The A-Z Of Superfoods For Your Skin: B Vitamins

Our Superfoods For Your Skin series is the ultimate guide to nourishing your skin from within. Concentrating on the key vitamins from A-Z, we’ll explore the best skin-loving foods and ingredients to help you achieve a gorgeous, glowing complexion. We’ve explored the skin care benefits of Vitamin A, so next up is the complex of B vitamins.

What Are The B Vitamins?

Vitamin B isn’t just any regular vitamin, there are eight different classes of B vitamins – all of which come from different sources and have a variety of skin care benefits. The vitamin B complex is water soluble, meaning that it can’t be stored by the body, so it’s super important to include vitamin B-rich foods in your diet every day in order to reap all of the skin care benefits.

Each class of Vitamin B boasts different skin benefits, but the entire Vitamin B complex helps to combat free radical damage.

The different classes of B vitamins are:
• Vitamin B1 (Thiamin)
• Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)
• Vitamin B3 (Niacin)
• Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic Acid)
• Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine)
• Vitamin B7 (Biotin)
• Vitamin B9 (Folate/Folic Acid)
• Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin)

Which B Vitamin Is Best For Skin?

Vitamin B1

Vitamin B1, also known as Thiamin, is known as the ‘anti-stress’ vitamin and is heavily involved in the functioning of the nervous system. A deficiency in vitamin B1 can massively effect the skin as it can cause hyper sensitivity and make the skin more sensitive to products, external aggressors and climate – leading to redness, acne or dry, flaky skin, as well as causing the lips to dry and crack.

As with all of the B vitamins, vitamin B1 has powerful anti-aging properties. Thiamin has powerful antioxidant properties and helps to remove toxins from the body as well as increasing circulation, for healthy, glowing skin. Thiamin helps to protect against the harmful effects of free radicals, helping to defend your skin from premature aging; such as fine lines, wrinkles and age spots.

Maintaining a healthy, balanced diet is the best way incorporate vitamin B1 into your diet, as a huge variety of foods contain traces of the vitamin. However, the richest sources of vitamin B1 come from:

  • Green Peas
  • Sesame Seeds
  • Spinach

Vitamin B2

Vitamin B2, also known as Riboflavin, plays an extremely important role in the maintenance of healthy, glowing skin. Riboflavin maintains the growth of tissues to ensure healthy cell turnover for a bright, radiant complexion.

Riboflavin is an important vitamin for those prone to acne as it helps to maintain the mucus secretion of the skin to prevent acne breakouts and dry skin. Vitamin B2 can even help to clear up pesky spots and revitalize the skin by promoting healthy cell turnover.

Vitamin B2 deficiency can cause dry, cracked skin and lips – especially in the corners of the mouth, as well as acne breakouts. If you’re noticing your skin cracking and the appearance of those pesky acne breakouts, then include the following foods in your diet:

  • Mushrooms
  • Almonds
  • Spinach

The Murad Pure Skin Clarifying Supplements can help you to reach your daily vitamin B2 requirements to assist with tissue repair, prevent clogged pores and reduce skin inflammation for truly healthy, radiant skin.

Vitamin B3

Vitamin B3 is one of the best forms of the B vitamins for your skin. Also known as Niacin, Vitamin B3 can help to improve the condition of the skin, helping to treat rosacea, acne, eczema, dermatitis, hyper pigmentation, sun-damaged, aging and dry skin – so it’s a must-have vitamin for healthy, glowing skin!

Vitamin B3 can help to improve the appearance of the complexion by softening and smoothing the skin and reducing the appearance of fine lines and redness. Niacin has been proven to assist with the production of ceramides and fatty acids in the skin, which help to form the skin’s protective barrier. This allows the skin to keep moisture in while simultaneously keeping irritants out, as well as keeping the skin plump and reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles – perfect for dry, sensitive and aging skin.

Some excellent food sources of Vitamin B3 include:

  • Green Peas
  • Mushrooms
  • Oatmeal

You can also reap the skin care benefits of vitamin B3 by applying it topically to your skin. Rodial’s Dragon’s Blood Essence is fortified vitamin B3 to instantly revive the skin and works to lock in moisture, soothe the skin, even out the complexion and protect against external aggressors, so the complexion will be left looking firm, bright and refreshed.

SkinStore’s Beauty Editor, Katie, loves this toner! She loves how easy the toner is to use and often uses it to refresh her make up throughout the day, as the refreshing, light mist instantly absorbs into the skin and doesn’t leave behind any residue.

