All About Collagen: The Secret to Smooth Skin
Chances are, if you have taken a human anatomy course, pierced your ears, or invested in anti-aging serums, you are familiar with collagen. It is one of the most plentiful and vital proteins in the body and can be found your bones, skin, ligaments, and tendons. It is also a staple in many beauty products and medical spa treatments.
Collagen gives skin an elastic, bouncy texture and helps to keep it smooth and youthful. Over time, however, our body’s natural production of collagen begins to slow down. This typically starts in our 20s and develops more progressively as we age. Unfortunately, this can mean a loss of elasticity and support since there is a decrease of collagen beneath the skin. For many patients, this can result in an increase in wrinkles, sagging skin, and fine lines.
How Collagen Works
Collagen is a stringy-like protein that sits just beneath the surface of your skin, among other places in the body. It looks a bit like cooked spaghetti noodles packed loosely together. This protein is what keeps your skin bouncy and firm while helping reduce wrinkles and fine lines, most notably in the face. Collagen does this by filling the space between the connective tissue to provide structure and hold up the epidermis. Healthy collagen replenishes regularly, but this can be affected by exposure to harmful elements, like smoke, pollution, and UV rays. Over time, healthy collagen diminishes, leaving room for deep wrinkles to form.
Think of collagen as a natural glue that holds together the tissues in your skin. Throughout our youth, these remain healthy and strong, leaving us free of wrinkles and other blemishes. However, certain things can cause them to become damaged and brittle. Sun damage, gravity, aging, harsh weather, tobacco smoke, and even stress can all cause something called “free radicals” to develop and poke holes in the healthy, spaghetti-like consistency of collagen. In turn, this can cause collagen to become brittle.
Eventually, the unhealthy, broken collagen will start taking place of the healthy fibers. Since we produce 1% to 2% less collagen every year (starting in the mid-to-late 20s), this can mean that by the time you are middle-aged there may be noticeable wrinkles in the skin and very little healthy collagen left.
What Can I Do To Prevent Collagen Loss?
Here’s the thing - there is really nothing that can be done to avoid collagen loss over time. It is a natural part of the aging process. We can, however, take extra steps in our youth to protect our healthy collagen against free radicals. This can help slow the aging process by preserving the integrity of the tissues. As we get older, certain measures can also be taken to reverse collagen loss and promote the natural production of these healthy spaghetti-like proteins beneath the skin. For example, introducing external collagen to your skin topically using high-end beauty creams can offer a subtle improvement in the appearance of the skin over time. Other medical-grade skin care treatments also help to stimulate the production of healthy collagen within your body naturally. At Colorado Beauty RN, we offer a wide range of services to help get rid of brittle, broken collagen and replace it with healthy, bouncy collagen!
In addition to beauty treatments, there are lifestyle changes or improvements patients can make to help reduce collagen loss, such as:
Eating a Balanced Diet
Healthy eating is often at the core of anti-aging and longevity solutions. After all, what you put into your body can have a big impact on how it looks, feels, and functions. Refined sugars, carbs, and unhealthy fats can impact more than just your waistline! Avoiding these - while taking care to include more healthy fats and sugars, like nuts, avocado, and fruits - can help the collagen in your skin.
For many people, the idea of regular exercise can be overwhelming or even time-consuming. But for many patients, you don’t have to commit to a rigorous training session or even buy a gym membership! A 20-minute jog can help stimulate blood flow and keep free radicals from forming! Plus, a quick weight lifting session every week can help strengthen your muscles and reduce sagging skin.
Take Precautions Against Collagen Killers
Wearing sunscreen is a great way to protect against the risk of skin cancer, but it can also help to preserve healthy spaghetti collagen. Avoid things that can compromise the quality of your skin, like excessive sun exposure, poor sleep schedules, cigarette smoke (both first and second-hand), and stressful conditions. Drinking plenty of water and hydrating your skin with vital nutrients is also essential! This can help to keep healthy collagen from becoming damaged, developing holes, and breaking.
Learn How to Care for the Skin You’re In
At Colorado Beauty RN, we provide medical-grade skin care products that can help target the causes of common skin imperfections and blemishes, like sagging skin and fine lines. Increasing collagen production naturally can help your appearance improve radically over time, without augmentation or surgery. Many patients opt to combine their collagen-boosting treatments with fillers, but you can achieve beautiful, natural-looking results through non-invasive procedures like micro-channeling alone. Plus, our resident beauty expert and medical nurse, Jenny Garland, helps patients customize the perfect skincare routine using expert picks from our SkinMedica® line! Call us today or schedule online to book a consultation at our luxurious facility.