Everything You Need to Know About the Glow-Inducing Benefits of Liquid Collagen

Photo: Getty Images/Uwe Krejci
Had Ponce de Leon actually discovered the Fountain of Youth, I'd venture a guess that on the lips it would taste ever-so slightly like collagen. Just a mention of the key skin protein brings to mind taut, plump complexions, and while we're born with the complexion building blocks already in our skin, the supply diminishes over time as we age.

"Oral supplements can help to support the body’s natural collagen production by being absorbed through the bloodstream, supporting underlying layers first," New York City dermatologist Dendy Engelman, MD says. "Supplemental collagen is fragmented pieces of amino acids and peptides; these connect in the bloodstream with enzymes that trigger the production of collagen."

While researchers are proving that ingesting it seems to show promising results, collagen drinkers (a group on the rise) are putting their money where their good skin is. According to statistics from the Nutrition Business Journal, collagen sales have climbed 30 percent in the last year, with United States customers spending $122 million in the past year alone.

When collagen powders and capsules first rose to favor, the tasteless dusts were meant to be dropped into smoothies and juices, where they assimilated into whatever flavor you were sipping (not the most delectable TBH). Today, however, with the help of only water, these newer supplements transform themselves into elixirs, fizzy flavored waters, and teas (yes, even matcha).

"I thought it was necessary to create a collection of products that could effortlessly blend with any lifestyle," says Kurt Seidensticker, CEO and founder of Vital Proteins, one of the buzziest collagen companies around. "This idea led to the creation of products like our Collagen Creamers and Matcha Collagen, things people were already enjoying daily but now with the added benefits of collagen."

When looking for a formula, Dr. Engelman explains that there are sixteen different types of collagen, but the best ones for skin are types one and three (derived often from bovine or marine sources). "For oral supplements, hydrolyzed collagen is easiest to digest, as it is broken down into the smallest forms of peptides and amino acids," she explains. Among her favorites: Reservage, a well-respected collagen supplement brand that recently released a collagen tea shown to help reduce wrinkles by 20 percent in 8 weeks. In other words, the answer to renewed skin could be as near as your closest kitchen cupboard.

If you're on the hunt for more intel about beauty supplements, here's what to know about biotin and these are the supplements that you need to know about to bust stress.

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