Vitamin E might not be the newest kid on the skin care block, but it’s a tried and trusted ingredient with a whole host of benefits for your skin. Did you know it can make fine line and wrinkles appear reduced, reverse sun damage and even soothe sunburn? Read on to find out more.
What is Vitamin E?
Vitamin E is an anti-oxidant, which means it helps to counteract free radicals and the damage they can cause. The human body doesn’t make Vitamin E, so you need to make sure you get an adequate supply in your diet (green leafy veg, nuts and avocado are great sources).
You might also see it listed on ingredients as Acetic Acid, Alpha Tocopherol, Tocopherol Acetate or variants of these.
How Vitamin E works
Vitamin E is an antioxidant – which means it counteracts the damage caused by free radicals (without getting too science-y, think of them as rogue particles). Now, free radicals are pretty much unavoidable as they can be caused by anything from exercise to environmental pollution. Vitamin E helps to convert those free radicals into normal, stable, well-behaved molecules preventing them from damaging and aging your body and your skin.
Use it for:
Sun damaged skin:
Vitamin E does not act as a sunscreen so it is not, we repeat NOT, any kind of replacement for sunscreen. However, it does help to protect the skin in other ways, chiefly by its antioxidant superpower of mopping up free radicals that result from sun exposure. It helps protect the cells which produced collagen, and when combined with Vitamin C it lessens the formation of sunburn.
If you’ve forgotten your sunscreen or been out in the sun too long, Vitamin E can help with sunburn. Gently smooth on a cream to soothe and heal the burn. (Studies show that it’s effective even 8 hours after the sunburn happened.)
Fine lines and wrinkles:
At least one study has shown that applying Vitamin E to the skin may reduce the length and depth of facial wrinkles. It also protects skin DNA, and the proteins and natural enzymes in the skin. This means healthier, younger-looking skin for longer. Yay!
Vitamin E helps to keep the skin from losing water so that it retains a higher moisture content.
Dark spots and pigmentation:
It also encourages healthy cell regeneration, helping to lighten dark spots on the skin.
Anyone who’s ever suffered with eczema knows that it’s no fun. Vitamin E can help – it has proven anti-inflammatory properties, which can soothe and heal the irritated and inflamed skin of eczema.
Good to know
Vitamin E is especially effective when it’s combined with other antioxidants like Vitamin C and CoEnzyme Q10. If your moisturiser combines these ingredients, you know you’re on to a winner!
Natural forms of Vitamin E are usually more powerful than synthetic forms of the vitamin (although both are useful). Here’s how you tell the difference – naturally derived forms have the prefix ‘d’ as in ‘d-alpha-tocopherol’ while a synthetic will have the prefix ‘dl’ so ‘dl-alpha-tocopherol’.
Pure Vitamin E can cause contact dermatitis, so we recommend applying it in the shape of skin care products – it’s safer than bursting open your vitamin capsules to rub on your face.
Find Vitamin E in:
Alpha-H Skin Loving Vitamins Kit Worth More Than €80
REN Vita Mineral Omega 3 Optimum Skin Oil
Nip + Fab Kale Fix Makeup Removing Pads
REN Vita Mineral Emollient Rescue Cream
First Aid Beauty Vitamin Hydrating Mist
REN Keep Young And Beautiful Firming and Smoothing Serum
PIXI Flawless Vitamin Veil
theBalm timeBalm Foundation
NUXE Contour des Yeux Prodigieux – Anti-fatigue moisturizing eye cream
Trilogy Balancing Face Lotion