Have you noticed how often this name pops up in beauty-related conversations, whether with friends or with your beautician and hair stylist! In fact, if you carefully read the fine print on any skin and hair care product packaging, you will find most of them list Vitamin E as a major component.
So, what makes Vitamin E a magic ingredient?
The chemical term for Vitamin E is ‘Alpha-Tocopherol.’ It is a fat-soluble vitamin that acts as a powerful antioxidant, protecting cell membranes from the damage inflicted by free-radicals in the environment.
As an antioxidant, Vitamin E can be likened to the good fairy in nursery tales, who uses her powers to destroy or banish the bad witch, in this case the free radicals! Let us explain.
Technically, a free radical is an unpaired atom that floats in the atmosphere looking for an electron to stabilize itself. This it does by absorbing electrons from molecules, through a process called oxidation. The free radical is the ‘bad witch’ because any cell it touches dies immediately. (Yes, that’s a lot of science!) Only antioxidants can stop the radicals’ path of destruction – thus Vitamin E is the ‘good fairy’!
Free radicals are caused from multiple sources such as the sun, pollution, cigarette smoke (a major source), pesticides and chemicals in food, unhealthy food fats, and physical and mental stress. Many of these are not in our control, making preventive treatment all the more necessary.
Benefits of Vitamin E Capsules in General
Vitamin E can be consumed through foods and as capsules, and applied in the form of oil. The overall benefits of Vitamin E capsules or foods can be listed as follows:
- It’s most common and best-known feature is its ability to heal parched and dehydrated skin
- Used in the treatment of a wide spectrum of heart related as well as blood related problems such as blockage of arteries, high BP and hardened arteries
- Treats diabetes along with diabetes related complications
- Useful in nerve related complications including Alzheimer’s diseases, forgetfulness, dementia, etc.
- Beneficial for health of the eyes
- Protects the foetus inside the womb, and is good for women’s health in general
- Protects against LDL cholesterol oxidation
- Vital for the formation of red blood cells
- Enhances immunity, has protective properties against chronic diseases
In short, Vitamin E benefits scan a wide spectrum of medical treatment. However, the most visible benefit is in the treatment of unhealthy skin and hair, like dryness, dull and brittle hair, dehydrated and aging skin, etc. All these are symptomatic of free radical destruction. One of the major uses of vitamin E is to repair skin and hair and restore them to good health.
Vitamin E benefits For Skin
1. Vitamin E as a Moisturizing Agent
As an oil-soluble nutrient, Vitamin E is heavier than water-soluble products. Applying it prevents loss of moisture, the cause of dehydrated skin, and restores and rejuvenates dull skin. Mix a couple of Vitamin E oil drops into your regular moisturizing lotion or into virgin olive oil, and apply on your skin at bedtime.
2. Vitamin E Reverses Signs of Premature Aging of the Skin
Vitamin E prevents every chance of your body and skin from ageing and thus becoming wrinkled, dull along with being saggy. Vitamin E enhances the basic production of protein collagen tasked with maintaining the elasticity of the skin, resulting in reduction in the skin’s fine lines and wrinkles which are the first signs of the skin’s aging.
3. Vitamin E Treats Sunburns
Free radicals caused by ultraviolet radiation can lead to dark spots and sunburn. vitamin E neutralizes the damage, and repairs and soothes sunburnt skin. All you should do is take a couple of drops of the vitamin E oil, or even break a capsule of vitamin E and then massage it gently into the affected area.
4. Vitamin E Lightens Dark Spots
One of the damages done by free radicals is hyperpigmentation of affected zones, which show up as dark spots. To treat these, mix the contents of a vitamin E capsule into a spoon of moisturizer or olive oil, and apply it on the dark areas and spots once a day. Continue the treatment for a while, and you will see the dark lines and spots lighten noticeably.
5. Vitamin E: Cleansing Agent
Vitamin E, being oil-based, is a heavy emollient, making it easier to deep-cleanse surface dirt and impurities, as well as maintain its oil balance. Take some drops of the vitamin E oil in your hand or on a clean cotton ball and gently wipe your face to cleanse your face.
6. Vitamin E Repairs Dry Fingernails
Rubbing a few drops of vitamin E in the oil form on the dried cuticles and fingernails is a wonderful moisturizing and healing treatment for dry, cracked cuticles and nails.
