Whether you get it from your diet or in a topical cream, the protective and nourishing properties of vitamins on our skin are just as beneficial. This week, we take a look at some essential vitamins and what they can do to keep our skin in top condition.
Vitamin A is commonly found in anti-ageing skincare, in products that contain retinol. Retinol has been gaining popularity recently in the beauty market for its potency and effectiveness in reducing wrinkles and increased moisture retention in skin.
It is especially effective in mature skin that has become accustomed to other types of anti-ageing skincare and are struggling to find a product that produces significant results for them.
Most people who consume a balanced diet will be able to obtain a healthy amount of Vitamin A from both plant and animal sources, as well as fortified products like cereals and milk. Having more Vitamin A in one’s diet and skincare speeds up healing of skin, reducing the amount of breakouts and inflammation.
Vitamin B, specifically Vitamin B-3, has been popping up in more skincare products recently and is set to continue as a skincare trend for the rest of the year. You may know it as Niacinamide, popularised by no-frills, science-based skincare brands like The Ordinary and Good Molecules.
Vitamin B comes in many forms and its deficiency can cause a number of skin troubles, from acne to dry skin and increased signs of ageing. Topical application of Vitamin B can help reduce the signs of ageing as well as reduce the impact of environmental aggressors on our skin. It also acts as a smoothing and resurfacing agent, which gives you baby-smooth skin that is well-hydrated and soft.
Niacinamide is very suitable for all skin types, even acne-prone and sensitive skin, and can be layered without irritating skin. Products with Vitamin B can be used around the eyes as well for a lightweight product that effectively repairs any damage and protects the thinner surrounding area.
B vitamins can be found in various foods, such as whole grains, fish, nuts, eggs, and fruits like avocado and banana. Not all B vitamins are present in every food and it is best to have a healthy, balanced diet to ensure we obtain all the different B vitamins for our body.
Vitamin C needs no introduction as a skincare essential. Its antioxidant properties provides a wealth of benefits for healthy skin and as such is included in many beauty products you may already own.
Vitamin C boosts collagen production and reduces the damage from UV rays, which makes it a common feature in anti-ageing skincare. Vitamin C serums on its own may sensitise skin if introduced in high dosages and should be introduced into one’s skincare routine slowly (always do a patch test first!).
Generally, it is quite rare be Vitamin C deficient owing to the prevalance of it in supplements and our usual diet, so individuals should look to include it in more skincare products for added anti-ageing benefits, cell renewal, and protection from environmental damage.
Vitamin D acts as an anti-inflammatory in our skin, functioning as a steroid to stimulate cell renewal and repair and reduces the tendency for dead skin build-up on the surface of the skin, thus lowering the risk of clogged pores and infections.
Typically, Vitamin D deficiency is associated with poor immune function and increased inflammation, which affects our body as well. It is quite rare to have a lack of Vitamin D in our body (especially since we live in hot and sunny Singapore) as we get more than enough of this from the environment and our diet. We can consume additional Vitamin D from fortified milk, as well as salmon, eggs, and mushrooms.
Applying sunscreen will not cause you to become Vitamin D deficient– it is a myth that you should stay in the sun to get in your required amount of Vitamin D.
Vitamin E is an antioxidant just like its more popular cousin Vitamin C. Our body naturally produces Vitamin E through our sebum to nourish and protect our skin from environmental damage, but long-term exposure to the sun or long periods in air-conditioned rooms may leave our skin craving more Vitamin E.
Individuals with particularly dry or inflammed skin may require more Vitamin E in our diet, which can be done through consuming more nuts and seeds, or taking a multivitmain that contains Vitamin E.
In hot and sunny Singapore, applying skincare products with both Vitamin C & E will help to double the amount of sun protection and reduce the harmful effects of UV damage on skin.