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As life expectancy increases, concerns about the integrity of skin during aging also increase. Various factors affect cutaneous health, so dermal changes are to be expected with age. A variety of environmental factors contribute to premature aging and skin damage, including sun exposure, air pollution, and lifestyle choices. (13) Other factors, such as ethnicity and gender, also play a role. (5)

Hydration levels in the skin are found to correlate with age inversely. As collagen production decreases, elasticity also decreases. As the dermis thins and roughness increases, texture may also change with age. Additionally, the number and depth of sulci (wrinkles) increase. (5) Preventing further damage to the skin barrier by addressing these typical hallmarks of aging skin may help preserve youthfulness.

Transepidermal water loss and elasticity are two common factors in skin aging that can be addressed using the ingredients presented below.


1. Collagen

A total of 2.5-10 grams of collagen per day for a minimum of eight weeks (2)(4)

  • A type I collagen hydrolysate derived from fish increases collagen density, skin firmness, skin moisture, and skin elasticity (3)(10).
  • Based on a systematic review of 11 studies, results showed that collagen supplementation improved wound healing and skin aging factors, such as elasticity, hydration, and dermal collagen density (4).
  • Skin elasticity and collagen content increased by 12%, observed with BioCell Collagen, collagen obtained from chicken sternal cartilage (17)
  • Supplementing with Peptan®F and Peptan®P improved dermal collagen density, dermal collagen network integrity, and hydration, as well as induced collagen and glycosaminoglycan synthesis (2).
  • When compared to placebo, low-molecular-weight collagen improved skin hydration, elasticity, and wrinkle assessment (10)

2. Hyaluronic Acid

Hyaluronic Acid Oral: 120 mg, once a day, for a minimum of six weeks (9)(15)

Topical: Apply 0.1% hyaluronan formulations twice daily for two months (16)

  • The use of oral hyaluronic acid has been shown to increase moisture content and skin elasticity (7)(9)
  • When oral hyaluronic acid was administered, wrinkle volume ratios, wrinkle area ratios, and whole sulcus volume ratios showed significant improvements compared with placebo (15)
  • Hyaluronan supplementation with high (800k) and low (300k) molecular weights both improved skin moisture content and subjective aging symptoms compared to placebo; high molecular weight hyaluronan improved skin moisture content within two weeks of supplementation (9)
  • Applying topical hyaluronic acid twice daily improved hydration and skin elasticity; in addition, 130 and 50 kDa improved mean and max roughness and wrinkle depth (16)

3. Pycnogenol

75-100 mg Pycnogenol, total per day, for 30 days (6)(14)

  • In postmenopausal women, hyaluronic acid synthase-1 (HAS-1) mRNA expression was increased, and skin hydration and elasticity improved; this effect was more pronounced in dry-skin patients (11).
  • In women with mild to moderate photoaging, age spot pigmentation and skin photoaging scores decreased (6)
  • Supplementation with Pycnogenol decreased the average affected area and pigmentary intensity in women with melasma; additionally, it had an overall effectiveness rate of 80% (14)

4. Turmeric

Depending on the form, turmeric doses may vary (follow instructions on the package).

  • Using topical and/or ingested turmeric improved skin disease severity compared to a control group across a number of skin conditions, including facial photoaging (19)
  • After four weeks, an herbal combination containing turmeric (but not turmeric extract on its own) reduced transepidermal water loss (20)
  • It was shown that hot water extract of Curcuma longa increased hyaluronan production, and the induced production of tumor necrosis factor and interleukin-1 was inhibited by UVB (1)
  • A systematic review of 11 studies showed that turmeric improved a number of skin conditions, including facial redness (12)

5. Astaxanthin

Astaxanthin 2-6 mg, total per day, minimum eight weeks (8)(18)(21)

  • A decrease in wrinkles, elasticity, corneocyte content, and corneocyte condition was observed in both male and female subjects, while wrinkles, elasticity, transepidermal water loss on crow’s feet and moisture levels and sebum levels on cheeks were decreased in male subjects. (18)
  • A daily supplement of 2 mg of astaxanthin, combined with 3 g of collagen, improved skin elasticity, barrier integrity, and transepidermal water loss in photoaged facial skin; gene expression was enhanced by increased expression of procollagen type I mRNA and decreased expression of MMP-1 and -12. (21)
  • When healthy subjects were supplemented with astaxanthin and exposed to UV-induced skin deterioration, moisture loss was decreased, and roughness and texture were improved (8).

