Foods that are good for your skin

Foods that are good for your skin

Who needs expensive cream when you have fruit?

Research shows that some foods have anti-inflammatory properties while being excellent sources of vitamins which your body, including your skin, needs to keep doing what it does. Eat your way to a smooth complexion with our pick of the best food for healthy skin.

The top ten foods for healthy skin

Oily fish

In any list of foods that are good for your skin, oily fish like sardines, mackerel, fresh tuna (sadly the tinned stuff doesn’t count) and pilchards come close to the top. Oily fish are packed full of so-called ‘good’ fats known as essential fatty acids (EFAs), which can reduce inflammation and keep your skin moisturised. So they’re especially great if you suffer from dry or sensitive skin and eczema. Eat it up to three times a week to feel and see the benefits. If you can’t stomach the taste, try fish oil supplements or flaxseed oil, if you’re a vegetarian.

Nuts and seeds

Nuts and seeds are crammed with skin-enhancing nutrients vitamins A and E, which can help maintain skin cells’ elasticity and protect your body and skin against pollution and sun damage (lowering your chances of skin cancer). Like oily fish, nuts and seeds are also rich in good fats to keep your complexion nourished and smooth. Add nuts, like sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, almonds or walnuts, to your breakfast cereal and salads or eat simply them as a snack.


This scaly skinned, green-fleshed fruit is loaded with loads of nutritional goodies to keep your skin looking great, including vitamin E and ‘good’ (yep, they’re not all bad for you) monounsaturated fats which keep your skin nourished. Mix avocado into salads or transform it into a guacamole with sour cream and fresh chilli, to banish dry skin.

Extra virgin olive oil

Olive oil is also blessed with the good fats and antioxidant vitamin E. Plus it has the added benefit of looking after your heart. It can be expensive, but if possible use it in place of your regular cooking oil, drizzle on salads, pasta dishes and pizza.


They taste like sweets, but unlike pick ‘n’ mix, these are healthy foods that are good for your skin. Blackberries, raspberries, strawberries and blueberries are super-charged with the powerful antioxidants vitamins C and E. Vitamin C is the great skin restorer; it helps produce natural collagen, which is vital for keeping the complexion plump and smooth. Eat them as a dessert, snack or on breakfast cereals.

Spinach, cabbage, kale and watercress

Leafy greens are a great source of antioxidant vitamins A, C, E and the mineral iron – essential for keeping your blood healthy and your skin bright. They’re also rich in B vitamins, so they also boost your energy (and your ‘glow’ factor). Try adding them to salads and sandwiches.

Mango, carrots, sweet potatoes and apricots

All contain beta-carotene which is crucial for your skin. Replace your regular baked potato with a sweet potato or try a thick, wholesome carrot and coriander soup. It’s hard to go wrong when it comes to fruits and vegetables, but it’s worth bearing in mind that juices such as mango juice are quite high in sugar. Despite this, juices are still an excellent source of vitamin C, beta carotene, potassium, iron and many other nutrients.


Healthy digestion is essential for the complexion – because if your body can’t get rid of waste efficiently, toxins will build up and show on your skin. Wholegrains, like in wholemeal bread and pasta, are packed with fibre for your digestion (which also means they keep you feeling full up), iron and vitamin B. Swap your usual processed ‘white’ carbs for whole grain versions, such as granary bread in place of white sliced loaves and brown rice for your usual long-grain.

Probiotic yoghurt

Live yoghurts are crammed to bursting with good bacteria that keep your digestion, and therefore your skin, in tip-top health. High on the list of foods for clear skin, research shows that a daily intake can help eczema sufferers. Use in fruit smoothies, salad dressings and as an alternative to cream in desserts.

Green tea

It’s bursting with antioxidants, called catechins, which are also said to fight viruses and slow ageing. It’s an acquired taste, but try to have about one to two cups daily. If you want the fancy version, try a matcha latte.

Skin enemies to avoid:

  • Tanning – can cause ageing, an uneven skin tone and even cancer. Learn more about sun safety here.
  • Smoking – leads to a yellow-grey pallor, spots, and broken veins. It can exacerbate existing skin complaints like eczema and psoriasis and eventually results in wrinkles.
  • Alcohol – dehydrates the complexion and leaves you susceptible to fine lines and wrinkles. It also widens blood vessels, which in turn results in unsightly thread veins and a permanently flushed not-so peachy glow. Drinking water as well as alcohol on a night out will help.
  • Stress – releases hormones which can make you spotty. Get a good night’s sleep by avoiding caffeine in the evenings, having a warm bath and a milky drink before you go to bed. You could also try spritzing your cushion with lavender essential oil, turning off the TV and reading yourself to sleep. Read our guide to how to sleep better at night for more tips.

Questions or concerns about your body? Take a look at the rest of our resources here. Share your own tips for how to look after your skin on our discussion boards.

Next Steps


food| skin

By The Mix Staff

Updated on 02-Nov-2022

Picture of girl with fruit over her eyes by Shutterstock.