Lots of skincare products feature vitamin E, but do we really need it in our daily routine? The short answer: Yes. For more on the reasons why, check out my last blog post, “You’re Probably Using Vitamin E in Some Form. What’s It Doing to Your Skin?” Here, I’ll discuss why vitamin E isn’t a good fit for everyone, and I’ll highlight the best ways to incorporate it into your regimen.
Should I avoid vitamin E?
Vitamin E is beneficial to most skin types, even helping to relieve eczema for some. But it’s generally not recommended for very sensitive, very oily, or acne-prone skin.
It’s rare, but topical vitamin E can also trigger an allergic reaction. In those instances, it can irritate the skin and cause itching and even a rash. We’re still not sure why vitamin E is an allergen to some. It’s possible that other ingredients play a role in the reaction. Either way, researchers believe that less than 1% of people are susceptible to such a reaction.
How can I benefit most from vitamin E?
Most people stand to benefit greatly from including vitamin E in their skincare routine. Because it’s oil soluble (it can be applied through or as an oil), incorporating it through oils and moisturizers are some of the best ways to use vitamin E.
Many serums pair vitamin E with vitamin C because they’re more effective together than they are on their own. Once a vitamin E molecule pacifies a free radical, vitamin C can help regenerate the vitamin E molecule.
If you’re trying vitamin E for the first time, or your skin tends to be sensitive, try seeking out a moisturizer with vitamin E. The concentration is typically less potent than it is in a serum.
A vitamin E oil can also be a boon to your skincare regimen. To get the most out of it, remember that an oil can penetrate a cream, but it doesn’t work the other way around. In other words, when you’re layering on different products in the morning, save the oil for next to last. The only thing that should come after it is your sunscreen. Getting the order wrong can significantly diminish the vitamin E’s effects.
A lot of people find oils to be greasy. For this reason, you may want to try using a vitamin E oil at night. Or, use the serum or cream with vitamin E on your face and reserve the oil for the rest of your body. A single application should hydrate your skin all day long, which can help protect it in the colder months, when your skin’s besieged by various conditions, indoors and out, that can cause dryness.