If you’ve ever strolled the skin care aisle in your local drug store, you’ve probably noticed a lot of Vitamin E oil products. There are lotions, creams and cleansers, as well as tiny clear capsules of the golden liquid. All of these items claim to do magical things for your skin. Is any of it true?
Vitamin E oil sounds like it would be good for us because we associate vitamins with good health. But Vitamin E oil is not the same thing as the Vitamin E that we get in our foods and supplements. There are a lot of good reasons for using Vitamin E skin oil, but to get the most help, you need to know what’s true and what isn’t. Here’s a rundown of the benefits of Vitamin E skin oil, and what to watch out for as well.
What Is Vitamin E and What is Vitamin E Oil?
If you want to know more about Vitamin E oil, learning about Vitamin E is the right place to start.
Your body can’t make Vitamin E. Vitamin E is found in many of the foods that are best for you, including nuts and seeds, fish and sweet potatoes. Avocados, apples and green leafy vegetables like spinach contain lots of Vitamin E. It is a powerful antioxidant that dissolves in fat. It has been found to be helpful in treating problems involving the arteries and blood circulation. It’s also used in the treatment of diabetes and to prevent cancer.
Experts say that Vitamin E boosts your immune system and your hormonal system. It can also help protect and repair your skin, but the best way to get those benefits are by applying it topically. This is why it has become such a popular ingredient in skin care products.
By itself, 100% pure Vitamin E oil is too sticky to use on the skin. When you buy a beauty item that is made of Vitamin E oil, it’s usually a mix of pure Vitamin E with other natural oils and ingredients. These help to thin it out and make it easy to apply to the skin.
Why Is Vitamin E Oil Good for Skin?
Because Vitamin E is such a powerful antioxidant, products containing Vitamin E oil are too. Antioxidants delay or prevent damage to your cells. Though your body makes its own antioxidants, it doesn’t make enough to fight the damage that occurs from aging and the environment. By getting more antioxidants from our foods and other sources, we improve our health and fend off aging and illness.
When it comes to skin, Vitamin E oil protects us in a very specific way. Our skin’s surface is made up of proteins and fats called lipids. These protect us and keep in moisture. Because Vitamin E can dissolve in fat, it can enter the lipids in our skin and protect against damage caused by UV rays. It can also fight inflammation.
Here are some of the most important ways that Vitamin E oil is good for your skin:
Vitamin E oil protects you from the sun’s damaging rays
When you go out into the sun, you’re exposed to both UVA and UVB rays. These can cause your skin to age. They can also cause skin cancer. Vitamin E oil protects against this damage. A study showed that mice given Vitamin E oil were less likely to develop skin cancer, even if they were exposed to strong UV light. Vitamin E oil also helps protect against fine lines and wrinkles, freckles, and age spots.
One of the best ways to use Vitamin E oil for your skin’s health is to combine it with Vitamin C. The two together provide even greater protection against the sun’s rays.
Vitamin E oil fights the signs of aging
As we get older our skin can’t make new cells as fast as it once did. It also stops making collagen. Collagen is what makes our skin firm and flexible. Much of what we see as aging in our skin is damage caused by free radicals. Free radicals are caused by pollutants like cigarette smoke, as well as by aging. Vitamin E oil fights this damage by inactivating free radicals. It offsets the damage, which reduces the look of fine lines and wrinkles. It also stops new wrinkles from forming.
Vitamin E oil is good for dry skin
Vitamin E locks in the moisture in your skin. It keeps your skin from flaking and can help to heal it when it gets dry. Vitamin E oil is a particularly good natural lip balm for chapped lips. You can use a lip balm made with Vitamin E oil, or keep a few Vitamin E oil capsules in your purse to rub on your lips as needed.
Vitamin E oil is a great sunburn treatment
If you forget to use sunscreen, putting Vitamin E oil on your skin after you’ve been exposed can help reduce the damage to your skin. Even once you’re inside or in the shade, a burn continues to get worse for hours after. Putting Vitamin E oil on your skin can stop swelling and inflammation and decrease the pain you feel from a burn. Use it as soon as possible after going out in the sun, but it can work as long as 8 hours after!
Vitamin E oil is good for skin irritation of all kinds
The sun and pollution are not the only things that can harm your skin. When your skin is irritated or itchy it can form a rash that’s known as dermatitis. Sometimes this rash forms because you are allergic to something that you’ve come into contact with. Other times it is caused by damage to your skin. In both cases, applying Vitamin E oil directly to the rash can provide relief and faster healing.
Vitamin E oil for skin lightening
Your skin gets dark for many reasons. Sometimes it is in reaction to the sun. Other times it is because of damage from injuries. When we form scars, freckles or age spots it is because of a substance called melanin.
Melanin actually protects our skin. It absorbs the sun’s energy and protects our skin cells from more damage. It is also produced in greater numbers when our skin is healing. What we see as a tan is actually protection from the sun. When the healing is done and protection is no longer needed, Vitamin E oil can take away this extra pigmentation. This works especially well when it is combined with Vitamin C.
Vitamin E oil can help heal cold sores
Cold sores are blisters that are caused by the herpes simplex virus. They can form anywhere, but especially on the mouth and lips. Vitamin E oil can reduce the inflammation of a cold sore, helping to relieve the pain and help it to heal faster. The best way to use Vitamin E oil to treat cold sores is to soak a cotton ball with the oil and hold it on the sore for 15 minutes.
Myths About Vitamin E Oil
Though there are many benefits of Vitamin E oil for skin, there are also problems that it can’t help. Knowing what it can and can’t do will save you money and make sure that you are using it to its best effect. Here is the truth about some of the most common false claims and myths about Vitamin E oil:
Vitamin E oil can’t prevent or treat stretch marks
Stretch marks are a type of scar that forms in the middle layer of the skin. They are caused by pregnancy, weight gain and weight loss. They fade over time but rarely go away completely. Vitamin E oil can’t prevent them from forming or make them go away.
Vitamin E oil can’t remove scars
Scars form when our skin damaged as a result of trauma. This is different from marks left by free radicals.
Vitamin E oil can’t help your skin make more collagen
Though Vitamin E oil can reduce the appearance of fine links and wrinkles, it can’t make our skin more elastic. Our skin gets its elasticity and strength from collagen. Collagen is a protein that helps build our skin, bones and muscles. Vitamin E oil protects against damage to collagen, but doesn’t help us to make more.
How to Use Vitamin E Oil for your Skin
Though Vitamin E oil is generally safe, there are some people who are allergic to it. It is a good idea to test a bit of the oil on the back of your wrist before using it on your face or the rest of your body.
Once you know it is safe, it is best to use Vitamin E oil on your skin at night as a moisturizer. The best Vitamin E oil for skin is combined with Vitamin C. The two together provide the greatest level of healing and protection for your skin.