Have you ever used vitamin E oil for your hair? There’s no debating the fact that good hair oils leave incredible effects on dry and damaged hair and scalp. This is because of their chemical properties and subsequent benefits. Just like any other hair oil, vitamin E oil is a favorite oil for hair for several women, rightfully so.
Not only is it a ubiquitous oil infused in almost all hair products that you use but also provided through the sebum which is secreted onto the surface of your skin as basically a cure to many hair woes.
Unless your hair follicles receive essential vitamins, you cannot steer clear of hair issues. So, if you haven’t added this gem to your list yet, you are missing out on so many benefits including your hair strands. Before we get into the apparent benefits of vitamin E oil no one should miss out, let’s see what all the fuss about vitamin E is.
Vitamin E: An Antioxidant Hailed As A Cure
To begin with, vitamin E is a well-known antioxidant that has been used in dermatology since the 1950s to help protect the skin against various skin woes. That includes sun damage, inflammation, (even) aging along with maintaining healthy skin and strengthening the immune system. It is also said to help neutralize free radicals in the skin and hair and protect the body’s cells from damage.
This lipid or fat-soluble molecule is a nutrient that is available naturally in several foods but also taken as dietary supplements. But as it turns out, this skin-boosting antioxidant(1) has a productive impact on hair health and it helps the hair strands and scalp as well. It has also gained a lot of popularity since several dermatologists explained their take on using vitamin E oil for hair and scalp as beneficial. Not to mention many brands add vitamin E oil into their beauty and hair products because of its rewarding promises.
But it doesn’t necessarily mean that adding vitamin E into the hair care regimen will be the end of your hair woes. Not for everyone anyway. According to Ayurveda, there could be various underlying issues associated with vitamin E deficiency in your hair follicles because of which you are facing hair problems. This is why it is often said that if the oil is supplied to your hair follicles the right way, your frizzy hair will be transformed into lustrous locks.
Keep reading to know the many benefits of vitamin E oil to your damaged and unmanageable hair, the potential side effects of using it, and how to use it to improve hair health.
What Are The Benefits Of Vitamin E Oil To Hair?
Early research suggests that vitamin E oil can help with many hair issues. There are a few ways to take advantage of this vitamin such as consuming foods rich in vitamin E oil, taking oral vitamin E supplements, or applying vitamin E oil to the scalp. Although it requires more studies to know more about the possible benefits, here’re a few benefits you can bag.
Improves Blood Circulation To The Scalp
Vitamin E has vasodilation(2) and vasoconstriction properties. Meaning, it can increase blood flow or supply and circulation to your scalp, which in turn improves hair health. The vitamin also acts as one of the dominant stimulants for capillary growth. It improves nitric oxide production, resulting in smooth blood circulation in your scalp.
This also enhances the supply of essential nutrients as well as oxygen from the blood to your hair follicles, supporting scalp rejuvenation. However, more research is required to attest to the validity of the direct link between vitamin E and blood supply to the scalp.
Supports Scalp Rejuvenation
Vitamin E can be considered a hair stimulant because it can affect scalp health. Your scalp health is determined by several factors such as blood circulation to the scalp, oil production, pH levels, and follicle health. If your scalp is not healthy, especially dry, the sebaceous glands will overproduce oil.
This excess oil will clog your hair follicles, resulting in dandruff, itching, and hair fall. All of these issues can be solved with vitamin E which provides moisture —thereby helping dry and flaky scalps— and soothes the oil glands along with giving your hair a strong base to grow from.
In addition to that, it helps in rebalancing various elements, reducing oxidative stress (because of its potent antioxidant properties), and preserving the (protective) lipid layer. All of this ensures your poor scalp health is revived and a healthy scalp environment is created.
Promotes Strong Hair Growth
Good scalp health along with improved blood supply and circulation to the scalp can result in strong hair growth. The antioxidant properties of vitamin E oil reduce cell damage, stimulate the capillaries —which in turn increase the blood flow to your scalp. It also promotes the synthesis of collagen which is used in the building of keratin. It is one of the important proteins of hair. A study(3) in 2001 found that increased blood supply can promote hair growth in mice.
Moreover, the enhanced blood circulation you receive through vitamin E can strengthen the roots on the scalp while conditioning the hair locks from root to shaft. Vitamin E can repair damaged hair follicles and promote the growth of healthy hair while the natural antioxidant effects help in maintaining hair growth.
Prevents Hair Loss
A person loses up to 100 hair strands each day. And it is everyone’s veritable cause of concern since not many effective remedies are there for hair loss. One of such effective remedies that can curb hair loss is taking vitamin E orally. Though there is only limited evidence to support the claim that vitamin E can help prevent hair loss.
Now how does vitamin E curb hair loss? The imparity of the production of free radicals and your body’s ability to neutralize their effects leads to the buildup of oxidative stress in the body —which is also linked with hair loss. Thanks to its antioxidant properties, vitamin E can reduce oxidative stress on the scalp as well as prevent tissue corrosion, which effectively prevents hair loss.
Balances Oil Production On The Scalp
An imbalance in pH levels of the scalp can cause two conditions that stay at two extreme ends on the same spectrum. These two conditions —both result in hair loss— are excessive oil production and insufficient oil production. To normalize the excessive oil production on the scalp, vitamin E can help by locking the natural moisture in as well as soothing sebaceous glands.
