Collagen is the main supporting structure for the skin, lining of the joints, ligaments and tendons, and is very important for our overall health. The more collagen your skin has, the smoother and tighter it appears. It is important to understand there are 29 different types of collagen in the body, each with its specific action. In the skin, the 2 most important are collagen Type III, designed for protection of the tissues, representing 10 % of the fibres. It is the first to appear for healing wounds, or creating a scar. Type I is the most abundant, 90% of the fibres, and is what we have an abundance of when we are young, maintaining supple and elastic skin. However, this decreases with age. There are many minimally invasive treatments designed to stimulate collagen, depending on your skin needs, there are different treatments you can try. Collagen begins to appear about 4 to 5 weeks after a stimulation, and will last for several years. We also need to make sure the treatment selected is creating the right type of collagen, ideally Type I.
Collagen stimulation is typically used to rejuvenate the face and skin, however it can also be used to treat the neck, décolletage, hands, scars and breasts.
At your initial consultation, your doctor or skincare expert will discuss your skincare concerns, and suggest the best course of treatment for you. All of these treatments are minimally invasive, meaning you should be able to have your procedure and leave the clinic within a few hours. Duration and intensity depends on what treatment you opt for. Microneedling resurfaces the top layer of the skin, with cleaner and healthier looking skin in just half an hour. Meanwhile, Fractora lasers typically take one hour, pulsing the skin to create an instantly fresher result.
Some collagen stimulators require you to prepare your skin before treatment. Before a CO2 laser treatment, you may be asked to use a specialised set of topical products for up to two weeks prior to treatment. These will strengthen your dermis and will minimise post procedure downtime and swelling.
Meanwhile, CO2 lasers don’t require any prep. However, you may need to put aside 3-5 days after treatment to reduce the risk of infection. To curb swelling and redness after treatment, it is recommended you use a cold compress and apply moisturiser. This will help promote healing and hydration.
While treatment with Ellanse doesn’t require any pre-care (except going make up free!), you should avoid hot baths and vigorous exercise for 24 hours post treatment, and limit your exposure to UV light for a week.
Radiofrequency While treatments are permanent, as we age our skin becomes laxer. To keep skin looking firm and wrinkle-free, you may want to revisit your practitioner every three to six months.
Lasers: A CO2 laser treatment will last four months.
Filler: Ellanse lasts between one and three years.
Thread lifts: PDO threads last between 6 to 12 months, while Silhouette Soft threads last between one year to 18 months.
All collagen stimulating treatments have immediate results, resulting in fresher looking skin. However, as our body is encouraged to produce is own collagen, you will experience healthier, bouncier and tighter skin in three to four months.
As with any aesthetic treatment you may experience some localised swelling, redness and bruising following your collagen stimulating procedure. In addition, during a microneedling treatment you may have slight bloodshed, which should stop immediately afterwards, leaving slight sensitivity and peeling. With a radiofrequency procedure, you will experience superficial surface wounds, which helps the body heal itself, as well as temporary pigment changes and pimpling for a week. After a thread lift you may experience some bruising, redness or swelling at the needle entry points.
Microneedling: From £250 per session
Radiofrequency £1,000 per session
Lasers: A session costs £300
Filler: Depending of the type of Ellanse filler chosen, costs start at £550
Thread lifts: PDO thread lifts cost between £999 and £3,000. Silhouette Soft thread lifts begin at £1,800
Microneedling is also known as collagen induction therapy due to its ability to rebuild the body’s collagen fibre support through healing of the micro wounds, making way for fresh, new fibres to take the place of the old. It is an effective method of erasing imperfections from the surface of the skin, from acne scarring and sun damage to fine lines and wrinkles.
Lasers are effective in resurfacing the skin, improving texture and quality. The CO2, Laser uses a small, wand like device to heat the dermis, creating small burns. This stimulates new collagen production, making it efficient for acne scarring, age spots, pigmentation, fine lines and wrinkles, large pores and skin laxity.
Longer term collagen can be boosted using biostimulating fillers, giving lasting benefits to the quality and structure of the skin. Fillers like Ellansé stimulate the body to produce collagen Type I for rejuvenation, to give healthier, bouncier and tighter looking skin. Ellansé biostimulating filler is dual action treatment as it gives immediate volume via a gel, followed by longer term, lasting collagen Type I which is stimulated over the first couple of months after treatment.
A thread lift is a non-surgical face or neck lift,neck lift, used for repositioning facial tissues to restore shape and structure to the face that has been lost over time. Thread lifts can also offer collagen regeneration.
There are two main types of threads. PDO thread lifts. This treatment uses a number of fine threads and is best for people with heavier skin. Silhouette Soft thread lifts stimulate the body's production of type 1 collagen whilst repositioning sagging tissues. Type 1 collagen will rejuvenate the skin, restoring shapeliness, creating a fresh, glowing appearance.
Radiofrequency uses energy to stimulate collagen and elastin production, using electrical heat energy to heat the dermis and tighten and contour the skin without damaging it. Some of these devices use pulses of radiofrequency to tighten and resurface the skin. These pulses cause the skin to contract, which produce newly formed collagen, creating a firming effect.
“Collagen has long been considered the holy grail when it comes to anti-ageing. The benefits of collagen? It strengthens the dermis and keeps the skin youthful and firm. However, from our mid-twenties, our collagen production naturally depletes, and smoking sun damage and sugar can also cause further damage. The collagen molecule is too big to penetrate the outer layer of the skin, so topical skincare won’t help beyond hydration. The best solution are in-clinic collagen stimulation treatments, from collagen injections and laser to microneedling and thread lifts. These, in combination with a skin friendly diet will leave you glowing.”Meet our Experts