Top 10 Best Vitamins for Skin and Hair Health
Your skin and hair need nutrients to stay healthy and beautiful, especially in these modern times where you are exposed to ever increasing levels of pollution, heat and dust, and you’re directly exposed to extra bacteria thanks to your smartphone screen (unless you tend to use an earpiece or a headset). And if you’re like most people, your diet includes packaged foods, fast food, a lot of sugar, energy drinks, caffeine, and other additives – all of which tire and age your skin.
To offset today’s environmental aggressors and their effects on your skin, your diet must include less and less of the abovementioned foods, and more and more vitamins. You can opt for oral supplements and also pick skincare products that have been enriched with specific vitamins.
So, let’s now explore which vitamin is good for hair, which vitamins are good for skin in general, what vitamins to take for skin and which are great to have in your skin products, as well as what vitamins to take for dry skin or oily skin – basically everything you want to know about this subject!
Vitamin A is one of the top vitamins for beautiful skin. It works to protect your skin against UV damage, harmful bacteria, and irritants. Vitamin A stimulates fibroblasts which are found in the deep layers of your skin. The fibroblasts are the very cells responsible for creating tissue that keeps your skin firm and radiant. It slows down signs of aging. Its deficiency can lead to acne.
Vitamin A sources include: (animal origin) liver, milk, egg yolks, cheese, fish, fish oil, butter, and (plant origin) carrots, beets, sweet potatoes, kale, cabbage, spinach, asparagus, broccoli, squash, pumpkin, melon, mango, tomato, apricot, and papaya.
Each vitamin B impacts skin health differently. Below are the top B vitamins for smooth skin.
- Vitamin B3 improves your skin, helping with conditions such as rosacea, acne, hyper pigmentation, sun-damaged, aging and dry skin. Vitamin B3 sources include peanuts, avocado, brown rice, whole wheat, mushroom, green peas, potato, liver, chicken breast, tuna, turkey, salmon, anchovies, ground beef and pork.
- Vitamin B5 helps keep your skin soft and smooth. It has anti-inflammatory properties that can stimulate your skin’s healing. Vitamin B5 sources include egg yolk, milk, yogurt, lentils, split peas, and soybeans, mushrooms, avocado, broccoli, sweet potatoes, corn, cauliflower, kale, and tomatoes.
- Vitamin B6 assists with the growth as well as the repair of your skin cells. It synthesizes collagen. Its deficiency can result in rashes. B6 sources include fish, beef liver, potato and other starchy vegetables, as well as fruits other than citrus.
- Vitamin B9 increases cell production and tissue growth for optimum skin cell turnover, leading to healthy, radiant skin. Because Vitamin B9 is a detoxifier for the body, it can lead to reduced breakouts and acne. B9 sources include legumes, asparagus, eggs, leafy greens, beets, citrus fruits, Brussel sprouts, and broccoli.
- Vitamin B12 regulates the production of pigments, helping to prevent dark spots and pigmentation. Vitamin B12 sources include fish, meat, poultry, eggs, milk, milk products. Vitamin B12 is generally not present in plant foods. Fortified cereals are a great alternative for vegetarians.
Vitamin C has antioxidant properties and a key role in collagen production and synthesis giving you firmer, more plump skin. It may also help to prevent and treat ultraviolet (UV)-induced damage.
Vitamin C sources include papaya, strawberry, orange, lemon, lychee, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, green and red peppers, spinach, cabbage, turnip greens, other leafy greens, sweet and white potatoes, winter squash, tomato.
Also known as the “sunshine vitamin,” vitamin D is linked to hair growth as well as prevent premature skin aging. It helps skin cell growth and repair.
Vitamin D sources include tuna, mackerel, salmon, beef liver, cheese, egg yolks, and foods fortified with vitamin D such as dairy products, orange juice, soy milk, and cereals.
One of the top vitamins for clear skin, Vitamin E helps prevents signs of aging, keeps your calm and skin hydrated, reduces sun damage as well as the appearance of scars, and even complements your SPF lotion. Vitamin E works exceptionally well when applied topically through skincare products.
Vitamin E sources include vegetable oils such as wheat germ, sunflower, safflower, corn, and soybean oils; almonds, peanuts, hazelnuts, sunflower seeds and green leafy vegetables such as spinach and broccoli.
Vitamin K aids blood clotting, helping heal wounds and bruises. It also helps improve the appearance of stretch marks and spider veins as well as the dark circles under the eyes. It protects against oxidation. It’s also believed to be great for treating dry skin.
Vitamin K sources include kale, spinach, turnip greens, collards, Swiss chard, mustard greens, parsley, romaine, green leaf lettuce, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage. Also, fish, liver, meat, eggs, and cereals contain smaller amounts.
Before you go…
If you’re wondering what vitamins will help with dry skin, the answer is pretty much “all of the above.” While Vitamin C deficiency is rare, not getting enough of it can lead to dry skin. Vitamin A and E are also crucial as well as the Vitamin B group. If you already have very dry skin, vitamin K can be great for improving it.
Please note that the information presented above is meant as a general resource, not to be used for diagnosis or treatment of any skin, hair, or medical conditions. If you suspect you have a vitamin deficiency, please visit your doctor to explore and discuss the issue.