Everyone knows that a healthy, balanced diet can keep you trim and contribute to healthy skin, hair, and nails. There are key vitamins, minerals, and herbs that helpful for anti-aging, sun protection, hair growth, strong nails, and a well-functioning metabolism. Of course, these are desirable benefits and marketers are capitalizing on our desires to look our best. Supplements for beauty are big business and it seems as if there is a new “fountain of youth” wonder pill every week. I’ve compiled a comprehensive list of supplements commonly taken for beauty and included what it is, what it does, and where to find it. Most of these are well-studied and doctor recommended but I’ve included a few hyped supplements that haven’t been scientifically proven and should probably be avoided. Click through to discover which supplements you might want to add to your regimen.
As always, you should consult your doctor before starting any new vitamins or supplements.
20 Supplements for Beauty 1 of 21
Learn which supplements commonly taken for the health of skin, hair, and nails or promoting weight loss are legit.
CoQ10 2 of 21
Coenzyme Q10 is a natural compound found in our bodies that is essential for the proper functioning of cells. As we age, our levels of CoQ10 drop. Adding this antioxidant to your diet in the form of oily fish, organ meats and whole grains has a whole host of potential health benefits including fighting fatigue, boosting athletic performance and fighting off cancer. According WebMD, CoQ10 is also thought to be beneficial to combat the signs of aging.
These 50 count NOW CoQ10 100mg supplements were found on Amazon. $13.19
Vitamin C 3 of 21
Vitamin C is necessary for the production of collagen, a structural protein found in skin. Vitamin C is also a powerful antioxidant that protects against skin damage from free radicals. A study by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that increased intake of vitamin C is linked to "a lower likelihood of a wrinkled appearance, dryness of the skin, and a better skin-aging appearance." [Source: WebMD]
Get Solaray Vitamin C 1000 mg 250 capsules on Vitacost. $18.29
DHEA 4 of 21
This hormone secreted by the adrenal gland has been touted as an anti-aging miracle. Advocates claim that the supplement will slow aging by increasing muscle and bone mass as well as burn fat. Unfortunately, the research doesn't back up these claims, according to a study conducted by the Mayo Clinic.
These 90-count GNC DHEA 25 mg tablets are available at GNC. $11.99
Biotin 5 of 21
Biotin is a vitamin necessary for breaking down substances such as amino acids and fats. While a biotin deficiency can lead to hair loss, it has not yet been proven to reduce hair loss when taken orally. Other potential benefits may be stronger nails, but again, according to Medline (a service of the U.S. National Library of Medicine) additional research is needed.
Buy 60 Lozenges of Solaray 5000 mcg of biotin on Vitamin Life. $9.91
Alpha-lipoic Acid 6 of 21
Alpha-lipoic acid is an antioxidant found in yeast, spinach, broccoli and other food sources. According to SmartSkincare.com, it inhibits crosslinking, which has been connected to wrinkling of the skin, as well as hardened arteries and stiff joints.
These NOW 250 mg Alpha-lipoic acid capsules are available on Swanson Health Products. $9.98
Vitamin E 7 of 21
Vitamin E is a strong antioxidant that prevents premature aging. It works by blocking free radical damage, a main cause of wrinkles. It also increases collagen production and promotes cellular turnover. Capsules can also be opened and used topically on burns, scars, and dry cuticles. [Source: Livestrong]
Nature Made 400 IU Vitamin E capsules can be purchased at Target. $15.49
Green Tea Extract 8 of 21
Green tea has been in the media quite a bit for its far-reaching health benefits including warding off cancer and maintaining a healthy heart. According to WebMD, green tea is also beneficial for healthy weight loss. Green tea is rich in a polyphenol called catechins that researchers believe may be the component that promote body fat reduction.
Vitacost Decaffeinated Green Tea Extract 725 mg supplements are 45% EGCG, 98% polyphenols, and 75% catechins. $14.99
Horsetail 9 of 21
This natural plant extract is found in many hair and nail growth formulas. It is rich in silica and silicic acids, which are the building blocks of collagen and is also rich in manganese, potassium and selenium, which may support healthy skin and nails according to Naturally Curly. As with most herbal remedies, these claims have not been proven but horsetail is on a the list of potentially helpful herbs for hair growth according to James A. Duke, PhD, author of "The Green Pharmacy." [Source: Dr. Weil]
440mg Solaray Horsetail Shavegrass capsules can be found on Vitamin Shoppe. $7.49
Vitamin A 10 of 21
Resveratrol 11 of 21
Resveratrol is a polyphenol thought to have strong anti-oxidant properties. It's the compound found in the skin of red grapes and is one reason why moderate amount of red wine have been deemed healthy for your heart. Resveratrol is thought to be beneficial in a number of ways including anti-aging and weight loss. However, according to WebMD, more studies need to be conducted before this supplement can be recommended.
