The skincare and beauty world has a set of its marvels, does it not? Every product you look at boasts about its ingredients, highlighting its best qualities and promising you magical results. And for over 50 years, there is a certain ingredient we hear about a lot in our skincare explorations. That’s right, we are talking about Vitamin E today!
Serums, oils, creams, capsules … you find this mysterious gate to goodness and healing called Vitamin E all around. You may have heard of it as an important antioxidant, and other times as a natural healer. Most popularly, this ingredient is gushed about for its unique capsule form, which is used both orally and topically. But really, what does Vitamin E on skin? How does it work to provide your skin with good health? And do you need supplements to add more of it to your body? We attempt to answer all of these questions for you!
What is Vitamin E?
This is a tricky question to answer without getting into some chemistry. First things first, vitamins themselves are essential organic compounds that occur in little quantities in our diet, contributing to our bodily functions. Different vitamins have different functions. For example, Vitamin A is said to have a big role in maintaining eyesight. Vitamins either dissolve in water or fat content in our bodies to be absorbed in our muscle tissues.
Vitamin E, which is relevant to us right now, refers to a group of fat-soluble compounds that possess antioxidant qualities. Its functions include fighting free radicals (released in the process of oxidization) from damaging cells, improving overall immunity, and preventing blood clotting in the arteries. If one does not have enough Vitamin E in their system, they may suffer from serious nerve damage.
This class of vitamins has eight types in total but the one that is most relevant to humans is alpha-tocopherol, which is synthesized in plants. Therefore, we get regular doses of Vitamin E through our diets. An average nutritious diet tends to sufficiently provide the required healthy dosage of the compound. Some Vitamin E-rich foods include sunflower oil, spinach, almonds, peanuts, mangoes, and avocados. Only if your digestive tract has some trouble digesting fats properly could the problem of a Vitamin E deficiency occur.
How is Vitamin E relevant to the skin?
Vitamin E undoubtedly has essential functions when it comes to the internal biological process going about in our bodies. In skincare, it has some topical functions. You might be familiar with the concept of sebum, which is a waxy-oily substance produced by our skin to keep itself smooth and nourished. It is through sebum that Vitamin E is added to the skin from our diets. That is if we assume you do not get any Vitamin E content through your skincare products.
The vitamin has many important, protective functions on the skin. It is present in oils, and like most oils, its function is to add moisture to the skin while also creating a barrier between external harm and bare skin surface. Therefore, most of its benefits revolve around the prevention of skin problems. Here are some of them:
Protects skin from sun damage
Studies in the past few years have repeatedly shown that Vitamin E is a healing component for the skin, especially when it comes to preventing sunburns. The harsh ultraviolet rays from the sun tend to oxidize our skin, leading to sunburns. Apart from the irritation sunburns cause, this oxidization process is harmful because it leads to the release of free radicals. Free radicals pose harm to healthy skin cells and in extreme cases may cause cancer.
Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that fights this process. In fact, some experts go as far as to claim that when Vitamin E and Vitamin C are combined and applied topically, they provide sunscreen like benefits. Combined with this, since vitamin E is fat-soluble and therefore tends to be used as an oil, it provides excellent topical moisturization to the skin, which prevents the itching that can be caused by severe sunburns.
Heals scars and spots
We have already established the antioxidant nature of Vitamin E, which means it is now time to magnify and talk about its fabulous anti-inflammatory properties. While inflammation is an immune system function designed to protect your body, it can often cause irritation, redness, and swelling.
Inflammation makes things worse for you if you have acne or skin infections, making them very painful. Vitamin E soothes and calms your skin, enabling a regeneration boost in your skin cells. In other words, it helps you heal scars and spots by healing them faster and making new, clear skin appear in their place. Many Vitamin E lovers rely on an overnight Vitamin E application for spot treatments. These benefits apply to you if you have a hyperpigmentation problem too!
Sure, aging is a natural process and an inevitable part of human life. That does not mean you cannot slow it or make sure you age in the most graceful ways possible! Vitamin E is a beloved ingredient in anti-aging products. You see, as the skin ages, it loses its elasticity and faces a reduced sebum production. By its nature of providing a lipid barrier on the skin, it can prevent the formation of fine lines and wrinkles caused by excessive dryness.
Another component involved in aging is the overactivity of free radicals. As discussed before, Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that reduces the harm caused by free radicals. This helps your skin stay radiant and youthful for longer, and reduces signs of even intrinsic aging! This means that you can use oral or topical usage of Vitamin E to preserve the youth for your beautiful smooth skin.
Suitable for dry skin
Dry skin is a skin type that is characterized by a lack of natural oils and sebum on the upper layers of the skin. Vitamin E-filled substances tend to be thick and require effort to be spread all over skin - but this is great news for dry skin! Whether you apply Vitamin E capsules on your skin or ingest them, they will better the content of sebum in your skin. This makes the compound useful for aged skin and naturally dry skin.
The moisturizing quality of Vitamin E and the fact that it helps your skin hold hydration makes it further useful for serious skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis. These disorders tend to be characterized by flaky and irritated skin - both problems that are covered by vitamin E’s anti-inflammatory and moisturizing qualities.
How do Vitamin E capsules work on skin?
Vitamin E capsules are designed as supplements for the body for those who would like to boost its content in their system. These capsules contain pure Vitamin E oil inside them. Sometimes they can be medically prescribed by professionals to treat certain conditions. When it comes to the matters of skin:
- You can consume Vitamin E capsules orally with water, just after your meal, or as prescribed by a physician. Regularly doing this may add it to your natural sebum. This will boost the healing and regenerative processes of your skin from within.
- Vitamin E capsules come such that you can open them to find Vitamin E oil inside! Dermatologists suggest that applying these capsules directly to the skin multiply their benefits by over 20 times!
How to apply Vitamin E capsules on the skin – DIYs using Vitamin E
Vitamin E is listed as the ingredient “alpha-tocopherol” in foods and skincare products, in case you want to check its content in the products you already have. This is an ingredient that is not new but has been used in skincare for decades and proves to still be popular. Whether it’s face creams, spot treatment serums, dry skin remedies, body oils or face oils - its presence is noted everywhere.
Here is the simple way to use Vitamin E capsules on your skin: -
- Use a needle or a sharp object to poke a hole into the capsule.
- Squeeze out the oil from the capsule through the pierced hole onto your palm.
- There you go! Squeezed out on your palm is a good dose of pure vitamin E oil which can be used for various purposes.
Note: It is wiser to use Vitamin E capsules topically overnight instead of using them during the day. Vitamin E oil has a very rich and thick texture, which is partly why it is sometimes hard to even apply on the skin (Pro tip: If you want to use Vitamin E oil as a moisturizer, a smart trick is to add it to your favorite body lotion to make it easier for you to spread). Because of its thick and oily texture, it can attract dirt and impurities to stick on your skin if you use it during the day. It does no favors to you in preventing acne breakouts in such cases.
Here are some easy DIYs and home remedies you can use with Vitamin E capsules for the array of dermatological issues any person could have.
Aloe vera and Vitamin E for acne scars
While those with oily skin usually need to be extra careful with their usage of Vitamin E oil, this home remedy is safe for spot treatments. Aloe vera soothes and calms your skin, and Vitamin E moisturizes it to speed up the process of healing, letting you have the spot-free even skin tone you wish for.
- Pierce a hole in 1 Vitamin E capsule.
- Squeeze out half of its oil onto your palm.
- Add two pea-sized quantities of aloe vera gel to the oil.
- Mix well.
- Put this mixture on areas where you would like your skin to be clearer. This can include acne scars, dark spots, hyperpigmented regions, and so on.
- No need to rub it in. Let the mixture soak into your skin overnight.
Overnight under eye treatment with Vitamin E
Dark circles usually happen as a result of a lack of moisture around your eyes. Certain people have dry skin, which leads to a darker appearance of eye bags under their skin, because of the lack of oils in that area. Unhealthy sleeping habits further dry out your eyes, worsening the condition of dark circles. Vitamin E oil is healing and moisturizing, therefore making an excellent and effortless under eye serum. Regular usage of Vitamin E capsules under your eyes is certain to show you an improvement in your under eye skin.
- Poke a hole into a Vitamin E capsule and pour it all out on your palm.
- In gentle movements, apply this oil under your eyes thoroughly.
- For best results, do this every day before going to sleep to wake up with an eye-bag free clear skin.
Vitamin E and yogurt face mask for dehydrated skin
Dehydrated skin is characterized by a lack of water content in the upper skin layers. Vitamin E oil alone does not treat dehydrated skin, since oil is not the solution to a lack of water. However, when combined with yogurt, it can work wonders. Yogurt is a great natural hydrator that will make sure to add water to the epidermis. The addition of Vitamin E oil creates a barrier on the skin so that all the hydration brought about by yogurt stays intact in your skin. In the long term, this formula does not just treat dehydrated skin but works in reducing signs of aging, tightening skin, and giving your face a natural radiant glow.
- Take two tablespoons of yogurt and put them in a bowl
- Poke a hole in 1 vitamin E capsule and pour all of its oil content into the bowl.
- Mix well
- Apply this paste all over your face and neck
- Leave it on for about 15 minutes
- Rinse with lukewarm water. And you’re done!
Can you overuse Vitamin E supplements?
Vitamin E is a well-praised, beloved skincare ingredient that many love to swear by. Indeed, it is helpful and essential for skin healing and protection. However, there is certainly still a limit to just how much you can push the usage of these little capsules. The organic compound performs several essential functions in the body - but just like other essential functions, too much is not good for anybody. Even water, the one elixir that brings all of us together, has a limit to how much you should consume it.
Here is a list of risks and advisory facts to keep in mind before getting too comfortable with using Vitamin E capsules: -
- The WHO recommends a minimum of 15 milligrams of Vitamin E consumption for the average adult’s nutrition needs. Over 1000 milligrams of Vitamin E in its natural form and 670 milligrams in the synthetic form are considered harmful.
- Vitamin E oil should not be overused on oily and sensitive skin. This is partly because oily skin already produces a lot of sebum, which gives the skin a sufficient topical dose of Vitamin E. Additionally, overuse of the thick Vitamin E oil could clog your pores and cause more breakouts and skin problems. Sensitive skin is prone to breakouts which can be worsened by this quality of the compound.
- One of the essential functions Vitamin E performs in our systems is preventing the clotting of blood. If you over consume Vitamin E, this effect is magnified to undesirable extents. It can widen your blood vessels (causing your blood to get thinner) and prevent clotting even at places where it is essential. In severe cases, it can lead to internal bleeding in crucial organs like the brain.
- Usually, our diets provide us with enough Vitamin E. Therefore, it is wise to consult a doctor before consuming Vitamin E capsules. Deficiencies occur when your body has trouble digesting certain fats. If that is the case, visiting a physician could help you get to the root of the problem.
Vitamin E capsules work miraculously for people with dry skin and related skin problems. These capsules are available in the market for pretty cheap and are relatively easy to use. Considering the array of skin problems Vitamin E can treat, it is a wise investment.However, precautions are necessary and one should not get greedy with the multipurpose benefits of this compound. The overuse of Vitamin E supplements can cause more harm than its use causes good.