8 Best Collagen Supplements of 2024

Collagen peptides are one of the trendiest dietary supplements of 2022 and is one of the Amazon best sellers under the 'Health & Household' category. Why is it becoming so popular?

Collagen is the most abundant protein in the human body, and it plays an important role in skin and bone health. Collagen peptides are broken down collagen that’s easier for your body to absorb.

best collagen peptides
Source of figure: Frank Geisler (MediDesign)

The primary function of collagen is to help tissues withstand stretching. Although collagen loss starts between the ages of 18 and 29, after age 40, the body can lose around 1% per year. At around age 80, collagen production can decrease 75% overall in comparison to that of young adults (Source). This is where collagen peptides supplements and powders come in.

However, since collagen has recently become so popular, countless new dietary supplements have begun to flood the market and it may be difficult to pick the right one.

Where to buy collagen peptides? We've rounded up the best collagen peptides available online below.

Note that research on collagen supplements is fairly new, and not enough studies have been done to support the many claims that can be found on bottles. So, keep this lack of conclusive research in mind when you consider product claims on efficacy. Always speak to your healthcare provider before adding a supplement—including collagen—to your routine.

According to Consumers Survey, "Amazon is a fantastic marketplace and resource for many consumers, but sadly relying only on Amazon reviews can be tricky. That's because up to 60% of reviews on Amazon were paid for by shady third party companies. So when it comes to shopping on Amazon, just make sure to be extra vigilant and take it with a grain of salt."

Best Collagen Peptides

best collagen supplement

Best Collagen Peptides Overall: Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides Powder on Amazon

The grass-fed bovine collagen also includes vitamin C and hyaluronic acid to promote collagen absorption and promotion. In addition to protein, your body also needs vitamin C to help it form collagen.

Best collagen supplement for seniors: Thorne Collagen Plus Powder

Made with a blend of polyphenols and 13 g of bovine collagen per serving, Thorne Collagen Plus is formulated to support the health of your hair, skin and nails.

In addition to collagen, it features nicotinamide riboside, a compound that stimulates the production of a coenzyme called nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide, which can promote healthy aging and cellular repair. This berry-flavored powder is sweetened with stevia and free of gluten, dairy and soy.

It’s manufactured in a facility that adheres to the CGMPs and is certified by NSF. Thorne is also certified by the Therapeutic Goods Administration, an Australian government agency that is responsible for ensuring the safety of supplements.

Best Post-Workout: Physician's CHOICE Collagen Peptides Powder on Amazon

Ideal for post-workout drinks, it contains 14 essential amino acids and digestive enzymes to promote healthy skin and nails.

Best collagen peptides for skin and Best Keto: Ancient Nutrition Multi Collagen

Collagen peptides aren’t just for muscle strength. Your skin uses collagen to retain elasticity and softness: for this purpose, we recommend Ancient Nutrition Multi Collagen, thanks to its unusually wide variety of collagen sources which help support better absorption and bioavailability.

DEVELOPED BY DR. JOSH AXE: Author of Keto Diet. With 9 grams of protein, 10.2 grams of collagen, 35 calories, and no carbs and sugars, it's ideal for those on the ketogenic diet.

Best collagen peptides for joints: Essential Elements Collagen Peptides

Essential Elements provides types I and III collagen from grass-fed cows that’s independently tested for purity. Whether you’re striving to keep your joints strong, or trying to tamp down on joint inflammation, it’s a great pick.


Best collagen peptides for gut health: Live Conscious Collagen Peptides

Collagen peptides help with gut health by providing concentrated doses of amino acids—that’s why we recommend Live Conscious Collagen Peptides for gut health, with its highly bioavailable hydrolyzed form of collagen peptides, derived from pasture-raised and grass-fed cows.
A solid choice if you enjoy tropical flavors, the powder has 15 grams of marine-based collagen to support bones and joints.

Best Flavored Collagen Peptides: Obvi Collagen Peptides on Amazon

Despite its sweet taste, the powder is sugar free and only 31 calories per serving.

What Is Collagen?

Collagen is a protein that aids in strengthening skin, bone and other tissues. There are at least 16 different types of collagen, and 80% to 90% of collagen in the body are types I, II or III[1].

While collagen is plentiful within the bodies of mammals, research shows natural collagen production decreases with age and lifestyle factors ranging from excessive sun exposure to smoking to lack of sleep. Research shows declining collagen production can result in changes like loss of skin firmness and elasticity, as well as bone loss.

As a result, many people use collagen supplements in an effort to offset natural collagen loss. Collagen supplements often come in powder form, which can be mixed with water or coffee, or as a pill, tablet, gummy or liquid.

Types of Collagen Supplements: Peptides and Gelatin

The collagen used in supplements is extracted from two primary sources: Animals and plants. Animal-based collagen typically comes from fish scales, pork or chicken skin, bone broth or egg whites. Plant-based collagen supplements are often manufactured using modified yeast and bacteria.

Collagen supplements are typically available in the following forms:
  • Peptides: Also known as hydrolyzed, this form features shorter chains of collagen that are broken down and more easily absorbed. Most collagen supplements come in this form.
  • Gelatin: Gelatin is essentially a degraded, cooked form of collagen. It can be made from cooking down animal bones, skin and cartilage. When offered in supplement form, it often appears as a gel and can be added as a thickening agent when cooking.

How Does the Body Make Collagen?