For more enhanced skincare solutions, you should try our Skincare products.

Evidence rating

The following protocols were developed using only a,b, and c-quality evidence.

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  1. Asada, K., Ohara, T., Muroyama, K., Yamamoto, Y., & Murosaki, S. (2019). Effects of hot water extract of Curcuma longa on human epidermal keratinocytes in vitro and skin conditions in healthy participants: A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, 18(6), 1866–1874. (C)
  2. Asserin, J., Lati, E., Shioya, T., & Prawitt, J. (2015). The effect of oral collagen peptide supplementation on skin moisture and the dermal collagen network: evidence from an ex vivo model and randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trials. Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, 14(4), 291–301. (C)
  3. Borumand, M., & Sibilla, S. (2014). Daily consumption of the collagen supplement Pure Gold Collagen® reduces visible signs of aging. Clinical Interventions in Aging, 9, 1747–1758. (C)
  4. Choi, F. D., Sung, C. T., Juhasz, M. L. W., & Mesinkovsk, N. A. (2019). Oral Collagen Supplementation: A Systematic Review of Dermatological Applications. Journal of Drugs in Dermatology: JDD, 18(1), 9–16. (A)
  5. Dąbrowska, A. K., Spano, F., Derler, S., Adlhart, C., Spencer, N. D., & Rossi, R. M. (2018). The relationship between skin function, barrier properties, and body-dependent factors. Skin Research and Technology: Official Journal of International Society for Bioengineering and the Skin, 24(2), 165–174. (F)
  6. Furumura, M., Sato, N., Kusaba, N., Takagaki, K., & Nakayama, J. (2012). Oral administration of French maritime pine bark extract (Flavangenol(®)) improves clinical symptoms in photoaged facial skin. Clinical Interventions in Aging, 7, 275–286. (C)
  7. Göllner, I., Voss, W., von Hehn, U., & Kammerer, S. (2017). Ingestion of an Oral Hyaluronan Solution Improves Skin Hydration, Wrinkle Reduction, Elasticity, and Skin Roughness: Results of a Clinical Study. Journal of Evidence-Based Complementary & Alternative Medicine, 22(4), 816–823. (C)
  8. Ito, N., Seki, S., & Ueda, F. (2018). The Protective Role of Astaxanthin for UV-Induced Skin Deterioration in Healthy People-A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial. Nutrients, 10(7). (C)
  9. Kawada, C., Yoshida, T., Yoshida, H., Sakamoto, W., Odanaka, W., Sato, T., Yamasaki, T., Kanemitsu, T., Masuda, Y., & Urushibata, O. (2015). Ingestion of hyaluronans (molecular weights 800 k and 300 k) improves dry skin conditions: a randomized, double-blind, controlled study. Journal of Clinical Biochemistry and Nutrition, 56(1), 66–73. (B)
  10. Kim, D.-U., Chung, H.-C., Choi, J., Sakai, Y., & Lee, B.-Y. (2018). Oral Intake of Low-Molecular-Weight Collagen Peptide Improves Hydration, Elasticity, and Wrinkling in Human Skin: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study. Nutrients, 10(7). (B)
  11. Marini, A., Grether-Beck, S., Jaenicke, T., Weber, M., Burki, C., Formann, P., Brenden, H., Schönlau, F., & Krutmann, J. (2012). Pycnogenol® effects on skin elasticity and hydration coincide with increased gene expressions of collagen type I and hyaluronic acid synthase in women. Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, 25(2), 86–92. (C)
  12. Mata, I. R. da, Mata, S. R. da, Menezes, R. C. R., Faccioli, L. S., Bandeira, K. K., & Bosco, S. M. D. (2020). Benefits of turmeric supplementation for skin health in chronic diseases: a systematic review. Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition, 1–15. (A)
