Science: Skin

Skin is the largest organ in the human body and it has several important roles. Skin offers a physical and chemical barrier from outer factors as well as the sense of touch.

Skin layers

Epidermis: outer barrier

  • The epidermis is the visible, outermost layer of skin. It is responsible for many protective functions of the skin.
  • Keratinocytes make up 90-95% of the epidermis cells.
  • The lower or basal layer of the epidermis is made up of undifferentiated keratinocytes which are constantly dividing to create new cells which will make up for the peeled cells from the skin’s surface.
  • When keratinocytes leave the basal layer of the epidermis, the process of their differentiation begins and is called keratinization. During keratinization, cells go through changes which result in a synthesis of unique proteins (keratin) and secretion of specific lipids, which have the key protective role in the epidermal layer.
  • The outer layer of the epidermis, the stratum corneum, consists of metabolically inactive (“dead“) cells made from the process of keratinization and are called corneocytes. Corneocytes are like bricks in plaster – a layer of the mentioned lipids and proteins and form the outer protective layer of skin which limits absorption and penetration into the skin, and loss of vital nutrients and water from the skin.

Dermis: internal support

  • The dermis is the structural and nutritive support of the epidermis. It is the inner skin layer located between the epidermis and the subcutaneous tissue. The dermis can vary in depth depending on body location and is generally at least ten times thicker than the epidermis. Nearly 75% of the weight of the dermis is a matrix of collagen, which allows for both structural support and elasticity of the skin. That is why the primary role of the dermis is to mechanically support the epidermis, providing integrity and flexibility to the skin.
  • Blood vessels that supply nutrients for all skin layers are found in the dermis too.
  • A majority of cells found in the dermis are fibroblasts that synthesize collagen and elastic fibers and other structural elements of the dermis.

Subcutaneous tissue: energy resources and heat protection

  • Subcutaneous tissue is located under the dermis and it joins the skin with base and allows the skin to be flexible. Fat cells are most dominant in this layer, they offer the skin structural support, energy resources and they help in regulating body temperatures.

Skin ageing

The importance of dermis for skin appearance

Young skin is firm, smooth and shiny but with time major changes occur in the skin’s structure under the influence of inner and outer factors which cause the aging of the skin.

In order for the skin to function normally and look youthful, the structure of the dermal layer has to be maintained. The reasons why are: the dermis gives the epidermis structural support, it contains blood vessels and supplies the skin with nutrients important for its function. However, natural aging can influence the structural integrity of the dermis, and parts of the skin exposed to the sun are additionally subjected to photoaging.

The changes that lead to skin ageing

The density of collagen in the dermis reduces with age and is connected with the reduction of the thickness of the dermis.

The collagen fiber network in the dermis becomes more fragmented and shorter and less organized fibers are starting to appear as well as gatherings of degraded fragments of collagen. At the same time, new collagen network creation is slower which results in an inadequate replacement of degraded fragments. Elastic fibers also lose their integrity with time. This loss of skin firmness and elasticity causes wrinkles to appear and skin to lose its tenseness.

The amount of hyaluronic acid in the epidermis and dermis also decreases within years. This is reflected in the capability to retain skin moisture, leading to dry skin often seen in older people.

Factors that contribute to ageing

Natural, chronological and photo effects, the impact of the environmental factors like pollution and overexposure to the sun and individual factors such as smoking or consuming alcohol can also affect the production of collagen in the body.

After the age of thirty, the production of collagen in the body decreases, on average 1% per year. In women, hormonal changes in their mature age contribute to a rapid reduction of renewal of collagen.

The importance of collagen

Collagen is the most abundant protein in our body constituting 70% of the dry skin mass content. It is greatly responsible for our skin staying firm and toned.

The role of collagen in skin

The main role of collagen is maintaining the structure and resilience of skin. Collagen fibers create a network that strengthens skin layers and make a support base for components such as elastin which gives our skin elasticity and hyaluronic acid which maintains skin hydration.

Collagen and ageing

As we age, the number and the activity of cells that produce collagen (fibroblasts) decrease. As the fibroblasts become less active, the collagen matrix which ensures the structure and the firmness of the skin starts to fall apart. This is why the skin becomes thinner and dehydrated, and why wrinkles and fine lines appear.

Collagen for youthful skin

Smooth, firm and young looking skin requires an optimal level of well-organized collagen fibers which will ensure that the skin keeps its elasticity, firmness, and capability to retain moisture. Research has shown that the exogenous collagen can induce the synthesis of new collagen fibers by stimulating fibroblasts.

