Myths and media in oral collagen supplementation for the skin, nails, and hair: A review

Andrea M. Rustad, Melissa A. Nickles, Jenna E. McKenney, Sara N. Bilimoria, Peter A. Lio*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Background: As a key component of the hair, skin, and nails, there is strong consumer interest in the dermatologic efficacy of oral collagen supplementation. Oral supplementation with collagen peptides has increased in popularity in recent years. Aims: There are relatively few studies investigating the dermatologic effects of ingested collagen peptides, many of which are limited by sample size and variability of results. The question remains whether there is sufficient evidence to support companies’ promises and consumers’ goals. Methods: In this review, we investigate and compare the claims surrounding collagen supplementation on Instagram and YouTube, made by collagen companies, and established in the literature. Results: Although some studies have demonstrated that collagen supplementation can enhance skin qualities such as elasticity and hydration, dermatologic claims in the media surpass any evidence currently supported by the literature. Conclusions: More research is needed to establish knowledge of the effects and physiologic mechanism of collagen supplementation. Dermatologists should be aware of the unsubstantiated proclamations of collagen made by companies and in social media, as well as what evidence is established thus far, to be equipped to discuss collagen supplementation with patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Cosmetic Dermatology
StateAccepted/In press - 2021


  • anti-aging
  • collagen
  • collagen hydrolysate
  • hair
  • nails
  • supplements

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology


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