While rare and exotic beauty treatments tend to get all the press, sometimes it’s good to be reminded of the basics that remain just as effective as ever.
Vitamin E oil is one of those ingredients that appears in so many products that we tend to forget about it. It is often used as a preservative in cosmetics and toiletries — you might have seen it frequently near the end of the ingredients list.
But we think this stellar natural remedy deserves more credit. Vitamin E oil can benefit your hair, nails, face and body. Here are some of the best ways to use it. (Plus, read on to find out how to avoid dangerous synthetic forms and buy the most beneficial vitamin E oil.)
First remove any makeup from the face. Dab a few drops of vitamin E oil under the eyes and massage in gently, without pulling on skin. When used regularly each evening, this treatment should help keep the skin under the eyes more elastic to maintain a youthful appearance.
Dark circle prevention
When used as an eye cream as described above, vitamin E can prevent excess melanin formation, which is one potential cause of under-eye darkness or circles.
Reverse sun damage
As an antioxidant, vitamin E can help reverse damage to the skin. The sun can cause photo-aging, which leaves skin looking leathery and tired. Applying a small amount of vitamin E oil to areas that get frequent sun exposure can gradually undo some of this damage. Apply to the face, neck, chest, forearms and backs of the hands.
Help skin look younger
Along with undoing damage, vitamin E oil encourages cell regeneration to reduce signs of aging such as wrinkles and brown spots.
Use as a moisturizer
Look no further than vitamin E oil for your whole-body moisturizer. Who doesn’t want softer, younger-looking skin all over? Since natural vitamin E oil is often mixed with coconut oil, this is all you need for great skin. Simply smooth on the oil when skin is still damp after a shower or bath.
Regulate oil secretion
Contrary to what you might expect, vitamin E oil is great for oily skin. It helps to regulate the action of the glands that secrete sebum, the body’s natural moisturizer. If you have shiny, oily skin, vitamin E oil can help calm the activity of the sebaceous glands.
Heal dry skin and skin conditions
Vitamin E plays a role in improving cellular health and bolstering the immune system. As such, using the oil can help relieve skin conditions such as psoriasis, eczema and rosacea.
Dry skin can also benefit from the moisturizing action of vitamin E oil. Be sure to include a small amount in your homemade natural personal care products.
Accelerate healing of injuries
Vitamin E oil has been noted as an accelerant of healing. This goes for any type of skin injury including cuts, scrapes, razor burn and sunburn.
Fade marks and scars
One of the most notable benefits of vitamin E oil is to help fade unsightly marks on the skin. If you feel self-conscious about stretch marks, acne scars, pigmentation or keloids, vitamin E will definitely help. Apply a small amount to the affected site each day and the marks will fade over time.
Detangling treatment for hair
Vitamin E oil makes a great addition to your natural hair care routine. Mix a small amount of vitamin E oil into your shampoo (or no-poo) and enjoy silkier hair with improved shine and texture. Alternatively apply a few drops to the ends of damp hair to help prevent dry, split ends.
Healthy dandruff-free scalp
Using vitamin E as part of your hair routine can also prevent hair loss and scalp disorders. Massaging the scalp with a few drops of vitamin E oil will help moisturize the skin and prevent flaking, dryness and dandruff.
Nails and cuticles
Rough, cracked nails and cuticles will benefit from a treatment with vitamin E oil. Simply smooth straight on, or mix into a homemade cuticle butter recipe.
Soften dry lips
Lips that are looking the worse for wear can be made soft again with vitamin E oil. Using the oil on lips is a good reason to seek out a natural form rather than a synthetic one (see tips below). Use the oil directly, or mix into your DIY lip balms.
Prevent skin cancer
Vitamin E oil helps to fight off free radicals, which damage cells and cause mutation. It also calms inflammation, which is another function that may help prevent skin cancer.
Treat cold sores
Since vitamin E supports the immune system and speeds skin healing, it’s the perfect natural remedy for cold sores. Simply apply vitamin E oil every few hours as soon as you notice a cold sore begin to form. It should be able to prevent or speed along the process.
Use in a bath
One of the best ways to take advantage of the moisturizing benefits of vitamin E oil is to literally bathe in it. Add a teaspoon or two to a bath and allow the luxurious oil to smooth away any rough or dry skin. Apply a little coconut oil or shea butter to damp skin after bathing to seal in the moisture and protection.
Grow longer, stronger hair
Vitamin E oil acts as an antioxidant, which improves blood circulation to the scalp. This can help grow healthier, thicker hair that may even stay its natural color longer before turning grey.
How to shop for the best vitamin E oil
Vitamin E oil can be either natural or synthetic, and may come mixed with various carrier oils. There is some concern that the synthetic form, tocopherol acetate, can react with other chemicals in makeup and may contain a contaminant called hydroquinone. Natural forms are much more bioavailable, meaning they are more easily used by the body.
Therefore we recommend seeking out a naturally sourced product that is combined with a natural oil, such as coconut, almond or olive oil. This way you can avoid applying petrochemicals or other fillers or binders to your skin.
Another option is to use a whole oil that is naturally rich in vitamin E, such as wheat germ oil. Wheat germ oil is the most potent natural source, with 150 mg per 100 grams of oil. Hazelnut oil, sunflower oil and almond oil are also options, with 47 mg, 41 mg and 39 mg per 100 grams respectively.
With ingredients like natural vitamin E oil, it’s easy to keep skin and hair looking great without toxins or chemicals. Try these DIY natural skin care recipes with vitamin E oil.