Vitamin D, also known as the "sunshine vitamin," is a fat-soluble vitamin that plays a critical role in various biological processes within the body. Vitamin D is not a common ingredient in skincare products because its primary function is to be created by skin when exposed to sunlight or obtained through dietary sources. But, there are some specialized formulas that include vitamin D for its potential role in supporting skin health, particularly in individuals with certain skin conditions like psoriasis or eczema. These products may include creams or ointments that contain vitamin D derivatives that can treat these issues as recommended by a healthcare professional.
Vitamin D can be obtained from dietary sources including fatty fish (e.g., salmon, mackerel), fortified foods and dietary supplements. The body also creates vitamin D when skin is exposed to sunlight, particularly UVB radiation, making sunlight a natural source of this vitamin.
While sunlight is the primary source of vitamin D, it's essential to practice safe sun exposure and use sunscreen to protect skin from sun damage. Vitamin D supplementation or dietary sources can also be recommended if there is a deficiency or limited sun exposure. Consultation with a healthcare professional can help determine the appropriate levels of vitamin D for your needs.
Vitamin D is generally well-tolerated on skin, but its primary mode of absorption is through dietary intake or sunlight exposure.
Protects against Sun Damage
Vitamin D is created in skin when it's exposed to sunlight. It helps protect skin against the harmful effects of UV radiation and repairs damaged DNA and reduces inflammation caused by sunburn.
Vitamin D supports the formation of new blood vessels, collagen synthesis and the production of antimicrobial peptides, which can help speed up the healing process of cuts, wounds and skin injuries.
Soothes and Calms Skin
Vitamin D has anti-inflammatory properties that can help calm and soothe inflamed skin. It can help manage inflammatory skin conditions including eczema, psoriasis and acne.
Strengthens Skin Barrier
Vitamin D supports the integrity and function of the skin barrier. It helps maintain the health and strength of skin's outermost layer, which acts as a protective barrier against external aggressors and helps retain moisture.
Skin Health and Appearance
Adequate levels of vitamin D are associated with healthier skin and a more youthful appearance. It can contribute to improved skin tone and improved overall skin health.
Vitamin D supplementation or topical application may help manage certain skin conditions including psoriasis, eczema and vitiligo, as low levels of vitamin D have been associated with these conditions. But, more research is needed to fully understand the effects of vitamin D on these specific conditions.