Why I Love Collagen So Much

Collagen is definitely one of those wellness buzzwords that’s making the rounds right now, especially in the blog world. But, contrary to the many “magical” supplements on the market that claim to change your life, collagen peptides are one of my tried-and-true staples that have actually given me real, tangible results! So, I wanted to write a post for those of you who may be interested in adding collagen to your diet, along with some tips for how I include it in my daily routine. 

But first things first: What exactly is collagen? And what the heck are collagen peptides?

Collagen is basically the “glue” that holds our body together. It’s a key protein (30% of the proteins in our body are collagen-based) that ensures the flexibility and elasticity of our connective tissue, including skin, bones, and ligaments. As we age, we naturally begin to produce less collagen, making supplementation important. Some of the side effects of lower collagen production include thinner skin (aka wrinkles), fragile bones, and a general loss of muscle mass.

Collagen peptides are basically a much smaller and more easily digestible form of the protein. They are quickly absorbed and act as the building blocks for our bodily tissues. Some benefits of collagen peptide supplementation include stronger hair, skin and nails, a healthier gut, and cellulite prevention. Ok, well, the verdicts out on that one, but I like to hope it helps! 🙂 

So, what benefits have I seen since I started taking collagen peptides a couple of years ago? Well, I am happy to report that I have seen an improvement in my digestion and overall appearance of my skin. I’m sure Entyvio and Beautycounter help too, but things are better on both fronts. All I know is that I look back at photos of myself in my early 30s and think my skin looks so much better now! My hair and nails also feel stronger, much healthier, and less prone to breakage. Plus, the extra protein source in my diet doesn’t hurt, especially as someone who lives an active lifestyle.

I use a marine-based collagen. Marine collagen is sometimes less likely to trigger food sensitivities or destroy the gut lining like some of the crazy chemical-laden protein powders on the market. This particular brand is really affordable compared to many others on the market, and you can Amazon Prime it right to your house. I actually have it on a subscription to come every other month, so it’s even cheaper! 

Edited to add that I recently started using a vanilla bean-flavored collagen in my morning iced coffee, and I absolutely love it. It adds a subtle flavor without sugar and extra calories while also helping me get some quality protein into my diet. 

Collagen is super easy to mix – in both hot and cold foods as well as liquids – it’s a staple in my morning iced coffee! To get my iced coffee perfect, I typically add half to one full scoop (10g) of collagen. (You could totally add more/less depending on your personal preferences.) I’ll often add a scoop of collagen AND a scoop of protein powder into my iced coffee, and they mix right in, no problem. Here’s a quick tutorial about how I get it to all mix together without any clumps as well as a few of the other supplements I like to add and tools I like to use. I know that some of you may be skeptical about adding collagen peptides to your morning cup of joe, but trust me when I say you can’t taste it! Another quick tip for mixing collagen into cold liquids: Just mix it with a little warm water first (a watery gel will form) and then mix that with your cold liquid. 

Collagen peptides also work great in all kinds of recipes. Try it in my Almond Butter Collagen Cookies, Banana Flax Protein Cookies, or Meal Prep Breakfast Cookies as a way to get in an extra dose of gut-healing, skin-boosting protein through a healthy, fun treat!

Question of the Day

Have you tried collagen? If so, how do you like to use it?

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  1. Yes!!! I have been using collagen I purchased at our local bulk store for about six months. I ordered some from Amazon but have been out for two weeks and can totally tell. My nails are breaking and I swear new lines, on my face, have emerged. I wanted to see the difference between generic and brand name.

  2. Love collagen SO much! <3 My hair & nails love it too 😉 Quick question.. where is that grey shirt from?

  3. this is anecdotal and great that it works for you- however do you have any evidence-based research that supports oral collagen supplements actually work? thanks.

  4. Is there a “taste” associated with this particular collagen? I ask because I purchased a beef-based collagen that claimed to be unflavored, but it had such a bad taste that I was unable to chug it down! Thanks!

