Vitamin E and allergic contact dermatitis

Dermatitis. 2010 May-Jun;21(3):148-53.


Reports of vitamin E-induced allergic contact dermatitis (ACD) and frequent use of vitamin-E derivatives (tocopherol, tocopheryl linoleate, tocopherol acetate, etc) in skin care products deserves further investigation into tolerability and suitability of vitamin E in skin care preparations. A PubMed search was conducted to review the prevalence of vitamin E-induced ACD. It revealed 931 cases of vitamin E-induced ACD mainly from one large study. There were no reported deaths and only three patients required hospitalization for treatment. It appears that vitamin E-induced ACD is an uncommon phenomenon; incidence is low despite its widespread use in skin care products. Given its antioxidant and photoprotective properties, vitamin E should remain an ingredient in skin care products.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Cosmetics / adverse effects
  • Cosmetics / chemistry
  • Dermatitis, Allergic Contact / diagnosis
  • Dermatitis, Allergic Contact / epidemiology
  • Dermatitis, Allergic Contact / etiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Patch Tests
  • Sunscreening Agents / administration & dosage
  • Sunscreening Agents / adverse effects*
  • Vitamin E / administration & dosage
  • Vitamin E / adverse effects*
  • Young Adult


  • Cosmetics
  • Sunscreening Agents
  • Vitamin E