Vitamin B5

If you’re suffering from dull, dry skin, Vitamin B5 will be your skin’s new best friend. Vitamin B5, also known as Pantothenic Acid, functions as a humectant, attracting and retaining water to improve elasticity and leave you with a truly plumped, hydrated complexion.

Vitamin B5 also helps to heal and protect the skin, to reduce inflammation and redness while strengthening the skin barrier, making it perfect for acne-prone skin. Studies have shown that Pantothenic Acid can reduce the skin’s formation of oil to regulate and maintain optimum oil levels to reduce the formation of acne.

Include these foods in your diet every day for an intense boost of vitamin B5;

  • Avocados
  • Mushrooms
  • Tomatoes

Erno Laszlo’s Hydraphel Skin Supplement is rich in vitamin B5 to help the skin to ‘keep calm and glow on’. The hydrating toner helps to strengthen the skin’s barrier, provide antioxidant support as well as encouraging cell repair and renewal to leave you with a truly plumped, moisturized and radiant complexion.

Our Make Up Expert, Anna, swears by this toner; ‘I love the gel-water consistency of this toner. It’s super hydrating and always leaves my skin looking really fresh, glowing and radiant. I apply it before applying my makeup and it really does make all the difference to my complexion.’

Vitamin B6

Vitamin B6, also known as Pyridoxine, is required by the body for the development of red blood cells, cell production and protein metabolism, which assists with the growth and repair of the skin cells. Vitamin B6 can also help to regulate some of the hormone irregularities which can cause acne flare ups, to keep your skin clear and acne-free, especially during menstruation, as well as reducing the inflammation that co-exists with acne flare ups to leave you with calm, clear skin.

To include Vitamin B6 in your diet, try eating:

  • Sunflower Seeds
  • Bananas
  • Garbanzo Beans

 Vitamin B7

Vitamin B7 is more commonly known as Biotin and is essential for the healthy growth and repair of cells and synthesis of fatty acids and amino acids within the body. Biotin helps to revitalize the skin and even out the complexion while combatting the harmful effects of free radicals on the skin as well as maintaining the skin’s production of fats to encourage a plump, hydrated complexion that’s less prone to the early signs of aging.

Biotin can also help to keep rashes, dermatitis, psoriasis, eczema and acne at bay – if you’re suffering from a deficiency in Biotin, it will manifest itself in your complexion, causing flare ups of all of the skin conditions listed above.

To keep Biotin deficiency at bay, include the following foods in your diet:

  • Walnuts
  • Almonds
  • Oatmeal

BABOR’s Multi Active Vitamin Fluid is enriched with pro-vitamins and Biotin to promote optimum hydration levels in the skin, stimulate cell renewal and help to combat the effects of free radical damage. For a truly nourished, healthy-looking complexion

Vitamin B9

Vitamin B9 is more commonly known as Folic Acid and is an essential B vitamin for cell production and tissue growth, ensuring optimum cell turnover for healthy, radiant skin. Vitamin B9 also helps to detox the body, in turn, reducing the occurrence of breakouts and acne. Folic acid also contributes to glowing, healthy skin that looks clear, plump and radiant.

b vitamins

Be careful not to overload your body with Folic Acid, though, as excess Folic Acid in the body can lead to increased acne and dry, patchy skin – it’s recommended to have around 500 micrograms of Folic Acid per day, from foods such as:

  • Spinach (263 mcg/cup)
  • Garbanzo Beans (282 mcg/cup)
  • Lentils (358 mcg/ cup)

Vitamin B12

Just like all of the vitamin B complex; vitamin B12 has another name – Cobalamin. Vitamin B12 helps to regulate the production of pigment in the skin, helping to prevent dark spots and pigmentation. Cobalamin also assists the body with the metabolism of  protein which, in turn, promotes the growth of healthy skin cells and helps to repair damaged skin.

Vegetarians and Vegans usually have to supplement their diet with a Vitamin B12 supplement, as Vitamin B12 is almost exclusively available from animal-derived foods such as:

  • Cheese
  • Eggs
  • Shellfish

If you want to achieve a clear, even complexion, you need to ensure that you’re including Vitamin B-rich foods in your diet every single day. It also helps to apply the B vitamins topically to your skin. Some of our favorite skin care products fortified with vitamin B include:

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Health & Beauty Expert

As a qualified make up artist, I love all things make up! I'm also really passionate about health and nutrition, so I'm always on the look out for the latest Superfood to improve my skin, nails and hair!

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