Collagen is the structural protein essential in holding together the tissues of our bodies. Typically, we have plenty of collagen to go around -- it's in our tendons, muscles, skin and bones. However, collagen maintenance and production slow as we age, which leads to wrinkles and loss of bone strength.
That's why many people turn to collagen, in powder or supplement form, to offer several benefits like slowing skin aging, promoting healthy skin in general and improving bone and joint health.
But there are many collagen powder options, ranging in ingredients, taste and dosage. That can make it difficult to determine which collagen powder is best. We pulled together a list of our top collagen powder picks based on price, ingredients and third-party testing so that you can find the best collagen powder for you.
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Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides powder takes our pick for the best overall collagen powder because of its versatility and quality. It's the type of collagen powder that everyone will like, whether you're just starting or a collagen pro. With 20g of collagen per serving (2 scoops), Vital packs a punch. It supports skin, hair, nail, bone and joint health.
The collagen in Vital is made from grass-fed, pasture-raised cattle. The powder contains extra benefits like hyaluronic acid and vitamin c for skin health. User reviews are overwhelmingly positive, praising how easily it dissolves in liquid and the results seen.
Collagen content per serving: 20g per serving
Price: $47 for 28 servings
Vital Collagen Powder's best features:
- Third-party tested for NSF Certified for Sport
- Vital collagen powder is certified paleo-friendly and Whole30-approved
- You get 20g of grass-fed, pasture-raised collagen in each serving.
Things to consider:
- Vital is priced higher than other options available. You only get 28 servings for $47.
If you've been around the protein powder space for a while, then you probably know Orgain and its affordable prices. Orgain's collagen powder takes our pick as the best budget collagen powder because of the balance it strikes between price and quality -- it's the most affordable on the list without sacrificing quality.
Like many other options on the list, Orgain collagen powder is sourced from grass-fed and pasture-raised cows and includes type I and type III collagen. Collagen I is most ample in skin, bones, tendons and ligaments. Type III makes up the reticular fibers of organs and soft tissues.
The only ingredient on the label is collagen peptides, which makes Orgain a great choice for those looking for a one-ingredient solution that cuts out the extra sugar or artificial additives.
Collagen content per serving: 20g per two scoops
Price: $31.99 for 45 servings
- The 45-day supply of Orgain collagen powder is inexpensive compared to other options.
- It's dairy- and soy-free.
- Meets CGMPs to ensure the quality and purity of the product.
Things to consider:
Care/of is a popular vitamin and supplement subscription service highly regarded for personalization. When you sign up for Care/of, you take the quiz that tailors your supplement suggestions based on your diet, exercise, lifestyle and health goals. That's why it's the best collagen powder subscription available.
The Care/of bovine collagen powder is made from grass-fed cows and supports skin hydration and elasticity. It also helps strengthen nails. Made without fillers or artificial ingredients, you can easily blend this collagen powder into your tea, coffee or smoothie. This collagen powder also includes real ingredients like organic lemon and vanilla.
Collagen content per serving: 10g per two scoops
Cost: $24 for 15 servings
Care/of best features:
- Care/of has a handy app that you can use to track your supplement routine and recommended dosages.
- The helpful Care/of quiz is easy to take. Your results suggest supplements based on your diet, lifestyle, exercise routine and goals.
- This collagen powder is dairy- and gluten-free.
Things to consider:
- The unflavored Care/of collagen powder comes in 15-serving containers and costs $24. It's more expensive than other options. However, you get free shipping on orders over $20.
- The flavored collagen powders from Care/of are more expensive. The matcha, vanilla oat creamer and lemon passion fruit cost $32.
Sometimes you want your collagen powder to be seen but not tasted. If you're adding collagen powder to a smoothie or coffee and don't want to taste or smell it, consider Further Food Collagen Peptides.
This unflavored collagen powder is hydrolyzed, meaning it's broken down into amino acids that your body can absorb more easily. You don't have to worry about fillers or artificial sweeteners with Further Food Collagen Peptides; the only ingredient is hydrolyzed bovine collagen. You'll get both types I and III collagen in this product.
Further Food shines in testing, which is why it's one of the best collagen powders you can get. Not only is it rigorously tested for purity, but it's also third-party tested to ensure that the quality and potency of each bottle are what's advertised. The facilities that Further Food uses to produce this collagen supplement meet cGMP standards.
Collagen content per serving: 8000mg (8g) of collagen peptides
Cost: $24.99 for 28 servings
Further Food Collagen best features:
- It's available in one-month, three-month supplies and single-stick packs.
- Third-party tested and made in cGMP-certified facilities.
Things to consider:
- The dosage of collagen per serving is slightly lower than other products at only 8g. Though a serving is only one scoop, others have a serving size of two scoops for 20g.
If you're someone who likes your healthy choices to taste good, try Ancient Nutrition Multi Collagen Protein Powder. The vanilla and chocolate flavors are fan favorites, but they have unique flavors like cold brew, strawberry lemonade and cucumber lime. This collagen powder is made from grass-fed, cruelty-free and non-GMO sources.
