Originating in Asia, liquid collagen first started popping up on our shores all the way back in 2012. Since then, the hype around these supplements has exploded, with tons of products hitting shelves everywhere from your local drugstore to VitaminWorld. Some women, eager to share their newfound "miracle" product, are now throwing collagen-drinking parties. Botox parties are so 2008, you guys.
The theory behind these beauty elixirs is that by drinking the collagen-and-vitamin cocktails on the daily, you'll help boost collagen production in your skin, which will in turn lead to a healthier, younger complexion. That's all well and good except for, you know, science.
This also holds true for eating collagen directly — say, from something like a pig's foot. One R29 editor's mother swears by eating a pig's foot each week to help keep her skin radiant. Other than grossing out her daughter, turns out this isn't technically doing her skin any good. In fact, according to Dr. Schultz, the recipient cells receiving the broken-down amino acids don't recognize if that collagen came from a liquid collagen drink or a hamburger — protein is protein to them.
If you really want to have any sort of impact on collagen production, Schultz says your best bet is increasing your levels of vitamin C, which is used in the production of collagen. "When you take vitamin C, it is absorbed as an intact molecule — not broken down," he explains.
Now, many women who take drinkable collagen on the reg swear that it makes a huge difference in their skin, science and skin experts be damned. More power to them if that's something that they feel is working for them, but we're not dropping our hard-earned cash on something multiple experts say has no scientific proof.
Our take on this trend: You could shell out $20 for liquid collagen that has questionable benefits, or you could spend $3 for a bottle of vitamin C that has proven efficacy. We think that choice is pretty clear, no?
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