Collagen in Mikeda® Active Collagen 5000

Peptan® hydrolyzed collagen

Peptan® hydrolyzed collagen in Mikeda® Active Collagen 5000 is 100% natural and is produced by a carefully controlled enzymatic hydrolysis of native collagen producing much smaller and easily digestible collagen peptides (molecular weight of 2 kDa). Collagen peptides are a mixture of specific peptides of various length with a high amount of the amino acids hydroxyproline, glycine and proline. Hydroxyproline is an amino acid unique to collagen.

Mechanism of action

To be active in the deeper layers of the skin, hydrolyzed collagen has to cross the intestinal barrier and reach the bloodstream.

More than 90% of hydrolyzed collagen is degraded within the digestive system into tripeptides and dipeptides which are resistant to further degradation and free amino acids. These peptides are absorbed through the intestinal mucosa by the PEPT-1 transporter. Hydroxyproline containing di- and tripeptides appear in the blood within an hour of intake. Research has shown that the absorbed peptides reach the skin and stay there for up to two weeks. This proves that the collagen peptides are capable of getting into the dermis – the place of action.

Collagen peptides with specific amino acids characteristic for collagen give a signal of degradation of endogenous collagen in the body. Those peptides act as messengers and induce synthesis and reorganization of new collagen fibers by stimulating fibroblasts. Collagen peptides also stimulate the expression of elastin and glycosaminoglycans such as hyaluronic acid. Studies have shown that collagen peptides can increase the density of fibroblasts and the thickness of collagen fibrils in the dermis.

Mikeda® Active Collagen 5000 increases the amount of collagen in the skin by affecting the balance of creating and degrading of collagen in the skin. Hydrolyzed collagen in Mikeda® Active Collagen 5000 types I collagen, the same collagen as that found in the dermis of the skin.

Clinical studies

Research has shown that hydrolyzed collagen contributes to firm and young skin from within, maintaining a firm and dense collagen network that is the key to wrinkle prevention. Hydrolyzed collagen also has an impact on skin hydration. Optimally hydrated skin is smooth, healthy and less susceptible to the formation of fine lines.

Bad news

Skin ageing is connected with the decrease of the skin moisture levels.

Good news

Mikeda® Active Collagen 5000 increases skin hydration.

Bad news

The main structural component of skin which changes during ageing is the density of the collagen in the dermis.

Good news

Mikeda® Active Collagen 5000 increases the density of collagen in the skin.

Bad news

During ageing not only the amount of collagen in skin reduces, but its quality does as well.

Good news

Mikeda® Active Collagen 5000 reduces collagen fragmentation in the skin.

Effect of the daily intake of Peptan® on skin hydration determined by Corneometer®

A double-blind, placebo-controlled study conducted in Japan on women aged 40-59 showed that taking the hydrolyzed collagen increased skin hydration by 12% after eight weeks.*

Effect of the daily intake of Peptan® on collagen density in the dermis determined by high-frequency ultrasound

A randomised, placebo-controlled, double-blind study conducted in France on women aged 40-65 showed that after only four weeks of taking the hydrolyzed collagen the density of collagen in the dermis increased significantly.*

Effect of the daily intake of Peptan® on the collagen network fragmentation in the dermis determined by reflectance confocal microscopy

The same study showed that only four weeks after using the hydrolyzed collagen the collagen fragmentation significantly decreased (18%). After 12 weeks there was a 31% reduction.*

*Asserin J et al. The effect of oral collagen peptide supplementation on skin moisture and the dermal collagen network: evidence from an ex vivo model and randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trials. J Cosmet Dermatol. 2015. 14: 291-301.

Why liquid collagen?

While traditional skin care products that are applied locally to the skin affect the epidermis, they usually don’t reach the dermis, regardless of their price or quality. However, the dermis is the skin layer that is vascularized and that brings oxygen and vital nutrients to the skin.

This is why the oral intake of collagen is significantly more effective in improving skin quality which is visible after a few weeks of regular use.

The liquid form is more concentrated than tablets or capsules and it ensures quick and full absorption as well as better efficiency.

Drink your daily dose of Mikeda® active collagen with vitamins and minerals, for the youthful and beautiful skin as well as for shiny hair and healthy nails.

monodose = 25 ml

one per day

7x active ingredients

30 min - fast absorption