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Health

The Girlfriend’s Guide to Collagen Powder

What is it? Collagen powder is powdered connective tissue from cows and fish. Icky right? But adding it to foods and drinks is suddenly super trendy, especially among those slightly nuts about premature aging. Celebs including Jennifer Aniston – who, they say, mixes collagen powder into her morning smoothie – are on board with ingesting it as a way to reduce wrinkles.

But don’t we already have collagen in our bodies? Yes, and this abundant protein is good at keeping skin firm. But as we age, collagen gets damaged. And we actually start producing less in our 20s and 30s.

Does it live up to the hype? The science is kind of promising. In one small study, women who took a collagen peptide supplement (available at health-food stores) daily for eight weeks enjoyed a 20 percent reduction in eye-wrinkle volume. In other words, their skin looked smoother.

Anything I should worry about? Anecdotally, there are many who say they’ve noticed improvements in hair and skin after taking collagen. But there are others who’ve noticed absolutely nothing. And not a lot of research has been done, meaning it’s hard to predict potential side effects.

So should I try it? After consulting with a doctor, a few of our Girlfriends gave it a whirl. They started with 1 to 2 tablespoons a day, which wasn’t hard to do since it’s practically tasteless. And tell us if your laugh lines are less obvious.