What Type of Collagen Do I Need?
Types of Collagen:
There are numerous types of collagen found in the body, and, numerous amino collagen supplements on the market. When it comes to choosing a collagen supplement, you should first know what part of the body you want to benefit.
- Type I Collagen
Skin, hair, nails, organs, bone, ligaments.
- Type II Collagen
Cartilage and joints.
- Type III Collagen
Gut and organs.
For skin and beauty (i.e. anti-aging), Type I Collagen is considered to be the best.
Research in dermatology has shown that when type I collagen is increased, the results are visible in the skin. (see Collagen Supplement Studies below)
Related: Benefits of Collagen Supplements
Sources of Collagen:
Dietary collagen is available from the following sources:
- Marine (fish)
- PROS: Marie collagen peptides, from fish skins, are considered to be superior in raising overall body collagen (Type 1) and improving skin, hair, nail, and bone quality for a number of reasons. More about marine collagen. (2)
- CONS: Wild caught fish collagen peptides generally cost more than other sources of collagen.
- Bovine (cow)
- PROS: Bovine collagen peptides are usually lower cost, and can provide good results. These comprise a wide array of collagen supplements on the market due to the high accessibility of of bovine materials.
- CONS: Lower absorption makes bovine collagen less effective than marine collagens. Also, bovine collagen comes with higher risk depending on how the cows were raised. For this reason, we only recommend products from grass fed cows.
- Porcine (pig)
- PROS: Like bovine products, pig collagen peptides are usually lower cost, and comprise a wide array of collagen supplements on the market due to the high accessibility of of porcine materials.
- CONS: For the same reasons as bovine, including some individuals have personal or religious restraints pertaining to pig products.
- Fowl (chicken)
- PROS: Chicken collagen peptides are known to be most effective for supporting cartilage in the body. For this reason, type II collagen supplements are usually derived from chicken.
- CONS: Not considered effective at raising overall body collagen levels, or as an ingredient in a beauty supplement.
- What to Look For:
- Vitamin C
Vitamin C plays a critical role in collagen synthesis.(9). When taken orally, as well as applied topically, it activates the body's own mechanisms for producing collagen.
- Hyaluronic Acid
HA is shown to have a
durable effect to retain moisture in the skin from inside the body.(10) In a double-blind, 4 week study, individuals who added hyaluronic acid to their diet showed significant reductions in skin dryness, wrinkles, and improvements in skin moisture and fullness.
(Asethetic Dermatology Vol.12 :109~120, 2002)
Read about HA on Amazon
- Vitamin C
- What to Avoid:
- Collagen supplements with fillers (i.e. maltodextrin), flavors or sugars, oils, artificial ingredients, and unnecessary ingredients should be avoided. Basically, read the label to make your judgment.
- Branched-Chain Amino Acids, while effective with aiding recovey from muscle trauma, will not offer significant benefit in raising overall body collagen (Type 1).(7)
Because of the dramatic "anti-aging" results, we consider that Vitamin C and Hyaluronic Acid are absolutely integral ingredients for maximizing the benefits of a collagen supplement.
While other ingredients, such as, CoQ10, glucosamine, and arginine may be beneficial on their own, the inclusion of these low-value ingredients in a collagen supplement may add a lot of cost relative to the benefit they can provide in the formula itself.
While most dietary collagen taken on a daily basis can benefit your health, not all collagen supplements will bring maximum results for beauty. Knowing the types of collagen, sources of collagen, and supporting ingredients of these supplements will help you make an informed decision when it comes to choosing the right supplement.
See the Comparison Guide below.
Product Comparison Guide
The following comparison values may help you make your decision when choosing a collagen supplement. Since there are too many collagen supplements to list them all, we have comprised a chart which includes the main supplements of interest (rated 4 stars or higher). The information above can help guide your decision for other collagen supplements which are not listed on this chart.
(Information on this chart deemed accurate as of October 2013 based on online research)
DISCLAIMER: Prices are based on published MSRP (as of: Oct 2018). Pros and Con, and opinions herein, are the opinions of Elavonne experts and their conclusions based on provided scientific and dermatologic research. Reviews are excerpts found on manufacturer or distributor websites from verified purchases.