Collagen: My Ultimate Anti-Ageing Essential

I said I’d never smoke, I hated everything about it I watched my mum smoke all my life and I couldn’t stand the smell, the nicotine stained fingers and all the health issues that came with it. And then when I was 20 I met a guy who smoked, on the first date which happened to be a blind date (in more ways than one – I must have gone blind) I was incredibly nervous and when offered a cigarette I took it. I couldn’t inhale it and almost choked – but I kept up the lie and soon I was hooked and after the relationship ended I was still smoking. Once I realised I could smoke 30 cigarettes in a day and more if I had a drink I knew it was time to stop. Roll on 2 years and I’ve quit but I occasionally still have a couple when I have a drink. This (ok not only this but it was one of the biggest factors) lead me to my obsession with ageing and trying to counteract the damage. 

Photo by Irina Kostenich on Unsplash

I don’t mind growing older as long I don’t look older, this might sound crazy because the odds are very much stacked against me, but I can try all the same. As much as our genes determine our personal ageing process our lifestyles have a huge impact on the way our skin looks, the elasticity in the skin starts to decrease as we age, and this terrifies me. After doing a lot of research and training as a beauty therapist – specialising in skincare I found the miracle that is collagen, of course, I knew of it before this, but I didn’t know there were pills, powders, serums and numerous treatments that could help produce more! 

As a nation we are obsessed with anti-ageing, look through any magazine or watch the tv and you can’t miss that every second advert is in some way related to this multi-billion-pound industry. Companies want to make money and it’s no breaking news that the promises made by the beauty industry can sometimes be misleading – those glitzy adverts are made to draw us in and it works! - In 2015, the global anti-ageing market was estimated to be worth 140.3 billion U.S. dollars. The industry is estimated to see a compound annual growth rate of 7.5 percent between 2016 and 2021. It reminds us that there is no escape from growing older but are these so-called anti-age potions worth the hype (and the hefty price tag)? But is there something already in our bodies that we can help keep us looking younger for longer? Yes, I’m talking about that precious gem – collagen. 

Photo by Lesly Juarez on Unsplash

Collagen is a protein and its found in our muscles, bones, blood vessels, digestive system and tendons. When it comes to our joints and tendons, it’s basically the “glue” that helps hold the body together. However, it’s more wildly known as what gives our skin its strength, elasticity and that ‘baby face’ look along with replacing dead skin cells but sadly this protein naturally depletes as we age (experts say from 40 onwards) but our choices can also have an adverse effect - things such as stress, sugar, alcohol, UVA, and (mutters under breath) smoking among the top culprits. 

Obviously, we can’t do much about stress and we’re never going to be able to live without sugar completely but rather than slathering your skin with expensive creams and serums (which simply cannot penetrate to the level we need them too) what if there was an easier way (and cheaper in the long run) to top up your collagen levels? 

Collagen tablets are fast becoming the top choice for beauty professionals and women alike, what first seemed like an unattainable product can now be found at your local skincare haul and the results have been fascinating. One of the most popular being beauty within by boots, in their study 80% said they had improved the appearance of fine lines, 79% said it improved the appearance of wrinkles and 84% agreed it improved their skin texture. Gold Collagen is one of the most well-known producers of collagen supplements from liquid shots to tablets, they have been scientifically proven to improve skin hydration levels (+12% in 3 weeks) and improve skin suppleness (+20% in 9 weeks). Their full study results can be found here.  

One double-blind study by youththeory found that women who took collagen peptide for 8 weeks saw a 20% reduction in their wrinkles. The study also found that consuming collagen helped improve skin elasticity and moisture. 

I can only speak for myself but as a user of Gold Collagen myself I can very much say that I have seen a huge difference in my skin – suppleness being a biggie. Supplements aren’t for everyone and they certainly aren’t the one and only answer – a diet high in natural collagen and healthy lifestyle choices go a long way in improving skins appearance but they are a good helping hand especially in current times when getting all our needs from food and a stress-free life (yeah right!) is sometimes not possible.

Plus, I’m still asked for ID! I know, I know – that’s not scientifically proven but hey at 26 and a few smokers years behind me I’m not complaining.