Vitamin A For Oily Skin


If you’re trying to keep your skin looking fresh and healthy, you might be looking for a way to get rid of the excess oil that makes your face look shiny. It’s important to treat oily skin with care because it’s more likely to have breakouts and other problems.

One of the most effective ways to do this is by using vitamin A, which is found in many products designed specifically for oily skin. You can find vitamin A in creams, lotions, or serums that are designed specifically for oily skin.

Vitamin A works by helping control oil production in your pores. When applied regularly, it can help prevent breakouts and keep your skin looking bright and clear.

Vitamin A For Oily Skin

Vitamin A (usually in the form of Retinol) is added to creams that go on your skin. It boosts the amount of collagen your body makes and plumps out skin, reducing fine lines and wrinkles. It also improves skin tone and color and reduces mottled patches.

Many dermatologists prescribe retinol’s stronger counterpart — tretinoin — or similar products to slow skin aging, improve irregular coloring, and clear up acne. Over-the-counter products that have retinoids may be weaker, but they can still improve how your skin looks.

Using a retinol-based product may make the top layer of your skin dry and flaky. It’s best to apply it at night and wear moisturizer and sunscreen the next morning. Ask your dermatologist about alternatives.


What is oily skin? 

Oily skin occurs when the sebaceous glands in the pores are producing more oil, or sebum, than necessary. Sebum is natural in all skin as it keeps the skin moist and healthy. Over production of sebum can be caused by hormones, genetics or could even be a result of dry skin over-compensating by producing extra oil, in order to retain some measure of moisture. 

Oily skin can also be caused by using the wrong products for your skin type. For example, if you are using overly drying soaps and astringents for your skin type, your skin may respond by over producing oil to compensate, as mentioned above. This can create an unfortunate cycle of using harsh soaps to eliminate oils, but instead exacerbating the problem. 

On the other hand, overly oily makeup and products can also cause oily skin. 

What ingredients are best for oily skin?

Ingredients that help exfoliate dead skin cells to keep pores unclogged and increase new skin cell production, such as Vitamin A/Retinol, glycolic acid, and salicylic acid, are good for treating acne as well. Benzoyl peroxide is a topical agent for fighting bacteria and unclogging pores. It is one of the longest-used medications to keep oily pores clean and healthy. Jojoba oil is also good for fighting bacteria trapped in oily skin and maintaining a moisture barrier to prevent over-production of sebum.

Does vitamin A work on oily skin ?

vitamin A may be effective for oily skin, but there are many other factors that may affect whether this ingredient would work on your skin or if there are better ingredients that may work for you. Take this skin quiz to find the best ingredients for your skin and build your skincare routine.

vitamin a foods

Top 10 Foods High in Vitamin A

Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin with several important functions in the body. It helps cells reproduce normally, is involved in healthy reproductive function and normal growth and development of the embryo and foetus. It is also required for the maintenance of good vision, immune system function, and keeping skin healthy.

A deficiency of vitamin A can lead to blindness and increased viral infection. However, deficiency is only considered a problem in developing countries, where it is a leading cause of blindness in children.

Overconsumption of vitamin A can lead to jaundice, nausea, loss of appetite, irritability, vomiting, and even hair loss.

About The Types of Vitamin A and Retinol Equivalents

  • Vitamin A is available to humans in 2 ways: preformed vitamin A and carotenoids.
  • Carotenoids, like beta-carotene, are found in plant foods and have to be converted by the body into vitamin A.
  • Preformed vitamin A is found in animal food sources like liver, meat, fish, and dairy. Like carotenoids, the preformed vitamin A also needs to be metabolized by the body into an active form of vitamin A.
  • In rare cases certain people cannot convert carotenoids to vitamin A and should consume vitamin A found in animal food sources or supplements. These people should see our lists of meats high in vitamin A, fish high in vitamin A, and dairy foods high in vitamin A.
  • Solving the Vitamin A Problem: Since vitamin A comes in many forms, starting from July 2018 large US food producers will report vitamin A values in retinol activity equivalents (RAE) of vitamin A. The new daily value for Vitamin A RAE will be 900μg per day. (2,3)

High vitamin A foods include sweet potatoes, carrots, fish (tuna), winter squashes, dark leafy greens, cantaloupe, lettuce, bell peppers, pink grapefruit, and broccoli. The current daily value (DV) for Vitamin A is 900μg of retinol activity equivalents (RAEs).

Below is a list high vitamin A foods, click here for over 200 foods high in vitamin A, sortable by common serving size, 200 calorie serving size, or 100 gram serving size.

