Collagen Supplements - The Double Edged Sword
The recognition that our diet and what we eat has an impact not only on our health, but also on our skin and gut microbiome, has never been more acknowledged. Many clients when treating their skin often look for internal supplements to support and assist what they are doing topically.
Collagen has been renowned as a fountain of youth for years, with eastern countries regularly consuming foods rich in collagen. And with influencers like Kourtney Kardashian, starting her day with a hot collagen beverage; is it any wonder that collagen supplements are on the rise. Collagen is what holds the body together - our skin and our joints.
So … Do they actually work?
Some do and some don’t. Collagen is normally a large molecule and is not absorbed easily. However, some companies have processed it in a way that makes absorption easy. Verisol is the trademarked name of a collagen that has proven double blind studies showing efficacy.
However, whilst collagen supplements have great benefit for anti-aging, they are the archnemesis of acne clients. What most people don’t realise is that collagen supplements will make acne way worse.
Collagen supplements contain Branch Chain Amino Acids or BCAA as they are often known. These amino acids contain Leucine, Valine and Isoleucine. These three amino acids are a problem for acne skins.
Individuals doing gym or personal training are often recommended BCAA supplements because they are a building block for protein and muscle. BCAA supplements also reduce fatigue after a strenuous workout by reducing the amount of seratonin your brain produces. However, they make your skin cells proliferate more, which causes acne. Leucine in particular is extremely bad as it makes the skin produce more sebum, causing an increase in inflammation and acne bacteria.
If you are trying to reduce the signs of aging and you are acne prone, we do not recommend you using a collagen supplement at all. The amino acids in it activate pathways in the skin that put your oil glands on over drive. These are the same pathways that are activated from high glycaemic foods and the western diet.
The best anti-aging serums to boost collagen and elastin production that are acne safe are the following:
Vitaskin – Contains nanogold which reduces wrinkle depth by up to 55% in 4 weeks, as well as N-Acetyl Glucosamine, that has a visible firming effect on the skin. This all-rounder is great especially for those who are acne prone, as it has other actives that will assist with breakouts.
Peptide Finisher – Also contains nanogold but has another ingredient called Ribose which increases the oxygenation and energy of the skin, with a significant reduction in the appearance of wrinkles within 14 days.
Agave Dew – Our superstar serum that instantly works to reduce expression lines. Within days the skin takes on a radiant glow. Dubbed by our clients as “Botox in a bottle”, this remarkable serum quickly erases the look of aging off the face.
Cellular Defence – Our powerhouse vitamin c serum that contains 4 types of vitamin c. Packed with a powerful peptide that reduces expression lines over a period of time, it smooths the surface of the skin and erases the appearance of sun damage from the skin. Skin is left brighter and more even in skin tone.