The Truth About Collagen
Written by Nicola Moulton
1 Dec 2022
We asked our Consultant Dermatologist, Dr Andrew Markey, about the naturally occurring protein and just why boosting collagen is so important - at any age.
Why is collagen so important?
"As your collagen levels decrease, your barrier function becomes impaired and your defences against environmental attack from things like UV rays and pollutants are all reduced. Decreased collagen levels can lead to dryness, irritability of the skin, fine lines, wrinkles, texture changes, sensitivity."
"They’re all a manifestation of the loss of the sorts of structural firmness and plumpness of the skin and patients notice that quite significantly in some cases. So when it comes to skin that looks smooth, healthy, plump and fabulous - collagen is obviously key."
What does collagen do?
"Collagen is the key protein of the second layer of the skin, the dermis. Together, collagen and another protein found in the dermis, elastin, form the main structural component of the skin and they support the barrier part of the skin, the upper level. [Collagen makes skin cells strong and resilient, and elastin keeps it flexible.] If that foundation level impaired, for example when collagen starts to decrease, then your skin just doesn't function in quite as healthy a way as it could."
"And as I always say, if you've got properly-functioning, healthy skin, your skin will look great. That's always the aim of great skincare, and that’s absolutely the idea behind the Youthbomb Biologic-Collagen Peptide Cream."
We hear a lot about menopause affecting the skin. Is this a ‘menopause’ cream?
"No - but that’s certainly a time when collagen is key. One of the big changes in the skin around the perimenopause and menopause is loss of collagen. As we get older (from around the mid-20s onwards) particularly in women's skin, we lose around one or two percent of our collagen every year."
"But when you get to the menopause, the rate drops dramatically and you start getting double-digit collagen loss over a very short period of time. (The figure that’s often mentioned is that during the first five years of menopause, you lose between 20 and 30 percent of your collagen). As your oestrogen levels decrease, you get decreased collagen in your skin as a result of that."
"As well as the peptides in this cream, there are some phyto oestrogens - plant-derived ingredients which we believe may have some benefit in protecting against collagen loss, and also in helping to hold on to the collagen you’ve got. In the new Youthbomb cream there are both peptides and phytoestrogens, and collectively they can help preserve, stimulate and boost the collagen in your skin.
What is glycation and why do we need to tackle it in skincare?
"When sugar is chemically linked to proteins in the skin like collagen, it makes the collagen sort of sticky, and not as flexible. And skin that's got a lot of glycation in it contains what's called AGE – Advanced Glycation End Products. Essentially, skin goes a little stiffer. So there are a couple of things in our new Youthbomb Biologic Collagen Peptide [Potentilla Miyabe Callus Extract and Waism Ume Extract] that help to tackle the effects glycation. So it's not working directly on collagen itself, like the peptides do, but it helps to try to keep the collagen fibres a little bit more flexible."
You’ve created a moisturiser specifically designed to work on boosting skin’s collagen supplies. Why is that?
"When it comes to skin that looks smooth, healthy, plump and fabulous - collagen is the key. So We’ve created a really deluxe, really high-performance moisturiser that you can just drop in as an alternative to whatever your current favourite moisturiser is. Ultimately everything in there helps preserve, stimulate and boost the collagen in your skin. I call it a ‘moisturiser with benefits’."
How does your Collagen Peptide Cream help to relax expression lines?
"There's a specific peptide we've included, that actually has a slight modulating effect on nerve muscle transmission - a very mild form of the 'Botulinium Toxin' effect that you'd get in a dermatologist's office. And as it can potentially modulate the expression of what we call 'movement wrinkles' - the thinking was that when it's in creams, it might help a little bit not only with static wrinkles and fine lines and texture, but it might just give you a tiny 'topical Botulinium toxin' effect, too."
Read more about our new collaboration with Dr Markey, our Youthbomb Biologic Collagen Peptide, who it can benefit and more in Dr Markey on His New Youthbomb Cream.