Growing old can be tough, especially when it starts to show up as unsightly wrinkles, sagging skin, thinning hair, and brittle nails. But what if there were a way to nutritionally fight back against these visible signs of aging with clean, high-quality ingredients, that didn’t come with a hefty price tag?

The good news is there is, and it’s called collagen.

Collagen: A Building Block of Life 

A fundamental building block of life, collagen is what your body uses to maintain strong and healthy bones, tendons, teeth, skin, joints, cartilage, nails, and hair. And the latest science suggests that adding more of it to your diet could be one of nature’s keys to staying forever young.  

While collagen is naturally produced by your body in abundance during youth, like many other things it tends to decline with age. This is what leads to those unwelcome physical changes both inside and out that eventually lead to failing health. 

The most abundant protein in the human body [1], collagen is an integral part of human existence. Without it, your body would quite literally fall apart, which is essentially what happens with the passage of time as you grow old – but it doesn’t have to be this way. 

Even though your body produces less collagen the older you get, you can effectively fill the gap by including more of it in your diet. By doing this, you can better your chances of living a long, healthy, and vibrant life. 

Different Types of Collagen and What They Do in the Body

What is collagen, exactly? Simply put, it’s the most basic form of protein that your body uses to stay strong and robust. Science has discovered 28 different forms of collagen [2], five of which are considered to be among the most useful for supporting healthy skin, hair, and nails.

Collagen Types I, II, and III are considered to be the primary structural fibrils of bodily tissue, while the others act more in a secondary capacity to connect and integrate these primary fibrils to other components within the body. 

Collagen Type I is the most abundant form of collagen in the body. It is found mostly in tendons and functions as a structural support for hair, skin, nails, blood vessels, and teeth. Type III is the second most abundant form of collagen, providing support for Type I [3]. Type II also helps the others and is most prominently found in joint cartilage [4]. 

Collagen Type IV is somewhat rare, constituting the “basement membrane” that underlies epithelial and endothelial cells. It also acts as a barrier between tissue compartments, aiding in the filtration of kidneys and other organs [5].  

Collagen Type V is a more fiber-like variety found mainly in the interstitial matrices of the muscles, liver, lungs, and placenta, as well as in hair. 

Collagen Type X is closely associated with bone and cartilage formation and growth. It’s most typically found in the calcified zone of articular cartilage of long bones, where it helps in the calcification process key to bone health [6].

How Collagen Can Help You Look and Feel Your Best 

Because collagen is such an important building block for your bones, skin, hair and nails, it makes sense that taking a good, complete collagen supplement (such as AnnieMak’s Clean Multi Collagens Anti-Aging Blend) could help to improve the elasticity and structural integrity of your hair and skin while also enhancing the strength and growth rate of your nails. 

Collagen and Your Skin 

Collagen Type I has specifically been shown to improve skin’s tautness while keeping it hydrated and free of wrinkles [7]. It also aids in wound healing, helping to prevent visible scars following an injury [8]. 

Collagen Types II and IV also support skin health, the latter forming in sheets rather than the tight helix structure formed by other collagen types. Collagen Type IV is especially beneficial in the formation of a deep skin layer known as the basal lamina, which separates the outer layers of skin from the inner layers of the body [9]. 

Collagen Type V further supports the healthy formation and maintenance of other skin layers that are not specifically supported by the others. Together, each type contributes in its own unique way to optimized skin health

Collagen and Your Hair

As for hair, collagen provides many of the amino acids necessary to build healthy keratin, this being the protein from which hair is made [10]. While any protein you consume is eventually broken down and used to help build or repair hair proteins, proline, one of the three primary non-essential amino acids found in collagen, is said to be the most useful. 

Proline-rich collagen, in other words, just might be exactly what your hair needs to look its best, especially since it fight the free radicals that damage cells, proteins, DNA, and hair follicles [11].  

Since your body’s natural defenses against free radical damage decline with age right alongside collagen production, consuming collagen, a powerful antioxidant, can help to combat this, resulting in thicker, fuller hair [12]. 

Each hair root on your head grows in what is known as the dermis, or middle layer of your skin. Since collagen makes up about 70 percent of the dermis, consuming more of it could help to provide added strength, effectively slowing the thinning of hair that comes with aging [13]. 

Studies have also shown that collagen plays an important role in keeping hair from turning gray. Since collagen helps to fight the damaging free radicals that lead to graying hair, adding more of it to your diet could help to protect your hair’s natural color as you age, resulting in a more youthful look

Collagen and Your Nails

As for brittle, slow-growing nails, one study found that taking bioactive collagen peptides resulted in a 12 percent growth rate increase along with a 42 percent decrease in the frequency of breakage. Nearly two-thirds of participants reported significant improvements in brittle nails, while 88 percent saw such improvements in just four weeks [14]. 

Consider Collagen Supplementation

Photo showing powdered collagen supplement and a glass of water.

Because your body’s natural collagen production slows down as you age, it’s important to consider taking a collagen supplement to help replace what your body no longer produces. But not just any collagen supplement will do… 

Collagen peptides, also known as hydrolyzed collagen, are unique in that they’re about as bioavailable as it gets. Hydrolyzation is a process that breaks collagen down into smaller parts called “peptides” that are easily digested and absorbed by the body. This means that when you take them, your body quickly and easily absorbs them for rapid integration into whatever tissue, tendon, cartilage, joint, or other structure needs them for optimization. 

AnnieMak’s Clean Multi Collagens Anti-Aging Blend contains five key forms of collagen (Types I, II, III, V and X) in one easy-to-take formula, along with other anti-aging nutrients such as acerola cherry, silica from organic horsetail, zinc gluconate, vitamin B6, tryptophan, and camu camu berry that enhance its function. Try it today and see how quickly you notice the difference that healthy collagen levels can make to your skin, hair, nails, and overall vitality!