, beta, and gamma.
Tocopherol group form a majority of the antioxidants found on the skin and are mostly found in the vegetable oil such as corn oil, soybean, and margarine. They help stop free radical damages to the skin, absorb correct amount of UV rays, protect the skin from inflammation and maintain oil balance in the skin hence moisturize.
The subgroups of tocopherol include:
- Alpha-tocopherol is easily absorbed by the body this particular form of vitamin E guards the cell membranes against cell damage.It is present in large quantities in most foods and supplements.
- Beta Tocopherol is not easily absorbed by the body hence found in smaller quantities.
- Gamma Tocopherol is easily absorbed by the body and research shows that it has superior properties than Alpha-tocopherol. Found in flaxseeds, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, walnuts, and pistachios.
- Delta Tocopherol-found in lower quantities in food but easily absorbed by the body including raspberries, raw blackberries, margarine, peppers, candies, and crackers.
Tocotrienols are found in smaller quantities in the skin. This is because even though they are found in most foods such as barley and wheat germ and in the palm and rice bran oil, the liver removes them in even larger quantities. This means that only a small part is left to be used within the body.
- Alpha Tocotrienols
- Beta Tocotrienols
- Gamma Tocotrienols
- Delta Tocotrienols
Vitamin E occurs naturally in most diets and oils or synthetically through capsules or supplements (in liquid or pill form ). However, the synthetic supplements mostly contain only one form of Vitamin E (mostly alpha-tocopherol) without the other seven.
Natural Sources of Vitamin E for Skin
- Dark green leafy vegetables such as broccoli, Swiss chard, spinach, mustard green, turnip, kale. A cup any of the above vegetables when steamed provide at least 4 -20% of the daily requirements with spinach topping the list.
- Plant oils should be unrefined, that are organic, unrefined and cold pressed which include wheat germ oil (1tbs is 100% daily vitamin E ), sunflower oil-5mg, hemp seed oil, coconut , argan, olive, cottonseed and safflower oil which contribute at least 5 mg of the required dosage.
- Nuts which can be eaten whole or as oils which include Brazilian, pine nut, hazelnuts and almonds which contribute 2.6-7.4 mg of the requirements.
- Seeds which have a very high content of Vitamin E supply and they include pumpkin, sunflower and sesame seeds.
- Fruits such as Papaya, olives, banana, avocado and mangoes which provide 17-20% of vitamin E supply.
- Squash or butternut
- Fish and shellfish
How to Use Vitamin E for Skin
To benefit the skin, vitamin E can be applied topically or taken orally as a supplement.
- Pop a vitamin E capsule and squeeze out the liquid
- Vitamin E skin creams
- Vitamin E supplement
- Eat natural vitamin E food sources
Benefits of Vitamin E for Skin
Acne and Acne Scars
Vitamin E both in liquid and capsule form has antioxidation and anti-inflammatory properties that aid in filing the body’s plasma lipids. Acne results from the influx of androgens in the body.It usually affects the face and it is characterized by the presence of whiteheads, blackheads and inflamed lesions that occur when the sebaceous glands are blocked. This is mainly because oils in the skin or sebum often react with oxygen.
When the body tries to heal on its own using the collagen present, the cumulated collagen forms scars.
Vitamin E sweeps in to correct this skin disease by adjusting the production of elastin and collagen so that it is not in excess and prevents oxidation of the sebum gland.
Recipes for acne treatment
- In equal parts mix well Kiwi fruit, one egg yolk and olive oil which contains Vitamin E
- Apply on cleansed face for fifteen minutes and rinse well
- One tablespoon honey
- One egg yolk
- One tablespoon Almond oil
- Apply on clean face for fifteen minutes and rinse with lukewarm water.
Recipe 3 (mango mask)
- Fresh mango pulp
- One tablespoon of oat powder
- One tablespoon wheat germ oil (contains Vitamin E)
- Apply on clean face for twenty minutes then rinse.
