NAD+ vs Collagen Supplements for Skin Aging: Which one is better?

NAD+ vs Collagen Supplements for Skin Aging: Which one is better?

Mirror, mirror on the wall, who has the healthiest skin of them all? Individuals who use NAD+ supplements or those with collagen supplements? 

Before we figure that one out, let’s see what our skin goes through with aging: 

  • Becomes thinner and loose 
  • Loses glow, moisture, and smoothness 
  • Takes longer to heal scratches and cuts 

In the pursuit of ageless skin, individuals often turn to supplements as a key player in their skincare routine. Two supplements gaining attention for their potential anti-aging benefits are NAD+ (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide) and collagen.  

While collagen is commonly associated with skin elasticity, NAD+ is emerging as a potential game-changer, targeting the root causes of skin aging. In this blog, we explore the scientific basis behind these claims, drawing on reputable sources to highlight why NAD+ supplements might offer a more comprehensive solution. 

Collagen Supplements: A Surface-Level Solution 

Collagen is a structural protein abundant in the skin, responsible for its firmness and elasticity. As we age, collagen production declines, leading to wrinkles and sagging skin. Collagen supplements aim to replace lost collagen, providing visible improvements. However, studies suggest that these benefits may be more superficial, addressing symptoms rather than the underlying causes of aging (Smith-Mungo & Kagan, 1998). 

NAD+ Supplements: Targeting Cellular Aging 

NAD+ is a coenzyme essential for cellular processes, including energy metabolism and DNA repair. Research indicates that NAD+ levels decline with age, contributing to cellular dysfunction. NAD+ supplements, through precursors, aim to boost cellular NAD+ levels. This approach targets the root cause of aging, potentially offering more profound and long-lasting benefits (Cantó et al., 2015). 

Beyond Skin Deep: NAD+ as a Holistic Solution 

One key advantage of NAD+ supplements lies in their impact beyond skin health. By supporting mitochondrial function, NAD+ contributes to overall cellular rejuvenation. Studies suggest that enhanced NAD+ levels may positively influence various organs and tissues throughout the body, offering a holistic approach to aging (Verdin, 2015). 

  • Energy Production (Mitochondrial Function): NAD+ is a key player in cellular respiration, the process by which cells generate energy. It is involved in both glycolysis (the breakdown of glucose) and oxidative phosphorylation (the production of ATP in mitochondria). Enhanced NAD+ levels can support optimal mitochondrial function and improve overall energy metabolism. 
  • DNA Repair and Maintenance: NAD+ is essential for DNA repair enzymes, such as poly (ADP-ribose) polymerases (PARPs). Adequate NAD+ levels facilitate efficient DNA repair processes, helping to maintain genomic stability and reduce the risk of mutations and other DNA damage-related issues. 
  • Sirtuin Activation: NAD+ is a cofactor for sirtuins, a family of proteins that play a role in regulating cellular processes, including metabolism, stress response, and longevity. Sirtuins are involved in various protective mechanisms, and their activation is associated with improved cellular health and resilience. 
  • Anti-Aging Effects: Some studies suggest that maintaining higher NAD+ levels may have anti-aging effects by promoting cellular repair, reducing oxidative stress, and supporting overall cellular function. The activation of sirtuins is often linked to longevity and age-related health benefits. 
  • Metabolic Health: Enhanced NAD+ levels may contribute to better metabolic health by improving insulin sensitivity, regulating glucose metabolism, and supporting efficient energy utilization. This can be particularly beneficial for individuals with metabolic disorders or those at risk of developing them. 
  • Neurological Protection: NAD+ is involved in neuronal functions and has been implicated in neuroprotection. Some research suggests that maintaining optimal NAD+ levels may help protect against neurodegenerative diseases and age-related cognitive decline. 
  • Cardiovascular Health: NAD+ has been linked to cardiovascular health by influencing vascular function and the regulation of blood flow. Studies indicate that NAD+ supplementation may have potential benefits for cardiovascular function and reduce the risk of certain cardiovascular diseases. 
  • Exercise Performance: NAD+ plays a role in cellular energy production, and some evidence suggests that maintaining higher NAD+ levels may contribute to improved exercise performance and endurance. 


While collagen supplements play a role in addressing visible signs of aging, NAD+ supplements offer a more comprehensive solution by targeting cellular aging at its roots. As science advances, our understanding of the intricacies of skin health deepens, paving the way for innovative approaches to maintaining youthful skin. As with any supplementation, it's essential to consult healthcare professionals to tailor solutions to individual needs. 


  • Smith-Mungo, L. I., & Kagan, H. M. (1998). Lysyl oxidase: properties, regulation and multiple functions in biology. Matrix Biology, 16(7), 387–398. 
  • Cantó, C., Menzies, K. J., & Auwerx, J. (2015). NAD+ metabolism and the control of energy homeostasis: a balancing act between mitochondria and the nucleus. Cell Metabolism, 22(1), 31–53. 
  • Verdin, E. (2015). NAD⁺ in aging, metabolism, and neurodegeneration. Science, 350(6265), 1208–1213. 
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