It includes hydrolyzed bovine collagen. Hydrolyzed collagen is easier for your body to absorb because it's already broken down into amino acids. Ancient Nutrition collagen powder also includes vitamin C, hydrolyzed bovine and fish collagen peptides.
You get 10g of collagen per serving, which is only one scoop. Some of the options on the list have a higher serving size that includes more collagen. Ancient Nutrition collagen powder has an average amount of collagen per serving -- there are options with more or less.
Collagen content per serving: 10g per serving
Cost: $49.95 for 45 servings
Ancient Nutrition's best features:
- Ancient Nutrition stands out for flavor variety.
- This collagen powder includes several collagen sources -- bovine hide, fermented eggshell membrane and fish collagen peptides.
- It's a budget-friendly option.
Things to consider:
- With flavors like cucumber lime and strawberry lemonade, the taste is not for everyone.
Athletes must pay special attention to the supplements they buy to ensure they don't contain banned substances. Momentous Collagen Peptides boasts an NSF Certified for Sport label, which means it has been tested and proven to not contain any illegal substances. NSF is the gold standard for supplements.
Each serving delivers 11.6g of collagen from grass-fed bovine collagen and Fortigel collagen. Fortigel collagen is a patented collagen peptide that promotes collagen production in important areas like tendons and ligaments, which is essential for athletes. Momentous collagen powder also includes vitamin C.
Collagen per serving: 11.6g per one scoop
Price: $49.50 for 30 servings
Momentous collagen's best features:
- Momentous is designed to target more than just skin and hair. It contributes to long-term tendon and joint strength.
- It's GMO- and gluten-free.
Certifications include NSF Certified for Sport and Informed Sport.
Things to consider:
- Momentous Collagen Peptides powder is a little more expensive than other options on the list.
All collagen supplements are derived from animal sources. The Garden of Life Mykind Organics Collagen Builder doesn't include any collagen. However, it includes key nutrients like vitamins A and C to help your body produce collagen naturally. It's a good option for vegetarians and vegans who want to increase collagen. Garden of Life's collagen builder is made from organic plant and tea extracts. It also includes 2,500 mcg of biotin to improve the health of your nails and hair.
Collagen content: None
Price: $27.99 for 30 servings
- Garden of Life shines in product testing. It is USDA organic, vegan, and NSF-certified.
- It's a good option for vegans and vegetarians who want to boost their collagen production without taking collagen.
Things to consider:
- This product does not contain collagen.
- There are additives like tea extracts in this collagen booster.
How we chose the best collagen powders
The FDA doesn't regulate the supplement industry before it gets to consumers. This means that there are fewer requirements placed on the products. To supplement this, I looked at third-party tests that vouch for the products' quality and purity. Cost and collagen content were also considered when selecting the best collagen powders.
Frequently asked questions
Does collagen powder work?
Collagen is one of the top-selling supplements available. But do collagen supplements work? Though the research is limited, some studies have found that collagen supplements can improve skin elasticity and joint health.
So the answer is… maybe. However, it's no magic pill. Collagen may help revitalize skin and hair, but it can't do it alone. Lifestyle and diet changes are also essential.
Read more: Are Hair Growth Vitamins Worth the Money?
Should you take collagen powders?
Collagen powders have gained popularity for the various benefits for hair, nail and skin health and strengthening bone density. Typically, most people can take collagen powders without any negative side effects. However, if you have a food allergy, you should pay special attention to the ingredients label, as many of the best collagen powders include dairy, soy and eggs.
Those who shouldn't take true collagen powders are vegans and vegetarians. The collagen powders available on the market are made from animals or fish. Vegan supplements help the body produce collagen, though they do not contain any collagen powder.
Things to consider when shopping for collagen powders:
- Third-party testing: Given the lack of FDA regulations, third-party certifications like Current Good Manufacturing Practice regulations, National Sanitation Foundation and Informed-Sport Certification help establish the quality and purity of the product.
- Price: There are various price points across the collagen market.
- Ingredients: Make sure to carefully read the ingredient label to see what is included in the collagen powder. Common additives include vitamin C and zinc. It's important to check the recommended daily value of these ingredients to ensure you're not getting too much of anything.
- Type of collagen: Collagen is derived from animal sources -- typically porcine, bovine, eggshell and marine.
Is collagen powder vegan?
No collagen powder on the market today is vegan. Currently, all products that contain collagen are made from animal sources. Vegetarians and vegan options are available, though they do not contain collagen. Instead, they include vitamins and minerals that help boost your body's collagen production.
What are the different types of collagen supplements?
Collagen powders are typically favored because they deliver the most potent doses. However, other forms of collagen are available -- liquid collagen, collagen pills and collagen gummies. All of these options have a lower dosage than collagen powders.
How long does it take for collagen supplements to work?
Research suggests that collagen benefits like skin hydration and elasticity can be noticeable as early as four weeks or as long as 12. How quickly results take effect will vary by person. With collagen products, progress is measured in months, not weeks.
The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.