Vitamins and Supplements for Dry Skin

Dry skin can be caused by a number of factors, including dehydration, aging, seasonal changes, allergies, and micronutrient deficiencies (1).

Depending on the cause of your dry skin, different treatment methods, including medicated ointments and moisturizers, may be used to increase skin hydration.

Additionally, lifestyle modifications, such as drinking more water and taking certain supplements, may improve skin dryness.

Here are 8 vitamins and supplements for dry skin.

1. Vitamin D

Research shows that low levels of vitamin D may increase the chances of dry skin. Therefore, supplementing with this nutrient may help increase skin hydration.

2. Collagen

A good amount of evidence supports the use of collagen supplements for increasing skin hydration and treating dry skin.

3. Vitamin C

Vitamin C is an integral nutrient for skin health. Consuming supplemental vitamin C may improve dry skin, according to some studies. However, more research on its effects on dry skin is needed.

4. Fish oil

Fish oil may help improve skin hydration and decrease moisture loss. Plus, it has been shown to improve dry, scaling skin in those with psoriasis.

5–8. Other supplements for treating dry skin

In addition to the nutrients listed above, studies have shown that supplementing with several other compounds may be an effective way to improve skin moisture.

  1. Probiotics. A study found that supplementing both mice and humans with Lactobacillus plantarum bacteria improved skin barrier function and skin hydration after 8 weeks. However, more research is needed (16).
  2. Hyaluronic acid. Hyaluronic acid is often used topically to improve skin hydration, but recent research shows that ingesting this compound in combination with other nutrients may significantly increase skin hydration (17).
  3. Aloe vera. A study in 64 women found that supplementing with fatty acids derived from aloe vera for 12 weeks significantly improved skin moisture and skin elasticity, compared with a placebo (18).
  4. Ceramides. Ceramides are fat molecules that are important components of healthy skin. Some research has shown that supplementing with ceramides may increase skin hydration, which may help treat dry skin (19, 20).

Some research suggests that the supplements listed above may help enhance skin moisture and treat dry skin.

However, more research is needed before these compounds can be recommended as effective ways to naturally relieve dry skin.

Supplementing with probiotics, hyaluronic acid, aloe vera extracts, and ceramides may improve dry skin, but more research is needed.

Additional considerations

Although taking certain supplements may help improve dry skin, several other factors can contribute to skin dryness and should be considered.

For example, dehydration is a common cause of dry skin, so upping your water intake can be a healthy and easy way to improve skin hydration (21).

Following an unhealthy diet, having micronutrient deficiencies, and not eating enough may also cause or worsen dry skin (22, 23).

Additionally, certain diseases, including kidney disease, anorexia, psoriasis, and hypothyroidism, as well as environmental allergies can cause dry skin (24).

Therefore, it’s important to talk to your healthcare provider if you’re experiencing significantly dry, irritated skin to rule out more serious health conditions.

Dry skin can be a sign of an underlying health condition, so it’s important to contact your healthcare provider if you have unexplained, significantly dry skin.

The bottom line

Dry skin is a common condition that can be caused by a number of factors, such as dehydration, allergic reactions, and diseases like hypothyroidism.

Research has shown that taking certain vitamins and other nutritional supplements, including vitamin D, fish oil, collagen, and vitamin C, may help improve skin hydration and help keep your skin healthy and nourished.

However, although the supplements on this list may act as helpful tools for people who have dry skin, it’s important to talk to your healthcare provider if you’re experiencing unexplained, chronic dry skin, as this can be a sign of an underlying medical condition.

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