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It will make your skin look youthful, your bones and nails strong, and your joints pain-free. These are the claims made by the countless collagen drinks and collagen supplements on the market. For that reason, it’s no surprise that collagen drinks have become a widely sought-after product in the beauty and wellness communities.

But how exactly does collagen work? Are they as effective as their makers would have you believe? And if they do work, how many bottles of collagen would you need to knock back to notice a difference in your skin?

Ahead, we’ll give you the lowdown on all things collagen, from what it is to how it works. Keep reading, because we’ve also rounded up our top collagen drinks and supplements to try.

What is collagen?

Collagen Skin Concerns

Collagen is one of the most abundant proteins in the body. In fact, collagen is the main structural protein that forms the connective tissue throughout our body, from our skin to bones, muscles, tendons, and ligaments.

Unfortunately, our natural collagen production slows down from our early 20s by 1 to 1.5% every year. By the time you turn 50, most individuals will have lost about 50% of the collagen in their skin. This can lead to wrinkles and a lack of firmness seen in mature skin.

Collagen depletion, however, does not happen at the same rate for everyone. The rate will depend on various lifestyle factors, such as diet, sun exposure, sleep, and stress levels, as well as genetics and hormones.

That means that wearing sunscreen, avoiding smoking, and limiting your time in the sun, as well as living a healthy, balanced lifestyle, can help protect against prematurely dropping collagen levels. In fact, they should be a part of any effective anti-ageing routine too.

How do collagen drinks work?

Collagen Avalon

Credit: Avalon Singapore on Instagram

Unlike the collagen that’s naturally produced by our bodies, collagen drinks and supplements utilise collagen peptides (also referred to as hydrolysed collagen). These peptides are made of the same amino acids as collagen, but they’re absorbed more easily by our bodies. That’s because they are much shorter chains of amino acids than collagen, making them much easier to digest.

Contrary to what you might believe about collagen drinks, they don’t actually add the collagen peptides you drink directly to your dermis. Rather, the collagen peptides act as a feedback mechanism to trigger your own natural collagen production.

Some studies show that taking collagen supplements for several months can improve skin elasticity as well as visible signs of ageing. Others have shown that consuming collagen can increase density in bones weakened with age and can improve joint, back, and knee pain, so it’s no wonder that the bottled-up version of this protein is in high demand.

How much collagen to consume for the most effective results

The higher the daily dose, the more effective the product. Studies have shown that you’ll need 2,500mg of collagen a day incorporated into a regular diet, but you’ll need to ingest 6,000mg of collagen peptides daily to trigger fibroblast activity in the dermis. That’s why each daily bottle of collagen drink would usually provide you with more than 6,000mg to compensate for any shortfall in absorption.

For long-lasting effects, you’ll have to take supplements for the rest of your life. That’s because our bodies are constantly producing collagenase, an enzyme that eats away at our natural collagen. So if collagen supplements improve your skin, bones and joints, you’ll need to keep taking them.

If you’re vegetarian or have food-related allergies, be sure to check the ingredients before you make a purchase. Every brand derives its collagen from different sources, so it’s better to be safe.

Best collagen drinks and supplements in Singapore

1. Tsubaki Ageless Collagen Drink

Collagen Drink Tsubaki

With most collagen drinks, you’ll have to wait for several weeks before you start to see visible changes to your skin. The Tsubaki Ageless Collagen Drink, however, promises a brighter complexion with even skin tone in just a few days.

To rejuvenate and speed up your skin’s natural healing process, the peach-flavoured collagen drink contains royal jelly, a nutrient-rich substance that’s produced by honey bees to nourish queen bees and their young.

The collagen drink also contains 10,000mg of MCP-EX Marine Collagen Peptides, which have molecules that are 60 times smaller than regular collagen, so they’re 1.5 times easier to absorb.

Tsubaki Ageless Collagen Drink retails for S$44.90 (10 bottles) at Watsons

2. New Moon Inner Radiance Collagen Drink

Collagen Drink New Moon

For those who want a brighter, more radiant complexion, try the New Moon Inner Radiance Collagen Drink. It contains 13,000mg of concentrated collagen peptides derived from fish, along with whitening properties to brighten your skin.

