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Marine Collagen vs Bovine Collagen – Which One is Right for You?

Marine collagen vs bovine collagen – what’s the difference?

In this article, we’ll explain the differences between marine and bovine collagen.

This information will help you determine which is the best choice for your individual needs and preferences!

What is Collagen?

Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body.  It is one of the main building blocks for your bones, skin, hair, muscles, tendons, and ligaments.

When it comes to your skin, collagen provides its’ structure and elasticity!

Collagen & Aging

A Woman's face showing progression of aging and collagen loss

Aging causes collagen breakdown.  You can see evidence of this in your wrinkles and fine lines.

These hallmarks of aging also demonstrate our inability to replenish collagen.

Collagen breakdown doesn’t just impact your skin.  It also weakens your bones, making you more susceptible to breaks and fractures. 

In addition, with age, the cartilage in your joints decreases, and your muscles lose strength with the loss of collagen.

Benefits of Collagen Supplements

Collagen supplements - powdered and capsules in small bowls

There is promising research on the benefits of Collagen Supplements.

A 2021 grouped analysis of studies showed favorable results of hydrolyzed collagen supplementation compared with placebo in terms of improved skin hydration, elasticity, and wrinkles

A Review of the Effects of Collagen Treatment in Clinical Studies in 2021, deemed Collagen as one of the most important supplements for aging people.

Additional advantages of Collagen Supplements found in this review included relieving joint pain, preventing bone loss, boosting muscle mass, and treating disease.

Collagen supplements can benefit both women and men. Check out these Age-Defying Dietitian blog posts- “Can Men Take Collagen?” and “Collagen and Menopause: Is it Helpful?”.

Skin, Hair, & Nails
Collagen supplements may benefit the skin, hair, & nails.

Marine Collagen vs Bovine Collagen

Both marine and bovine collagen have their own unique benefits and applications.

The choice between them depends on individual preferences and needs.

Marine Collagen Explained

Six fish representing the source of marine collagen
Marine collagen is derived from fish skin & scales

This collagen supplement comes from fish skin and scales and contains mainly Type 1 collagen.

Type I collagen is the most abundant type of collagen in the human body. It benefits the skin, hair, nails, and joints.

Marine boosts types I and II collagen.

Marine is a more sustainable and environmentally friendly option than bovine. This is because it uses parts of the fish that would otherwise go to waste.

Bovine Collagen Explained

Cow grazing in a field; representation of the source of bovine collagen.

Supplements containing bovine collagen come from the connective tissue of cows, particularly from the hides and bones of the animal.

Bovine collagen increases types I and III collagen. Your skin is primarily made up of types I and III collagen.

As a result, bovine collagen may reduce wrinkles, promote elasticity, and increase skin’s moisture.

In addition, bovine may benefit joint health and connective tissue.

Marine Collagen vs. Bovine Collagen – Which is Better?

Woman with arms stretch comparing marine collagen vs bovine collagen

There is no definitive answer as to whether bovine or marine collagen is better. Both types have their own unique benefits.

Marine collagen may have a higher bioavailability than bovine collagen, which means that it may be more easily absorbed by the body.

It also contains a higher concentration of Type 1 collagen, which is particularly beneficial for skin, hair, nails, and joint health.

Bovine collagen, on the other hand, is generally more affordable than marine collagen.

It has a mixture of type 1 and type 3 collagen, which is beneficial for joint health, skin, and connective tissue.

Woman running on the beach representing joint health
Marine & bovine collagen have been shown to provide benefits for joint health.


The choice between bovine and marine collagen comes down to personal preference, taking into account factors such as price, quality, and specific health needs.

Choose a high-quality collagen supplement from a reputable source that has been verified by a third-party company like NSF International.

You should always consult with your healthcare provider prior to adding a dietary supplement to your wellness routine.

Hungry for more healthy aging content?

Check out the Age-Defying Dietitian’s blog for the latest content on all things healthy aging!

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