hydration since lower vitamin D levels have been associated with lower skin moisture and eczema,” she explains.
She also adds, “Vitamin D likely improves dryness by improving the skin barrier function.” Another option is to eat more foods rich in this mineral—like fatty fish, milk, and cheese—or use a moisturizer or serum formulated with this all-star vitamin.
Fatty acids are another great addition. Why? Our lipid bilayer (membranes that protect our cells) is made up of fatty acids, among other components. When we are dry or dehydrated, these fatty acids evaporate more quickly, leaving behind flaky dry skin.
“Omegas that are rich in essential fatty acids can help repair this damage,” Hatcher notes. In other words: adding omega fatty acids to our diets helps to hydrate us from the inside out.
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Dark Spots or Hyperpigmentation: Antioxidants
Dark spots don’t follow any rhyme or reason for sprouting, and frankly, they can happen at any age. How do they happen? Hatcher explains that most of the time they’re due to free radical damage.
“Free radicals are unstable molecules in our environment, meaning they have an uneven amount of electrons surrounding them,” she continues. Because antioxidants lend an electron to this unstable molecule, creating balance, they help to prevent free radical damage and hyperpigmentation.
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Sun Damage and Free Radicals: Vitamins C and E
As appealing and alluring as the sunshine is, it can be your skin’s worst enemy. If you suffer from the after-effects of this star, Dr. Sarkar suggests taking a break from this source of vitamin D and turning toward the powerful antioxidants of vitamins C and E. “Antioxidants fight free radical damage, which is caused by environmental pollution and ultraviolet rays,” she continues.
Although taking vitamin C every day via pill or chewable isn’t a bad idea for your body, Dr. Sarkar says that a topical vitamin C and E combo might be more effective because these two work best when they’re together. Another great idea? Adding nutrient-dense green vegetables in your diet!
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Fine Lines and Loss of Elasticity: Vitamin A and Peptides
As we age, our bodies—and our skin cells—demand different things. For when those fine lines and wrinkles begin to reveal themselves, reach for a topical vitamin A, usually in the form of a retinoid or retinol, to fight against those extra birthday candles.
Dr. Sarkar says that retinoids have been shown to inhibit the enzymes that break down collagen, thereby preserving collagen levels in the skin, while retinol increases the cells that make collagen. “Collagen gives skin its structure and volume, and without it, you can start to see wrinkles and hollowing of the skin,” she explains.
Plastic surgeon Dr. Javad Sajan, MD, agrees, saying that as we age, our skin begins to lose its