Reviews Collagen Supplements

7 Best Collagen Supplements for Tendon Repair in 2024

Reviewed by: Jacek Szymanowski (Certified Nutritionist, S&C specialist, M.Sc.Eng. Biotechnology)

Collagen supplements are a common additional treatment for tendon injury to help with recovery and repair. In this article, we’ll be covering the best collagen supplements for tendon repair available today, so you can decide which one is best for you. 

As with any product recommendations relating to the treatment of an injury or illness, we strongly recommend consulting with your doctor before using any product. When using collagen supplements for ligament repair, they’re only meant to be a part of a larger treatment plan.

So, be sure you’re consulting with a doctor and getting the proper treatment for your injury or condition. 

For this article, our team of certified nutritionists and professional athletes collected 14 products reviewing them by 5 main parameters, and only 7 top products made it to the list. We’ve spent 10 hours testing most of the products and analyzing hundreds of user reviews online. We keep updating our list regularly so feel free to share your experience in the comments section.

Best Collagen Supplements for Tendon Repair

Top 7 Best Collagen Supplements for Tendon Repair Reviewed

  1. Collagen Hydrolysate by Transparent Labs – Top Pick
  2. Gnarly Nutrition Collagen Pro – Best With Vitamin C + Zinc
  3. BPN Collagen Protein
  4. Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides
  5. BUBS Naturals Collagen
  6. Sports Research Collagen Peptides
  7. Sparkle Wellness Collagen – Best With TENDOFORTE®
ProductTotalCollagen
Type
Collagen
per Serving
Taste/
Texture
Third-Party
Testing
Price/
Quality
Transparent Labs49109101010
Gnarly Nutrition49109.59.51010
BPN48.510109109.5
Vital Proteins48.510109109.5
BUBS48.510109109.5
Sports Research4810991010
Sparkle Wellness47.51099.59.59.5
TOP PICK

1. Collagen Hydrolysate by Transparent Labs

Collagen Hydrolysate by Transparent Labs
  • Collagen Type: Hydrolyzed Bovine Collagen
  • Number of Servings: 30
  • Serving Size: 11g
  • Price per Serving: ~$1.17
  • Company Founded: 2012
  • Recommended By AthletesHafthor Bjornsson, Paul Sklar, Sean Harris

Starting our list of tendon repair supplements, one of the most reputable brands across all supplements is Transparent Labs with their Collagen Hydrolysate. With this option, you can be confident you’re getting a product from a highly trustworthy company.

In each serving, you’ll be getting 11g of collagen. Keep in mind this is fairly low for our list, especially considering the recommended dose when using collagen for tendons. You may be better off taking a double serving of 22g to maximize its effectiveness. 

This product comes in 2 options, chocolate and unflavored. It’s one of the few products on our list to offer any flavor variety, even if it is fairly limited. Also, as you can expect from a Transparent Labs supplement, their Collagen Hydrolysate contains no unnecessary artificial ingredients. 

At ~$1.17 per serving, this is one of the cheaper supplements on our list. However, considering the relatively small serving size, the value for money could still be better.

49 EXPERT SCORE

As with most Transparent Labs products, this collagen is a high-quality, no-nonsense option that earns its spot on the top of our list.


Ingredient Breakdown:0
Stimulation:0
Taste/Flavor:0
Label Transparency:0
Value for Money:0

Positives:

  • Comes from a high-quality, reputable brand
  • Single-ingredient formula
  • Comes in 2 flavors

Could be better:

  • Relatively small serving size
  • May be expensive if you’re taking a double-serving
BEST WITH VITAMIN C + ZINC

2. Gnarly Nutrition Collagen Pro

Gnarly Nutrition Collagen Pro
  • Collagen Type: Hydrolyzed Collagen
  • Additional Сomponents: Vitamin C, Zinc
  • Number of Servings: 30
  • Serving Size: 15g
  • Price per Serving: ~$1.67
  • Company Founded: 2012
  • Recommended By AthletesRun with Tara, Ethan Pringle, Lael Wilcox

Taking the runner-up spot the best collagen for tendon repair is Gnarly Nutrition with their Collagen Pro supplement. Let’s see how this compares with the top spot on our list.

Each serving of Gnarly’s supplement contains 15g of collagen, which is a more all-around solid dose than Transparent Labs. This should be an effective amount to assist tendon repair, with our recommended dose being 15-20g.

This is also the best option if you’re looking for a collagen supplement with some added micronutrients. Gnarly’s supplement contains 100% of your DV for Vitamin C and 136% of your DV for Zinc. These micronutrients are also necessary for collagen synthesis, making them a valuable addition here. 

Similar to Transparent Labs, this option doesn’t contain any artificial ingredients. However, there aren’t any different flavor options available other than unflavored.

At ~$1.67 per serving, this supplement may seem significantly more expensive than Transparent Labs. However, considering the larger serving size, both supplements are about equal in terms of value.

49 EXPERT SCORE

Containing additional Vitamin C and Zinc, this is a great choice if you’re looking for a collagen supplement with added micronutrients.


Ingredient Breakdown:0
Stimulation:0
Taste/Flavor:0
Label Transparency:0
Value for Money:0

Positives:

  • Includes Vitamin C and Zinc
  • Solid effective serving size
  • No unnecessary artificial ingredients

Could be better:

  • No flavor variety
  • Still a relatively small serving size compared to some other products on our list

3. BPN Collagen Protein

BPN Collagen Protein

Next on our list of tendon healing supplements is Bare Performance Nutrition’s Collagen supplement. Let’s see how it compares to the top 2 options on our list.