  13. McDaniel, D., Farris, P., & Valacchi, G. (2018). Atmospheric skin aging-Contributors and inhibitors. Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, 17(2), 124–137. (F)
  14. Ni, Z., Mu, Y., & Gulati, O. (2002). Treatment of melasma with Pycnogenol. Phytotherapy Research: PTR, 16(6), 567–571. (C)
  15. Oe, M., Sakai, S., Yoshida, H., Okado, N., Kaneda, H., Masuda, Y., & Urushibata, O. (2017). Oral hyaluronan relieves wrinkles: a double-blinded, placebo-controlled study over a 12-week period. Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigational Dermatology, 10, 267–273. (B)
  16. Pavicic, T., Gauglitz, G. G., Lersch, P., Schwach-Abdellaoui, K., Malle, B., Korting, H. C., & Farwick, M. (2011). Efficacy of cream-based novel formulations of hyaluronic acid of different molecular weights in anti-wrinkle treatment. Journal of Drugs in Dermatology: JDD, 10(9), 990–1000. (C)
  17. Schwartz, S. R., Hammon, K. A., Gafner, A., Dahl, A., Guttman, N., Fong, M., & Schauss, A. G. (2019). Novel Hydrolyzed Chicken Sternal Cartilage Extract Improves Facial Epidermis and Connective Tissue in Healthy Adult Females: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial. Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine, 25(5), 12–29. (B)
  18. Tominaga, K., Hongo, N., Karato, M., & Yamashita, E. (2012). Cosmetic benefits of astaxanthin on human subjects. Acta Biochimica Polonica, 59(1), 43–47. (C)
  19. Vaughn, A. R., Branum, A., & Sivamani, R. K. (2016). Effects of Turmeric (Curcuma longa) on Skin Health: A Systematic Review of the Clinical Evidence. Phytotherapy Research: PTR, 30(8), 1243–1264. (A)
  20. Vaughn, A. R., Clark, A. K., Notay, M., & Sivamani, R. K. (2018). Randomized Controlled Pilot Study of Dietary Supplementation with Turmeric or Herbal Combination Tablets on Skin Barrier Function in Healthy Subjects. Journal of Medicinal Food, 21(12), 1260–1265. (C)
  21. Yoon, H.-S., Cho, H. H., Cho, S., Lee, S.-R., Shin, M.-H., & Chung, J. H. (2014). Supplementation with dietary astaxanthin combined with collagen hydrolysate improves facial elasticity and decreases matrix metalloproteinase-1 and -12 expression: a comparative study with placebo. Journal of Medicinal Food, 17(7), 810–816. (C)

Disclaimer: Protocols are intended solely as an informational reference tool for practicing health care professionals. The content provided is not intended to be for medical diagnosis or treatment, is not a substitute for your professional judgment, and is not meant to provide you with medical or professional advice. You should evaluate and independently confirm the appropriateness of the content provided, including verifying uses, dosages, warnings and contraindications on product labels, and rely on your experience and judgment and other available resources when applying the provided content to an actual patient care situation. While content has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable, we cannot and do not guarantee the accuracy, validity, timeliness or completeness of the content. We make no representation or warranty, express or implied, including, without limitation, any warranty of merchantability or of fitness for a particular purpose, and you assume full responsibility for the use of the content and products and agree that Fullscript and its content providers are not responsible or liable for any claim, loss, injury or damage arising from your use of the information. Statements regarding dietary and other healthcare supplements have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

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