Ten benefits of vitamin E oil
Vitamin E oil: The basics
Ten potential benefits
Risks and considerations
How to use vitamin E
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Vitamin E is not a single vitamin, but rather a group of fat-soluble vitamins with antioxidant effects.
Antioxidants fight free radicals, which are electrons that have broken off from an atom. Free radicals have been linkedTrusted Source to a wide range of health conditions, from cancer to premature aging.
Vitamin E oil is derived from vitamin E and can be applied directly to the skin, or added to lotions, creams, and gels. It is available for purchase in many health food stores and online. Many supporters of vitamin E oil argue that it is a potent antioxidant, but research on its benefits is mixed.
Vitamin E oil: The basics
Vitamin E oil is applied topically to the skin.
Vitamin E oil is distinct from vitamin E supplements because it is applied directly to the skin. Concentrations vary between manufacturers, and some users simply pop open vitamin E capsules and put the contents on their skin.
Vitamin E oil is an ingredient in many skincare products; especially those that claim to have anti-aging benefits.
Vitamin E supplementsTrusted Source may prevent coronary heart disease, support immune function, prevent inflammation, promote eye health, and lower the risk of cancer. However, the research on these benefits is varied, and vitamin E supplementation is not right for everyone.
Vitamin E oil’s benefits are primarily cosmetic and have limited scientific support. Before using vitamin E oil, consult a doctor or skin care expert.
Ten potential benefits
Vitamin E oil’s potential benefits derive from two key features: its antioxidant properties, which could fight inflammation and slow the effects of free radicals, and its moisturizing properties.
Some purported benefits of vitamin E oil include:
Vitamin E is found in many moisturizers, and the oil may be used as a moisturizer to prevent or treat dry, flaking skin.
Some research suggests that vitamin E supplementsTrusted Source may promote wound healing. It is possible that topical vitamin E oil might offer similar benefits, but there is little research on the subject.
Skin cancer prevention
A 2013 study found that mice given supplements containing vitamin E were less likely to develop skin cancer, even when exposed to large quantities of ultraviolet light. These results prompted some supporters of vitamin E oil and supplements to claim that it can prevent skin cancer.
However, studies on humansTrusted Source have not found any skin cancer prevention benefits associated with vitamin E.
Reducing skin itching
Vitamin E may help to reduce itchy skin and ease eczema.
Vitamin E cannot treat allergic reactions, infections, and other issues that cause skin itching.
Because it moisturizes the skin, however, it may offer temporary relief from itching caused by dry skin.
Keeping skin well moisturised may help to prevent dry skin, and prevent symptoms such as itchiness. Any kind of oil safe for skin may offer these benefits.
Vitamin E may alleviate the dryness, itching, and flaking associated with eczema, or atopic dermatitis.
One studyTrusted Source found that oral vitamin E supplements could produce significant improvements in eczema symptoms. Though vitamin E oil has not been well-studied in the treatment of eczema, it may increase the effectiveness of topical moisturizers.
At least one studyTrusted Source has linked topical vitamin E to a reduction in psoriasis symptoms. Even better, the study showed that there were no serious side effects.
However, the effects of vitamin E on psoriasis were not as good as most readily available treatments. Vitamin E oil might be a good option for people who want to avoid prescription remedies and who have mild psoriasis.
Preventing or minimizing the appearance of scars
Folk wisdom has long suggested that vitamin E, applied to the skin, taken as a supplement, or both, might treat scars, or prevent them from forming in the first place. But research does not support this claim and has found no association between vitamin E use and scar prevention.
In one older studyTrusted Source from 1999, almost one-third of participants had an allergic reaction to topical vitamin E, suggesting the oil is more likely to make scarring worse rather than prevent it.
A more recent literature reviewTrusted Source found that evidence about whether vitamin E improved or worsened scarring was inconclusive.
Research does suggest that well-moisturized skin is less likely to scar. So for people who do not have an allergic reaction to vitamin E, using it as a moisturizer while the wound heals may offer some benefits.
Preventing or treating fine lines and wrinkles
Dry skin tends to look more wrinkled than well-moisturized skin. The moisturizing benefits of vitamin E oil may help the skin look more youthful and less wrinkled.
Claims that vitamin E prevents or treats wrinkles, however, are unsupported by scientific evidence. The best strategy for preventing wrinkles is to avoid direct sunlight and to wear a quality sunscreen.
Vitamin E may help to reduce the risk of sunburn.
Limited research suggests that vitamin E can prevent or reduce the formation of sunburns.
Because vitamin E oil can moisturize and soothe dry, flaky skin, it may help to relieve the burning and itching that result from a sunburn.
However, wearing sunscreen and avoiding direct sun exposure remain the best strategies for protecting the skin.
Promoting nail health
Research suggests that vitamin E supplementation can prevent yellow nail syndrome, which causes peeling, cracked, and yellowing nails.
Vitamin E oil’s moisturizing benefits may also support nail health by preventing cracked cuticles and dry skin around the nail bed.
