As a skincare fanatic, you may have heard of the term ‘collagen’ thrown around here and there. But what exactly is collagen, and why is it all over the usual skincare talk? Keep reading to find out!

What is collagen?

Collagen is a common type of protein in the body, made up of amino acids built from carbon, oxygen and hydrogen particles. Making up 30% of the human body’s proteins, collagen is made by combining amino acids (such as glycine, hydroxyproline, arginine and proline) with the help of vitamin C.

Why is collagen important for your body?

In addition to making up a large sum of the proteins within your body, collagen is also incredibly important due to its multiple functions and benefits. These include maintaining and improving the integrity of your cartilage (thus helping with fluid joint movements), strengthening your bones, and helping your muscles grow after exercise. Furthermore, when it comes to the largest organ in your body, collagen will help by providing your skin with structure.

Due to these combined beneficial effects of collagen, the protein is deemed essential to helping individuals maintain a healthy body. However, unfortunately, internal collagen production naturally slows down as you age, causing noticeable physical effects such as wrinkly skin and joint pain. Thus, some individuals may consider using artificial methods to stimulate the body to produce more collagen, or ingest more collagen into the body.

How can you increase your body’s collagen levels?

There are many ways for you to increase your body’s collagen levels, especially as you age and you find your body producing less of the essential protein. The most commonly used methods include:

Collagen stimulants/stimulators

Collagen stimulators are injected into your body to encourage increased collagen production. Similar to cosmetic fillers, in that they are inserted into the body, collagen stimulants are known to have beneficial anti-aging skin effects, especially since high levels of collagen production resolve the root problems behind aging skin.

However a key difference between cosmetic fillers and collagen stimulants is that collagen stimulants do not reshape the skin in any way, shape or form, rather restores it. As a result, collagen stimulants may take longer than cosmetic fillers to take effect on the skin (usually four to ten weeks), and may require multiple treatment sessions as well (usually three or four treatment sessions).

Collagen supplements

Rather than being directly injected into the body, collagen supplements are simply ingested – through pills or other health products (such as shampoo or body wash). Collagen supplements contain a concentrated amount of collagen and can be conveniently absorbed into the body, however require more frequent usage than other methods such as collagen stimulants.

Some pill supplements may also have other health-related side effects – both beneficial and detrimental, meaning it is important to do your research and consult with a qualified health practitioner before taking collagen supplements regularly. 

Looking to learn more about collagen, its effects on your body, and how to produce higher levels of it? Check out the information provided on reputable skincare retailer websites and you’re sure to find some useful new knowledge there!