Besides its skin-boosting benefits, New Moon’s collagen drink also helps to promote gut health and helps your body recover faster after an intense workout.

New Moon Inner Radiance Collagen Drink retails for S$48 (10 bottles) at Watsons

3. Avalon Stemcell Beauty Drink

Collagen Drink Avalon

Apart from collagen, the Avalon Stemcell Beauty Drink also contains orchid stem cells that help to repair skin cells and prep the skin for other beneficial nutrients. Designed to resolve major skin issues, such as damaged skin cells and acne, the collagen drink brightens your skin tone, tightens pores, improves skin firmness, and reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

Marine collagen peptides help to replenish and lock in moisture too, allowing your repaired skin cells to thrive. On top of that, the collagen drink also contains sparkling water for a refreshing, fizzy boost that’s said to boost nutrient absorption and skin metabolism.

Avalon Stemcell Beauty Drink retails for S$49.90 (10 bottles) at Avalon’s official Shopee store

4. LAC Taut Collagen Drink Plus Placenta

Collagen Drink Lac Taut

One of the pricier collagen drinks on our list, the LAC Taut Collagen Drink Plus Placenta contains a whopping 13,000mg dose of low molecular weight collagen. Derived from red snapper, the collagen drink has an orange flavour, so you won’t get any fishy burps after.

Together with a potent concentration of placenta extract, the collagen drink works to rejuvenate ageing tissues as it enhances your skin’s renewal process.

LAC Taut Collagen Drink Plus Placenta retails for S$84.96 (8 bottles) at Lazada

5. POLA Inner Liftia Collagen & Placenta

Collagen Drink Pola

Another collagen supplement that’s infused with placenta, POLA’s Inner Liftia Collagen & Placenta is a collagen powder that is enhanced with a blend of elastin, hyaluronic acid, and iron, which is a mineral that’s commonly deficient in women.

It also contains a rare plant placenta that’s extracted from melons, an ingredient packed with nutrients to support your skin from the inside. When taken daily, you’ll notice a lit-from-within glow.

POLA Inner Liftia Collagen & Placenta retails for S$61.86 (30 sachets) at Osakakuma’s official store on Shopee. Osakakuma’s collagen products are also available online at Lazada and Qoo10, and physical stores at Paya Lebar Quarter and Bugis Plus.

Paya Lebar Quarter: 10 Paya lebar Road, #02-22 Paya Lebar Quarter Mall, Singapore 409057
Bugis+: 201 Victoria Street, 02-51/52 Bugis+, Singapore 188067

6. Shiseido Collagen Powder W

Collagen Drink Shiseido

Apart from 5,000mg of beautifying collagen, Shiseido’s Collagen Powder W contains glow-boosting ingredients, such as lingonberry and amla (gooseberry) fruit. Lingonberry amps up hydration levels and combats signs of ageing like fine lines and wrinkles, while amla fruit supports and brightens your skin.

Since it doesn’t have a distinct scent or taste, you can mix the powder into your favourite drink or other foods for a beauty boost. Many customers have enjoyed adding the collagen powder to their coffee, smoothie, soup, or even rice.

Shiseido Collagen Powder W retails for S$31.92 – S$56.62 at Osakakuma’s official store on Shopee. Osakakuma’s collagen products are also available online at Lazada and Qoo10, and physical stores at Paya Lebar Quarter and Bugis Plus.

Paya Lebar Quarter: 10 Paya lebar Road, #02-22 Paya Lebar Quarter Mall, Singapore 409057
Bugis+: 201 Victoria Street, 02-51/52 Bugis+, Singapore 188067

7. Kinohimitsu Collagen Diamond

Collagen Drink Kinohimitsu

Kinohimitsu is a brand you probably have seen stocked on the shelves of Watsons or Guardian. Their Kinohimitsu Collagen Diamond is a sugar-free formula that contains 5,300mg of marine collagen peptides per pop, and it’s one of the most popular collagen drinks on the market.

Besides providing that much-needed skin boost, it’s also rich in antioxidants derived from perilla seed extract. This works synergistically with the marine collagen peptides to help reduce cell inflammation and skin ageing while helping your skin repair itself.

