More than a beauty routine, we give you the lowdown on the most nourishing vitamins & minerals for your skin, hair & nails along with a few of our favourite supplements*
We’ve all heard the saying ‘beauty starts from within’. And it’s true! Your favourite lotions and potions can only do so much, which is why eating a healthy and balanced diet is the real secret to looking after your skin, hair and nails.
The best vitamins & minerals for skin, hair & nails
Knowing what vitamins and minerals to look out for and where to find them is the first step to nourishing yourself from the inside out. Here are the ones to know:
Also known as retinol, vitamin A supports the maintenance of healthy skin. Rich sources of vitamin A include:
•Fortified low-fat spreads
•Liver and liver products such as liver paté (not suitable if you’re pregnant**)
•Milk and yoghurt
**If you’re pregnant or thinking of having a baby, avoid eating foods high in vitamin A such as liver or liver products and avoid taking supplements that contain vitamin A, as having large amounts of this vitamin can harm your unborn baby.
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)
Vitamin B2 is a great all-rounder and may also help our bodies absorb zinc, another mineral that supports the maintenance of skin, hair and nails. (More on that later). You can find vitamin B2 in:
•Fortified breakfast cereals
(Top tip: vitamin B2 is destroyed by ultraviolet light, so always store these foods out of direct sunlight.)
Vitamin B3 (Niacin)
This important B vitamin helps our bodies turn food into energy and helps support skin and a healthy nervous system. Vitamin B3 can be found in a variety of foods including:
Vitamin B7 (Biotin)
Biotin helps our bodies make fatty acids which support skin health. Biotin is found in many foods, so it’s fairly easy to get from a balanced and varied diet. The best natural sources include:
Vitamin C (Ascorbic acid)
We bet you’ve heard the hype about vitamin C in skincare, but do you know the science behind its popularity? This hard-working anti-oxidant helps protect cells from environmental damage and helps create collagen, which is the foundation of healthy skin, hair and nails. A colourful diet is the key to getting enough vitamin C, and you should incorporate foods such as:
Our bodies need zinc to help make new cells and enzymes. It supports the healthy development and maintenance of skin, hair and nails. Zinc occurs naturally in many foods, including:
•Legumes (beans, peas and lentils)
The best supplements for skin, hair & nails
As well as the supplements above, here are a few which have been specially designed to support skin, hair and nail health.
If you feel your skin is looking dull or tired, then a supplement may help. (For anything more serious such as acne, eczema, rosacea or psoriasis, it’s advised to see your GP.)
If your hair sometimes feels dry and dull, then you may want to consider adding a supplement to your haircare routine. (If you’re experiencing hair loss, then it’s recommended to speak to your GP.)
If your nails feel on the drier side, then a supplement could help with this. (If you have any unusual discolouration, texture, ingrown nails or fungal nail infection, it’s best to see a GP).
For a supplement to support skin, hair and nails
Try: Boots Skin, Hair & Nails – 90 Capsules
This multi-vitamin is specially formulated with a blend of 14 vitamins and minerals, including vitamin B2 to help maintain healthy skin, zinc to support healthy nails and biotin to help maintain healthy hair.
Are there any other things that can help?
•Too much sun damages skin and hair, so use sunscreen with at least SPF 15 and wear a hat in the sun
•Avoid smoking and excess alcohol, which are both bad for the skin
•Excess heat damages hair. Set your hairdryer to a cool setting or allow it to dry naturally
•Make sure to drink plenty of fluids (ideally water) to help keep your body and skin hydrated
*Supplements should not be used as a replacement for a varied and balanced diet. Consult a GP or medical professional before taking supplements if you are pregnant, have a medical condition or are taking other medication. Refer to the product information before taking a supplement.