Find this Finest Nutrition Resveratrol 200mg 60 count bottle at Walgreens. $9.99
Omega-3 Fatty Acids 12 of 21
According to this article on WebMD, Omega-3's are a "must-have" for healthy skin. These fatty acids help promote healthy cell membranes, which can improve skin tone from the inside it. Supplements are generally found in the form of fish oil capsules. I take them at night to avoid the dreaded "fish" aftertaste.
Perricone MD Nutraceuticals Omega 3 Supplements (30 day supply) are available on Perricone MD. $38
Vitamin B Complex 13 of 21
B vitamins including Niacin, B6, and Pantothenic Acid are beneficial throughout the body and a deficiency can lead to dry, itchy skin. [Source: Web MD] Additionally, B vitamins have a well-established link to maintaining a healthy nervous system and we all know the physical tolls that stress can take on us.
Find NatureMade B-Complex Caplets (100 count) at Walmart. $4.98
HCA 14 of 21
According this article from Forbes, HCA (hydroxycitrate, hydroxycitric acid) is one of the few supplements proven to inhibit fat absorption, increase metabolism, and suppress appetite. HCA is a salt derived from Southeast Asian plants.
90-cound Life Extension HCA capsules are available at The Natural. $13.50
Black Currant Oil 15 of 21
If you are suffering from hair loss, leading wellness expert Dr. Weil recommends an essential fatty acid called GLA (gamma-linolenic acid) in the form of 500mg black currant oil supplements.This natural supplement is also beneficial for skin ailments and brittle nails.
Find NOW Foods Black Currant Oil 500mg, 100 capsules on Drugstore. $9.99
Vitamin D 16 of 21
Vitamin D has been long touted as an essential for healthy bones. However new evidence is showing that it is also beneficial for hair, skin, and nails. According to Truth In Aging, when Vitamin D metabolizes on on skin, it creates calcitriol, an antimicrobial substance that can help clear acne and other skin diseases. Further evidence shows that Vitamin D may assist with hair growth.
These Nature's Bounty D-3 5000 IU tablets (100 count) are available at Walgreens. $17.99
Human Growth Hormone (HGH) 17 of 21
HGH is a hormone made in the pituitary gland and production of it naturally declines as we age. Because of this it is being sold as "fountain of youth" and some claim that it can reverse the signs of aging. Synthetic HGH has been approved by the FDA for certain ailments but has deemed the drug too risky for the general public. Side effects include the development of diabetes and breast cancer in males. Even still, many people receive illegal injections including athletes, who believe it boost their performance. [Source: Discovery Fit & Health]
A 3-month supply is $179.90 on HGH.com.
Raspberry Ketone 18 of 21
Who hasn't heard of the "miracle fat burner in a bottle" endorsed by Dr. Oz? Unfortunately, according to WebMD, there isn't sufficient evidence to support these claims. Additionally, there haven't been studies conducted on the chemical extracted from red raspberries to know it there are any long-term side effects.
These 60-count Genesis Today Raspberry Ketone 800mg capsules are available on A1 Supplements.
Grape Seed Extract 19 of 21
Grape seed extract is another powerful antioxidant that fights against cellular damage caused by free radicals. A study published in the Journal of Medicinal Food found that it promotes youthful skin and increased elasticity due to its ability to bond with collagen. [Source: NCBI]
Find Nature's Way Grape Seed Extract with 95% polyphenols on Drugstore. $12.99
L-Carnosine 20 of 21
L-Carnosine or carnosine is a protein composed of two amino acids. It is believed to be a potent anti-aging substance due to its ability to protect against the protein damage that causes wrinkles. [Source: eVitamins] However, WebMD reports that more research is still needed to prove carnosine's ability to slow the aging process.
These L-carnosine 500mg 90-count capsules are available on Vitacost. $24.99
Zinc 21 of 21
Zinc is an essential mineral that has an anti-inflammatory effect on cells, making it a potentially effective treatment for certain types of acne. Zinc does have side effects and interacts with certain drugs so speak to your physician before beginning an oral zinc regimen. [Source: Livestrong]
Pick up this 100-count bottle of Good n' Natural Zinc for Acne tablets on Amazon. $6.89