After months of hiding our hair under hoodies and comforters, there's going to be time (hopefully soon) where we can let our hair loose. The problem is our hair might need more nourishment than we think, and if you've been stripping away oils with excessive washing and using damaging hairstyling tools, you might need an extra boost.
One way to know? Dull, thin, and lifeless hair can be a clear indicator that you're in need of some TLC. Vitamin E can help. Shab Reslan, hair health expert and founder of Leona, a soon-to-launch haircare brand, cannot recommend it enough. "Any kind of topical blended with vitamin E is excellent for anyone, and I recommend it to anyone who wants to create a better scalp environment to grow better-quality hair. It has helped many of my clients balance and protect their scalps," she says.
What is vitamin E?
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A fat-soluble vitamin that acts as a powerful antioxidant, vitamin E protects cell membranes from free radical and environmental damage. Something as common as sun exposure, pollution, or cigarette smoke can negatively affect hair health, and since these things are often not in our control, taking preventive caution is all the more necessary.
Luckily, you can get vitamin E through your food, especially with a Mediterranean diet that's full of healthy fats such as olives, soybeans, nuts, and seeds. Fiber-packed beans and leafy green vegetables are also great sources, and they help make sure your heart and immune system function properly. Vitamin E is also helpful in managing diseases of the heart and blood vessels, preventing eye disease, balancing cholesterol, and protecting against Alzheimer's disease.
Signs of a Vitamin E Deficiency
A deficiency can be detected from a weakened immune system, hair loss, eye problems, and hormonal imbalances. As an antioxidant, vitamin E improves circulation, particularly in smaller vessels such as those feeding the scalp. So hair loss and dull, thin, and lifeless hair might be an indicator that you are vitamin E deficient. A visit to your doctor or healthcare provider can help answer that for you.
Benefits of Vitamin E for Hair Health
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You can improve hair health through the topical application of vitamin E, which will treat the problem at its source. Just be sure to reach for creams and oils packaged in light-resistant bottles, which better preserve the vitamins. If you are taking vitamin E orally, you should know that it's fat-soluble and doesn't excrete quickly from the body, so it's important to make sure you're taking the correct dosage.
"Vitamin E is known for its antioxidant properties and helps support a healthy scalp by improving scalp circulation," says Jayme Jenkins, co-founder and chief brand officer at haircare brand Everist. "Vitamin E is also known to boost hair's elasticity and shine, and a healthy scalp aids in hair growth and prevents hair loss."
Heat-styling, chemicals in products, and UV rays can damage the outer protective fat layer of hair cuticles, resulting in frizzy and dull hair with split ends. Vitamin E protects and preserves the outer layers of your hair, bringing back its natural shine. This leave-in treatment oil from Christophe Robin revives dull hair and adds luster and volume thanks to its vitamin E-packed olive oil, wheat germ oil, and palm oil.
Vitamin E doesn't strip hair of its natural oils, and it's a key ingredient in most products due to its hydration powers. When massaged into your scalp for a few minutes before shampoo, it imbues the scalp and hair with an extra layer of protection, making it look healthier and fresher.
Vitamin E oil retains the natural moisture in your skin, which prevents the scalp from becoming irritated, dry, and flaky. "This vitamin is one of the best for the health of your scalp. Not only does it nourish hair follicles to promote healthier and stronger hair growth, but it also helps produce collagen and healthier skin cells," Reslan says. The Scalp Detox by Act+Acre not only cleanses the scalp, but it also nourishes it. The shampoo oil is best when massaged into your roots and left in for 20 minutes before you jump in the shower.
Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that helps decrease the impact of environmental damage on your hair. It also promotes circulation to the scalp, so hair can grow stronger and thicker. This Monpure mask "feeds" hair follicles and skin cells with essential vitamins and nutrients. It also soothes, hydrates, and relieves sun damage thanks to aloe vera and camellia tea oil.
Vitamin E provides moisture and soothes the oil glands, rebalancing the various elements and ensuring that the scalp is revived and hair grows out healthy and strong. It stops the excess oil that can clog hair follicles and cause itchy, greasy dandruff. This scrub with a soothing and super-moisturizing vitamin E source, mongongo oil, repairs hair follicles and keeps the scalp nourished, flake-free, and balanced.
Improper blood circulation from a lack of vitamin E can affect every cell of your body, including hair follicles. Stimulating the scalp, this serum improves cell turnover, which helps prevent hair loss and thinning. Vitamin E–rich pumpkin-seed extract is known to help block an enzyme called 5-alpha-reductase, which produces the chemical DHT from testosterone that causes hair loss. Together, the retinol and lactic acid improve cell turnover and remove dead skin buildup, leaving room for new hair to grow.
An imbalance in pH levels on your scalp may cause either insufficient oil production or excessive oil production, with hair loss occurring in both cases. Since excessive oil production with greasy dandruff on the scalp is common, it's best to treat it at the source. Vitamin E plays a vital role in normalizing oil production on the scalp by locking the natural moisture and soothing sebaceous glands. This treatment mask helps nourish your hair without weighing it down and makes way for a balanced and healthy environment for hair to thrive.
Sometimes, using heat tools to style your hair can lead to split ends. This vitamin E–rich serum is a must the next time you curl or blow-dry your hair. Pampering your scalp with a deep-conditioning massage helps repair broken bonds to help strengthen internal hair structure and ends. This lightweight, reparative serum is great for all hair types.
Bet you didn't know this one, but studies show that you can prevent premature graying. As gray hair is a byproduct of decaying hair tissues, keeping balanced endocrine and nervous systems can actually prevent it. The powerful antioxidants in vitamin E prevent tissue oxidation and disintegration and could reduce the chances of premature graying. Using a strengthening serum or balm on a regular basis can deeply condition hair and keep hair tissues strong.
This article is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended to be used in the place of advice of your physician or other medical professionals. You should always consult with your doctor or healthcare provider first with any health-related questions. See our full health disclaimer here.