Hair & Beauty Magazine

Clear Skin Basics | Some Supplements...

By Becca @glowgetterbecca
Clear Skin Basics | Some Supplements...

Today, I wanted to talk about fairly recent addition to my skincare routine - Cod Liver/Fish Oil. I have been taking them for just over a month, and I already notice a marked difference in my skin's condition - it's much clearer, almost blemish-free. The difference is most noticeable on my forehead, which tends to be the main "stubborn spot" area. I'm quite surprised at how much of a difference it has made, since I'm taking a fairly small dose, but I can only put it down to this, because I haven't made any other changes to my routine recently.

I'd read that Fish Oil supplements could improve the quality of your skin, so when I was doing my weekly food shop, I decided to head to the supplements aisle and grab some. I picked them up for about £2 for 30 caps (plus they were on 3 for 2 in Tesco, so I got 3 months supply for £4!!). However, since they were a bit of an impulse purchase, I didn't have a chance to research the difference between Cod Liver Oil and Fish Oil before I purchased. Well I have now... and what a difference there is! Luckily, I bought one tub of pure Fish Oil and two of a Cod Liver/Fish (Body) Oil combo.

Why take an Omega 3 supplement?
I try to eat at least 2 portions of oily fish a week, but in general the Western diet doesn't have enough Omega-3 in our diets. In contrast, we tend to get loads of Omega-6, so we don't need to worry about that so much. Omega-3 has loads of health benefits, mostly associated with heart health. But in terms of skin, it improves cellular health and functioning, which in turn helps the skin maintain a smooth, elastic texture. There is also evidence that it can also slow down skin aging.

An Omega-3 deficiency tends to be related to dry/inflamatory skin conditions, including dandruff, eczema and psoriasis, but also just regular dry skin. Omega-3 basically help the skin to retain moisture, and it acts as an anti-inflammatory. It also helps to treat acne, for the same reason. Lots of skin conditions are a form of inflammation in one way or another - think of those angry hormonal pimples...

So Omega-3 is well placed to help across the board, whether you suffer from dry skin or an inflammatory skin condition.Cod Liver or Fish Oil?As an Omega-3 supplement, you want to go for Fish Oil (which comes from the body of oily fish) over Cod Liver Oil (which obviously comes from the liver of cod), because it is a better source of Omega-3. Cod Liver Oil, however, also contains Vitamin A and D in quite high doses, where Pure Fish Oil doesn't. These two vitamins have their own skin and health benefits. As you probably know, Vitamin A is often used in acne treatment medicine.I'm not sure what is having the strongest effect on my skin, so I'm going to keep going with all three supplements. I'm going to up my dose of Fish Oil, and keep taking a Vitamin A supplement separately - green smoothies are also a great natural source of Vitamin A. I've been taking a Vitamin D supplement for a long time, but I've never noticed a marked outward difference using it. I'm not into multi-vitamins - they have never agreed with me - I'm into a more tailored approach...A Note for Veggies: Non-fish based Omega-3 alternatives are flax (linseed) oil or Udo's Oil, although unfortunately neither are as potent.

When to take and how much?I used to take Cod Liver Oil Capsules when I was a kid, and I remember they used to repeat on me all day. So, my top tip is to take them WITH FOOD. Like, in the middle of your meal. Then they just get mixed in with anything else, and I have not once had that problem since I started taking them again.

In terms of dosage, apparently it's safe to take up to 10,000mg a day, but that seems like loads to me. I started with 1000mg once a day, with my main meal. I plan to up to 3000mg per day. But I'm no nutritionist/doctor, so use your judgment on this one. My only advice would be to start small.

Which to buy?

As I said, this was an impulse purchase, so I didn't look into different brands of fish oil and the difference in quality. As far as I can tell, you're looking for the largest amount of Omega-3 per 1000mg capsule. There is huge variation in price: from £69 for 270 from Dr Perricone, to £5 for 90 from Tesco. Lamberts offers a happy medium, at £22.50 for 180, and I think they offer the highest dose of Omega-3 per capsule (700mg per 1100mg, compared to Tesco's 250mg per 1000mg, so maybe you do get what you pay for).
...Let me know if you take Fish Oil, and if you've noticed a difference? Are there any other supplements you take for skin health? Anything I should add to my daily routine?xx

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog