Hydrolyzed Collagen



Hydrolyzed Collagen at a glance

  • Collagen that’s been broken down into smaller segments
  • Increases skin’s moisture levels
  • Promotes a dewy, smooth appearance
  • Also commonly used in supplements

Hydrolyzed Collagen description

Hydrolyzed collagen, also referred to as collagen peptides, is collagen that’s been broken down into short chains of amino acids, forming collagen peptides. Contrary to popular belief, hydrolyzed collagen does not function as an anti-aging ingredient, but rather a humectant that assists in hydrating skin. Humectants help promote a smooth, plump and dewy appearance by drawing and binding moisture to the skin. They work particularly well when paired with emollients, which help trap moisture within the skin. Collagen occurs naturally in the body. Alongside elastin, it provides structure and firmness to skin, helping skin maintain a youthful, tight appearance. As we age, our body slows production of collagen and elastin. Combined with accumulated environmental damage, mostly from UV light exposure, this results in sagging skin with a compromised, fragmented structure. Hydrolyzed collagen’s molecules are far too large to penetrate skin and impact its structure. This is why we use collagen-stimulating ingredients, like retinol and vitamin C, in anti-aging skin care. This ingredient’s also commonly used in supplements and hair care. The Cosmetic Ingredient Review Expert Panel assessed hydrolyzed collagen and stated that it’s safe for use in cosmetics. In skin and hair care, usage levels of hydrolyzed collagen typically range from 0.2–2%.

Hydrolyzed Collagen references

  • International Journal of Toxicology, August 2022, pages 21S-42S
  • Molecules, November 2019, ePublication
  • The Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology, March 2009, pages 38-43

Peer-reviewed, substantiated scientific research is used to assess ingredients in this dictionary. Regulations regarding constraints, permitted concentration levels and availability vary by country and region.

Ingredient ratings


Proven and supported by independent studies. Outstanding active ingredient for most skin types or concerns.


Necessary to improve a formula's texture, stability, or penetration.


Generally non-irritating but may have aesthetic, stability, or other issues that limit its usefulness.


There is a likelihood of irritation. Risk increases when combined with other problematic ingredients.


May cause irritation, inflammation, dryness, etc. May offer benefit in some capability but overall, proven to do more harm than good.


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Not rated