Vitamin E– The TRUE Beauty Vitamin ?

vitamin E capsulesThis week my email box had several questions about vitamin E and I thought that the best way to do  justice to both  was to answer them together.

A Little Back Story

Vitamin E is found in nuts, olives sunflower oil, wheat germ, corn oil and leafy greens.  Also called tocopherol, vitamin E is a powerful anti-oxidant that protects the body from free-radicals.  The RDA for vitamin E is 8mg/day, an amount easily met by one ounce almonds or one tablespoon of  sunflower oil.  For many years, there has been speculation that vitamin E  may prevent cancer, heart disease or slow the aging process.  But large well-controlled studies have been shown that vitamin E supplements may actually increase serious  health probems. 

A study funded by the National Cancer Institute showed that 400mg/day ( which is the standard supplement increased the incidence of prostate cancer by 17%.  Not good. A related study published in the  uber prestigious  Journal of the American Medical Association reported equally miserable results.  A meta analysis of 68 trials found that a cocktail of beta-carotene, vitamin A and vitamin E can increase  risk of premature death by 5%.???? Doctors suggested that the higher doses of vitamins actually trigger new free radicals.

But its  not all bad news for vitamin E.  There is some evidence that  vitamin E, especially when combined with vitamin C, can reduce free-radicals  from UV rays.

.Vitamin E for Beautiful Skin?

Vitamin E has quite a reputation  for skin care– but facts don’t uphold the hype.  Rumour has it that vitamin  E is  effective for healing scars because it can stimulate  collagen  production. I so wish this was true.  In fact, not only does it not reduce scars, about 30% of people who tried it for scars reported  an itchy red rash. Seriously.

Now that we have a bit of a background, lets answer some specific vitamin E questions:

 Vitamin E Question 1.  Should I mix vitamin E with Retin A?  I want to prick a vitamin E capsule and mix it with a dab of Retin A and apply the mix all over my face.

Answer:  I am  guessing here that you want to mix Retin A with vitamin E to reduce dryness and irritation from retinoids.  Since vitamin E is a known irritant, a better choice would be a moisturizer with ceramides  and or hyaluronic acid to help you hydrate your skin. Usually Retin A is  most effective applied directly to the skin, but mixed with a moisturizer helps sensitive skin get the benefits without the redness. 

 Vitamin E Question 2: Which is better for the skin– Retin A or vitamin E?

Answer: Retin A and vitamin E acts very differently on the skin. Retin A is one of the very few skin care ingredients that actually promote healthy new collagen. Vitamin E is a strong anti-oxidant which may help protect the skin from UV rays. To bottom line it, its not an either/or situation and both Retin A and Vitamin E have a role in beautiful skin.

5 thoughts on “Vitamin E– The TRUE Beauty Vitamin ?

  1. Hi. Your post on Vitamin E was very good. I have a huge scar/scar tissue that I’m trying to get rid of and in my research I found the same facts. Not good to be rubbing on your scar at all.

    I continue to enjoy your site. Keep the information coming! 🙂

    • If you send me a photo of your scar I will ask my experts for your best treatment options. THere are new lasers that offer amazing results, but you have to choose the right one for the problem.

  2. I am gonna try to make my own anti age night and day creams.
    From what I ‘ve researched so far I bought 1% retinol- hylaloric acid ,ascorbic acid powder- rosehips oil- Vitimin b3 – and vitimin e. I dont know the right combination to mix for a day cream and a night. I have already spent quit a bit and don’t want to waste it by making a mistake. can you help me please?

    PS I turned 66 yesterday and do have good skin for my age but I gonna fight ageing all the way…

  3. When I had a polyp removed from the corner of my eye, the plastic surgeon told me to massage vitamin E oil in circles to prevent scaring and it worked!

    When I had a botched episiotome incision, vitamin E oil was recommended and helped heal me faster. That scar still remains, it was just too deep ?

    • I am so glad vitamin eye worked for the scar near your eye. I have been researching laser treatment for issues like episiotomy scars and will be posting about it a few months.

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