Collagen is a fiber in the connective tissue throughout your body, most noticeably in the face. As you age, your body naturally stops producing collagen and the existing collagen will begin to break down. This leads to facial sagging and wrinkles and gives skin a rough appearance. A number of expensive and invasive procedures can rebuild or replace lost collagen; however, there are also practices you can incorporate into your daily life to start replenishing your body's collagen.
Apply sunscreen daily. A good majority of the collagen loss in your face can be attributed to UV sun damage. Many moisturizers include sunblock. Check the labels and use an SPF of at least 30.
Eat foods that contain the amino acids lysine and proline. Natural collagen contains large quantities of these two amino acids; consuming foods high in them can help to replenish your body's supply. Lysine can be found in lean meats, fish and low-fat dairy while egg whites and wheat germ are good sources of proline.
Take a vitamin C supplement on a daily basis. Vitamin C is required to transform the lysine and proline into hydroxylysine and hydroxyproline, the forms of the amino acids necessary to rebuild collagen.
Increase the amount of protein you consume in your diet. Women should consume 46 grams of protein a day, while men should consume 56 grams per day. Protein supports the growth and health of collagen.
Apply a daily cream that contains retinol. You can get a prescription for a high-dose cream, but several quality products are available at drug and beauty stores. Retinol has been shown to heal the collagen breakdown caused by photodamage.
Things You'll Need
Foods rich in lysine, proline and protein
Vitamin C supplement
Rebuilding collagen is a complicated process and all the steps above work in conjunction to make it happen. Omitting a step will hinder the growth of collagen.