Kinohimitsu Collagen Diamond retails for S$69.90 (16 bottles) at Watsons

8. BRAND’S InnerShine RubyCollagen Essence

Collagen Drink Brands

Famed for its Essence of Chicken, BRAND’S also has its very own collagen drink – the BRAND’S InnerShine RubyCollagen Essence. Unlike most other collagen drink brands, however, its signature ruby formula is created with a unique and precious blend of natural ingredients.

The collagen drink contains micro-collagen and is formulated with one of the most powerful natural antioxidants, astaxanthin. The antioxidant is scientifically proven to be 6,000 times more powerful than vitamin C, 800 times more powerful than CoQ10, and 500 times more powerful than vitamin E.

BRAND’S InnerShine RubyCollagen Essence retails for S$44.03 for 12 bottles at BRAND’S official store on Shopee

9. Nano Jewel Collagen

Collagen Drink Nano Japan

Air-conditioners can zap moisture from our skin, whether we’re back at the office or working from home. Coupled with harsh sunlight from the outdoors, our skin can lose its radiance and appear duller.

This is why Nano Japan has created its Nano Jewel Collagen, which uses 8,000mg of collagen peptides as well as eight kinds of active beauty ingredients to tackle dull, dehydrated skin. The formula helps to hydrate your skin while protecting it from the damage of harmful UV rays too.

Nano Jewel Collagen retails for S$39.90 at Nano’s official store on Shopee

10. Astalift Pure Collagen Drink 10000

Collagen Drink Astalift

Made in Japan, the ASTALIFT Pure Collagen Drink has a unique formula because it uses low-temperature extraction technology to harness a rare “first extraction” of the collagen that is said to be purer. This purer collagen is then readily absorbed by the skin.

To top it off, the collagen drink also contains three types of pure collagen that can moisturise your skin, enhance your skin’s elasticity, and restore your skin’s firmness.

Astalift Pure Collagen Drink 10000 retails for S$60 (10 bottles) at Watsons

11. TruLife Collagen Cell Renew

Collagen Drink Trulife

Packed with 15,000mg of pure micro marine collagen peptides, the TruLife Collagen Cell Renew is supposedly able to show you visible results in just 10 days. The collagen drink is filled with vitamins A, C, E, B1, B2 and B6, and omits added sugar or additives, so you won’t have to worry about it adding to your daily caloric intake.

According to customers, it has a naturally sweet taste, which makes it a wholesome beauty treat. With those ingredients combined, the collagen drink targets fine lines, locks in moisture, and brightens your complexion to give you more supple and youthful-looking skin.

TruLife Collagen Cell Renew retails for S$36.80 (10 bottles) at TruLife’s official store on Shopee

12. Lao Xie Zhen Collagen Beauty Essence

Collagen Drink Lao Xie Zhen

Lao Xie Zhen’s Collagen Beauty Essence boasts a proprietary formula from Japan. The drink is chock-full of vitamin C and plant polyphenols to boost the production and absorption of collagen by the body, promising a glowing radiance from within.

Thanks to a blend of beetroot, figs, hawthorn, and acerola cherries, the collagen drink has a fruity, berry-like scent and taste to it. The drink also contains patented nano collagen peptides PO·OG from Japan, which are made of the purest and highest grade of fish collagen out there. Despite the presence of fish collagen peptides, you probably won’t detect any fishy odour from the drink.

Check out our full review of the product here!

Lao Xie Zhen Collagen Beauty Essence retails for S$44.20 (6 packets) at Hao Yi Kang’s official store on Shopee

13. The Beauty Chef Collagen Inner Beauty Boost

Collagen Drink The Beauty Chef

This beauty-boosting collagen drink by The Beauty Chef features a concentrated blend of certified organic ingredients, such as maqui berry, acai, papaya, blueberry, goji berry and pomegranate powders, which are packed with skin-boosting nutrients. These are combined with grape seed extract, zinc and vitamin C, which plump up and brighten your skin.

The Beauty Chef uses an exclusive Flora Culture fermentation process too. This makes the nutrients more bio-available and better absorbed by your body. Even better, the collagen drink is free from artificial colours, sugar, and gluten, so it is suitable for vegans.

The Beauty Chef Collagen Inner Beauty Boost retails for US$50 (S$67.31) (500ml) at Beautylish