Much like retinol and hyaluronic acid, collagen is one of those skincare buzzwords we see thrown around a lot – but it’s fair to say most people have no idea what exactly it is and what its benefits are.
What exactly is collagen?
Collagen is the most abundant protein [essential for building muscle] in the body. It’s a long, fibrous, structural protein [rope-like in appearance] that gives the skin strength and elasticity.
Often described as scaffolding for the skin, it acts like a trampoline providing a supportive base structure and giving us the ‘boiiing’ we need for bouncy, healthy-looking skin. Think plump, juicy skin.
With its fundamental face-perking credentials, it stands to the reason that beauty brands and consumers want a piece of the action, and skincare products promising to give our complexion added oomph via collagen are big business.
Whilst we’ve read about collagen’s benefits on our skin, it has now been revealed that collagen could be the secret to healthy hair post lockdown.
If lockdown – and a lack of hairstyling appointments – left you with thinning hair, first time greying and lacklustre ends, the following advice could come in handy.
1. Collagen may keep early greys at bay
People have ditched the home hair dyes and they’re not only looking for ways to disguise the grey hairs by opting for lowlights instead of all over dyes, they also want to keep them at bay. Collagen can act as an antioxidant to fight cell damage as studies suggest free radical damage to the cells that produce hair colour may be one of the reasons for early-greying. Other reasons could include stress, poor diet which may damage melanin producing cells, too.
2. Collagen could help rebuild hair from the inside out
Post-lockdown has meant most people’s locks are in desperate need of a restyle and treatment, as well as a good trim and/or restyle with a nourishing hair treatment, collagen will build hair from the inside out. Put simply, hair is primarily made up of the protein keratin. Your body uses several amino acids to build keratin, some of which can be found in collagen, so this could help keep hair healthy long after your cut.
3. Collagen could be the key to prevent hair-thinning
More and more people, due to the stress of lockdown, have complained about hair loss and hair thinning. As well as special shampoos and thickening sprays for a faux volume boost, regular trims to stop hair loss through splitting and a cleverly layered haircut – a collagen supplement could help. It makes up 70% of your skin and your scalp is an extension of that, a healthy scalp could mean less hair thinning.
There are studies which show evidence that marine collagen in particular is most effective. This one is an ingestible liquid shot. Liquids absorb into the body far more effectively than pills and one 50ml shot contains the same amount of active ingredients as up to 15 pills.
Best collagen supplement for absorption
This Collagen is Type 1, purified hydrolysed collagen, which means it’s easier to absorb than non-hydrolysed marine collagen. Just one serving provides 7,500mgs of high strength highly absorbable hydrolysed collagen to help supplement existing collagen.
The doctor-approved collagen supplement
This is designed to nourish your skin from within thanks to high levels of collagen and hyaluronic acid. Added vitamin C contributes to the protection of cells from oxidative stress.
Best budget collagen supplement
A vegan elixir to plump the skin from within and nourish your gut so a double whammy. Packed with bio-fermented papaya and grapeseed extracts, added pomegranate peel extract, gotu kola, organic goji, acai and maqui berries, plus more vitamin C to support collagen production and zinc to support skin structure and healthy hair and nails, it packs a beauty punch.