You may have gleaned from some of my other blogs that I have a very tumultuous relationship with my skin. I’ve been suffering from eczema pretty much my entire life. For about a year when I was young I couldn’t move a few of my fingers without them cracking or bleeding. Although my skin has definitely improved since then, it’s still a real problem area for me. I’ve also realized that much like getting fit, it’s what you put in your body that has an outcome on how you look – so no matter how many topical treatments I try, my skin problems could be coming from a vitamin deficiency. I also have friends who struggle with problem skin, whether it’s acne or rosacea, so I did a bit of research and compiled this list on the top 10 vitamins to take to improve your skin: 1) Vitamin A: prevent dryness, rebuilds skin tissue, is especially good for psoriasis, acne, and anti-aging. Can be taken in emulsion form, as in lotions. 2) Vitamin E: probably the most well known in relation to skin problems, vitamin E is an antioxidant that relieves dryness and itching, fights free-radicals which cause premature aging, and reduces age spots, lines, wrinkles, etc. Like vitamin A it can also be taken topically. 3) Zinc: actually a mineral, not a vitamin, but it does wonders in taming oil production making it a great choice as both a supplement and a topical treatment for acne. It also boosts the immune system, and generally helps with healing. 4) Vitamin K: is the vitamin that makes your blood clot, and is not as much use to your skin when taken as a supplement, but topical vitamin K application can help reduce dark under eye circles or other bruising/dark spots. 5) Vitamin D: the subject of recent debate, it’s said that vitamin D can help with Atopic dermatitis, itchy skin, can heal damaged tissue. 6) Vitamin C: another antioxidant for anti-aging, vitamin C also prevents inflammation, and stimulates natural collagen production in your body, keeping skin smooth. 7) Biotin (also known as B7, Vitamin H, or coenzyme R): essential in forming skin, hair, and nail cells. A deficiency could cause itchy scaly skin, or even hair loss. I wonder if this will also help my nails stop chipping. 8) Vitamin B3: or Niacin, helps your body have proper circulation, getting rid of redness and minimizing dark spots. Good for dry skin and acne problems alike. Do not take this if you have high blood pressure or liver problems. 9) Vitamin B5: helps to detoxify your body and turns carbs into energy and good fats. If you also suffer from headaches or sleep difficulties you could be missing this vitamin. 10) Vitamin B12 (also known as Cobalamin): promotes cell formation and cell longevity. Mostly found in meat sources, and easily destroyed when cooking, as a vegetarian (like me) this vitamin deficiency could be contributing to dry skin. Will also make your hair and nails stronger and healthier. * side note, you might have noticed that the last 4 vitamins are part of the Vitamin B family. You can get a B-complex vitamin which will include the majority of the B vitamins listed above as well as some others, but depending on your symptoms you may need more of one or the other specific B vitamins. Obviously it’s ideal to get all of the vitamins and minerals that you need from your diet, but sometimes you just can’t. Even with a healthy protein and vegetable-rich diet you can find yourself with a deficiency, which is when you should turn to supplements as an add-on to your health routine. There are so many of these vitamins that are only “possibly effective” but I’m willing to try anything if I think it could help my skin, and these vitamins are a good jumping off point to achieving my own complexion perfection.