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Does collagen help hair growth?

    With an estimated value of over £1 billion1, the collagen market has boomed in recent years, largely thanks to the protein’s growing popularity as an at-home treatment to maintain healthy skin, hair and nails.

    While more commonly associated with health conditions like arthritis and osteoporosis, in recent years, collagen has emerged as a potential hair growth solution. 

    In this article, we take a detailed look at how collagen can promote hair growth, highlighting some of the science behind its use and whether its purported benefits actually hold up.

    What is collagen?

    In order to understand the potential impact of collagen on hair growth, it’s important to look at what collagen is and how it works within the body. 

    A structural protein found in skin, tendons, bones, connective tissues and, more notably, hair, collagen is the most abundant protein in mammals, comprising 25% to 35% of the body’s whole protein content2

    Collagen is also not a single substance – it’s a diverse family of proteins, made up of different types that each play a distinct role within the body. 

    In the context of hair health, for example, collagen plays a crucial role as a structural element of hair follicles, providing vital support, strength and elasticity.

    The science behind collagen and hair growth

    While collagen is often touted as a potential remedy for hair loss, there are limited studies that prove its benefits. 

    What’s more, the studies that do show its benefits on hair growth have been mainly funded by brands in the cosmetic and supplement industry, presenting a conflict of interest.

    However, some studies have shed light on the relationship between hair and collagen more generally. 

    One piece of research, for example, showed that younger cells at the base of hair follicles use more collagen, while older cells use less, suggesting that declining collagen levels could contribute towards hair loss3

    Another study found that, when used as a food supplement, collagen derived from fish could prevent hair loss and trigger hair regrowth in people with alopecia4

    Deficiencies in specific collagen types, such as collagen VI and XVII, have also been linked to hair loss and premature greying5,6.

    How does collagen help hair growth?

    While further research needs to be done to fully understand the relationship between collagen and hair growth, its use is theorised to enhance hair health in three of the following ways:

    • Stimulate body’s antioxidant activity – collagen is associated with antioxidant properties that are thought to combat oxidative stress, a factor implicated in both hair and skin ageing7.
    • Delay hair ageing – as the body produces less collagen over time, replenishing collagen levels through supplements may counteract signs of hair ageing.
    • Enhance collagen synthesis in the scalp – collagen supplements may stimulate collagen synthesis in the skin of the scalp, potentially improving blood supply to hair follicles and improving regrowth.

    As a result of these mechanisms, collagen peptides are said to offer the following benefits: 

    • Reduced thinning and hair loss – collagen may improve scalp health and strengthen hair follicles, potentially reducing fallout. 
    • Improved hair thickness – the amino acids that collagen contains can contribute to building stronger, thicker hair strands. 
    • Delayed greying – certain studies have shown that deficiencies in certain collagen types can delay premature greying8.

    It’s important to note that these mechanisms are all mainly theoretical. Therefore, if you have a condition like male pattern baldness, collagen is unlikely to deliver significant hair regrowth in the same way as other non-surgical treatment options, like Finasteride or Minoxidil, would.

    How to integrate collagen into your daily routine

    While research may still be ongoing into its effectiveness as a hair loss treatment in its own right, collagen is often recommended alongside other types of hair loss treatment to promote regrowth. 

    To incorporate it into your daily routine, there are a few different options you can consider: 

    • Eat collagen-rich foods – many foods contain natural collagen within them, such as bone broth, egg whites, chicken skin and fish like tuna, salmon and cod. 
    • Use collagen supplements – available in powder, capsule and liquid form, adding a collagen supplement to your daily routine allows you to easily reach the recommended daily dosage.  
    • Maintain a well-balanced diet – since the body also uses vitamin C to produce collagen9, eating plenty of nutrient-rich foods, like fruits, vegetables and whole grains can help promote hair growth.
    • Keep hydrated – collagen relies on proper hydration to function properly. Drinking plenty of water is vital to maintaining healthy hair. 

    As collagen supplements aren’t officially licensed as a hair loss drug, there is no recommended daily dose of collagen to take per day. Therefore, it’s important to speak to a haircare specialist to find the right type of solution for your specific type of hair loss. 

    The bottom line: does collagen help hair growth?

    Despite results from previous studies showing some promise, collagen’s use as a supplement should be treated with cautious optimism. 

    While some people may vouch for its use in restoring hair loss, thickening hair and delaying greying, the lack of scientific evidence currently available means that other hair loss treatment options, like Finasteride, Minoxidil or FUE hair transplant surgery, should be favoured. 

    Here at The Treatment Rooms London, we have helped hundreds of patients address their hair loss issues. 

    We understand just how much hair loss can affect your confidence and way of life, which is why our team of experts specialise in creating tailored solutions that cater to your exact needs. 

    To find out more about the range of hair loss treatments we offer, book a consultation with us. We will then be able to thoroughly assess your pattern of hair loss and provide you with personalised advice and recommendations. 


    1. Pulidindi, K. & Ahuja, K. (2023) Collagen Supplement Market Size By Source (Bovine, Marine, Porcine, Others), By Form (Pills & Gummies, Drink/ Liquid, Powder), By Distribution Channel (Pharmacy, Online Stores, Specialty Stores), By Application & Forecast, 2023-2032. Global Market Insights. Available at: [Accessed 16 November 2023]
    2. Di Lullo, A., Sweeney, S., Körkkö, J., et al. (2002). Mapping the Ligand-binding Sites and Disease-associated Mutations on the Most Abundant Protein in the Human, Type I Collagen. J. Biol. Chem. 277(6): 4223–31. Available at: [Accessed 16 November 2023]
    3. Kim, H., Choi, N., Kim, D., et al. (2021) TGF-β2 and collagen play pivotal roles in the spheroid formation and anti-aging of human dermal papilla cells. Aging (Albany NY). 13(16): 19978 – 19995. Available at: [Accessed 16 November 2023]
    4. Hwang, S., Park, H. & Lee, B. (2022) Hair-Growth-Promoting Effects of the Fish Collagen Peptide in Human Dermal Papilla Cells and C57BL/6 Mice Modulating Wnt/β-Catenin and BMP Signaling Pathways. Int J Mol Sci. 23(19): 11904. Available at: [Accessed 16 November 2023]
    5. Chen, P., Cescon, M. & Bonaldo, P. (2015) Lack of Collagen VI Promotes Wound-Induced Hair Growth. Journal of Investigative Dermatology. 135(10): 2358 – 2367. Available at: [Accessed 16 November 2023]
    6. Natsuga, K., Watanabe, M., Nishie, W. & Shimizu, H. (2018) Life before and beyond blistering: The role of collagen XVII in epidermal physiology. Experimental Dermatology. 28(10): 1135 – 1141. Available at: [Accessed 16 November 2023]
    7. Nurilmala, M., Hizbullah, H., Karnia, E., et al. (2020) Characterization and Antioxidant Activity of Collagen, Gelatin, and the Derived Peptides from Yellowfin Tuna (Thunnus albacares) Skin. Mar Drugs. 18(2): 98. Available at: [Accessed 16 November 2023]
    8. Streit, L. (2019) 5 Evidence-Based Ways Collagen May Improve Your Hair. Healthline. Available at: [Accessed 16 November 2023]
    9. Almohanna, H., Ahmed, A., Tsatalis, J. (2019) The Role of Vitamins and Minerals in Hair Loss: A Review. 9(1): 51 – 70. Available at: [Accessed 19 December 2023]

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