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One of the most well-known and researched antioxidants for the body and for skin. Vitamin E occurs naturally in human skin, but can become depleted due to constant environmental exposure in the absence of sun protection.
There are eight basic forms of the entire fat soluble vitamin E molecule, which are either synthetically or naturally derived. The most typical forms are d-alpha-tocopherol, d-alpha-tocopherol acetate, dl-alpha tocopherol, and dl-alpha tocopherol acetate.
The "d" prefix in front of the "alpha" indicates that the product was derived from natural sources, such as vegetable oils or wheat germ; the "dl" prefix indicates that the vitamin was created from a synthetic base.
Research has shown that natural forms of vitamin E are more effective than their synthetic counterparts, but both definitely have antioxidant activity.
What about using pure vitamin E on scars? Although this is a popular tip, research has shown doing so isn’t effective and in some cases can actually make matters worse.
References for this information:
Canadian Family Physician, July 2006, pages 855-856
Dermatologic Surgery, April 1999, pages 311-315
About the Experts
Paula Begoun is the best-selling author of 20 books about skincare and makeup. She is known worldwide as The Cosmetics Cop and creator of Paula’s Choice Skincare. Paula’s expertise has led to hundreds of appearances on national and international radio, print, and television including:
The Paula's Choice Research Team is dedicated to busting beauty myths and providing expert advice that solves your skincare frustrations so you can have the best skin of your life!