Collagen is the structural protein that keeps your skin firm and lifted. Its loss can account for the development of fine lines, sagging, and loss of volume. And past your late 20s, you’re constantly losing your natural supply..
Everyone’s collagen depletion rate is different: Lifestyle and environmental factors all play a huge role, as do genetics.
How much collagen you lose annually
How much collagen you lose annually is influenced by several factors, most notably your age: Starting in your mid to late 20s, the balance between how much you produce and how much you’re losing tips. Our bodies always balance collagen production and degradation. When we’re young, our bodies produce more collagen than we break down. That balance tips the wrong way with age since tissue regeneration decreases.
After you pass this threshold (which is influenced by genetics), you lose about 1% of your collagen every year. But this isn’t the only thing that influences the rate of your collagen loss. For starters, several habits accelerate collagen’s depletion.
Smoking and unprotected UV exposure are the major factors.
One study observed collagen under UV light and found that there was a significant decrease in collagen structure afterward.
As for smoking, it’s obviously problematic for a myriad of reasons, but for the skin, smoking decreases the amount of oxygen delivered to tissues. Therefore, tissue cannot regenerate and is more likely to become denigrated.
But other habits to look out for can be quite insidious: everyday stress, high-sugar diets, inadequate sleep, and even using too aggressive topical ingredients can all contribute to collagen loss.
Finally, hormones and major (life-stage-related) shifts in hormone production will alter your collagen production. Particularly menopause. People who experience menopause see a dramatic drop (~30%) in collagen production during that time.
What can you do about it?
First and foremost, address any and all lifestyle changes: Quit smoking. Be smart about sun protection. Adjust your diet as needed. Find ways to lower your stress. Get in your eight hours each night. Use skin and collagen supporting topicals.
Additionally, you can take collagen supplements to support your natural production. Collagen peptides have been shown to help promote your body’s natural production of collagen and other molecules that make up the skin, like elastin and fibrillin, by supporting the fibroblasts.
Robust research has shown that you are able to improve your skin’s appearance as a result of collagen peptides. For example, one double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled clinical trial found that participants’ moisture levels in the skin were 7 times higher than those who did not take collagen supplements.
Another rigorous clinical trial found that when a small group of women took a collagen supplement that was also formulated with hyaluronic acid and a few other actives, they experienced a significantly smoother appearance of wrinkles.
The Vintage Salon Team x