Taking care of your skin is an essential part of the health regimen.
At least it should be.
Remember, your skin is your body’s largest organ.
One of the first things skin professionals tell us is that we should keep our sun exposure to the minimum if we want healthy skin.
However, what you will see is that a little sun exposure can go long ways in keeping your skin healthy.
Well, sun exposure lets your skin absorb vitamin D, and this is one of the best vitamins for skin.
What are all the other vitamins that are good for your skin health?
Let’s break it down.
Table of Contents
Why you need vitamins for skin?
Vitamins are essential for our health and body functions.
When we are deficient in certain vitamins, our body responds in a number of ways.
And you experience adverse effects on your skin and body.
For starters, vitamin C and E play important roles in protecting your skin from skin damage and even skin cancer.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that skin cancer is the most common type of cancer in the United States 1.
Making sure that you get enough vitamins will ensure your skin is looking healthy and youthful.
In other words, getting the right vitamins for your skin will translate in a reduction of:
- Dark spots
- Excessive dryness
- Rough patches
With that in mind, what are the vitamins you need to consume more?
What vitamins are good for skin
Known as the “sunshine vitamin”, vitamin D is made when sunlight is absorbed by your skin 2.
This is our body’s natural way of producing vitamin D.
Just 10 to 15 minutes at the sun, as long as it is not in peak hours, is more than enough to produce enough vitamin D.
Our body converts cholesterol to vitamin D when our skin absorbs sun lights.
While getting sun exposure is the easiest way to increase your vitamin D, you can also do it by eating fortified foods and eating foods that are high in vitamin D.
The former include fortified breakfast cereals, yogurt, and orange juice, while the latter include salmon, tuna, and cod.
When you think of vitamin C, you think of the immune-boosting vitamin.
After all, we all know that vitamin C is essential for boosting our immune system.
But vitamin C plays a key role in protecting our skin as well3.
Found at both the outer and inner layer of the skin, vitamin C has antioxidant and cancer-fighting properties that keep our skin healthy.
Additionally, vitamin C plays a role in collagen production.
Therefore, you can understand why vitamin C is one of the key ingredients in anti-aging products4 .
Vitamin C also plays a role in protecting our skin from sun damage.
Yes, we said that little sun exposure is good, but overdoing it will damage your skin.
The good news is you can easily up your consumption of vitamin C.
There are plenty of vitamin C rich foods, including citrus fruits, berries, broccoli, and leafy greens like spinach and kale.
Similar as vitamin C, vitamin E plays a role of an antioxidant for our skin5.
The main function of the vitamin in terms of skin health is to protect our skin against sun damage.
Vitamin E can absorb the harmful UV light, and minimize the damage caused by UV rays.
As a result, vitamin E prevents wrinkles and dark spots.
Our body produces vitamin E through sebum.
If you have the right balance, sebum keeps the skin conditioned and prevents dryness.
However, if you have dry skin, your body does not produce enough sebum.
Vitamin E can help with that, and also protect the skin of inflammation6 .
The most preferred way of getting vitamin E is through your diet.
This means consuming foods high in vitamin E like nuts, seeds, and taking a multivitamin every now and then.
Your body needs around 15mg of vitamin E per day to function properly.
Vitamin K is mostly needed in our body to aid the process of blood clotting.
This helps our body heals wounds and bruises.
But the same function also helps with skin conditions like stretch marks, scars, spider veins, dark spots, and circles under your eyes7.
Vitamin K deficiency is rare in the United States, and you can up your intake by consuming kale, spinach, cabbage, green beans, and lettuce8 .
We know probiotics are important for our digestive health.
But their role in skincare is growing as well.
Some studies have shown that probiotics are very helpful in reducing inflammation of the skin, and some can decrease oil production.
All in all, probiotics help by reducing breakouts.
Can you use vitamins topically?
When we talk about vitamins for skin, we talked mostly about consuming vitamins that can help your overall skin health.
But you can also apply all of the vitamins topically.
For example, applying vitamin A topically, or retinoid can help you with wrinkles.
Make sure to apply retinoid at night, as sunlight will activate forms of vitamin A.
OTC products are best for beginners, and at the beginning, apply them every third night.
This will give your skin time to adjust to the treatment.
Vitamin C helps with spots and is an all-around anti-aging solution.
You can use vitamin C cream in the morning before sunscreen.
This will help you shield the skin from any harmful UV rays.
Vitamin E adds moisture to your skin and eases dryness.
Apply before and after sun exposure.
Last, but not least, you can apply vitamin K cream in the night to fight off dark circles under the eyes.
Using vitamin K will help you achieve look of younger and brighter eyes.