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Does Collagen Really Work for Better Skin, Hair, and Nails?


By: Amir Karam MD

collagen powder supplement

As we get older, beginning in our twenties, our bodies begin to slow down collagen production, which leads to aging not only in the skin but throughout our bodies. Collagen supplements are a hot topic in the health and skincare industries, but does it ACTUALLY work to improve our hair, skin, and nails? Can we use collagen supplements to actually stimulate collagen production within our bodies?


In this episode of my YouTube series, Skin School, I discuss the topic and whether I recommend using collagen supplements as a part of your health and skincare regimen. Let’s answer the question, “Collagen: game-changer, or fad?”

What is Collagen?

Lines, wrinkles, laxity, and dull skin appear because collagen decreases over time. Collagen is a protein that builds our entire body, and in an anti-aging context, collagen is crucial to restoring youthfulness, suppleness, and hydration.


Simply put, collagen is vital to maintaining your skin’s health, vitality, and firmness.

Do you need a collagen supplement?

Skincare products can absolutely turn on the collagen “engine” and rebuild collagen growth over time, but we must stimulate collagen production at the cellular level to trigger the cells that boost collagen production. 


Collagen supplements are animal-derived sources of broken-down collagen. They also contain vitamin C, zinc, and copper which are necessary for collagen production. Ingesting collagen is one of the best ways to replenish your skin because collagen is a large molecule that must be broken down into smaller amino acids by the digestive system. You cannot receive collagen through topical products, such as a skin cream that contains collagen. The molecule is too big to pass through and won’t be integrated into your dermis.


Getting a collagen supply into your body is critical, whether through supplements or diet. Supplements help keep collagen building blocks present in the body, which can then be used to repair and replenish the skin.


The key is to pair collagen supplements with a comprehensive and consistent skincare regimen. Regardless of the amount of supplements and diet you are consuming, exposing your skin to the sun without protection will hasten the loss of collagen.

Do I recommend collagen supplements?

I personally use Vital Proteins, but without the idea that it will keep my skin young forever. I know that supplements give me a rich source of essential amino acids and other nutrients necessary for enhancing collagen production. When I consistently take collagen supplements to boost my skincare efforts, my nails and hair grow faster and I notice an overall vibrancy.

How does the skincare fit in when it comes to stimulating collagen production?

The entire reason for putting skincare products on your face is to get your cells to produce collagen again. If you’re not using a product that gets down to the cellular level and triggers the cells that boost collagen production, you are wasting your time and money.


When I formulated the Trifecta I wanted to develop a product that stimulated collagen for the long run, and was easy enough to use every day to reverse collagen loss over time. My simple, easy-to-follow skincare routine helps people reverse the signs of age while achieving luminous, supple skin. These products were built around the core concept of getting the body to produce collagen again at a whole new level.


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5 comments


  • Customer Support Team

    Hi Sharon,
    Vital proteins can be purchased at many large retailers. Check out their website to find one near you!

    https://www.vitalproteins.com/collections/collagen/products/collagen-peptides?utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=us_core_20200504_brand—-acquisition-brand_vp-exact-match_all_3&utm_term=conversion&utm_content=brand-search&device=c&keyword=vital%20proteins&matchtype=e&adposition=&gad_source=1&gclid=CjwKCAiAxreqBhAxEiwAfGfndA6aj_sGQd40_Ackgwn6ZZfVm7SSmhkxCyekLUKy_sEr8FsuG1A6EBoCchoQAvD_BwE


  • Sharon

    Where can I purchase the collagen supplements that you use & recommend?

    Thank you.


  • KaramMD Customer Support Team

    Hi Karen,

    Vital Proteins is the brand of collagen supplements that Dr.Karam uses and recommends!


  • Karen Wesman

    What vital proteins do you recommend for aging skin


  • Ida Switzer

    Thank you Dr Karam,
    I thoroughly enjoy listening to your podcasts and especially your clarity on the topic of collagen. I have been a patient of yours for over 10years and make my home in Canada. I am doing most of what you explain in your video especially the stringent use of excellent products to keep my skin youthful. I dont have access to good appliance use eg: microneedling, laser peels etc. I am happy that you mentioned them so I undertand better their application
    Sincerely,
    Ida

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