Collagen, it’s everywhere right now, but can you really believe the hype? While your body naturally produces collagen, production decreases with age leaving us longing for that plump, youthful glow. In fact, studies show we start losing collagen in our 20s, which means it’s never too soon to be thinking about the best way to add it to your daily routine. Let’s break down the benefits of collagen in all forms—from supplements to skincare products and determine the best way to use collagen as part of an anti-aging beauty skincare routine.
What is Collagen?
Collagen is the most abundant protein in your body and is a major component in the connective tissues that make up your tendons, joints, muscles, and yes, the skin. There are at least 16 types of collagen in the body and with Type 1 making up 90% of your body's collagen. Type 1 is responsible for providing structure to skin, tendons, cartilage, connective tissue and teeth. Unfortunately as your body ages, it produces less and lower quality collagen, with one of the most visible signs of this showing in your skin. Suddenly it looks less firm and supple as you age.
Vitamin C is an important nutrient when it comes to the body producing more collagen naturally. Your body makes collagen by combing two amino acids, glycine and proline, which is a process that requires vitamin C. Translation? The more foods you eat rich in vitamin C, glycine, proline and copper could aid in natural collagen production.
Supplements: Do they work?
Several studies have shown that collagen peptides or supplements containing collagen may help slow the aging of your skin by reducing wrinkles and dryness. This is attributed to their ability to not only add collagen to your system but stimulate the body to produce collagen on its own. Some other results have shown that collagen
supplements help prevent acne and other skin conditions. But what do the experts say? While taking supplements that contain collagen may help slow the aging of your skin, stronger evidence is still needed from studies to determine the effects of collagen supplements.
Skincare Products: Are they the answer?
While not necessarily the Fountain of Youth, we do know that science is much farther along when it comes to understanding the success of collagen in skincare products. While collagen’s main function in skincare products is to moisturize the skin, the ultimate goal is to stimulate collagen production. To do this consider other ingredients that when combined with collagen, will help achieve even more noticeable anti-aging results:
- Retinol: Consider this the shining star of boosting collagen. Adding products with retinol into your skincare routine can go a long way in increasing collagen and firming the skin. Retinol can be irritating at first, adding a soothing mask will help protect and restore your skin.
- Peptides: These are amino acids that make up certain proteins needed by the skin. Collagen is made up of three polypeptide chains, so adding them to your skin can help stimulate collagen. A peptide serum when used before your moisturizer at night can tone, protect and firm your skin.
- Vitamin C: Just think of vitamin C and collagen as the perfect match since vitamin C is necessary for the creation of collagen. The ideal age-fighting serum, add this to your skincare routine every morning.
- Sunscreen: Using a sunscreen daily will help protect your skin and prevent collagen from breaking down further.