Collagen has become a skincare buzzword. But unlike other fads, this trend is building traction based on science. Find out how you can combat wrinkles, fine lines, and other signs of aging with the benefits of collagen.
What is Collagen?
Collagen is a naturally occurring protein in your body. In fact, it’s the most abundant protein in your body. It provides structure to your body, including your skin. The only problem is, collagen production drops off as you age.
Why Does Your Skin Need Collagen?
Collagen is the protein responsible for keeping your skin elastic and young. Without collagen, you begin to develop wrinkles, fine lines, and other age-related skin damage. But while your body is all about collagen production during your younger years, after you turn 25 you begin losing 1% of your body’s collagen each year.
What are the Different Types of Collagen?
There are 16 types of collagen, responsible for varying tasks within your body. But besides these 16, there’s also procollagen which turns into collagen.
Procollagen is made of glycine and proline. This is important stuff. We’ll dive into how you can help your body make more procollagen and from it collagen, in a minute.
What Damages Collagen?
You can’t keep collagen around, and the young-looking skin that comes with it, if you’re constantly doing things to damage it. Avoid the following activities or substances damaging to collagen:
*Okay, so you can’t just stop aging. But you can be sure your lifestyle and habits promote collagen production in your body.
How You Can Rebuild Collagen in Your Skin
Even as your body slows down collagen production, you can step in with lifestyle changes to combat the reduction. Rebuilding collagen in your skin requires lifestyle changes or the addition of services or products aimed to help your skin out.
Many turn to collagen-boosting skincare creams or serums as a convenient alternative to more intensive and time-consuming options. Here are a few lifestyle changes you can make to rebuild collagen in your skin.
Tip #1: Change Your Diet
What you eat is reflected in your skin. A diet change, when done right, can boost collagen production and produce younger-looking skin.
Just remember, this is a change you’ll need to stay on top of. You can’t expect to make these changes briefly and get long-lasting results.
Here are some dietary alternatives to what you’re already eating:
|Eat This||Not This|
|Citrus and tropical fruits or berries||Foods high in added sugars|
|Foods high in Omega-3 (Flaxseed, Chia, Fish)||Foods high in Omega-6 (Think processed foods)|
|Bone broth||High-sodium soups|
The Benefits of Adding Collagen to Your Diet
Boosted collagen doesn’t just benefit your skin (although that’s a big bonus). You can expect the following changes to your body when you take collagen production into consideration:
- Joint pain relief
- Improved digestion
- Stronger nails
- Hair growth
Tip #2: Cut Out Bad Skincare Habits
Your skin won’t thrive if you’re treating it poorly. Keep up with good skincare habits, including the following easy skincare changes to make:
- Wash your face every night, no excuses
- Hydrate your face using creams made for facial moisturizing
- Skincare should extend to your décolleté
- Change your skincare routine to accommodate the changes in season
- Protect your skin with sunscreen
Tip #3: Keep Hydrated
Collagen helps the body stay hydrated and the amino acids within it help to absorb water in the body correctly. By staying hydrated and meeting your recommended water intake regularly, you are helping to work alongside collagen for healthy, more hydrated skin.
Hydration tip - Use an app to track your water intake for a gamified approach to reaching your optimal daily water intake.
Tip #4: Try Out Facial Massage
Strengthen muscle memory and encourage collagen production with regular facial massages. There are a number of techniques, but to get started use gentle circular motions on your face once daily. An added benefit is refreshed, brighter skin right away.
Tip #5: Collagen Supplements
Collagen supplements aimed at skincare comes in a variety of options to meet any preference you may have. You can go with capsules, pills, or powder. The important thing with collagen supplements is that you introduce your body gradually. You shouldn’t start at 15,000 milligrams a day - that’s too much from the start.
If you’re not one to take supplements orally you can opt for topical solutions such as creams and serums.
Tip #6: Resurfacing Lasers
Resurfacing technologies are advancing and offering cosmetic professionals more ways to improve the tone, texture, and pigmentation of their client’s skin.
Depending on the type of laser treatment you’re receiving, the procedure could take anywhere from fifteen minutes to close to two hours. You can opt for one-time, monthly, or yearly treatments. But no matter the intervals of treatment chosen, your skin will be incredibly sensitive to the sun for up to a year following your last treatment. This means you’ll need to avoid the sun and pack on high SPF sunscreen every day.
Only work with a knowledgeable, professionally trained individual in resurfacing lasers. If you fall into the wrong hands you may end up with a butchered resurfacing job which will only set your skin back further from your goal look.
Tip #7: Microneedling
Microneedling for collagen production is the practice of using a dermaroller with small needles that prick the skin. The thought is that by creating hundreds of tiny wounds in your skin, the natural healing process will jump into action and produce collagen in the process.
You’ll need to commit to multiple sessions if you want to see results, each session coming in at the cost of two hours of your time. Each session should be completed by a dermatologist, cosmetic surgeon, or plastic surgeon.
You can expect treatments to cost up to $700 per session. Unfortunately, it’s incredibly unlikely you’ll find an insurance provider who will cover it.
A Convenient Alternative to Time Consuming Collagen Rebuilding Techniques
A complete lifestyle change like changing your diet or tracking water intake or paying for intensive, repeat skin therapies like microneedling and resurfacing laser treatments are not for everyone. These are heavy on time and monetary commitments. Some of them are even potentially painful (we’re looking at you resurfacing laser treatments).
So what are your options?
Skincare products offer an easy way to play around with options on your skin and observe results over time. Plus, skincare is completely customizable to what suits you.
If you’re searching for a cream or serum before for collagen-boosting, keep an eye out for the following qualities:
- Vitamin C
You won’t find a collagen product that’s one-size-fits-all, however, there are formulas made to work across varying skin types. Shop with the target area in mind. For example, your eyes should be treated with a formula made specifically for the delicate eye area.
Using skincare as the leading force against collagen reductions is easy and flexible. You won’t need to worry about tracking, diet-changing, or session scheduling. Simply incorporate your newfound collagen-boosting product into your existing makeup routine and voila, you’re on your way to healthier, younger-looking skin.
What are next steps?
Shop our entire collection of collagen rebuilding skincare products.