Vitamin E is a popular antioxidant and moisturizing ingredient that you would find in skincare. It has been around for a long time, but does that mean that you really need it?
So, we did the research for you to help you make the decision on whether you should add vitamin E to your skincare routine. Plus, we have tips on how you should do it.
What is vitamin E?
Vitamin E is a fat-soluble antioxidant. It easily absorbs into the skin and can be stored in our sebaceous glands. There are 8 different forms of vitamin E, and tocopherol is only form that meets human needs. In your skincare product ingredients lists vitamin E is often referred to as tocopheryl acetate or tocopherol.
As an antioxidant, vitamin E protects your skin from oxidative damage by free radicals. It is impossible to escape these free radicals, the environment around us and the pollution that surrounds us is chock-full of it, we explored the dangers of free radicals in this article. These free radicals are constantly looking for electrons to snatch from anywhere and the more you protect your skin from them the better your skin will look over time.
Who should use Vitamin E? And who should not?
A vast majority of people can benefit by adding vitamin E to their routine. However, anyone with super sensitive, extremely oily, or severely acne-prone skin should stay away from using vitamin E in their skincare, unless of course a dermatologist suggests it.
Most of the vitamin E products are created in oil based formulas. Using these can run the risk of clogged pores and other frustrating side effects.
Even super lightweight serums containing vitamin E often contain safflower oil or sunflower oil because these are great sources of vitamin E.
If you are just starting out with vitamin E, we think that you should use a moisturizer containing vitamin E to gauge your reaction to the ingredient before using a more potent and/or pure form of vitamin E.
What does Vitamin E do?
Vitamin E is an intensely moisturizing ingredient for the skin. It works great as a lip treatment and can even substitute lip balms.
Vitamin E is one of those ingredients that help heal the skin from various conditions from dryness to scarring. There is a lot anecdotal evidence pointing to the role of Vitamin E in heal acne scars.
Since vitamin E also promotes skin regeneration it prevents wrinkles and reduces photo-aging – more on that below.
Vitamin E and Skin Protection
Vitamin E not only reduces the damage caused by UV rays it also protects against UV radiation. This does not mean that vitamin E is a sufficient sunscreen, but it does mean that they work well together.
If you choose to apply your vitamin E serum in the morning, you may reap more benefits.
Related: Guess what? SPF is really important, do you want to know why?
Why is a combination of Vitamin C and E good for the skin?
Vitamin C and vitamin E are two antioxidants that play very different roles in skincare. Vitamin C is all about working on the surface of the skin and vitamin E’s oil soluble nature allows it to penetrate deeper into the skin.
So, with this combination you get the best of both worlds.
Different types of Vitamin E in Skincare
When you are looking for vitamin E in your skincare it won’t always be listed as vitamin E in the ingredients list. There are a few terms that are used to denote vitamin E in skincare products.
These are the most common ways vitamin E will be listed d-alpha-tocopherol, d-alpha-tocopherol acetate, dl-alpha tocopherol, and dl-alpha tocopherol acetate. The d prefix shows that the ingredient was derived from natural sources and the dl prefix is to denote that ingredient was synthetically made.
Being synthetic doesn’t make the product inferior in any way, but if it matters to you well now you know how to can tell which is which.
What skin type is Vitamin E good for?
Sensitive, mature, and dry skin types can benefit from using vitamin E in their routine. It is a soothing ingredient that provides moisture and allow the skin to retain hydration.
Best Vitamin E Products that we love
Here are a few products that we enjoy that contain vitamin E.
Bio Oil is a cult favorite. Many including us at the Hey Simply team have seen marked improvements in scars new and old after consistently using Bio Oil.
The Body Shop Vitamin E Moisture Cream is a thick occlusive moisturiser that is great for those with oily skin.
(MALIN+GOETZ) Vitamin E face moisturizer another soothing moisturizer that is lightweight and residue free.
Related: Create the perfect skincare routine for your skin
Frequently Asked Questions about Vitamin E
Vitamin E is one of those ingredients that we know is very important but it is often shrouded in mystery or is often misrepresented due to a variety of old wives tales. We’re here to set the record straight.
Does Vitamin E darken your skin?
No vitamin E does not darken your skin. In fact, it is used to treat melasma. On the hand hyperpigmentation is only mildly improved with the use of vitamin E.
Does vitamin E increase facial hair in females?
There is no evidence suggesting that applying vitamin E to your skin will increase hair growth. So, worry not that your new moisturizer is going to give you a beard.
You won’t definitely won’t end up looking like Rachel in Vegas.
Is vitamin E bad for oily skin?
If you use in an oil format yes it may not have ideal results. It will be better for you to choose a serum that contains vitamin E that is compatible with your oily skin.
Can vitamin E be applied directly on face?
Well vitamin E capsules have been many women’s holy grail over the years and many experts are not against it, but they do want you to exercise caution. It is better to apply skincare products with vitamin E in it, then pure vitamin E out of a capsule.
Does vitamin E remove scars
There isn’t enough evidence for this particular use of vitamin E however, it is a popular notion that vitamin E helps remove scars. The most important thing to remember is pure vitamin E oil can do more harm than good when it comes to scars and other sensitive areas.
Products containing vitamin E like Bio Oil have been proven to help with scarring. But there are other elements in those products that help with the reduction of scars.
Does vitamin E remove dark spots
Dark spots caused by hyperpigmentation can be moderately improved with use of vitamin E, but the ingredient needs to be paired with vitamin C for any real impact to be seen.
Final Thoughts on Vitamin E in Skincare
Adding vitamin E to your skincare routine is not a drastic move. It is not like retinol or AHAs, vitamin E is going to act on your skin slowly and consistently. It is a preventative measure than a healing or changing measure. So, if you’re looking for added hydration consider adding vitamin E into your skincare routine.