Recently, some of my clients have had bad breakouts because they’d started taking biotin. If you’ve never heard of Biotin, it’s a supplement that’s taken to help with skin, hair and nail growth. If you’re trying to grow your hair or nails or both, you’ve probably considered using a product with biotin in it, whether it’s a shampoo, liquid or a vitamin.
Biotin, which is also known as vitamin B7 or vitamin H, is a part of the B vitamins group. The “H” in vitamin H comes from Haar und Haut, which means hair and skin in German. It’s common in foods like egg yolks, salmon and leafy greens. Our bodies can also produce biotin from our intestinal bacteria.
If you have a B5 deficiency and take biotin it can actually cause acne. This happens because there’s an imbalance of vitamins in your body. There isn’t much information online to help those who are curious about biotin, so I wanted to answer some questions about how biotin can change your skin.
What is Biotin and What Does it Do?
Biotin has other names such as vitamin B7 or vitamin H. It’s a B complex vitamin that converts food into energy and promotes cell growth in our bodies. When you’re deficient in biotin, you’ll notice hair loss or thinning hair, brittle nails and itchy or flakey skin.
Biotin is crucial in helping your body metabolize carbohydrates, fats and amino acids and is great for pregnant women to take. Biotin can even regulate the blood sugar of those who have diabetes. If you want to make sure you’re getting enough biotin from your diet, eat more eggs, seafood, chicken and legumes.
If You’re Curious About the Pros and Cons of Taking Biotin, Here are a Few:
- You can easily get biotin in any drug store or mass retailer. It’s also budget friendly, so you won’t be spending a ton of money to get a large amount of it.
- It can help to reduce your nail brittleness by aiding in the keratin in your nails.
- Biotin can help your body metabolize carbohydrates, fats and proteins which can give you more energy.
- If you don’t take biotin consistently, you’re unlikely to see results.
- It can interact with other drugs or conditions. Certain medications can lower biotin levels including antibiotics and anti-seizure medications. If you have preexisting conditions, you should ask your doctor before you take any new supplements.
- It can change your complexion by causing acne.
Does Biotin Cause Acne?
Biotin isn’t the culprit but the Vitamin B5 deficiency it can cause is. Biotin and Pantothenic acid – Vitamin B5 – are absorbed through your intestines through the same receptors. When you take a biotin supplement, the biotin in your gut will outweigh the amount of vitamin B5 which can lead to a vitamin B5 deficiency. Pantothenic acid is said to regulate the barrier function of your skin’s surface layer to reduce acne. When you have a deficiency of pantothenic acid or too much biotin in your system, it can cause your skin to breakout.
Vitamin B5 and Biotin work together in your body. An excess of one often means there’s a deficiency in another in your gut. Vitamin B5 regulates the surface area of your skin, while B7 or biotin aids in the distribution of fatty acids and improves the keratin infrastructure of your skin. Working together, these two vitamins will keep your skin glowing and looking its best.
How Can I Avoid Acne and Improve my Hair or Skin?
If you’re noticing thinning hair, brittle nails or dull skin, don’t rush out and buy biotin pills. Instead, a biotin multivitamin can give you a boost of vitamin B5 without creating an imbalance in your system. A good rule of thumb would be to not take over 2.5mg per day, which could lead to a deficiency in vitamin B5.
You Can Also Choose to Get More Biotin Naturally by Changing Your Diet. Here are a Few Foods that are Biotin-rich:
- Organ meats (such as liver or kidney)
- Egg yolks
- Leafy greens
- Nuts and nut butters
- Sweet potato
Biotin should be taken in moderation like all supplements. If you over-do it and notice that you’re breaking out, you may want to slow down on any biotin supplements you’re taking. If you need help resetting your skin after breaking out, reach out to me and I can help! I can easily suggest products or treatments that can help your skin to normalize. A facial with me or some of my Yonka products are great ways to get rid of acne and help your skin look its best. If you have any questions about biotin, or how it might be changing your skin, message me on one of my social media pages with any questions you have!