Collagen supplements are seriously trending right now; chances are you’ve either googled them, or they’ve popped up on your Instagram feed when your fave influencer claimed that it’s their secret to glowy skin. And we totally understand the appeal – youthful, radiant skin, healthier hair, and stronger nails – what beauty junkie would say no? Definitely not us. To save you the hassle of searching the internet for the best, we’ve rounded up our fave three supplements that are proven to deliver results. But before we share the collagen supplements in our beauty drawer – here’s the full lowdown on why you need them and how they work.
Collagen 101: What is collagen?
Collagen is a naturally occurring protein in your body and is responsible for keeping your body and your skin strong and healthy. Your skin is made up of 75% collagen, but after the age of 25, your body begins to produce less collagen (bummer, we know). This results in sagging skin, the production of wrinkles, and sore joints. Collagen levels decline by roughly 1.5% a year, which means by the age of 45 it may decline by a total of 30%. The reason why you want to hold on to your collagen is it helps strengthen and rebuild connective tissue while regenerating new skin cells for healthier, more supple skin. It encourages blood flow and circulation, so more oxygen is pumped around your body. It also keeps your joints flexible and your mane glossy, and your nails strong. Think of it as one of the essential building blocks of your body.
How do collagen supplements work?
What makes collagen supplements more effective than a topical cream is they’re absorbed into your bloodstream faster. Once they’re in your body, the collagen peptides stimulate fibroblasts, to encourage collagen production. If you’re wondering where the collagen comes from, it’s usually derived from animal bones and tissue. The best collagen is taken from fish (marine) or beef sources, so always make sure you check the source (especially if you’re a vegetarian!). We’d always recommend marine collagen as it’s absorbed up to 1.5 times more efficiently. Collagen supplements can also enhance your diet as the glycine content helps encourage stomach acid production, aiding overall digestion. Plus, collagen drinks are perfect for when you’re on the go – you don’t have to worry about mixing powders, and these three are also super tasty!
If you’re skeptical about whether or not collagen supplements are worth your time, and your $$$, their efficacy was confirmed by a study in the Natural Medicine Journal. The study trialed a group of woman, who took the dietary supplement Collagen BoosterTM, for six months, and they confirmed that there was a noticeable improvement – minimizing the appearance of their pores and lessening hyperpigmentation.
Our Fave Drinkable Collagen Supplements
1. Vital Proteins
We heard that Jennifer Anniston swears by Vital Proteins, and she basically hasn’t changed since she stole our heart and gave us outfit inspo as Rachel Green in Friends. Like seriously, she’s about to turn 50 and doesn’t look a day over 30. The collagen shots are the latest addition to the Vital Protein family, and there are five different drinks, so you’ll definitely be able to find one to cater to your skin’s needs. Whether you need a digestive cleanse or a beauty boost, they’ve got you covered. We’d, of course, recommend the Glow Collagen shot, which is infused with skin-brightening Vitamin C and biotin. We also love their powder formulas (slightly cheaper than the drinks) which we mix in with smoothies and soups, or just in a glass of water. They even come in convenient sachets so you can chuck them in your purse and have them whenever you like.
Shop here, $54.
The Huda Beauty team have been trialing these collagen supplements, and tbh, they’re so delicious we’d drink them without the skincare benefits. But the benefits are major too. In a recent Uk study, after three weeks of a group of people taking the supplements, skin hydration improved by 12% after three weeks and the appearance of wrinkles decreased by 15%, and 27% after six weeks. The supplement contains zinc, biotin, and copper, as well as Vitamin C, E, and B6, which help boost your metabolism and reduce signs of tiredness in the skin.
Shop it here, $90 for a 30-day-trial.
Skinade is another collagen drink that we’ve trialed and loved. The multi award-winning formula is bursting with active ingredients to boost collagen production and hyaluronic acid levels, which strengthen and brighten the skin. It’s also flavored with natural peach and vitamin-rich mangosteen extracts, so it’s super delicious too.
Shop it here, $89 for a 20-day-trial.
A more natural alternative…
If you don’t fancy buying one of these ready-made drinks and want to opt for a more natural alternative, you need to get on the bone broth hype. Bone broth is kinda like a homemade collagen drink, and it’s packed with collagen, as well as healthy minerals including calcium and magnesium, both of which will help brighten and strengthen the skin. Wellness goddess Gwyneth Paltrow drinks it daily. You can make it easily from scratch; check out this recipe here or buy it from your local health store.
Let us know if you’ve tried collagen in the comments below.