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How Effective Is Vitamin E for Acne Scars?

author image Brenda Barron
Brenda Barron is a writer, editor and researcher based in Southern California. She has worked as a writer since 2004, with work appearing in online and print publications such as BabyZone, "Cat Fancy" and "ePregnancy." She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English literature from California State University, Long Beach.
How Effective Is Vitamin E for Acne Scars?
Alpha-tocpherol is a form of vitamin E. Photo Credit Thinkstock/Comstock/Getty Images

Acne can be devastating to your self-esteem. However, acne scars can be even worse because they leave permanent marks on your face. You should always see a dermatologist to assess the best route of treatment for your acne scars. Vitamin E may provide benefit for certain aspects of skin care.

Vitamin E

Vitamin E is naturally found in foods like fruits and vegetables, says AcneNet, and is an essential part of your everyday diet. However, it can be applied topically to the skin as well. It's an antioxidant and can help protect your body from sun damage, because of this, it's added to many over-the-counter skin care preparations.


Though vitamin A is the vitamin typically associated with skin care, you need vitamin E to regulate it in the body. The fat in your body absorbs vitamin E, which then influences vitamin A. Vitamin A then ensures you have healthy-looking skin. A topical preparation of vitamin A, or a retinoid, can be used to soften acne scars and lessen their appearance. A lack of vitamin E can cause dry skin and acne breakouts, as well, making it an even more essential part of your diet and even your skin care routine, says The Acne Resource Center Online.

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Only surface scars or hyperpigmentation can be treated using topical methods, according to AcneNet. These scars are usually temporary and appear as dark brown or red marks. They will go away on their own in time, though many believe you can speed up this process by applying a vitamin E cream to thoroughly moisturize the skin. Though the cream won't fade the marks, it will supposedly make your skin more hydrated and make the dark spots less noticeable. However, according to a study published in "Dermotologic Surgery" in April 1999, applying topical vitamin E to scars can worsen their appearance and even cause contact dermatitis.

Acne Scar Treatments

If you have acne scars that leave depressions on the skin, vitamin E won't help you in any way. Instead, you'll need to seek out dermatological treatment. Typically, acne scar treatments vary from dermabrasion and chemical peels to surgical removal and fillers.

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