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Battling the Signs of Aging with Collagen Stimulation

By: Jennifer Hsieh, PA-C


Battling the Signs of Aging with Collagen Stimulation

Have you ever wondered why we look older with time? What causes wrinkles and sagging skin? 

The biggest culprit in aging is that our collagen production slows as we get older. Starting at age 20, our body produces 1% less collagen per year, so at age 30 we are already producing 10% less than we were at age 19. Why is collagen so important? It is the structural support of the skin, along with elastin. They give it strength and elasticity. Without it our skin becomes thinner and more prone to wrinkles. [1] 

Another factor in aging is sun damage that accumulates through our whole lifetime. This mainly comes from UV light which damages the collagen fibers and causes increased production of abnormal elastin. It is so important to wear sunscreen of at least SPF 30 daily to slow down this photoaging process. And don’t forget to wear a hat when outside for long periods of time. [2] 

Antioxidants such as Vitamin C, Vitamin E, and green tea can help reverse skin damage from the sun. Daily topical Vitamin C serums help scavenge the free radicals that cause oxidative stress and cellular damage. It also is a cofactor for the 2 enzymes required in collagen synthesis. Retinol (Vitamin A) helps in anti-aging by increasing the rate of cell turnover so that new skin can be formed faster.  

Smoking and pollution can also contribute to premature aging. Your body will look and feel younger if you give up tobacco. And your lungs will breathe easier too!

With all these things working against us, what can we do to slow down or even reverse the march of time across our faces? Many people use botulinum toxins  (Botox, Dysport, Xeomin, Jeuveau) to relax the muscles in the forehead, frown lines, and crows feet around the eyes to make these wrinkles less noticeable. However, these injectable products eventually wear off in 3-5 months leaving you at your baseline. To keep the wrinkles at bay requires repeat injections 3-4 times a year. Wrinkles in the lower face such as deepening of the nasolabial fold and marionette lines (from the corners of the mouth to the chin) are best treated with dermal filler  which lasts 12-18 months. 

What about an approach that doesn’t wear off in a few months? There are several modalities that can trigger your body to produce collogen at a faster rate which helps make your skin become firmer, smoother, and soften the appearance of wrinkles.  

  • CynoSure’s TempSure Envi  machine uses radiofrequency (RF) to generate heat which causes an inflammatory process in the skin and triggers your body to produce collagen. It is very relaxing and feels like a hot stone massage. 
  • CynoSure’s Icon non-ablative laser  resurfacing treatments can penetrate the skin deeper than RF technology. 
  • Skin Pen microneedling  triggers collagen production and is especially good for acne scarring.  
  • Sculptra  is an injectable that also stimulates collagen production.  
  • Ultherapy uses ultrasound to build collagen in the deeper levels of the skin. 

Even better results can be seen when combining these therapies. It is recommended to do a series of treatments to continue to stimulate the collagen production in your skin to achieve a more youthful look. 

We hope that you will come in for a free consult  to see which treatment is best for you!

Information was taken from the following articles:

[1] “Why does skin wrinkle with age? What is the best way to slow or prevent this process?” September 26, 2005 by Suzan Obagi, assistant professor in dermatology at the University of Pittsburgh and director of the Cosmetic Surgery and Skin Health Center (From

[2] “Photoaging: What you need to know about the other kind of aging” January 10, 2019 by The Skin Cancer Foundation (From 

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.