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The Science Behind Collagen Absorption: Which Delivery Method Takes the Crown? A Closer Look at the Effectiveness of Powders, Capsules, Liquids, and Tablets
Beauty dietary supplements, collagen, guasha

Choosing the Best Collagen Supplement Delivery Format

The Best Delivery Format for Collagen Supplements  

Not only is collagen the most abundant and vital protein found in the human body—making up one-fourth of the body’s dry mass—but it is extremely popular as a dietary supplement, primarily used for maintaining younger-looking skin and promoting joint health. 

As a current or prospective dietary supplement business owner, you are probably aware that collagen can be manufactured in various supplement delivery forms.  

But what are the preferred delivery formats for collagen supplements amongst today’s consumers? Collagen pills vs powder? Liquid collagen vs pills? That’s what this article is all about. 


Collagen Supplement Delivery Methods 

This part of the discussion needs to be prefaced with the understanding that the effective collagen dosage is generally 1 g, 2.5 g, 5 g, or 10 g, depending on the form of collagen used (e.g., ordinary collagen or collagen peptides) and the purpose for which it is intended (e.g., skin or joint support). This is relevant because higher doses don’t lend themselves to capsule or tablet delivery forms. 



If you intend to offer a capsule delivery form for your collagen product, you will be limited to materials showing effectiveness in a 1 or 2.5 g dose. Even then, the 1 g dose will require a 2-capsule serving size, and the 2.5 g dose will require a 4-capsule serving size. While many individuals are fine with consuming two capsules, fewer are inclined to take four capsules to meet their daily collagen intake. Therefore, branded collagen peptide materials requiring a 1 g dose would be preferred for the capsule delivery form.  

In any case, since collagen materials are derived from bovine (cattle), porcine (pig), or marine (fish) sources, there is no real advantage to using a veggie cap since the finished product won’t be vegetarian-friendly. You might as well select a gelatin capsule. It should be noted that capsules generally offer good stability. 


There is a perception in some quarters that a liquid collagen supplement is more easily absorbed than a powder or other dry dose. However, there is presently no research in the medical or clinical literature to support this idea.  

It may be easier to fit higher doses in a liquid, but the convenience of liquids may come with significant disadvantages. First, stability tends to be more challenging with a liquid, so you’ll have to ensure you’re using a high-quality collagen peptide in your product with good stability data. Liquid collagen is an ideal growth medium for bacteria, so your contract manufacturer’s facilities must be scrupulously clean to prevent contamination by pathogens.  

Another potential issue with liquid collagen is taste. Specifically, a liquid delivery method can amplify the bitter and unpleasant flavors of certain collagen ingredients. This is not as much of an issue with high-quality collagen peptides used in powders, tablets, and capsules. Working with a collagen supplement manufacturer with a certified food scientist or experienced flavoring professional on staff could be advantageous regardless of the dosage form you select. I will cover this in more detail towards the end of this article. 


As a delivery form, tablets have one advantage over capsules: you can generally use a smaller serving size to achieve the same dose.  

For example, you can fit a 1 g dose into a single tablet, and a 3 g dose into three tablets. This is possible since the collagen peptide powder is compressed into the tablet, allowing more of the material into each pill.  

The disadvantage is that people generally perceive tablets as less easy to swallow than capsules. Also, tablets are often perceived as being more difficult to digest and, therefore, absorb—but this is not necessarily true. If formulated well with the right disintegrants, tablet breakdown shouldn’t be a problem. Like capsules, tablets offer good stability. 


Collagen supplements are commonly available in powder form, making them popular among consumers. The convenience of powders lies in their versatility, as they can be easily mixed with various beverages like water, juice, or coffee, according to individual preferences. 

Powders are traditionally packaged in canisters, jars, stand-up (gusset) bags, or convenient single-serving stick packs. When mixed with a beverage, powders are easier to swallow than capsules or tablets, and allow for a higher collagen dosage per serving. Additionally, powders generally exhibit better stability than liquids.  

It’s worth noting that, like liquids, developing a favorable flavor and taste profile for powders requires some extra effort during the research and development phase. 


Choosing the Right Supplement Delivery Method: What’s Best for You?  

In case you’re wondering, Is powder collagen better than capsules?” and “Is liquid collagen better than powder?”, I have this advice.  

If your target audience skews older (e.g., baby boomers), capsules tend to be a preferred delivery form—although an older population will still use powders. In any case, powders offer greater flexibility for using higher doses than capsules. 