All proteins are made up of tiny molecules called amino acids. When you eat protein, your body breaks it down into its individual amino acids. It then uses those amino acids, along with amino acids it can produce on its own, to make new proteins.

“Amino acids are like building blocks, and the body puts some of them together in a specific pattern to form collagen,” says Lauri Wright, PhD, an associate professor of nutrition at the University of North Florida in Jacksonville. The three amino acids most prevalent in the formation of collagen are glycine, proline, and hydroxyproline.

Although collagen is found naturally in animal foods, your body can still make it if you don’t eat meat, dairy, or eggs. “As long as you eat a variety of plant proteins—such as legumes, soy, and quinoa—you will get all the essential amino acids your body needs to build collagen,” Wright says.

In addition to protein, your body also needs vitamin C, zinc, and copper to help it form collagen. “Vitamin C is especially important to regulate the synthesis of collagen,” Wright says. Vitamin C is plentiful in citrus fruits, bell peppers, and broccoli. You can get copper and zinc from nuts, seeds, and whole grains.

Does Eating More Collagen Build Your Collagen Reserves?

There’s no doubt that having ample collagen in your body is important. But the question remains as to whether taking supplements or eating foods that contain collagen translates directly to more collagen in your body. All protein you consume, collagen included, is processed by your body in the same way.

“Whether you ingest a collagen supplement or a steak, the body recognizes them as protein and breaks them down into amino acids in the digestive system,” says Maritza Perez, MD, clinical professor of dermatology at New York City’s Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai and member of the Skin of Color Society board of directors. “There’s no guarantee that when you eat collagen, those amino acids will wind up in the skin [or ligaments] and produce collagen.”

Supplement proponents argue that in order for your body to make more collagen, it needs more of the specific amino acids (namely glycine and proline) the body uses to build collagen. How do you get more of those amino acids? By consuming more collagen. Many supplements and collagen-enhanced foods use hydrolyzed collagen (also called collagen peptides).

“There is some evidence the body can absorb these and use them to rebuild tissue,” says Donald K. Layman, PhD, professor emeritus in the food science and human nutrition department at the University of Illinois in Urbana. “Collagen also contains unique levels of glycine, an amino acid that may stimulate growth hormone, improving collagen synthesis.”

Collagen is found in meat, poultry, fish, egg whites, and gelatin, as well as in stock or bone broth. The latter two are made from simmering animal bones for several hours, which leads to the collagen in the bones being released into the liquid.

But if you are concerned that you are not getting enough collagen from your diet, you could consider taking a collagen supplement.

Regular collagen vs hydrolyzed collagen: What's the Difference?

You’ll see this term quite a bit in collagen descriptions below: hydrolyzed. Hydrolyzed collagen has been broken down into smaller molecules. It may be easier for your body to digest and absorb than regular collagen.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the best collagen powder to use?

Because of the wide variety of collagen powders out there, the best collagen powder is one that fits your personal needs.

What is collagen good for?

Collagen is a protein that aids in the strengthening of skin, bone and other tissues. Collagen supplements have been shown to decrease joint pain and improve joint mobility, as well as help with skin elasticity. However, more high-quality studies need to be done to verify these initial results.

Can you take a collagen supplement on keto?

Since a collagen supplement is typically low in carbs and high in protein, it can normally fit into a ketogenic diet program.

However, it’s important to look for a collagen supplement that does not include added sugar and is lower in carbs. Keto-specific collagen powder is also available on Amazon and other online retailers.

What age should you start taking collagen?

Adults can supplement with collagen at any age.

Where does collagen come from?

Collagen is found in the flesh, cartilage and bone of animals.

How long does it take for collagen powder to work?

The amount of time it takes to experience noticeable benefits after taking collagen supplements can vary. However, some research suggests that collagen supplements could improve skin elasticity and hydration within just 4–12 weeks. (PubMed)

Are collagen supplements safe?

Collagen supplements are generally considered safe and are associated with few negative side effects when used as directed.

However, to ensure safety, it’s important to purchase products that have been tested by an independent lab whenever possible. Additionally, be sure to consult a healthcare professional before adding any new supplements to your routine.

Are collagen supplements good for reducing wrinkles?

Some research suggests that collagen could help slow down signs of aging.

In fact, one review of 19 studies concluded that hydrolyzed collagen supplements could:
  • reduce skin aging
  • decrease wrinkles
  • improve skin elasticity after 90 days
Can collagen supplements help tighten saggy skin?

There is limited research on whether collagen can tighten skin. However, some studies have found that collagen supplements could potentially improve the appearance of saggy skin by improving:
  • skin elasticity
  • hydration
  • texture
Is there a vegan source of collagen?

Because collagen is derived from animal products, there are no vegan-friendly sources of collagen.

Some older research suggests that vegan collagen could be produced using genetically modified yeast and bacteria. However, more studies are needed, and vegan collagen supplements are not yet readily available.

However, several vegan-friendly collagen-boosting supplements are already on the market. These usually contain ingredients that support collagen production, such as vitamin C.

Alternatively, you can consume more vitamin C-rich foods, such as fruits and vegetables, to help naturally promote collagen production.

Key Takeaway

Taking a collagen supplement can be an easy and effective way to help promote better skin.

Plenty of products are available, containing a range of dosages and a variety of ingredients.

When deciding which supplement is right for you, consider:
  • the type of supplement
  • additional ingredients
  • the dosage
  • whether the product has undergone third-party testing
As with any supplement, consult a healthcare professional before adding collagen to your treatment regimen, especially if you have any underlying health conditions.

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