Collagen Supplements for Healthier Skin, Hair, and Nails
The name of the protein collagen is derived from the Greek word “kolla”, meaning “glue”. Being around 30% of all the body’s protein as a major building block of your body’s connective tissue, it indeed is the body’s glue! But, as we get older, the body starts to produce less collagen, at a rate of 1% less every year after age 20! Left to the ravages of age, our skin starts to lose its elasticity, and our joints start to ache. But, there is strong evidence that taking an oral supplement can help reverse this decline. And who wouldn’t want to look and feel the same as they did at age 20?
But, we’ll see a lot of variety among collagen supplements. First of all, there are actually 28 different types of collagen in humans. Around 90% of what you have in your body is Type I, being present in your skin, tendons (the cartilage which connects muscle to bone), your cardiovascular system, bones, and more. Most of the supplements we’ll see have Type I. But, many supplements will have Types II, III, and V, to help maintain your connective tissue and hair. And there will be supplements with other vitamins and minerals as well, all with the aim of giving you healthier and more youthful skin, hair, and nails. Let’s see what are in the most popular collagen supplements now on the market!
Why should I take a collagen supplement?
Collagen is a major building block of our skin, nails, hair, joints, and bones. As we get older, our body produces less collagen. But adding more collagen to our diet can help our body make up for the body producing less with age.
Does taking collagen supplements orally help reduce wrinkles or improve your hair?
There is mounting evidence that taking collagen orally may help increase your skin’s elasticity and reduce wrinkles, as well as improve your hair and nails. There is anecdotal evidence and medical studies that indicate that oral supplements are truly effective in speeding up wound healing, preventing aging of the skin, and increasing skin elasticity and moisture.
How does collagen improve your skin, hair, and nails?
For nail health, it is theorized that collagen helps deliver amino acids to your nail bed, to ensure the proper growth of your nails. This way, your nails will be less prone to breakage. Collagen supplements can help your skin by increasing hydration and elasticity. And collagen strengthens your scalp and promotes proper hair growth.
Types of Collagen Supplements
Collagen supplements come in a number of forms: capsules, gummies, and powders are the most popular:
Capsules: You’ll see collagen supplements in capsule form. The convenience of capsule form is that you can take it with you almost anywhere–but you have to take it with water. An example is the Checkable 1500 mg Collagen Supplement. It has collagen derived from bovine, chicken, eggshell, and marine sources. It contains collagen types I, II, III, V, and X, which are intended for healthy hair, skin, nails, joints, and bones, and supports muscle recovery.
Checkable 1500 mg Collagen Supplement
Gummies: There are also collagen supplements in gummy form. This is ideal for children, who would otherwise have difficulty swallowing capsules. It also doesn’t require you to take the supplement with water. The Purify Life Marine Collagen Gummies contain collagen Types I and III derived from cod, in an orange-flavored chewable gummy form.
Purify Life Marine Collagen Gummies
Powder: There are also collagen supplements in powder form, which you can mix in a drink. For example, the InstaSkinCare Collagen Peptides Powder contains collagen Types I & III derived from a bovine source, but in an unflavored powder form. You can dissolve it in water, or choose to put it into tea, coffee, or a smoothie if you prefer.
InstaSkinCare Collagen Peptides Powder
What reviewers say
Here are some of the impressions of customers regarding their choice of collagen supplement:
Smell and taste: Despite all of the efforts to make gummies taste good, some products don’t succeed. The Kaya Naturals Collagen Supplement has 200 mg of collagen, but it seems that the collagen is derived from cod and tilapia fish. Some customers said that they had a fishy smell and taste to them. You may want to prefer a powder that’s tasteless.
Helps people with joint pain: One customer who had severe shoulder pain found that a scoop of InstaSkinCare Collagen Peptides Powder helped it heal. Others noticed an improvement in their skin, hair, and nails after around 6 weeks of use.
Here are some tips and features of collagen supplements that may help you make a decision when shopping:
Hydrolyzed collagen: Many products will advertise that they contain hydrolyzed collagen. Collagen is a very large molecule, so hydrolyzed collagen is collagen that has been broken down into peptides by reacting with water molecules. Studies say that collagen dipeptides remain in the skin for 2-3 weeks after taking a supplement. Being in smaller peptide chains allows for easier absorption by the body. Also, once absorbed, it can stimulate the body’s own collagen production.
Additional vitamins and minerals: Besides supplements that contain only collagen, there are also supplements that contain the vitamins and minerals that you need the most for healthier hair, skin, and joints. Each capsule of the Snap Organic Biotin and Collagen Hair Growth Supplement contains 900 mg of collagen, as well as Vitamins A, C, D, B1, B5, B6, B7 (biotin), E, copper, and zinc.
Vegan products: The majority of collagen supplements get their collagen from either animal sources, like bovine hides and cartilage, or from poultry or fish. If you insist on a vegan diet, it’ll be hard to find a product that suits you. But, there are vegan supplements that contain the building blocks that the body needs to produce its own collagen. Sunwarrior Collagen Peptides Powder has peptides derived from peas and brown rice. Your body can use these to make collagen naturally!
Sunwarrior Collagen Peptides Powder
We went through some of the most popular collagen supplements on the market. You can find collagen supplements that concentrate just on the type of collagen in your skin, while others aim at your body’s connective tissue, hair and nails as well. Whether you prefer a collagen supplement in capsule, gummy, or powder form, you’re sure to find a product that suits you!