When it comes to normalizing insufficient oil production, vitamin E plays a vital role. Vitamin E deficiency can contribute greatly to poor scalp health. This results in a dry and irritated scalp —which translates to insufficient oil production. To improve scalp health, the scalp needs to be moisturized. Here, vitamin E is important in creating a protective barrier on the scalp to lock in the moisture. It can balance oil production and neutralize pH levels on the scalp, providing a healthy growing environment for hair.
Adds Shine To Hair Strands
Several factors affect the health of hair strands. Because of such factors, the outer protective fat layer of the hair cuticles is removed. This will leave the hair dull, dry. The hair becomes frizzy with split ends. Also, the hair strands will lose the lustrous shine they once had. This lifeless hair with damaged pigments’ solution is vitamin E oil.
It can replace that protective outer layer and restore the shine. By further protecting and preserving the outer layers of hair from external threats, the oil can bring a boost of shine to the locks. It can also seal out moisture and reduce hair breakage. But most importantly, it can counter UV exposure and replenish the lost shine as a result of UV damage(4).
Mends Split Ends
Who doesn’t like styling and pampering hair with blow dryers and heat-stylers? But the one side effect of using these products that no one wants is split ends. A study involving a small group of individuals showed that vitamin E oil can mend undesirable split ends. It can prevent the breakdown of existing hair follicles. It reduces free radicals that may cause the hair follicle cells to break down in the first place.
Aside from these listed benefits of vitamin E oil, the oil is believed to block the erosion of your scalp tissues due to free radicals and tissue disintegration. Thus, it prevents hair from premature greying (a byproduct of decaying hair tissue). But this claim also lacks rigorous scientific evidence. Also, some regular users of vitamin E oil have praised it for helping with their thinning hair and dandruff as well.
Are There Any Potential Side Effects?
Yes, there are a few potential risks that cannot be overlooked. If you are using vitamin E oil on your scalp, make sure to dilute it with any carrier oil. Because undiluted vitamin E oil, if applied directly to the scalp, can cause irritation.
It is possible for an individual to consume too much vitamin E by intaking supplements. The average dose of vitamin E for an adult is 15 milligrams each day. High doses of vitamin E can weaken bones, increase the risk of prostate cancer, and disrupt thyroid hormone production. Hence, you need to follow the prescribed recommendation of the dosage. Though scientists are still studying the effects of vitamin E on health, its supplements can interfere with other medications, especially chemotherapy.
So, it is essential to consult with your doctor before adding the supplement to your diet.
How To Use Vitamin E Oil For Hair?
You can take advantage of vitamin E for hair in 6 different ways:
The first way is, of course, increasing the intake of foods rich in vitamin E oil such as leafy greens, nuts, olive oil, meat, and fortified breakfast cereals. It is pretty easy to add vitamin E oil to a balanced diet. Also, vitamin E deficiency is rare because many of us get plenty of it through whole and enriched foods.
The next one is incorporating the intake of vitamin E oral supplements according to the dosage prescribed by your doctor.
Shampoo Or Conditioner
If your existing shampoo or conditioner doesn’t use vitamin E oil as its ingredients, you add a few drops of vitamin E oil into your favorite hair care products. This will give your hair the much-needed hydration boost.
Anyone can use vitamin E oil topically on the scalp. But it is more geared toward people with natural hair —textured or curly hair— for extra moisture. But you cannot apply it directly onto your scalp. Always dilute it with any carrier oil and then, apply, and moisturize your dry hair. If your hair is flat or thin, you can choose any other way to avoid weighing down your hair.
Transformative Hair Mask
There are several leave-in hair mask treatments using vitamin E oil. But always test on your skin before using it to avoid the risk of getting an unwanted reaction. You can either cut open a few oral capsules or purchase dropper vials of vitamin E oil to apply to your hair and scalp.
Vitamin E Infused Products
You can find several hair products that are infused with vitamin E to reinvigorate your hair.
Who Can And Cannot Use Vitamin E Oil For Hair?
Vitamin E oil delivers benefits for all hair types, including color-treated and natural hair. But since it adds shine and luster to hair, it is especially great for dull or damaged hair with coarse and dry strands. If your textured hair is too dry and looks like it needs a rejuvenating push, vitamin E oil can help. Its balancing quality can help those with an unbalanced scalp.
Hair growth is generally desirable for all hair types, not just for any specific hair issue. But vitamin E oil can specifically help those experiencing hair loss or thinning hair. Also, many experts suggest that if you are applying just the oil to your hair, it may weigh down your fine hair. To avoid that, those with fine hair can add the oil to either shampoo or conditioner instead of applying directly to the scalp.
It is a whole different story for those with a sensitive scalp. As the oil is a potential scalp irritant, the sensitive scalp cannot handle an everyday application of the oil. Others who should steer clear of this particular oil are individuals with thyroid issues and who are undergoing chemotherapy.
About them, applying the oil on their scalp has not been researched enough to conclude. Hence it is better to not apply it or ask your doctor about it.
If one comes to know about the aforesaid benefits of vitamin E oil for hair, they will know that it is a beneficial addition to a hair care regimen. Not to mention it has gained a lot of love and fame over the internet in the last couple of years. But to be on the safe side, always try a patch test to know if you experience any reaction to the oil.