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vegan collagen

8 of the best vegan collagen supplements

21 Sep 2022 • 6 min read

Vegan…collagen…do the pair really go together? Yes, they can do!

Although many collagen products contain fish and animal ingredients, you can go vegan with your collagen.

But how? Let us explain all and reveal some of the best vegan and plant-based collagen supplements out there.

What is collagen?

Let’s start with the basics...

Collagen is an amino acid (a component of protein) that our bodies make to support our:1

  • Skin
  • Bones
  • Teeth
  • Muscles
  • Blood
  • Tendons
  • Ligaments

and even more.

A healthy, balanced diet is key to supporting our body’s natural collagen formation, as some nutrients like vitamin C are essential for this process.

Collagen is good for maintaining supple, bouncy skin. This is why babies are…well, baby soft. However, collagen production declines as we age, which often causes our skin to get drier and less elastic. It might also affect our hair and nail health.

While we can’t quite promise you the collagen levels of an infant, taking a daily supplement can help replenish your collagen supply and keep your skin, hair, and joints in check as you age.

What is vegan collagen?

In the sea of bovine collagen and marine collagen (extracts from animals, like fish scales and bones), vegan collagen can seem a little elusive – how are you going to get collagen from a pea or a carrot!?

Vegan collagen does exist; it just took a little longer to come into existence as the processing is a little complicated...

Here’s how:6

  1. To make vegan collagen, four human genes that code for collagen are added to the genetic structure of yeast or bacteria
  2. These microbes then start to produce amino acids that act as building blocks of human collagen.
  3. Then, a digestive enzyme is added to structure the building blocks into collagen molecules that have the same structure as human collagen – pretty clever, right?

That being said, this process is far from easy and hasn’t reached the beauty or health world in a big way just yet.

So, when you see a vegan or vegetarian collagen supplement, it’ll likely be more of a collagen-promoting supplement.

This means they don’t contain collagen, but they provide your body with all the micronutrients needed to make collagen.

You’ll usually find the following:

  • Vitamin C –which regulates the collagen synthesis process in the body7
  • Amino acids – especially glycine, lysine, and proline, which are the most abundant amino acids found in collagen
  • BCAAs – the “building blocks” of muscle protein.

 Handpicked content: Guide to BCAA & amino acids

11 vegan collagen-supporting foods

Your diet can also help support your body’s natural collagen formation. Try to include the amino acids glycine, lysine, and proline.

Look out for these to reap the vegan collagen benefits:

  • Tempeh
  • Tofu
  • Soy protein
  • Black beans
  • Kidney beans
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Chia seeds
  • Pistachios
  • Peanuts
  • Cashews

8 of the best vegan collagen supplements + skincare products

Here are our top 8 picks for vegan collagen support products so you don’t have to miss out on all of collagen’s wonderful benefits.

1. The best vegan collagen gummies

Starpowa Vegan Collagen Support, 60 Gummies

If you’re looking for a quick and easy vegan collagen supplement that tastes like a sweet – this offering from Starpowa could be for you!

These cloudy lemon-flavoured gummies contain ingredients proven to promote natural collagen formation in the body,  support skin health and much more, including:

They’re naturally flavoured and sweetened, 100% vegan, and contain less than 0.2g of sugar per gummy.

Plus, they have all the benefits of collagen powder or tablets in a fun, gummy form – what’s not to like?

What our customers think:

Gummielover – Amazing! – 5/5 stars

“Love love love this product! Noticed a difference after just a few weeks! I love it & highly recommend ✨”

2. The best vegan collagen protein powder

Bioglan Superfoods Beauty Protein, 100g

Enjoy Bioglan’s berry-flavoured food supplement almost any way you like. For example, shake into your morning smoothie, sprinkle onto cereal, or stir through a yoghurt for a collagen boost on your morning break.

Enriched with vitamin C, hyaluronic acid, bamboo extract, and biotin, it’s full of ingredients that help support collagen renewal and keep your skin smooth and hydrated.

What our customers think:

LesleyGreen – Excellent product – 5/5 stars

“Just bought my second sachet as the results from the first were so good. Add it to a mid-morning smoothie every day and I have had several days with no makeup which hasn’t happened in a long time.”

Hamzat – Beauty Protein – 5/5 stars

“This is a great way off adding protein to my smoothies and breakfast. Only need one teaspoon not two. Well pleased with my purchase!”

3. Vegan collagen-support tablets

Botanycl Skinclear Elixir Vegan with Coconut Oil Powder – 60 Capsules

Although not marketed as a collagen supplement, these Skinclear Elixir tablets contain some of the ingredients needed for optimum collagen synthesis, like vitamin C.

They’re 100% plant-based and made with carefully selected active botanicals to provide effective yet gentle skin support.

What our customers think:

Caz50 – Love it – 5/5 stars

“Fantastic product, all natural and really does make a huge difference, I absolutely love it!”

4. Vegan hair, skin and nail gummies

Starpowa Hair, Skin and Nail, 60 Gummies

Again, this supplement hasn’t been specifically designed to support collagen levels, but it does contain some ingredients that do just that!

