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.