  5. Tina, you were the one who turned me onto collagen about a year ago and after doing some research, I’ve been a convert ever since. I put two scoops of the Great Lakes hydrolysate collagen in my coffee on weekday mornings. It dissolves beautifully and I don’t taste a thing-just my coffee. Love it.

  6. I’ve been drinking it in my coffee every day for 2 years now, and I am not sure I really notice a difference. I have decided to change the brand and see if that helps.

  7. I am in total agreements with adding it to hot liquid such as tea or coffee! Sometimes I will throw in my smoothies as well. My special recipe for coffee is a little bit of cinnamon and coconut oil with collagen, try it out!

  8. I take collagen type 2 capsules twice a day to help me with pain from osteoarthritis and it really helps. It is also making my nails a lot harder. I started with the regular collagen from beef, but, like you, it did not agree with my tummy. The type 2 is made from chicken and works a lot better for pain. I don’t ever intend stopping the usage . At almost 82 years old, it is really making life a lot better painwise.

  9. I tried a collagen based on your previous recommendations and think of CNC every time I pull out the jar 🙂 It’s taking me forever to get through it though, because OMG I can totally taste it in my coffee!!!

    I got a marine collagen (I can’t remember which brand). It is very, very mildly flavored like you said. I’ve never been a huge fan of seafood so I think I am just extra sensitive to that salty/ocean-y flavor. I just mix it in with more flavorful things like a smoothie or oatmeal. It does mix very well!

  10. I’ve been taking collagen ever since I saw you post about those beauty boost chews! I also have powder form for my coffee but I’m more inclined to take the chews every day, haha.

  11. I was literally at our local supplement store 25 minutes ago debating whether to buy it!!! I didnt because I wanted to do some more reading on it. I think I will buy it next time I am there. I’m hoping for less joint pain! Thanks for the post!

  12. I’ve been taking Dr. Axe’s Multi-Collagen Protein for the past 6-7 months with Types I, II, III & X. My skin feels so soft now and not as thin, which helps lessen the look of cellulite on my legs. My eyes used to look red all the time, but the 1st thing I noticed were the whites of my eyes became much whiter and not as tired looking. My joints are not as stiff either. I mix a scoop with my warm lemon water every morning & it dissolves perfectly.

  13. Hi Tina! Been wanting to ask forever…Where can you buy it? What should you look for? Any brand recommendations?

    1. I bought it and used it for a while. Then, a friend had a kidney stone and I read another case online about someone who got kidney stones after supplementing with collagen. It sorta scared me into switching back to more protein based powders. Anyone else heard anything about links to kidney stones?

  14. Collagen peptides are awesome!I just bought a collagen supplement at the health food store, a different brand, but will try the one you suggest next. I add it to my morning smoothie and it hasn’t changed the taste. I also like getting collagen from other sources as well, like chicken bone broth that I make myself in the pressure cooker… it is easy to add that to a variety of foods as well as eating it as is. Using peptides directly on the skin is said to trick the skin into producing more collagen and elastin, which is amazing as well, although that is usually applied in a serum form…. do you think that making a mask out of the powder would absorb into the skin? Maybe it is worth a try.

  15. I am intrigued by this as I tried collagen for a while when I had a herniated cervical disc. It really did nothing, the Glucosamine and Turmeric I took seemed to help more with the inflammation. More recent articles I’ve read about collagen point out that collagen is merely a protein, and our bodies will take apart the protein and use the amino acids as it needs it, so the collagen doesn’t go directly to anywhere in our body. Therefore, the real benefits seem to come from increased protein, which could be from other sources, less expensive and more readily available.

    Also, our bodies do produce less collagen as we age, but there are other nutritional ways to increase collagen production. Vitamin C is vital for collagen production, and I wonder if the benefits from collagen are partly from the “health halo”–that is, when one does something one believes to be healthy, one tends to be healthier in other areas, such as eating more produce and exercising. Anyway, I think the jury is still out on the proven benefits of collagen for skin and joints, but it does seem to help some people with gut health. Personally I found it gave me more stomach problems. but everyone is different!

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