Charlotte Smith trials the collagen drink Skinade to see what youth-boosting effects it has on her complexion
Despite being as concerned about my appearance as the next person, I’d be telling a massive fib if I claimed I follow all the beauty rules. True, I cleanse and exfoliate regularly, there’s always water on my desk, and I’m a sucker for investing in the latest miracle serum. But my diet would raise disapproving eyebrows from health experts, not to mention some of my habits. Does dunking my bread in olive oil tick give me all the omega fats I need for youthful-looking skin? I doubt it. And what about getting enough antioxidants? Well, I drink plenty of wine. And, while I’m being honest, I often forget sunscreen in the morning… I think I’d better halt my confessions right here in case my mum’s reading.
While I’ve been busy riding the highs and lows of love, life, motherhood and career, the big 40 milestone has trundled on past. In my head I feel no different at 40 as I felt at 25, but my skin tells a truer story. I do, however, rather hope that my crow’s feet suggest that I’ve spent as many years laughing, enjoying the great outdoors and ‘gaining wisdom’ as I have squinting at screens.
So, when I was offered a three month trial of Skinade, a liquid collagen supplement, I was up for the challenge. All I had to do, according to the manufacturer’s instructions, was remember to knock back a drink (which contains a whopping 7,000mg of high-grade collagen sourced from freshwater fish) every morning and it would also give me my RDA of vitamin c, vitamin B complex and omegas 3 and 6. The tiny collagen fragments (peptides) contained in Skinade kickstart the body’s own production of collagen and research has shown an impressive 80-90 percent absorption rate compared with 30-40 percent for collagen pills. Data published in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology confirms that the structure of the skin is improved after two months use. What did I have to lose?
So for the past three months my morning routine has taken an extra twist. After breakfast and before I crack on with answering work emails, I’ve been drinking my very own would-be youth elixir. This is actually a pleasurable experience as the flavour is really very palatable – a refreshing blend of mangosteen and peach with absolutely no detectable trace of fish whatsoever.
One month in…
Impatience being my middle name, I couldn’t wait for more than a week before I was scrutinising my wrinkles in the mirror and dropping those irritating “Have you noticed anything different about me?” hints to my partner (he looked at me with puzzlement and a glint of fear: what does she want me to say?). But after two or three weeks, I did notice an uplift in the condition of my skin. Not a drastic reduction in wrinkles or anything blatantly obvious, but a general healthy bloom to my face and a smoother complexion. I stopped wearing
foundation, pinned my hair up and wore bright lipstick again for the first time in ages.
One month in, and close friends and loved ones were paying me compliments and I was feeling good about myself.
Two months in…
By the second month of taking Skinade, there was no doubt it was taking effect. On two separate occasions I had long-overdue catch ups with close friends and was asked what new make-up I was wearing because I “looked amazing” (truth: I was wasn’t wearing any). On another occasion, my daughter took a photo of me in bare light and I was very pleasantly taken with it – I looked like I’d been airbrushed.
There was one other notable improvement: my previously awful nails. I couldn’t believe how much they’d transformed. Where they were previously flaky, broken and dull, they were now growing like the clappers and looking strong, pink and youthful. I ditched my nail varnish along with my foundation. I started to do sums in my head – could I justify continuing with this monthly spend after the trial was over? I couldn’t bear the prospect of stopping the supplement and losing my glow!
Three months in…
I’m confident walking out without make-up; I use fewer expensive serums and masks (my skin just doesn’t seem to need them like it used to) and my hair and nails are both noticeably shinier and glossier. Blemishes seem to heal faster, I no longer have the problem of concealer bedding down into my wrinkles and even my eyes are a bit more sparkly. I’m sad that the trial is over, but I am considering tightening up my spend in other areas so I can continue taking Skinade. Make-up is definitely one – just a lick of mascara and eyebrow pencil and I feel good to go these days. I was a little sceptical at the beginning of the trial that one small drink each day could make much of a difference, but my new found confidence pays testament – Skinade does knock back a few years. I’m so glad I tried it.
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