Once the reserve of plastic surgeons and skin care specialists, collagen has recently become one of the modern-day skincare industry’s biggest obsessions. So much so that there are thousands of skin care products promoting the benefits of this miracle substance. But what exactly is it? Put simply, collagen is a naturally occurring protein and one of the building blocks for our skin, bones, teeth, and muscles. It’s what gives our skin its solid structure and keeps it firm.
Why is collagen important and what’s with all the hype?
Collagen is essentially the “glue” that keeps our bodies together, it stops our skin from sagging and keeps us looking young.
As we age, our bodies begin to produce less collagen, and this becomes more noticeable as our skin starts to wrinkle and bones become weaker — yikes! So, it stands to reason that many of us turn to collagen-infused skincare products to keep our skin looking younger for longer. But do they actually work?
Collagen supplements, creams, and serums
While they don’t actually add more collagen to your body, collagen-infused skincare products can promote natural collagen synthesis and come with a myriad of benefits. For instance, taken daily, collagen supplements like Solal’s Collagen Plus Skin Essentials can reduce fine lines and wrinkles, as well as improve the skin’s overall appearance. Some of the main skincare benefits of collagen products include:
Improved Skin Elasticity
When used as topical treatments, creams like QMS’s Collagen Recovery Cream can effectively combat the effects of hormonal changes and lower collagen production as we get older. Combined with active ingredients like hyaluronic acid, collagen creams nourish the skin and stimulate collagen production to improve elasticity and keep wrinkles at bay.
Better Skin Health
Collagen doesn’t just keep us looking younger, it helps our skin retain moisture and promotes skin health regardless of our age. In fact, many daily moisturisers contain active ingredients aimed specifically at promoting natural collagen production.
Faster Wound Recovery
Since collagen is so important to the structure of our skin, it plays a crucial part in helping wounds and scars to heal. Specialised scar repair serums designed to improve collagen synthesis are often used on both fresh wounds and old scars to help smooth them out, reduce itchiness, redness, and pain, and help the skin heal faster.
As popular as they may be in the skincare industry, few studies have been done on the effects collagen-infused products have on the body. Nevertheless, some preliminary studies do show that collagen supplements, creams, and serums can improve skin quality and minimize the effects of ageing. This slideshow by WebMD offers a more comprehensive overview of what collagen is and its function in your body. In general, however, experts have found collagen products to be safe with no known side-effects.