PREVENTION / KIERA CARTER / DECEMBER 27, 2012
The natural solution for a youthful appearance is simple: Boost your skin’s collagen levels. Figuring out how to do it is a little tougher, though a constant array of wild new products—drinkable collagen, anyone?—purport to work miracles. The unfortunate fact is that our bodies produce less collagen, a naturally occurring protein, as we age. The result? Thinner skin, fine lines, and dryness.
Now, UK researchers may have found a solution in sea cucumbers. Yup, you read that right. These leathery animals, found on the ocean floor, actually have a peptide formed from collagen that softens their body’s wall tissue as a defense from predators.
“They can control their collagenous tissue in ways that we can’t,” says lead study author Maurice Elphick, PhD, a professor of physiology and neuroscience at Queen Mary University of London. “We need to do more research to see if these peptides could have a similar affect in mammals.” If so, this research could lead to new skin care products down the line.