How much do you know about the vitamins in your skin care routine?
Vitamins are things our skincare labels promote, doctors recommend, and the reason why our mothers told us to drink so much milk when we were younger! The word vitamin itself is drawn from the Latin word “vita,” meaning life, so it’s no shocker how important they are to us. But what is a vitamin? According to Dr. Frauke Neuser, the principal scientist and senior director of science communications at Olay, a vitamin is a micronutrient that allows our bodies to live and be healthy. Vitamins make your skin more glowy, bones much stronger, help promote collagen production, and repair skin damage.
With all that being said, I was shocked at how little I knew about vitamins, specifically what they all stood for and exactly what they did. After doing some thorough research and listening to Allure Magazine’s podcast, The Science of Beauty, I learned a whole lot about vitamins and am a bit embarrassed to admit how much I didn’t know. This post is going to share all the knowledge I have learned in this short period so that you can start understanding exactly what vitamins do for our skin and how to incorporate them!
What are the main Vitamins?
Vitamin A aka retinol or retinoic acid is a major vitamin that I am sure you’ve heard of. It is what helps exfoliate the skin to help with cell renewal and collagen stimulation. Retinol also helps reduce skin pigmentation by stimulating the production of blood vessels. Essentially, it helps your skin return to its most optimal level. You may know that retinol is seen in a lot of acne-related skincare products, which is because Vitamin A helps balance your skin. It is what is in Accutane, for example. Ideally, according to Dr. Frauke Neuser, retinol can be used every day as long as you find the right concentrate and skin care product that doesn’t cause any irritation to the skin. You can expect to see results from using Vitamin A within 2-4 weeks.
Vitamin B is not a simple as I would expect. There are actually eight different vitamins and all help with turning food into fuel. B1 is thiamin, which helps the body obtain energy. B2, more well known as riboflavin, breaks down proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. B3, or niacin, keeps your skin and digestive system healthy. Pantothenic acid helps break down fats. Vitamin B6 helps create antibodies to fight off diseases. B7, or you may know it as biotin, aids in processing fats, which results in healthy skin. Folic acid creates healthy red blood cells, and B12 makes your skin look more radiant and decreases the look of uneven skin tones. Among those, B3 is most commonly used in skincare products not only because of its benefits but also because it combines really well with other vitamins. Currently, I take a B-complex, which helps with my immune system and energy. I notice that I have so much more energy than I used to.
Vitamin C is probably the most known vitamin. It is an antioxidant, promotes collagen production, and helps brighten your skin. It helps fade sunspots and makes your skin tone more even. The issue with using vitamin C in your routine is making sure it is stable. I had no idea vitamins need to be stable. Do any of your products ever turn a different color, maybe a little darker orange after some time? That means that the product you are using is unstable, and essentially everything you think is going into your skin is not (I had to throw a few of my products away after learning that). Vitamin C is naturally yellow but changes color when it degrades. Your product shouldn’t change any color. Right now, I use the DERMA-E Vitamin C Concentrated Serum every night. I haven’t found that it changes any color, and it does say that it is 100% stable. My skin seems firmer, brighter, and more even than ever!
Vitamin D is the reason why your mother told you to drink so much milk as a kid 😉 It is most notably known for helping with bone strength. It can be taken orally or absorbed from sun exposure. Bone health is super important, especially as we all age, so I currently take a D3 vitamin every morning.
Vitamin E has some great antioxidant properties, which protect your cells. There is not a whole lot of research on it, but when applied to the skin it may help repair any damage from UV rays. Using it topically on your skin may protect it from free radicals, unstable atoms that can damage your body. Essentially it is said to assist in repairing your skin. Vitamin E moisturizers are the best place to start if you want to incorporate the vitamin within your beauty routine.
After learning about vitamins, I have a better understanding of what I am putting into my body and on my skin. Currently, every morning I take a D3 and vitamin B complex, three Wellbel vitamins that contain biotin to help with my hair, nails, and skin, and two probiotic gummies from Olly that taste so amazing! I also currently use a vitamin C serum every night and am beginning to incorporate a small dosage of retinol on my skin. After reading this, what are you going to do to help your skin from the inside out?
What do you think?