Vitamin E Benefits for the Skin: Everything To Know
Most of us are familiar with the immunity-boosting vitamin C often found in citrus fruits or the feel-good vitamin D we soak up from the sun (while wearing our protective, environmentally friendly sunscreen, of course), but what about vitamin E?
While vitamin E may not have as much name recognition as some of its fellow vitamins, it is an essential vitamin that can benefit our wellness in many ways, particularly where our skin is concerned.
As our largest–and most visible–organ, caring for our skin is an important part of most of our daily routines, but finding skincare products that work for your individual skin needs and contain ingredients you feel good about can sometimes take some trial and error.
The good news is that vitamin E is an all-natural and ethically sourced ingredient that is easily absorbed into the body to provide stellar skin support.
So what exactly is vitamin E, what are its benefits, and how can you incorporate it into your wellness regimen to give your skin the TLC it deserves? We’re so glad you asked!
What Is Vitamin E?
Vitamin E is a fat-soluble, antioxidant-rich organic compound found naturally in certain foods and plants.
Vitamin E is an essential nutrient, which means that our bodies don’t produce it on their own. Instead, we must seek it out through dietary means and can incorporate it into our skincare routine as well.
What Forms of Vitamin E Are Available?
There are eight unique chemical forms of vitamin E, including alpha-tocopherol, tocopheryl acetate, and gamma-tocopherol.
Alpha-tocopherol is the best-known form of vitamin E for consumption, as it is easily metabolized as it moves through the digestive tract. Alpha-tocopherol vitamin E is found in foods such as sunflower seeds, grapeseed oil, wheat germ, avocados, and spinach. Alpha-tocopherol can also be produced synthetically for use in oral vitamin E supplements.
It is recommended that most adults consume around 15 milligrams of vitamin E per day through their food. And along with what we eat, we can reap added benefits when incorporating topical vitamin E into our skincare routine.
That’s where another one of the eight forms of vitamin E comes in: gamma-tocopherol. Gamma-tocopherol is a form of vitamin E found naturally in many plant seeds and nuts such as shea butter, sesame seeds, pistachios, and pumpkin seeds.
This is what we at Bite use in our skincare products to provide nourishing skin benefits.
What Are the Benefits of Vitamin E for the Skin?
Vitamin E can be added to creams, lotions, sunscreens, and balms to soothe the skin, serve as a protective agent, and reduce common signs of aging.
Prevents Water Loss
While understanding how to best care for our skin can sometimes feel complicated, it’s important to know that much of our skin health boils down to one simple need: water.
Water makes up most of the human body, and the skin is no exception. Water accounts for about 64% of our skin, and maintaining proper skin hydration is the key to happy and healthy skin.
However, water isn’t really able to be absorbed directly through the skin.
And while drinking enough water can help provide your skin with much-needed hydration (pro tip: filling a reusable water bottle can help you remember to stay hydrated throughout the day), the skin also undergoes transepidermal water loss (TEWL).
TEWL refers to the amount of water that evaporates from the skin. Certain environmental factors and the strength of the skin barrier can play a role in how much water loss occurs throughout the day.
If we are losing too much water, our skin can dry out and become irritated, more prone to damage, and more likely to show wrinkles and lines. No, thank you!
So what does this mean?
Basically, the best thing you can do for your skin is use ingredients that can help retain moisture and prevent water loss. Enter…vitamin E!
Vitamin E is known to provide long-lasting water retention by sealing in moisture around the skin cells. And because vitamin E is so easily absorbed into the skin, this natural and safe compound can provide fast-acting relief for dry, itchy, flaky, or damaged skin as it combats water loss.
Supports the Skin Barrier
Our skin barrier relies on lipids (fats) and water to provide a protective seal around skin cells. A healthy skin barrier keeps water in, but it also keeps potential dangers out, such as pollutants, bacteria, allergens, and other irritants.
When vitamin E is used on the skin, it can help protect lipids from damage and breakages, ensuring the protective skin barrier stays secure.
Applying topical vitamin E may also boost the amount of vitamin E stored in our sebaceous glands, which are responsible for producing and releasing oil to the surface of the skin. The addition of vitamin E stored in these glands means that the body’s natural secretion of sebum can provide even more protection against water loss and skin damage.