7. Vitamin E: Helps in fading of Stretch Marks
Stretch marks are white stripe marks that appear due to overstretching of skin, making the skin lose its elasticity and suppleness. It is a fairly common side effect of pregnancy and major weight gain. Regular application and gentle massaging of vitamin E oil on the stretch marks restores elasticity and lightens visible stretch marks.
8. Vitamin E Soothes Cold Sores
Cold sores and chapped lips are caused by over-dry skin, leading to painful eruptions or sores. Simply open a vitamin E capsule and apply directly on the sore. It will provide immediate relief. Also, rub it into your lips as lip moisturizer. It would prevent your lips from further sores.
Vitamin E benefits For Hair
1. Vitamin E as a Hair Stimulant
The foundation for healthy hair is a healthy scalp. Scalp health is determined by a number of elements such as the pH levels, oil production, blood circulation to the scalp, and follicle health. When your scalp becomes dry, the sebaceous glands start over-performing, making your scalp more oily than necessary. The excess oil clogs hair follicles, causes itching, dandruff and hair fall. Vitamin E helps by providing moisture and soothing the oil glands, rebalancing the various elements, ensuring that the scalp is revived and hair grows out healthy and strong.
2. Vitamin E: helps in Hair Growth
A feature of antioxidants is that it improves blood circulation in the body, and the scalp. Thus, enhanced blood circulation conditions the hair strands from root to shaft. Moreover, vitamin E also repairs dry and damaged hair follicles, promoting growth of healthy hair. All one needs to do is break one or two capsules of vitamin E in some warm olive oil or coconut oil, massage the mixture into the scalp and hair, and let it rest for an hour. Rinse with warm water for best results.
3. Vitamin E Prevents Premature Gray Hair
Gray hair is a byproduct of decaying hair tissues. The powerful antioxidants in vitamin E prevent tissue disintegration, and reduce the chances of premature graying. The simple chore of oiling your hair on a regular basis can work wonders to deep condition hair and keep hair tissues strong.
4. Vitamin E Mends Split Ends
Who doesn’t enjoy being pampered with beautifully coloured, blow-dried and styled hair! The side-effect is, of course, undesirable split ends. It’s easy to simultaneously pamper your scalp and hair with deep oil conditioning massages that help to repair hair cuticles, and mend split ends. Take equal measures of olive oil, coconut oil, vitamin E oil, and any other oil you have – like hemp oil – mix them together and use for massage with hot oil in order to nourish the scalp. Gently rub it into split ends in to seal them, and prevent further splits.
Vitamin E Rich Foods: A Glimpse
Instead of banking on vitamin e capsules for skin and hair, you should opt for natural foods that are rich in vitamins. Green leafy vegetables, nuts and seeds, fruits, and seafood are vitamin E rich foods.
- Nuts: Sunflower seeds, pine nuts, almonds, all are great sources of vitamin E. Just 2 tablespoons of any of these nuts on a daily basis, can give you up to 7.5 mg of vitamin E, which is almost 90% of your daily requirement! Use them roasted in salads, make pastes for delicious dips, or add to gravies, or mix it into your morning muesli. You can also use pure sunflower oil or pine nut oil as a drizzle in salads.
- Greens: Spinach, turnip greens, kale, mustard greens, swiss chard, or even parsley are some of leafy greens that work wonders to give your body its daily dose of nutrients like calcium, iron folates and vitamin E. In fact, a cup of boiled spinach or kale takes care of over 20% of your daily requirement. And, as nutritionists will tell you, eat greens in whatever quantity you wish – they are low on calories too!
- Avocado:Make a delicious avocado salad, or a guacamole dip. Half an avocado contains 2 mg of vitamin E, making it a great supplement.
In short, Vitamin E is a critical requirement for your body’s overall health, which reflects in glowing, younger looking skin and lustrous, shining hair. Make vitamin E rich foods and vitamin E capsules a part of your daily routine. However, over-dosage of anything is bad, and so it is in this case too. If you’re consuming vitamin E orally, it is advisable to limit the dosage to 15 mg daily. For external use of vitamin E for skin and hair, you should always do a small patch test to check whether you are allergic. Remember, consulting a doctor to determine dosage is always the best option.
[You can also read : Top 6 Super Foods For Beautiful Skin in Winters]