Vitamin B5 Guide: Importance, Deficiency, and Supplements

Vitamin B5, also known as pantothenic acid, is a water-soluble vitamin that plays a crucial role in various bodily functions, including energy production, metabolism, and the maintenance of healthy skin and hair. While it's often consumed through dietary sources like eggs, meat, and dairy, vitamin B5 has also gained significant popularity in the realm of cosmetics.

Uncover skincare secrets with Chanh Beauty in this article below!

What is Vitamin B5 in Cosmetics?

Vitamin B5, when used in skincare products, typically exists in its provitamin form, panthenol. Panthenol readily penetrates the skin's layers, where it converts to pantothenic acid and exerts its beneficial effects.

What is it?

Mechanism of Action

Vitamin B5's positive impact on the skin stems from its multifaceted abilities:

  1. Humectant: Vitamin B5 acts as a humectant, attracting and retaining moisture in the skin, resulting in increased hydration, suppleness, and elasticity.

  2. Skin Barrier Enhancement: Vitamin B5 strengthens the skin barrier, the outermost layer that protects the skin from environmental aggressors and prevents moisture loss.

  3. Anti-inflammatory Properties: Vitamin B5's anti-inflammatory properties help soothe irritated, inflamed skin, reducing redness, calming breakouts, and promoting healing.

  4. Wound Healing: Vitamin B5 promotes wound healing by stimulating cell growth and proliferation, accelerating the repair process.

  5. Antioxidant Protection: Vitamin B5's antioxidant properties combat free radical damage, which contributes to premature aging and skin damage.

Concentration and Dosage

The concentration of vitamin B5 (usually in the form of panthenol) in cosmetics typically ranges from 1% to 5% [1, 2, 3]. This range is considered effective and safe for most people. Here's a breakdown of the concentration and its effects:

  • 1-2% concentration: This is a good starting point for most skin types, especially those with sensitive skin. It offers mild hydration and soothing benefits.

  • 3-5% concentration: This is a more potent concentration that provides deeper hydration and can be helpful for dry, damaged, or mature skin. However, there's a slightly higher chance of irritation for sensitive skin at this level.

Important to remember:

  • While there's no one-size-fits-all approach, it's generally recommended to start with a lower concentration (1-2%) and see how your skin reacts. You can increase the concentration if needed and your skin tolerates it well.

Benefits of Vitamin B5 in Cosmetics


Vitamin B5 offers a plethora of benefits for the skin, including:

  1. Hydration: Vitamin B5 effectively hydrates the skin, leaving it feeling soft, supple, and plump.

  2. Moisturizing: Vitamin B5 helps maintain skin's moisture balance, preventing dryness and flakiness.

  3. Soothing and Calming: Vitamin B5's anti-inflammatory properties soothe irritated, inflamed skin, reducing redness and calming breakouts.

  4. Wound Healing: Vitamin B5 promotes wound healing by stimulating cell growth and proliferation, accelerating the repair process.

  5. Anti-aging Effects: Vitamin B5's antioxidant properties combat free radical damage, which contributes to premature aging and skin damage.

  6. Hair Health: Vitamin B5 can also benefit hair health by adding moisture, improving manageability, and reducing breakage.

Side Effects of Vitamin B5 in Cosmetics

Vitamin B5 is generally well-tolerated and rarely causes adverse reactions. However, some individuals may experience mild side effects such as:

  1. Skin Irritation: In rare cases, vitamin B5 may cause skin irritation, especially in individuals with sensitive skin.

  2. Allergic Reactions: Allergic reactions to vitamin B5 are uncommon but can occur.

How to Use Vitamin B5 in Cosmetics for Beginners

How to use it?

If you're new to incorporating vitamin B5 into your skincare routine, here's a simple guide:

  1. Choose a Suitable Product: Select a skincare product that contains vitamin B5 as a key ingredient. Look for products like serums, moisturizers, or masks.

  2. Start with a Low Concentration: Begin with a product containing a lower concentration of vitamin B5 (around 2%) to assess your skin's tolerance.

  3. Patch Test: Before applying the product to your entire face, perform a patch test on a small area of your skin, such as your inner elbow, to check for any reactions.

  4. Incorporate Gradually: Once you've established your skin's tolerance, gradually incorporate the product into your routine, applying it once or twice daily.

  5. Monitor Your Skin: Pay attention to how your skin responds to the product. If you experience any irritation, discontinue use and consult a dermatologist.

Precautions When Using Vitamin B5 in Cosmetics

While vitamin B5 is generally safe, it's essential to exercise caution when using it:

  1. Consult a Dermatologist: If you have any underlying skin conditions, consult a dermatologist before using vitamin B5 products.

  2. Avoid Sensitive Areas: Avoid applying vitamin B5 products to the delicate areas around your eyes and lips.

  3. Store Products Properly: Store vitamin B5 products in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight to maintain their efficacy.

  4. Discontinue if Irritation Occurs: If you experience any irritation, redness, or discomfort, discontinue use immediately and consult a dermatologist.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How should I store products containing Vitamin B5?

Store Vitamin B5-containing products in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight to maintain their stability and efficacy.

2. Can I use Vitamin B5-containing products while pregnant or breastfeeding?

Topical Vitamin B5 is generally considered safe during pregnancy and breastfeeding. However, it's best to consult your doctor before introducing any new skincare products during this time.

3. Does Vitamin B5 interact with any medications?

Interactions are rare, but if you are taking any medications, discuss the use of Vitamin B5-containing skincare products with your doctor or pharmacist to ensure there are no potential interactions.

4.  What does Vitamin B5 do for hair?

Vitamin B5 helps to strengthen hair, improve its shine, and retain moisture. It can also help to reduce hair thinning and improve the overall health of the scalp.

Benefits for hair

5. Does Vitamin B5 help with hair growth?

Yes, Vitamin B5 can promote hair growth by nourishing the scalp and strengthening hair follicles, leading to healthier and fuller hair over time.

6. Which is better for hair, Vitamin B1 or Vitamin B5?

Both vitamins offer benefits, but Vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid) is particularly known for its moisturizing and strengthening properties for hair. Vitamin B1 (thiamine) supports overall health and energy metabolism, which can indirectly benefit hair health.

7. What foods contain Vitamin B5?

Vitamin B5 is found in a variety of foods, including chicken, beef, eggs, whole grains, legumes, avocados, and yogurt. These foods can help you maintain adequate levels of Vitamin B5 for overall health.

8. Is Panthenol safe?

Yes, Panthenol (a form of Vitamin B5) is generally considered safe for use in cosmetics and personal care products. It is well-tolerated and rarely causes side effects, making it a popular ingredient in skincare and hair care formulations.

9. Can Vitamin B5 combine with other ingredients?

Yes, common combinations include:

  • Hyaluronic Acid: Enhanced hydration.
  • Vitamin C: Improved skin texture and tone.
  • Niacinamide: Better skin barrier and reduced inflammation.
  • Aloe Vera: Soothing and hydration.
  • Biotin: Stronger hair.
  • Keratin: Enhanced hair elasticity and shine.
  • Natural Oils: Deep conditioning and nourishment.

Vitamin B5 has rightfully earned its place as a valuable ingredient in the skincare world. Its ability to hydrate, soothe, protect, and promote healing makes it a versatile addition to various skincare routines. Whether you have dry, oily, sensitive, or mature skin, vitamin B5 can address your specific concerns and contribute to a healthier, more radiant complexion. Embrace the power of vitamin B5 and experience the transformative benefits it has to offer.