Foods High In Vitamin A


#1: Carrots

Vitamin A (RAE)
per Cup Cooked
Vitamin A (RAE)
per 100g
Vitamin A (RAE)
per 200 Calories
(148% DV)
(95% DV)
(541% DV)

Nutrition Facts for Cooked Carrots.(Source)

A medium-sized carrot provides 44% DV of vitamin A.

Tuna Fillet

#2: Tuna

Vitamin A (RAE)
in a 6oz Fillet
Vitamin A (RAE)
per 100g
Vitamin A (RAE)
per 200 Calories
(143% DV)
(84% DV)
(91% DV)

Nutrition Facts for Bluefin Tuna (Cooked).

Other Fish and Seafood High in Vitamin A

  • 201% DV in a 5.5 oz fillet of eel
  • 150% DV in 1 tsp of cod liver oil
  • 36% DV in 20 small clams
  • 24% DV in 3oz of cooked mackerel

See the complete list of fish high in vitamin A.

Half a Butternut Squash

#3: Butternut Squash

Vitamin A (RAE)
per Cup Cooked
Vitamin A (RAE)
per 100g
Vitamin A (RAE)
per 200 Calories
(127% DV)
(62% DV)
(310% DV)

Nutrition Facts for Cooked Butternut Squash.

Other Squash High in Vitamin A

  • 212% DV in 1 cup of canned pumpkin
  • 76% DV in 1 cup of hubbard squash
  • 59% DV per cup of average winter squash
  • 11% DV per cup of acorn squash

See the full list of vegetables high in vitamin A.

Sweet Potato

#4: Sweet Potato

Vitamin A (RAE)
per Cup Baked
Vitamin A (RAE)
per 100g
Vitamin A (RAE)
per 200 Calories
(122% DV)
(107% DV)
(237% DV)

Nutrition Facts for Baked Sweet Potatoes.(Source)

A medium-sized baked sweet potato provides 122% DV of vitamin A.

A Bowl of Spinach

#5: Spinach

Vitamin A (RAE)
per Cup Cooked
Vitamin A (RAE)
per 100g
Vitamin A (RAE)
per 200 Calories
(105% DV)
(58% DV)
(506% DV)

Nutrition Facts for Cooked Spinach.

Other Dark Leafy Greens High in vitamin A

  • 98% DV per cup of cooked kale
  • 96% DV per cup of cooked mustard greens
  • 80% DV per cup of cooked collards
  • 60% DV per cup of cooked Swiss chard
  • 40% DV per cup of cooked bok choy

A cantaloupe with a cantaloupe wedge

#6: Cantaloupe

Vitamin A (RAE)
per Cup
Vitamin A (RAE)
per 100g
Vitamin A (RAE)
per 200 Calories
(33% DV)
(19% DV)
(110% DV)

Nutrition Facts for Cantaloupe Melons.

Other Fruits High in Vitamin A

  • 17% DV in 1 cup of apricots
  • 10% DV per cup of sliced mango
  • 8% DV per cup of sliced papaya

See the full list of fruits high in vitamin A.


#7: Lettuce

Vitamin A (RAE)
per Cup
Vitamin A (RAE)
per 100g
Vitamin A (RAE)
per 200 Calories
(23% DV)
(48% DV)
(570% DV)

Nutrition Facts for Romaine Lettuce.(Source)

Sweet Bell Peppers

#8: Red Bell Peppers

Vitamin A (RAE)
per Cup Cooked
Vitamin A (RAE)
per 100g
Vitamin A (RAE)
per 200 Calories
(22% DV)
(16% DV)
(117% DV)

Nutrition Facts for Boiled Red Bell Peppers.

Cooked Green Bell Peppers provide 3% DV of Vitamin A per cup cooked.

Sliced Grapefruit

#9: Pink Grapefruit

Vitamin A (RAE)
per Cup
Vitamin A (RAE)
per 100g
Vitamin A (RAE)
per 200 Calories
(15% DV)
(6% DV)
(31% DV)

Nutrition Facts for Pink Grapefruit.

Note: Pink grapefruit provides about 30 times more vitamin A than white grapefruit.

Broccoli Stalk

#10: Broccoli

Vitamin A (RAE)
per Cup Cooked
Vitamin A (RAE)
per 100g
Vitamin A (RAE)
per 200 Calories
(13% DV)
(9% DV)
(49% DV)

Nutrition Facts for Broccoli (Cooked).

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