Does Collagen Help Acne?
This article has been independently verified for accuracy by Dr Harshi Dhingra MD.
With collagen, acne sufferers could see some huge benefits. But the truth is a little more complex than ‘A equals B’. Read on to learn more.
When it comes down to it, acne impacts more than your skin. It can also lead to varying degrees of emotional pain and make a serious dent in your self-esteem. Unfortunately, acne is a very common skin condition, impacting millions of people worldwide.
Often, it’s thought of as a teenage or puberty-related condition. Yet, many adults struggle with it too. At the same time, many adults who experience acne have also experienced it during their adolescence. However, there are many ways to tackle acne or, at the very least, minimize it. In fact, with collagen, acne scarring may be greatly reduced.
So, does collagen actually help acne or cause it? What should you know? Let’s take a closer look!
Can Collagen Cause Acne?
One of the biggest questions regarding collagen and acne is, “Can collagen cause acne?” Some even go so far as to question certain types. Can marine collagen cause acne? What about bovine collagen varieties?
As you might already be well aware of, collagen is the most abundant protein in the human body, making up the tendons, cartilage, muscle, bone, skin, hair, nails, and more. It’s essential for good overall health, in particular skin health, heart health, maintaining strong and healthy nails, and cartilage health and maintenance.
In fact, collagen used to be a staple in the human diet. Our hunter-gatherer ancestors’ diets consisted of using the whole animal where gelatinous connective tissue was used to prepare food. Today, the modern diet simply doesn’t contain as much collagen. Instead, many opt for muscle meat which is low in this necessary protein. This is why various collagen supplements, like So Body Co’s Collagen powder, have taken off.
So, where did the rumors start that collagen might actually cause acne?
Well, these “rumors” aren’t entirely unfounded. Some types of collagen powders contain various chemicals and additives, which may lead to breakouts due to clogged pores and inflammation. Thus, the type of collagen you purchase matters a lot! For the most part, you want to do your due diligence and research the company and ingredients. Ideally, the less chemicals and additives, the better. Look for brands (like So Body Co) that don’t contain additives that may cause skin issues.
Now, let’s look at the flip side!
Is Collagen Good For Acne?
According to research, collagen may aid in reducing acne scars. However, it’s important to note that it primarily helps reduce the appearance of future ones rather than minimizing the existence of acne scars already present. Using collagen for acne scars may help with healing blemishes and improving overall skin health.
Another way collagen may help improve acne is by reducing inflammation. Research indicates that daily oral consumption of collagen, specifically type I, may provide anti-inflammatory effects. Since inflammation in the body is a known pathology of acne, collagen may help lessen this and, thus, reduce acne breakouts.
So, what about collagen for hormonal acne?
A surprising number of acne cases are caused by hormonal imbalances. In fact, research indicates that, in some cases, hormonal therapy may lessen acne flare-ups. Interestingly, collagen may help in some hormonal acne cases due to its amino acid contents. Some of these amino acids are essential for the production of certain hormones and neurotransmitters, making collagen a great addition to your diet and as an aid for potentially improving acne symptoms.
How to Use Collagen for Acne
With collagen for acne (and most other uses too!), it’s recommended to aim for 2.5 to 15 grams of collagen per day. The key is to take it consistently to notice any improvements. Collagen powder can easily be added to smoothies, puddings, baked goods, coffee, juice, and more!
Other Ways to Treat Acne
Collagen for acne isn’t the only way to go. In fact, collagen should complement other methods to tackle acne. Some other things you may want to consider include:
1. The Use of Topical Treatment Options
There are various cleansers, prescription ointments, and more specifically for acne. For most of these acne treatments, it’s recommended to give them at least four weeks to work their magic (or to determine if they work or not for you). Discuss your options with your dermatologist or doctor who may know your situation best.
2. Adapt a Healthy Lifestyle
Inflammation frequently arises from imbalances regarding what we do. For instance, inflammation is common in those with obesity, who frequently lead sedentary lives. It’s important to tackle acne from all angles, including adapting regular exercise routines, stress techniques, healthy dietary strategies, drinking sufficient water, and prioritizing sleep.
This may ultimately require making small changes over time. For instance, you could start going to the gym once a week or making a couple of meals at home each week. Find what works for you!
3. Wash Your Face After Sweating
With acne, most individuals have very sensitive skin and are prone to flare-ups even with the slightest lack of care. Yet, you don’t want to overwash your face either as this can also cause issues with acne. Instead, be sure to wash your face regularly, such as when you wake up, before you go to bed, and after a sweat session. This will help avoid clogged pores.
4. Don’t Pick!
While it may feel like second-nature to pick or pop any acne blemishes, this can actually cause more harm than good. This can lead to further clogged pores and scarring. Instead, let the blemishes run their course and use appropriate treatment methods as discussed with your dermatologist or doctor.
Find What Works for You!
At the end of the day, acne treatment often depends on the individual. Treatment may vary from person to person and depend on the cause of your specific acne. At the same time collagen for acne can help improve overall skin health and offer various other health advantages. While it might not be the end-all, be-all solution to your acne, it can provide the foundations, along with prescription topical and oral treatments, exercise, sleep, and other dietary changes, for optimal health.