Vitamin E is as essential to the health of skin as lipids, moisture and blood flow. It’s especially important for skin exposed to sunlight, aging skin and for individuals with medical conditions that lead to thin, dry, sensitive skin. Without vitamin E, skin dries out, thins and wrinkles faster. This makes vitamin E a vital part of every skin fitness regimen.

Why Vitamin E?

Vitamin E is the most abundant fat-soluble antioxidant on the epidermis.i There it neutralizes free radicals, also called reactive oxygen species, created by exposure to ultraviolet (UV) light. This activity protects skin cells from damage that would lead to a disruption in the skin’s barrier and could lead to moisture loss and skin dryness, infection and premature skin aging.

To a lesser degree, vitamin E molecules protect skin by absorbing a limited range of UVB light. Some studies also suggest it may have anti-inflammatory properties that help the skin deal with damage sustained by exposure to UV light.

The body naturally produces vitamin E and supplies it to the skin via sebum secreted by hair follicles. Individuals who secrete more sebum have been shown to have higher levels of vitamin E on their skin.ii Different areas of the body may also have different levels of vitamin E as well.

Causes of Vitamin E Loss

Exposure to UV light reduces the presence of vitamin E in the skin.iii Ozone has also been shown to cause vitamin E loss.iv Scientists have also noted significantly lower levels of vitamin E on old and aged skin.v Age-related decreases in skin lipids, especially ceramides, may play a role in the reduction of vitamin E on the surface of the skin.

Skin conditions that cause skin to dry out, become thin and alter the lipid profile of the skin’s surface may also play a role in vitamin E loss.
Regardless of the cause, the absence of vitamin E increases the chance of damage to skin cells. It also increases the risk of premature skin aging.

When to Use Vitamin E Cream

Although vitamin E absorbs a small amount of UV rays, it offers little protection as a sunscreen. Application of a vitamin E cream after exposure to sunlight may offer an effective way to restore essential vitamin E levels. Due to lower levels of vitamin E, aging skin may also benefit from the regular application of vitamin to protect against UV-related photoaging.

Why Vitamin E Intensive Moisture Cream

The CABOT® Vitamin E Intensive Moisture Cream offers both vitamin E and important moisturizers. The vitamin E supports and protects the skin against free radical damage due to UV exposure. It also restores vitamin E in aging skin.

Moisturizers help to restore moisture to the skin. Research suggests they also enhance the effect of vitamin E. Water-soluble vitamins on the surface of the skin like vitamin C have been shown to help “recycle” vitamin Restoring moisture to the skin may also support the presence of essential vitamins that also help protect skin.


Vitamin E’s plays a vital role in the protection of skin against UV-related damage. Reduced levels of vitamin E due to aging and regular exposure to the sun increase the risk of damage and speed skin aging. The use of a vitamin E skin cream with moisturizers supplies the skin with the nutrients it needs to stay healthy and potentially slow aging.

For more information, please visit CABOT Vitamin E

i Shindo Y, et al. Enzymic and non-enzymic antioxidants in epidermis and dermis of human skin. J Invest Dermatol. 1994 Jan;102(1):122-4.
ii Thiele JJ, Weber SU, Packer L. Sebaceous gland secretion is a major physiologic route of vitamin E delivery to skin. J Invest Dermatol. 1999 Dec;113(6):1006-10.
iii Thiele JJ, Traber MG, Packer L. Depletion of human stratum corneum vitamin E: an early and sensitive in vivo marker of UV induced photo-oxidation. J Invest Dermatol. 1998 May;110(5):756-61.
iv Valacchi G, et al. Ozone potentiates vitamin E depletion by ultraviolet radiation in the murine stratum corneum. FEBS Lett. 2000 Jan 21;466(1):165-8.
v Rhie G, et al.Aging- and photoaging-dependent changes of enzymic and nonenzymic antioxidants in the epidermis and dermis of human skin in vivo. J Invest Dermatol. 2001 Nov;117(5):1212-7.
vi Kagan V, et al.Ultraviolet light-induced generation of vitamin E radicals and their recycling. A possible photosensitizing effect of vitamin E in skin. Free Radic Res Commun. 1992;16(1):51-64.