06 Apr What is Collagen and How Can I Get My Skin to Make More
What is Collagen? Why is it so important?
Collagen basically holds your body together. It is a fibrous protein that makes up one third of the protein in the human body. It is found mostly in skin, bones and connective tissue.
There are at least 16 types of collagen, but over 80% in the body are types 1,2 and 3. Type 1 fibres are especially strong – stronger than steel, gram for gram!
Like in so many things, a balanced diet and exercise plan will definitely help boost collagen production.
So What Messes With Your Collagen?
High sugar consumption in your diet – makes collagen dry and brittle.
Smoking– damages both collagen and elastin.
Sunlight– UV light breaks down collagen and stimulates abnormal elastin.
Ageing – Changes in your hormone levels. These can change long before actual menopause. While we are young, the body consistently makes collagen. But this production drops off after about 40 years of age, even further after 60. And we can see what happens – skin sags, gets less springy, or less elastic, and lines and wrinkles become more visible. In our body, cartilage in joints weakens, and aches and pains begin.
You can see why glowing healthy skin is a result of looking after your body in a holistic way.
How Can I Get My Skin to Make More Collagen?
Lets not forget a healthy diet and exercise.
But what can be done directly to skin to stimulate collagen?
Collagen molecules are too large to be absorbed through the skin. Beware of creams and serums that may claim to have collagen in them. These are really not going to make more collagen in your skin. Any improvement in skin from these kind of products will most likely be from a moisturising effect – nothing to do with boosted collagen. There are ingredients though that can push your cells to make more collagen. Ingredients such as Vitamin A and more recently Growth Factor Serums.
Make sure that you check the research that has been done on any particular brand. Just listing Vitamin A in a product does not make it effective, or absorbable. This is where professional advice from a Skin Care Provider can help you.
Microneedling and Lasers can be the Boot-Camp for your skin. The roots of Microneedling were with Dr. Michael Pistor, a Frenchman who developed mesotherapy in 1952. In The 1990’s Dr. Des Fernandez introduced the dermal roller and presented dramatic results for lip lines. Now we have needling pens that are effective for lines, scars, pigmentation and redness. All by boosting that Collagen!
Lasers are constantly being improved and refined. Resurfacing CO2 lasers were the first used on skin. They did get rid of lines and pigment but at a cost – translucent pale tight looking skin that didnt look quite normal, along with stop start lines where the face joined the neck. Now we have much finer ability in laser peeling, as well as fractitional lasers. Fractitional lasers aim to get better change with less downtime. By causing controlled heating or burning of the skin we can again boost your skins collagen production with added resurfacing if needed. Halo laser by the Sciton company is the first hybrid fractitional laser. It has 2 different laser wavelengths working at once to improve effectiveness.