Skin feel dry from central heating and cold winds? This hydrating ingredient can help

If your skin is feeling tight, you may need to up the ante on hydrating skincare ingredients. Introducing vitamin B5 (also known as pantothenic acid).

Between biting cold winds and intense central heating, it’s completely normal if your skin is a little drier than usual over the winter period.

At this time of year, you may find yourself reaching for products that can help to give your skin nourishment and take away that horrible tight, stripped feeling.

To ensure you’re reaching for the right kind of products, it’s helpful to know about ingredients that provide a hit of moisture. You’ll no doubt have heard of hydrating hyaluronic acid and may know about skin-boosting ceramides, but might not have come across vitamin B5 (also known as pantothenic acid) before.

Here, Lenka Anthony, clinical aesthetician at Tempus Belgravia, runs through everything you need to know about the beneficial ingredient.

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What is vitamin B5?

“Vitamin B5 is also called pantothenic acid and once consumed, its main function is to convert carbohydrates into glucose for energy. Nevertheless, it is also used in supplements and within skincare (applied topically) to promote healthy-looking skin.”

What are the skin benefits of vitamim B5?

“Vitamin B5 has many beneficial properties from a skincare point of view. Firstly, it stabilises the skin’s barrier which means that your skin retains more water, moisturising it and helping it to maintain its softness and elasticity. As a result, it becomes plumper and may even reduce fine lines as it smoothes the skin’s surface. Vitamin B5 has also been recognised to help with more chronic conditions such as cystic acne, eczema and rosacea as it enhances the healing process of the skin and reduces blemishes.”

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Which skin types are best suited to vitamin B5?

Vitamin B5 can be used by people with all skin types although as it’s a humectant (it attracts and binds water) and an emollient (it seals the cracks in the skin) and promotes blemish reduction, I would particularly recommend it for people with dry or flaky skin and for those with more severe conditions such as acne.

Which skin types should avoid vitamin B5?

Vitamin B5 is used in many skincare products because of its excellent moisturising abilities and has generally been recognised as safe and effective for use by people with all skin types.

Where should vitamin B5 sit in your skincare routine, if you use it?

It really does depend on which product you have bought that contains the vitamin. If your moisturiser contains Vitamin B5, the best course of action would be to clean your face thoroughly, tone your skin and then apply it. As it’s fairly innocuous it can be used in conjunction with other products and as it is unlikely to cause irritation, using the product multiple times shouldn’t pose any problems.  

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Best products with vitamin B5, picked by the Stylist team

  • Glossier Super Bounce

    As well as pro-vitamin B5 for hydration, this serum contains three molecular weights of hyaluronic acid to allow deeper penetration into the skin.

    Glossier Super Bounce at Glossier, £24

    buy now

  • Paula’s Choice Hyaluronic Acid Booster

    While a formulation of panthenol, hyaluronic acid and ceramides, this Paula’s Choice serum contains a hat-trick of skin-boosting ingredients.

    Paula’s Choice Hyaluronic Acid Booster at SpaceNK, £34

    buy now

  • Skinceuticals Hydrating B5 Gel

    This lightweight gel boosts skin hydration while also helping with tissue repair. The result? Happier, healthier skin.

    Skinceuticals Hydrating B5 Gel at Face the Future, £54.95

    buy now

  • La Roche-Posay Hyalu B5 Hyaluronic Acid Serum

    Created specifically for dehydrated skin, this clever serum contains two different sized molecules of hyalruonic acid, while a power duo of vitamin B5 and madecassoside team up to encourage collagen production.

    Shop La Roche-Posay Hyalu B5 Hyaluronic Acid Serum at lookfantastic, £38

    buy now

  • Drunk Elephant B-Hydra Intensive Hydration Serum

    This bestselling serum attracts and holds moisture in the skin for a plumper and healthier-looking complexion. Plus, the vegan formula also protects skin against free radicals.

    Drunk Elephant B-Hydra Intensive Hydration Serum at Cult Beauty, £40

    buy now

  • COSRX Balancium B5 D-panthenol Ampoule

    COSRX’s ampoule contains an impressive 30% d-panthenol to promote a healthier skin barrier, while leaving it smoother and soothed.

    COSRX Balancium B5 D-panthenol Ampoule at lookfantastic, £24

    buy now

  • First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Hydrating Serum

    Alongside panthenol, this First Aid Beauty serum contains hyaluronic acid, collagen and peptides to boost skin.

    First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Hydrating Serum at Feelunique, £30

    buy now

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