We are utterly spoiled for choice when it comes to skincare products, and keeping up with the new ‘it’ ingredients can become overwhelming. Every week both brands and celebrities launch their own skincare lines, full of information on what makes their ingredients more innovative than whatever came before, only to fade off the map just as quickly. That’s why today, we want to delve into one of the more classic ingredients, one that’s stood the test of time: Vitamin E.
What is vitamin E?
Vitamin E is a barrier boosting, antioxidant ingredient that can typically be found in pumpkins, avocado and wheat germ oil, but products such as moisturisers and facial oils mostly use a synthetic version of vitamin E. While synthetic ingredients may sound intimidating, rest assured that they’re chemically identical to the vitamin E found in nature, plus they come without the hassle of potential pesticides and pollutants.
Often referred to as a singular ingredient, Vitamin E is actually a group of oil-soluble antioxidants. There are eight types of vitamin E, but the ones you’ll see used most often in skincare are tocopheryl acetate and tocopherol. So, if you’re ever looking for a vitamin E rich cream, look for ‘tocopheryl’ in the ingredients list.
What are the benefits of vitamin E?
As we mentioned, vitamin E is a type of antioxidant; meaning can help defend the skin against free-radical damage caused by UV exposure and environmental pollutants. Additionally, as suggested by the name ‘anti’ and ‘oxidant’, vitamin E can help slow down the oxidisation of sebum in the pores, meaning the ingredient discourages blackheads. But, Vitamin E doesn’t only tout antioxidant benefits; there are many other reasons why this old-school ingredient is excellent for your skin:
Aids in moisture barrier health
Vitamin E can help preserve the skin’s lipids or fats while soothing and restoring your moisture barrier. So, if you’re suffering from a compromised acid mantle and are dealing with irritation, dryness or inflammation, then vitamin E can help you out.
Promotes skin healing
Not only is vitamin E a moisture barrier superhero, but when used in skincare, vitamin E can also help speed up skin healing. This is thanks to the vitamin’s combination of both antioxidant and moisture-retaining properties.
Boosts SPF protection
As an antioxidant, vitamin E has some UV protecting properties. Vitamin E doesn’t provide enough protection for you to skip your sunscreen, but it can help boost the effectiveness of your SPF, especially when combined with vitamin C.
Who can use vitamin E?
Vitamin E is generally suitable for most skin types. However, if you tend to suffer from oily skin, acne or extra sensitive skin, then vitamin E might not be advisable, as although rare, vitamin E can still trigger irritation for some people.
How to incorporate vitamin E into your skincare routine
Vitamin E is mainly found as an ingredient in moisturisers and skincare oils, so incorporating it into your skincare routine will be a breeze. All you need to do is use your vitamin E containing moisturiser or oil at the appropriate step in your routine. For moisturiser, it’s best to use this product on a clean face after applying toner and skincare serums and oils. During the day, don’t forget to follow up with your SPF!