Nutrition is known to influence skin condition and function.  There are a wide range of supplements that have been reported to have beneficial effects on the skin.

Skin dryness and an accelerated fragmentation of the collagen network in the dermis are hallmarks of skin aging. Nutrition is a key factor influencing skin health and consequently its appearance. A wide range of dietary supplements is offered to improve skin health. Collagen peptides are used as a bioactive ingredient in nutricosmetic products and have been shown in preclinical studies to improve skin barrier function, to induce the synthesis of collagen and hyaluronic acid, and to promote fibroblast growth and migration.

Collagen peptides are natural bioactive ingredients used in many nutricosmetic products, orally taken nutritional supplements which provide skin health and beauty benefits. Collagen peptides present as a mix of specific peptides of different length with high abundance of the amino acids hydroxyproline, glycine, and proline, which are produced by enzymatic hydrolysis of native collagen extracted from animal connective tissues. Hydroxyproline is unique to collagen and can be used analytically to differentiate collagen from other proteins. Collagen peptides are efficiently digested into di- and tripeptides, which are resistant to further intracellular hydrolysis.[2] peptides are transported across the intestinal mucosa by the transporter PEPT- 1.  In humans, hydroxyproline containing di- and tripeptides have been shown to appear one hour after ingestion of collagen peptides at nanomolar concentrations in the blood.  Investigations using radioactively labeled collagen peptides have demonstrated that the absorbed peptides reach the skin and are retained in the tissue for up to 2 weeks.

A growing body of evidence demonstrates the efficacy of collagen peptides to improve parameters of skin physiology in preclinical studies. Collagen peptides were shown to increase hyaluronic acid production in dermal fibroblasts and to improve skin barrier function by increasing the water content of the stratum corneum. Further, collagen peptides induce the synthesis of collagen on the mRNA and protein level  as well as the production of stronger collagen fibrils,22 promote growth of skin fibroblasts, and induce fibroblast migration. In contrast, clinical evidence for the efficacy of collagen peptides on human skin is still scarce.

There have been two clinical trials conducted showing the increase of skin hydration and the quantitative and qualitative improvement of the collagen dermal network upon oral supplementation of collagen peptides. Investigations in human ex vivo skin biopsies demonstrated that collagen peptides induce collagen as well as hyaluronic acid production. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of clinical evidence for the efficacy of collagen peptides to improve the dermal collagen fragmentation and thus to counteract a hallmark of skin aging.

The studies were performed using specific collagen peptides of fish origin (Peptan”F) and porcine origin (Peptan”P) with an average molecular weight of 2000–5000 Da. All products were provided by Rousselot.  The dosage was 10 g of peptide.

Oral collagen peptide supplementation significantly increased skin hydration after 8 weeks of intake. The collagen density in the dermis significantly increased and the fragmentation of the dermal collagen network significantly decreased already after 4 weeks of supplementation. Both effects persisted after 12 weeks. Ex vivo experiments demonstrated that collagen peptides induce collagen as well as glycosaminoglycan production, offering a mechanistic explanation for the observed clinical effects. Conclusion The oral supplementation with collagen peptides is efficacious to improve hallmarks of skin aging


About the Author

Jacine Greenwood

Jacine Greenwood is an internationally recognised educator who is known within the industry for her up to date knowledge and her ability to deliver training in an easy to understand method.

Jacine holds 6 Diplomas and a Bachelor of Nursing and her knowledge is well respected by her peers.  With over 22 years experience in the industry and a background of cosmetic formulation, Jacine has an immense knowledge of current trends in research and new developments in the industry.

Jacine has been continually educating herself in all aspects of skin function and cosmetic chemistry for the past 21 years.  Jacine’s knowledge is current and has a vast knowledge   of the active ingredients that are being released onto the market.



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