When comparing liquid collagen vs. powder, it’s important to note that powders have the upper hand due to their versatility – they can easily be mixed into a beverage of choice. Moreover, powders generally boast better stability, making them a more favorable option. Lastly, unlike liquids, powders have fewer shipping concerns, such as leakage, and tend to incur lower shipping costs.

I highly recommend thoroughly researching the ideal delivery method for your collagen supplement. Consider factors such as your target audience; for an older demographic, exploring liquid or powdered forms may be advantageous, while for a younger target group, collagen capsules or tablets could be a more suitable choice. Doing your homework ensures that your chosen delivery method aligns perfectly with the preferences and needs of your specific audience.  


Collagen Supplement Latest Market Scope, Challenges, and Trends  

The first paragraph of this article mentioned that collagen supplements are popular. But how popular?  

The size of the global collagen was estimated at $10.08 billion in 2022, and it is forecasted to hit about $23.02 billion by 2032 with a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8.9% during the forecast period of 2023 to 2032.[1] So, the answer is very popular. 

But what are the market trends for different collagen delivery forms? As of January 27, 2024, a quick search of shows the following results for the different delivery forms: 

  • 865 for “collagen powder” 
  • 379 for “collagen capsules” 
  • 161 for “collagen tablets” 
  • 111 for “collagen liquid” 

Clearly, collagen powders are the most popular delivery form by far. 

Ensuring quality is a major obstacle in the realm of collagen products. Using conventional collagen, which comprises intact collagen protein requiring lengthy digestion for absorption, is discouraged. Instead, selecting branded collagen peptides, which are smaller and easier to absorb, is recommended. It’s worth noting that these branded collagen peptides have been subject to human trials to verify their efficacy, a pivotal factor in supporting product assertions.

In conclusion, collagen dietary supplements are currently trending and purchased regularly by today’s consumers to address various health needs. These supplements come in many delivery forms, such as capsules, liquids, tablets, and powders. Among these options, powders stand out, offering several advantages and dominating the market compared to other delivery forms. 


How Can Vitaquest Help You Manufacture Collagen Supplements? 

For over 45 years, companies have trusted Vitaquest with their collagen supplement manufacturing needs. Our proficient team of in-house formulators and flavoring professionals will collaborate with you throughout the entire process. We’ll assist you in choosing the optimal collagen material, delivery form, and flavor for your supplement, ensuring a seamless and tailored approach to meet your specific needs. 

If you’re ready to start your collagen supplement manufacturing project, call 800-526-9095 to speak to one of our knowledgeable sales executives or request a competitive nutraceutical manufacturing price quote. We are eager to help you Deliver What’s Next in the world of collagen supplements! 


Frequently Asked Questions  


Q: What delivery method is best for you?
It depends on your customer demographics and the collagen dosage you want to use. Doses of 5 or 10 g are only practical for powders and liquids. Conversely, 1 or 2.5 g may be used in capsules and tablets. 

Q: Which form of collagen is most effective?
Research has demonstrated that branded collagen peptides are better absorbed and are more effective than ordinary collagen materials. 

Q: Is collagen better in powder or pill?
Both are good, although powder products can accommodate a larger dosage than capsules. 

Q: Is liquid collagen better than powder?
Not exactly. While both options are effective, collagen liquid often encounters stability issues and lacks the versatility of powder, which can be easily mixed into any preferred beverage.

Q: What is the healthiest way to take collagen?
Using branded collagen peptides in any of the delivery forms covered in this article is the best choice to maximize healthy results. 


[1] Collagen Market (By Source: Bovine, Marine, Porcine, Poultry; By Product: Gelatin, Hydrolyzed collagen, Native collagen, Synthetic collagen; By Application: Food and Beverage, Healthcare, Pharmaceuticals, Nutraceuticals, Cosmetics, Others; By Type; By Form; By Product Category; By Function) – Global Industry Analysis, Size, Share, Growth, Trends, Regional Outlook, and Forecast 2023 – 2032. Precedence Research. Retrieved January 27, 2024 from,forecast%20period%202023%20to%202032. 

VP Innovation

Michael Anthonavage serves as the VP of Innovation at Vitaquest, dedicated to expanding the supplement market footprint and ensuring a competitive edge. With expertise in bringing new technologies to the personal care industry, championing patents for natural skincare, and contributing to skin biology research, he’s an educator and a member of the scientific advisory board for the NYC Society of Cosmetic Chemists.

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