Collagen Filler - Does It Really Work?

the doctors on here seem to univerally say that collagen filler is old technique to improve lips and face lines. why then do so many skin care products have collagen and say collagen filler works? Like L'oreal Collagen Filler Eye. The L'oreal web site says in consumer testing, crow’s-feet decreased by 20% after four weeks, and 68% saw dark circles reduced in four weeks. So confused!

Doctor Answers 5

Injectable collagen does work to fill in creases, but topical collagen doesn't

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Topical collagen is like a good moisturizer but doesn't do anything long term. Injectable collagen does great to fill in creases but only lasts from weeks to a few months. Things that stimulate your own natural collagen production such as Retin A does soften creases and smooth the skin, but takes 4-6 months to see a significant difference and keeps working as long as you keep using the Retin A and moisture your skin.

Hope that helps.

Beverly Hills Dermatologic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Stuffing a cat through a Key Hole

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

We have been answering this question for at least thirty years when cosmetic companies first began trumpeting collagen as a skin care ingredient. . The answer has not changed. Collagen is far too big a molecule to penetrate the skin, even if it is latched to a carrier protein.

Certainly, there are techniques to stimulate collagen production. That is the whole basis of laser and IPL non-ablative treatment, dermal needling, etc. . There is also decent evidence that Retinoids stimulate collagen and less evidence but valid nonethess that alpha-hydroxy acids stimulate collagen. There may be others.

However, just by placing collagen on the skin, does not mean collagen can penetrate the effective skin barrier.

I would have to see more evidence than dubbing something clincally proven. The internet and infomercials are strewen with products which have been clinically proven. Was the study done with and without collagen for instance. Who did the study? Was it an in house study?

I would also like to mention that collagen as a filler has not seen its day. It was the original filler and has a long track record of being effective and safe. However, it was not long lasting. It never was intended to plump up the lips.

Its is undergoing somewhat of a revival in the form of Evolence which is a porcine derived collagen. This lasts as long if not longer than the hyaluronic acid fillers. I personally think it can give a more natural look. It does take an experienced physician to inject the stuff though, ie. someone who knows not to go too superficial.

I like Cosmoderm quite a bit around the vermilion borders. It gives good definition to the lip. It is also excellent for the crow's feet and scars.

Arnold R. Oppenheim, MD
Virginia Beach Dermatologist

Collagen and mositurizers in skin products.

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

That is a good question. The cosmetic industry makes billions off of these products.

Just because your skin is deficient in collagen, doesnt' mean that smothering the surface in collagen will help. The epidermis of the skin is a highly effective barrier and it really keeps the applied collagen from penetrating into the deeper layer of the dermis where it is needed.

Let me give you an example. If you are dehydrated, it doesn't mean that swimming in a pool will rehydrate you. In fact, it often does the opposite. The water is needed on an intra-cellular level. The only way to properly rehydrate is to get this into your bloodstream typically via the intestinal tract.

Building collagen in your skin requires the cells to manufacture this. It requires proper building blocks such as protein and vitamin C. Injection of collagen into the skin does not deliver this either but it does place the collagen into the skin. There are few known products that can stimulate and maintain collagen production on an onlgoing and longterm basis. However, this may be possible as recombinant DNA technology or stem cell research improves.

The same can be said for most mosturizers. Some may maintain or preserve the bodies mositure but few truly add moisture to the skin.

Collagen in skin care products not same as injectable collagen

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

The collagen that was/is used to improve lip and facial lines is an injection just like fillers such as Restylane and Juvederm. This can work and will improve lines but doesn't last as long as the modern fillers. This has nothing to do with the collagen that is put into skin care products. These products are rubbed on the skin. They are not injected into the skin. Collagen is a large protein that can not pass through your skin. Don't fall for the marketing hype!

Skin care products with collagen

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Skin care products from the cosmetic manufacturers offer alot of things. However, most of them do not work like they are purported to. The marketing for some of these products is so good, that consumers gobble them up. These collagen based products do not do much.

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.