These Starpowa gummies contain the following key ingredients to support your hair, skin, and nails:

  • Vitamin C – this is needed by your body and contributes to normal collagen formation, a type of protein which supports the normal function of skin cells.
  • Zinc – this mineral is present in almost every cell in the body and is essential for normal hair, nail, and skin function.
  • Biotin – this form of vitamin B is known for its crucial role in maintaining healthy skin and hair.

What our customers think:

Sarah456 - Great product - 5/5 stars

"Great. Works very well. Would recommend. Got on offer so very happy."

MonicqueX - Confidence with gummies - 5/5 stars

"I've been using these gummies for a few weeks now and most definitely feel a glow about myself. I take mine in the morning as part of my morning routine which suits perfectly! Grab yourself some Co fidenxe in gummies❣️"

5. Vegan vitamin C tablets

Holland & Barrett Vitamin C with Wild Rose Hips, 100 Caplets, 1000mg

Vitamin C is key for collagen formation in our bodies, and these 1000mg caplets can help keep you topped up!

It is also essential for immune, metabolic, and psychological function and helps us absorb iron.

Handpicked content: 10 health benefits of vitamin C

What our customers think:

Dino84Greek – Vitamin C – 5/5 stars

“Great vitamins! Great price and great quality! I’m satisfied!”

Welsh Jewels – Vitamin C at its best – 5/5 stars

“These are the best vitamin C tablets on the market.”

Vegan collagen skincare

If you’re taking collagen to help improve the condition of your skin, you can also get vegan skincare that supports your skin’s natural collagen levels.

If your skin’s a focus in your collagen journey, you’re not limited to tablets and powders. So why not add some vegan vitality to your skincare routine?

Here are a few options…

6. Vegan collagen serum

Vitaskin Vitamin C Collagen Boosting Serum

A serum is an amazingly nourishing addition to any skincare routine, and this vitamin C collagen-boosting serum is no exception!

Vitamin C and omega oils from kiwi, sea buckthorn, and sweet orange help visibly plump and hydrate the skin, help to reduce the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines, and deliver a healthy glow.

What our customers think:

SKSays – This really works! – 5/5 stars

“This is a wonderful little product. I’ve only been using it for four days now, but from day one, my skin feels smooth and replenished. I’ve been applying it once at night, alongside my usual cleanser and moisturiser. I’m really impressed, I wasn’t expected to see such wonderful results so soon!”

R Begum – Good serum! – 5/5 stars

“Good serum, I use a few drops with my night cream and it’s made a huge difference in my skin, my skin is very soft and hydrated. It has a slight fruity scent, which is nice too.”

7. Vegan collagen night cream

Vitaskin Vitamin C Collagen Boosting Night Cream

Support your skin’s collagen production while you sleep with this collagen-boosting night cream by Vitakin!

Just like the serum, it contains omega oils and vitamin C from a natural blend of kiwi seed, sweet orange and sea buckthorn oils.

These ingredients all work together to help reduce the appearance of wrinkles, fine lines and help give you a healthy, youthful glow.

What our customers think:

Cheryl51 – Fab collagen night cream – 5/5 stars

“Good value for money and I have noticed an improvement in my skin. Soft, plump and I feel, looks better/fresher!”

Molly64 – Love this range – 5/5 stars

“I started using the Vitaskin skin care range 2 months ago. Absolutely no regrets. My skin feels smooth, soft, well hydrated and looks brighter."

8. Vegan collagen food and drink

Ancient & Brave Vegan Collagyn

Fancy a snack? You can get your collagen intake through food and drinks, too.

This beetroot berry powder will brighten up a dull morning and help you on your way to natural vitality.

It has all the benefits of your usual collagen powder, plus a fruit-flavoured twist that’s perfect for adding to snacks and drinks.

Vitamin C, vitamin D, choline, and iodine help to support collagen synthesis and protect against oxidative stress – the reason we lose collagen in the first place.

Vitamin C, vitamin D, choline, and iodine help to support collagen synthesis and protect against oxidative stress – the reason we lose collagen in the first place.

Or shake up snack time with our other favourite vegan collagen food supplements:

The final say

Go vegan, glow vegan

  • Collagen supplements are usually made from animal bones and fish skin – but there are vegan alternatives that help with collagen support!
  • Vegan collagen supplements that replicate human collagen do exist, but most supplements currently on the market support collagen formation with vitamins and other nutrients
  • You can also find vegan collagen in foods like soya products, beans, seeds, and nuts
  • Vegan creams and serums can help support your skin’s collagen synthesis, too
The advice in this article is for information only and should not replace medical care. Please check with your GP or healthcare professional before trying any supplements, treatments or remedies. Food supplements must not be used as a substitute for a varied and balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle.

Last updated: 21 September 2022

bhupesh-panchal

Bhupesh Panchal

Author

Senior Regulatory Affairs Associate

Joined Holland & Barrett: April 2019

Masters Degree in Toxicology and BSc Hons in Medical Biochemistry

Bhupesh started his career as a Clinical Toxicologist for Public Health England, advising healthcare professionals all around the country on how to manage clinical cases of adverse exposure to supplements, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, industrial chemicals and agricultural products.

After 7 years in this role and a further year working as a drug safety officer in the pharmaceutical industry, Bhupesh joined Holland & Barrett as a Senior Regulatory Affairs Associate in 2019.
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