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Risks and considerations
The biggest risk associated with vitamin E use is an allergic reaction. Vitamin E can irritate the skin, making skin problems worse. People with a history of allergic reactions should avoid vitamin E, or should do a patch test on a small area of skin first.
Because vitamin E oil is a supplement and a beauty product, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) do not regulate it. This may mean that two vitamin E oils might have radically different concentrations and produce different effects in the same person.
Many vitamin E products contain additional ingredients. It is important to read the label and consult a doctor if uncertain about the product’s safety.
How to use vitamin E
Vitamin E oil and products containing it are available to purchase online and in stores.
Before using vitamin E oil, do a patch test. Apply a small dab of the oil to an area that is not highly visible, such as the back of the knee or behind the ear. Wait 24-48 hours. If no reaction develops, it is probably safe to use.
Do a patch test if using vitamin E on a wound. Apply to a small portion of the wound first and wait 24-48 hours.
Begin with a low concentration of vitamin E oil, and apply a thin layer over the affected area. Over several days, gradually increase the amount until reaching the levels recommended on the package. Read the label carefully and avoid exceeding the recommended dosage.
For even greater benefits, try adding a few drops of vitamin E oil to a thick moisturizing cream. This enhances the cream’s moisturizing benefits and helps buffer any potential irritation.
Dry skin: Seven home Remedies
Home remedies for dry skin
When to see a doctor
Whether it is caused by aging, an underlying skin condition, or environmental factors, having dry skin can be uncomfortable and itchy. There is a range of treatments available to treat dry skin at home – but which are most effective?
Dry skin, also called xerosis, is skin that lacks moisture in its outer layer. If left untreated, dry skin can crack and become infected. Keeping dry skin moisturized is important, but some store-bought treatments can be expensive or ineffective.
This article explores home remedies for dry skin and looks at the scientific evidence behind the claims.
Home remedies for dry skin
Studies suggest that sunflower seed oil may be used as a moisturizer.
There are a variety of home remedies a person can use to relieve dry skin. Most of the treatments below can be used as moisturizers unless otherwise stated. The best way to use a moisturizer is to apply it liberally to damp skin after a bath and let it soak in.
1. Sunflower seed oil
A 2013 studyTrusted Source found that sunflower seed oil improved hydration when used as a moisturizer on participant’s arms.
The same study found that olive oil actually damaged the skin’s barrier, suggesting not all natural oils are suitable for use as moisturizers.
2. Coconut oil
Another natural oil that works well to treat dry skin is coconut oil. A 2014 studyTrusted Source found that coconut oil is as safe and effective as petroleum jelly for treating dry skin. It was found to significantly improve skin hydration and increase the number of lipids (fats) on the surface of the skin.
As 2016 researchTrusted Source explains, coconut oil contains saturated fatty acids that have emollient properties. An emollient is a fat or oil that acts as a moisturizer by filling in gaps in dry skin, making it smooth.
3. Oatmeal bath
Oatmeal is another natural ingredient that can help treat dry skin. Adding powdered oatmeal to a bath or using creams that contain oatmeal may help to relieve dry skin.
A 2015 studyTrusted Source found that extracts from oatmeal had anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties, suggesting it can help treat dry skin.
4. Drinking milk
Milk could also offer relief from dry skin, but not when applied to the skin. Research from 2015Trusted Source suggests that a diet including milk could improve dry skin.
The study found that a fat contained in milk, called phospholipid, improved the skin barrier in mice when added to their diet. More research is needed to see if drinking milk has the same effect on skin in humans.
A 2012 reviewTrusted Source of research notes that some studies have shown honey to be beneficial for many types of skin diseases.
Some studies suggest that honey may be used as an at home treatment to relive dry skin.
Various studies have found honey to be:
These are all qualities that suggest honey is an ideal at home treatment to relieve dry skin. It is completely natural and can be applied directly to the skin.
6. Petroleum jelly
Petroleum jelly, otherwise known as mineral oil, has been used as a moisturizer for years.
In 2017, researchers foundTrusted Source that the skin barrier in older people improved after they used petroleum jelly. This finding supports the use of petroleum jelly to treat dry skin, especially when caused by aging.
7. Aloe vera
Aloe vera gel may help provide relief from dry skin, according to a 2003 studyTrusted Source.
A person with dry skin on their hands or feet can apply aloe vera gel and cover the affected area with a sock or glove. People may prefer to do this before they go to bed and leave the gel on all night.
If dry skin is on another area of the body, applying aloe vera gel liberally and allowing it to soak in may achieve a similar effect.
Moisturizing regularly after washing may help to prevent dry skin.
Applying emollients and moisturizers regularly after bathing helps prevent dry skin. People can also prevent dry skin by avoiding things that may trigger dryness or irritation, including:
scratching their skin
excessive air conditioning
shaving using a blunt razor or without shaving gel
bathing or showering too often
rubbing skin too hard when towel drying
bathing or showering in water that is too hot
using lotions that contain alcohol
wearing clothes that rub the skin
frequent contact with detergents
sitting under direct heat from a heater or fire
staying outside in windy conditions without covering the skin