Does your hair look thin and dull or shed excessively? It may be in severe need of collagen, an essential protein that plays a crucial role in stimulating hair growth and maintaining its health.
In this article, let's understand how collagen benefits your hair, how to use it and other important details you need to know.
Our Ayurvedic Doctor Speaks
‘’Collagen fibres are very strong structural, connective fibres that maintain tensional strength. For hair this means deeper, stronger and healthier hair.”
-Dr. Zeel Gandhi (Bachelor of Ayurveda, Medicine & Surgery), Chief Ayurvedic Doctor, Vedix
Is Collagen Good For Hair?
Collagen helps in promoting healthy hair growth in different ways. It is the building block of your hair as it provides the amino acids to synthesize hair protein. It helps in strengthening hair roots and preventing follicle damage. When your hair follicles stop receiving sufficient collagen from the blood, it results in dryness, hair breakage and hair fall.
‘’Collagen fibres are very strong structural, connective fibres that maintain tensional strength. For hair this means deeper, stronger and healthier hair,’’ says Dr. Zeel Gandhi, Chief Ayurvedic Doctor at Vedix.
What Does Collagen Do For The Hair?
1. Controls Hair Loss Related To Aging
As per studies, collagen synthesis reduces in chronologically aged skin and it is reversible.
Your body's ability to produce collagen naturally decreases as you age. This leads to increased dryness, weaker roots, and hair fall. Intaking collagen through your diet or supplements helps your body synthesize hair protein. This in turn, results in thicker, stronger, and longer hair growth.
2. Reduces Grey Hair Growth
Melanin pigment, which keeps your hair dark, is produced in the hair follicles. A damaged hair follicle cannot produce sufficient melanin, resulting in the growth of grey hair . When such damaged follicles are supplied with collagen topically or orally, it supports the healthy structure of the follicles by fighting free radicals. This in turn, results in the proper functioning of melanin and darker hair growth.
Studies found that the collagen hydrolysates prepared from a sea cucumber exhibited excellent radical scavenging activity.
3. Treats Split Ends And Breakage
Collagen helps to maintain adequate hydration levels in the hair. This prevents the hair from becoming dry and brittle. Also, it helps to treat split ends by boosting the cuticle integrity in hair strands. In turn, your hair gains softer texture, volume, and luster.
4. Promotes Strong Hair Growth
The stem cells present in hair follicles use the amino acids in collagen to produce keratin protein. Also, collagen provides the optimal environment for the hair bulb to receive the best nourishment during the anagen(growth) phase. In this way, collagen promotes stronger hair growth.
How To Use Collagen For Hair?
1. Oral Intake Of Collagen
Taking collagen peptides orally in the form of a well-balanced diet or supplements is the best way to maximize its benefits for your hair. Bone broth, chicken, sea fish, shellfish, egg white, beans, etc. are some of the dietary sources of collagen.
Dr. Zeel says, ‘’Ayurveda prizes amla for its pro collagen benefits, and moong bean protein for providing the substrate for collagen synthesis.”
Eating foods such as citrus fruits, berries, kiwi, mango, guava, pineapple, tomatoes, bell peppers, etc. that are rich in vitamin C regularly, promotes collagen production in the body. Studies claim that vitamin C has an essential role in collagen synthesis and connective tissue healing, as it is a cofactor for prolyl hydroxylase and lysyl hydroxylase.
Also, collagen supplements are available in the form of powder and pills, which can be quickly absorbed by the body.
2. Collagen-Infused Products
You can include collagen-infused hair packs, serums, shampoos, and conditioners in your hair care regimen. You can add herbs such as horsetail, nettles, calendula, gynostemma, etc. in your hair care routine to boost the collagen production in your scalp and hair.
Although the collagen from these products may work for hydration and antioxidant support for your hair, it may not be as effective as obtaining it from food sources.
Massage calendula oil to your scalp for a few minutes and wash your hair after an hour. Repeat this twice a week to promote collagen production in your scalp.
Does Collagen Have Any Side Effects?
In general, collagen supplements are safe for most people. In rare cases, some people may experience mild side effects such as bloating, nausea, and heartburn. However, these side effects are not directly linked to collagen, but to the common food allergens that are used in the supplements.
Also, excessive collagen consumption can cause scleroderma , an autoimmune disease that may affect the skin along with internal organs.
Seek medical help immediately if you notice any unusual symptoms after using collagen supplements.
Frequently Asked Questions About Collagen
1. Which Collagen Is Best For Hair Growth?
Among several types of collagen, Type I and Type III are the most commonly synthesized within the human body. These two types of collagen help in promoting stronger hair growth.
There are 16 types of collagen and Type I constitutes about 90% of the collagen in the human body. Also, Type I collagen has more strength than steel 
2. Can You Put Collagen Directly In The Hair?
Yes, you can use collagen directly on your scalp and hair in the form of protein hair packs, collagen peptide-infused serums, shampoos, and conditioners. However, topical application of collagen does not have the same potential as it has when consumed orally. When applied topically, collagen primarily helps in hydrating and moisturizing the hair strands and scalp.
3. How Much Collagen Should You Take For Hair Growth?
Officially, there are no specific guidelines on the amount of collagen to be taken per day. In general, doctors recommend 2.5-10 grams of collagen for daily oral intake for 8-12 weeks to promote healthy hair.
Doctors can prescribe the appropriate supplement dosage for you by evaluating how much collagen you are obtaining from your diet and how much your body can absorb.
4. How Long Does It Take For Collagen To Work For Hair Growth?
Typically, you may notice visible improvement in your hair growth within two weeks of using collagen for hair. Also, you may eventually notice a reduction in scalp itching and flaking while your hair starts feeling smoother, softer, and glossy.
Consult your doctor before using collagen in any form for your hair growth.
The Last Word
Collagen is one of the most fundamental components that are essential for the well-being of hair. Known as an anti-aging protein, collagen helps prevent hair loss caused due to aging. However, it is recommended to consult your doctor to find a safe dosage limit for collagen to boost your hair growth.
At Vedix, we understand your hair needs and craft a customized Ayurvedic hair care regimen that addresses your unique hair issues.Know Your Dosha Now
1. The structure of people’s hair (2014), PeerJ, National Library of Medicine
2. Age-induced hair greying - the multiple effects of oxidative stress (2013), International Journal of cosmetic science
3. Collagen, Harvard school of public health.
4. Scleroderma, Cleveland clinic
5. Collagen structure deciphered (2006), Massachusetts Institute of Technology
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