Collagen is the foundation of a youthful complexion. Think of it like building blocks-the more you have, the firmer your skin; the less you have, the more creases and lines you'll see. It stands to reason, then, that a range of beauty brands have invested an enormous amount of capital in such a commodity. From capsules to drinks, here's everything you need to know about collagen supplements, and the very best products to try now.
SEE: 10 best vitamins and supplements to take daily
What is collagen?
Collagen is one of the most abundant proteins in your body. It works by strengthening the skin and promoting elasticity and hydration, while collagen synthesis reduces at a rate of 1.5% a year after the age of 25 – at which point, signs of ageing will become more visible. Besides ageing, UV exposure and environmental stressors such as smoking and alcohol can cause a decline in collagen production. It also acts as the glue that holds ligaments, joints and bones together.
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What are the benefits of collagen supplements?
Several studies have shown that collagen supplements can slow the ageing process, but inconsistency will hinder results. A study in the Natural Medicine Journal proved that women who took a collagen supplement saw a significant improvement in hyperpigmentation spots and pore size after six months.
Best collagen supplements to try
Skinade ambassador Paul Banwell concurs that collagen supplements should be taken for a minimum of 30 days to see a difference. Bedding into a regular routine of consumption is vital, but science shows promising evidence for those who maintain one. If you'd like to get started, here's our edit of the best collagen supplements to try.
The triple hit collagen capsules
120 Marine Collagen capsules, £21.78,
SuperSelf's supplement combines marine collagen with hyaluronic acid and vitamin C for a potent blend offering the recommended daily dose of each complex. In particular, the collagen has been specifically chosen for its highly absorbable properties, with peptides derived from fish. The brand also prides itself on a non-GMO production approach, free from preservatives, gluten, dairy and hormones.
The insider's favourite collagen supplements
Advanced Nutrition Skin Collagen Support, £40, Harvey Nichols
Beauty insider's swear by Advanced Nutrition's supplements for actually delivering what they promise - and more. Their collagen support capsules include a clever cocktail of Vitamin C, zinc, grapeseed extract, MSM and melon concentrate to activate your skin's collagen.
The collagen capsules with added benefits
Potion London Collagen Boost 60 capsules, £18.99,
Potion Lotion's Collagen Boost capsules works to build the scaffolding behind the skin's surface with marine collagen, but besides complexion, it's also proven to improve sleep problems, the function of joints, tissue renewal and muscle repair.
Jennifer Aniston & Kourtney Kardashian's go-to collagen powder
Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides, £31.99, Amazon
Friends star Jennifer Aniston is a huge fan of collagen – and after using the Vital Proteins collagen powder for years, she finally teamed up with the brand as the Chief Creative Officer. Poosh lifestyle guru Kourtney Kardashian is another celebrity who backs the popular collagen supplements, and even has her own collab, Vital Proteins x Poosh.
The supermodel-approved collagen powder
Super Booster Aquatic Collagen sachets x 14, £51,
Elle MacPherson founded plant-based supplement brand WelleCo in 2014, and it quickly cemented itself as one of the best around. Its collagen sachets are designed to add to any drink of your choice, and proven to increase skin firmness, as well as hair and nail health. If it's good enough for Elle...
The collagen drink with a celebrity clientele
Skinade pack of 10 Collagen Drink Sachets, £35.95,
Skinade counts Victoria Beckham, Millie Mackintosh and Kardashian hair stylist Jen Atkin among its fans. Each bottle contains 7000mg of high grade collagen peptides with no artificial colours of flavouring and less than 35 calories. While it doesn’t come cheap, it's scientifically proven that liquids are more readily absorbed than solids (though this is not prescriptive), and Skinade's loyal celebrity following confirms its credentials.
The collagen capsules with an Australian approach to wellness
Swisse Beauty Glowing Skin, £32.65, Amazon
It’s well-known that Australians know a thing or two about a healthy lifestyle. From sun safety to outdoor exercise, they have led the way globally in many areas of health and wellness – and now it's all about Swisse. With global ambassadors Chris Hemsworth and Elsa Pataky, it's one of Australia’s leading wellness brands. The Beauty Glowing Skin tablets with hyaluronic acid and collagen peptides contain vitamin C which helps to support the production of collagen, and copper and beta carotene.
The collagen capsules created by a world famous makeup artist
Evolution_18 Beauty Glow 60 Capsules, £15,
World-renowned make-up artist Bobbi Brown launched her wellness venture, Evolution_18, shortly after stepping aside from her eponymous label in 2016. Skeptics erred on the side of caution with claims her expertise was on the exterior (i.e. what we put on our face as opposed to inside), but her range of collagen supplements have well and truly put paid to concerns. The Evolution_18 Glow Capsules contain a potent blend of vitamins, hyaluronic acid and grape seed extract that helps repair skin and improve texture and radiance.
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