Anti-aging treatment- get rid of Wrinkles
When free radicals destroy the lipids that cover the cell membranes surrounding the skin. The cells begin to rapidly degenerate and speed up aging where the skin wrinkles and looks shriveled.
Vitamin E due to its fat-soluble properties promotes collagen production found in skin and blood vessels thus stimulating cell regeneration. This increases skin elasticity, supporting the capillary walls and improves moisture while preventing wrinkles.
By reducing the free radicals in the body which often cause cell damage, vitamin E slows down the cells aging process thus creating a youthful skin.
Vitamin E for Skin Whitening- Skin pigmentation and scar removal
The tocopherols in Vitamin E help to regulate the absorption of UV rays as well as repair any damages causes by UV rays. This is because Vitamin E has fat soluble properties which make it easily absorbed by the epidermal layer of the skin thus able to protect it from sun rays.
For a few weeks, massage Vitamin E oil on affected are for fifteen minutes (2-3 times daily)
For a month, mix one or two Vitamin E capsules with one teaspoon castor oil and apply on affected skin overnight and rinse.
Softening dry, rough hands and Cracked Heels
The use of vitamin E oil and its fat soluble properties enable it to absorb and retain the much-required moisture by maintaining the oil balance and preventing water loss which in turn improves and softens dry skin.
For a month, mix well one lemon, honey, two Vitamin E capsules and lukewarm water. Soak hands for fifteen minutes.
- Use almond oil which is a high source of vitamin E
- Mix vitamin E oil in hand creams
Skin repair for smokers
Cigarette smoke causes adverse effects on the environment. It releases millions of free radicals. This effect of the release of this toxins causes damages to the cell membrane of arteries and the skin. Vitamin E creates antioxidants which are able to stop the oxidation process created by cigarette smoke. It gets rid of the free radicals, stops cell mutation and strengthens the lung and artery membranes which improve blood supply and skin repair.
Removal of stretch marks
Stretch marks appear when the fibers along the skin are stretched beyond normal. Though the skin tries to repair itself through the available collagen, free radicals may slow down the damage.
Vitamin E helps to increase the collagen production to allow for cell regeneration and possible elimination of the marks and also by creating a more elastic skin that can withstand stretching.
- Directly apply on skin, some Vitamin E oil and let it be absorbed directly into skin without massaging
- Alternatively, On low heat two tablespoons of Shea and cocoa butter plus coconut and olive oil and few drops of vitamin E oil. Gently massage on affected area.
Two to three times a day, evenly massage the affected skin with warm coconut or olive oil
Blood sugar regulation
Diabetes may cause itchy, dry, thick skin at the upper back and neck.Gamma Tocopherol one of the forms of Vitamin E is responsible for the elimination of excess glucose in the body thus enable it to manage blood sugar and insulin levels. This, in turn, will improve the skin appearance.
Prevent Alzheimer’s disease
The reddening of the face or Rosacea has been linked as one of the early symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. Use of Vitamin E helps to eliminate nitrogen oxides found in the body which causes diseases and promote the formation of genes that guard against Alzheimer’s disease. This is especially done by Gamma Tocopherol.
Act as an anti-inflammatory
The fat solubility property of Vitamin E allows it to be quickly absorbed by the skin. It thus reduces irritation and UV damage to the skin.By maintaining the collagen production and oil balance, cells are regenerated and wounds are slowly healed.
Vitamin E also stops the oxidation of activated phagocytes. These have been attributed to cancer that is highly characterized by inflammation.
Vitamin E has powerful antioxidant properties. There is no scientific evidence to support the effectiveness of vitamin e on skin tags. It is touted that topical application of vitamin e oil can significantly reduce the size and appearance of skin tags.
Side Effects of Using Vitamin E
When used in excess especially in form of capsules it can cause bleeding, blotched skin as well as diarrhea, headaches, blurry vison, and headaches.
Sources and References
Healthline: The Truth about vitamin E Oil
Top10homeremedies: Benefits of Vitamin E for Hair and Skin
Oregon State University: Vitamin E and Skin Health