Ottis Bailey - EXALT Writer
VEGAN COLLAGEN — WHAT’S BEHIND THE (FACE) MASK?
Collagen got a big boost and became an instant Instagram fad when it came out that Kourtney Kardashian was taking it religiously in her morning coffee. Since then, collagen-infused face masks, protein-bars, and even water are all over the place. So-called "Vegan collagen" products are also gaining hype and popularity. When your face pays the bills, of course, you’ll try anything to keep the money-maker as youthful as possible for as long as possible (we draw the line at messing with our morning coffee!) But should we follow in the superstars' footsteps? Let’s see what’s really hiding behind that collagen face mask:
DOES COLLAGEN ACTUALLY WORK?
Well, first, off, many health specialists endorse collagen. It makes sense, collagen makes up 80% of the protein found in our skin, holding it all together.
As we age, we produce less and less collagen naturally, which can lead to wrinkles and skin sagging, not to mention our bones get weaker, and our joints, muscles and tendons start acting up.
So we can use supplements to top up our collagen levels as our natural supplies start to drop off. There's plenty of research to support the claims that collagen supplementation has benefits which can help out with our skin and joint health as we age.
- 4 spears of broccoli
- 1/2 red pepper
- 1 large tomato, halved
- 1 onion, cut into wedges
- 1 garlic clove
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1 tin chopped tomatoes (100g)
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp chilli flakes
- 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 90ml plant-based milk
- Handful of spinach leaves
- 1 small courgette, spiralised
CAN COLLAGEN BE VEGAN?
We don't want to ruin it for you, but today's collagen supplements have pretty much the same core ingredients as... a roadside truck hotdog (but hopefully with more organic ingredients!) It is, by nature, an animal product. So why do you see “vegan collagen” supplements everywhere, then?
Well, because most of these supplements are misleading (at best). If you read the back label of these products, you'll usually see that they're actually "collagen booster" products, not an actual source of vegan collagen. Since plant-based collagen supplements can't provide our bodies with a direct source of collagen, these products can only promote the body's own production of collagen instead, via supporting vitamins and minerals. This is generally considered less effective, sorry Vegan and plant-based diet following friends.
But really — if you keep a varied veggie diet, you’ll get a good dose of the necessary macros/micros anyway. And if not… why not? Check out our plant-based meal and juice plans.
IS VEGAN COLLAGEN COMING IN THE FUTURE?
What about in the future? Is there hope for a true vegan collagen supplement?
Apparently, yes, there is!
There are lab tests coming out where micro-organism and yeast-based collagen is being developed, but it’s not yet widely available to consumers.
(We’ll definitely let you know when it finally reaches shelves!).
GET THE (VEGAN) GLOW
Our vegan green juice, Glow Up, contains 8g of healthy gut fibre and chicory root extract (inulin) will keep your insides in tip-top shape. While 106% of your daily Vitamin C will help to keep your skin glowing by aiding collagen production and fighting free radicals.