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Can I Take Vitamin E for Hair Loss?

By Marco Sumayao
Updated May 17, 2024
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Many studies suggest that individuals can take vitamin E for hair loss, as the compound can promote both hair growth and health. The amount you should use to counteract hair loss, however, is open to debate. While some reports confirm improved hair growth with over 800 IU of vitamin E hair treatment, other findings show that an overdose of vitamin E might negatively affect growth. You can get more vitamin E through your diet or by using oral or topical medications.

Although research has yet to determine the exact mechanism in which ingested vitamin E can help prevent hair loss, some experts believe that the vitamin is capable of healing damaged capillaries in the scalp. This, in turn, improves circulation to the area, stimulating hair follicles and encouraging growth. Improved circulation also facilitates healing from multiple types of damage, including dryness and chemical treatments. To consume more of this vitamin, you may want to take vitamin E capsules or include more vitamin E-rich foods, such as spinach and broccoli, in your diet.

It may also be helpful to apply vitamin E topically. The vitamin can work in two ways when applied directly onto hair: by providing immediate nourishment to dry and damaged hair and by acting as a shield against further damage. Topical application may prevent hair loss by rejuvenating and strengthening damaged hair.

The most common treatment methods using vitamin E for hair loss involve direct topical application. Many commercial hair care products in the market are formulated with vitamin E compounds, so individuals can choose to wash their hair with vitamin E-enriched shampoo or use a leave-on conditioner. Vitamin E oil is another common topical treatment.

Despite their popularity, topical products often aren't as effective as taking a vitamin supplement capsule. Capillary repair is only possible if the vitamin is directly absorbed into the system, so while topical application might help prevent hair loss, it cannot promote hair growth. In addition, topical application is more prone to human error — many individuals tend to rinse treatments out before they can be properly absorbed by the hair and scalp.

Some experts also warn about the possibility of overdosing on vitamin E supplements. Several studies have found evidence to suggest that too much of the vitamin can actually worsen cases of hair loss. As a result, the recommended dosage varies greatly. A number of experts estimate that 400 to 600 IU of supplementation is the ideal dosage when taking vitamin E for hair loss.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
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Discussion Comments
By fBoyle — On Jul 01, 2013

@literally45-- Vitamin E helps with hair loss if it's caused by a vitamin deficiency, but it doesn't work if the hair loss is genetic like male hereditary baldness or if it's caused by a health disorder.

Vitamin E had worked for me in the past, but when I tried it for hair loss caused by hyperthyroidism, it didn't work. I wouldn't say that vitamin E doesn't promote hair growth. But when there is an underlying condition, that has to be treated first.

By literally45 — On Jul 01, 2013

@ZipLine-- I've been taking vitamin E for hair loss for a month. It hasn't done anything for me. So clearly, it doesn't work for everyone.

By ZipLine — On Jul 01, 2013

My hair used to be very brittle. It would break and fall out easily. I couldn't get it to grow even though it was always my dream to have long, beautiful hair.

I was talking about this with my friend who suggested that I take vitamin E. She said it helped her hair. I started taking vitamin E supplements daily after that. I have no idea how it works, but my hair stopped falling and it became much healthier in just a few weeks. It has already grown a few inches. I guess I had a vitamin E deficiency!

I highly recommend vitamin E for hair growth and hair health. You have nothing to lose.

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