Can Provide Additional Protection From Ultraviolet Rays
The weather is warming up, and we are psyched for those long summer days spent soaking up some sun.
But before your next pool party, beach day, or simple afternoon relaxing in your yard, consider nourishing your skin with vitamin E for added protection.
While you shouldn’t forgo your dermatologist-recommended sunscreen, using vitamin E in conjunction with sunscreen may provide added protection from sun damage.
Promotes Youthful-Looking Skin
By helping protect skin cells from damage, antioxidants like vitamin E can also help reduce visible signs of aging.
That is because skin cells that have undergone oxidative damage contain less collagen and are more likely to show fine lines, wrinkles, and hyperpigmentations such as age spots and dark spots.
Wrinkles and lines are also more visible on dehydrated skin. And when it comes to reducing signs of aging, vitamin e can provide multiple lines of defense by supplementing the skin with proper hydration and powerful antioxidants.
Can Help Reduce Swelling and Irritation
By strengthening the skin barrier and protecting skin cells from damage, vitamin E products can help smooth and soften the skin, while also soothing discomfort associated with dryness, sunburns, or skin conditions.
Supports Healthy Skin Cells
Fun fact: we are constantly producing new skin cells that replace old ones. This means we shed about 30,000 to 40,000 skin cells a day, but this shedding is necessary to keep our skin healthy and functioning!
While our cell regeneration slows with age, moisturizing products can help maintain the health and performance of our skin cells. Vitamin E may help reduce the appearance of scars, fine lines, wrinkles, and blemishes by nourishing and hydrating the skin.
Are There Any Side Effects of Vitamin E for Skin?
As an essential nutrient, vitamin E is extremely safe for most people, especially when diluted with other ingredients in a skincare product.
The risk of an allergic reaction or irritation is slightly higher when using pure vitamin E on its own, such as through a capsule that is directly applied to the skin. In this pure, undiluted form, vitamin E may acne-prone or sensitive skin.
But, the good news is that the risk of irritation or reaction is extremely rare when vitamin E is used in smaller amounts and in conjunction with other ingredients.
At Bite, we incorporate a suitable amount of vitamin E into our skincare products to ensure that all skin types benefit from the soothing effects.
Enjoy the Benefits of Vitamin E With Bite
If you’re ready to experience the soothing benefits of antioxidant-rich and ultra-hydrating vitamin E for yourself, you can find this natural ingredient in our Bite Body Balm and any of our four natural deodorants.
We are committed to keeping our products safe for you and the planet. When it comes to our skincare products, you’ll find everything you need — and nothing you don’t.
Our waterless balm is lightweight, non-greasy, and doesn’t require the use of any harmful preservatives or harsh chemicals such as parabens, sulfates, or phthalates. In fact, our body balm contains only fourteen ingredients, all of which are natural and environmentally friendly.
Shea butter provides ample amounts of protective vitamin E and vitamin A, while hyaluronic acid promotes even further hydration to smooth out and plump the skin.
Vitamin E also makes an appearance in our plant-based and aluminum-free deodorants, where it helps keep the delicate underarm skin soft and smooth. The inclusion of sunflower seed oil helps further promote the absorption of vitamin E, while coconut oil prevents bacteria growth.
And while we put a lot of thought into what goes inside our balm and deodorants, we put just as much care into what’s on the outside.
Our solid body balm and deodorants come in reusable, refillable, and plastic-free cases to help put an end to the millions of pounds of plastics making their way into our oceans and landfills each year.
When you’re ready for more, refills are delivered in plastic-free packaging using carbon-neutral shipping. You’ll get refills every four months with a subscription, so tending to your skincare needs sustainably will always be a breeze.
Vitamin E is a natural nutrient found in plants and nuts that can help hydrate and soothe dry skin, reduce irritation, and provide antioxidants known to boost cell function and reduce signs of aging.
The use of vitamin E in Bite’s zero-waste body balm and deodorants can help soften and soothe the skin without any harsh chemicals or plastics — protecting your skin, our oceans, and our atmosphere all at once.