First, each serving is 22.2g and contains 20g of protein. This means BPN offers nearly twice as much collagen per serving when compared with Transparent Labs.

BPN Collagen Protein instagram
Photo by @bpnsupps

Similar to Transparent Labs and Gnarly, BPN’s product is made without any unnecessary artificial ingredients. Keep in mind that this supplement doesn’t come in any flavors other than unflavored.

In terms of price, BPN is fairly similar to Gnarly at ~$1.60 per serving. Once again, however, considering the larger serving size, BPN arguably offers better value for money.

48.5 EXPERT SCORE

BPN is a solid all-around pick if you’re looking for a simple supplement with a large serving size of 20g.


Ingredient Breakdown:0
Stimulation:0
Taste/Flavor:0
Label Transparency:0
Value for Money:0

Positives:

  • Large serving size of 20g
  • Simple high-quality formula
  • Good value for money

Could be better:

  • No flavor variety
  • No additional beneficial ingredients

4. Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides

Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides

The next collagen product on our list of tendon-strengthening supplements is Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides. This is especially similar to BPN’s product in terms of price and serving size.

Each scoop contains 20g of Collagen Peptides. While this is a slightly smaller serving than BPN, it’s still significantly larger than the top 2 options on our list.

As with most of the supplements on our list, this is a very simple formula made without any unnecessary artificial ingredients. Vital Proteins also easily offers the best flavor variety on our list with 5 total options to choose from.

Vital Proteins offers a fairly standard price for our list as well, costing ~$1.68. Considering the flavor variety and large serving size, this product offers excellent value for your money.

48.5 EXPERT SCORE

This will be your best choice if you’re looking for a high-quality supplement with an excellent variety of flavors.


Ingredient Breakdown:0
Stimulation:0
Taste/Flavor:0
Label Transparency:0
Value for Money:0

Positives:

  • Great flavor variety
  • Simple all-natural formula
  • Large serving size

Could be better:

  • One of the pricier supplements on our list
  • Doesn’t contain the same third-party certifications as other products on our list

5. BUBS Naturals Collagen

BUBS Naturals Collagen
  • Collagen Type: Collagen Peptides
  • Number of Servings: 28
  • Serving Size: 20g
  • Price per Serving: ~$1.68
  • Company Founded: 2017
  • Recommended By AthletesEric Hinman, Jonathan Levin, Danny Way

Next on our list of ligament repair supplements is Bubs Naturals Collagen supplement which offers many of the same benefits as the other products on our list at a similar price. 

As with the previous couple of supplements we’ve looked at, BUBS contains a solid 20g dose of Collagen Peptides. As mentioned throughout our list, this is a solid dose for maximizing the effectiveness of collagen.

BUBS Naturals Collagen instagram
Photo by @bubsnaturals

Like most options we’ve been covering, BUBS’ supplement only comes in an unflavored variety. It’s also a solid single-ingredient supplement, exclusively containing collagen peptides as its single ingredient. 

Coming in at a very similar price to Gnarly Nutrition, Vital Proteins, and BPN, BUBS will cost you ~$1.68 per serving, which as you can see is fairly standard for a high-quality collagen supplement.

48.5 EXPERT SCORE

This will be your best choice if you’re looking for a high-quality supplement with an excellent variety of flavors.


Ingredient Breakdown:0
Stimulation:0
Taste/Flavor:0
Label Transparency:0
Value for Money:0

Positives:

  • Effectively dosed at 20g per serving
  • Single-ingredient formula
  • BUBS ensures fast-dissolving and tasteless collagen

Could be better:

  • No reviews available on iherb.com
  • No flavor variety

6. Sports Research Collagen Peptides

Sports Research Collagen Peptides
  • Collagen Type: Hydrolyzed Collagen Peptides
  • Additional Сomponents: Iron
  • Number of Servings: 40
  • Serving Size: 11g
  • Price per Serving: ~$0.90
  • Company Founded: 1980
  • Recommended By AthletesBianca G, Mariane Welter, Jerry R Joseph

Next on our list is Sports Research Collagen Peptides which is similar to Transparent Labs for its low price and relatively small serving size. However, this is also a good choice if you’re interested in getting some extra iron in with your Collagen supplement. 

This supplement has the same small serving size as Transparent Labs at 11g per serving. As mentioned with Transparent Labs, you may want to take a double serving for maximum effectiveness. This is also the first product on our list to contain any iron with 14% of your DV. 

Like all the products covered on our list so far, it’s made of 100% natural ingredients. Also, this is the only option we’ve covered which rivals Vital Proteins in terms of flavor variety. Sports Research’s product comes in 4 options including unflavored. 

Finally, on the surface, this does appear to be the cheapest option on our list at ~$0.90 per serving. However, considering the small serving size, it still doesn’t have the best value for money out there.

48 EXPERT SCORE

Sports Research is a great option if you’re after flavor variety at a reasonable price. Just keep in mind that the small serving size may be an issue if you want a more effective dose of collagen.


Ingredient Breakdown:0
Stimulation:0
Taste/Flavor:0
Label Transparency:0
Value for Money:0

Positives:

  • Great flavor variety
  • Plenty of third-party certifications
  • High-quality all-natural formula

Could be better:

  • Small serving size
  • Doesn’t have the best value for money
BEST WITH TENDOFORTE®

7. Sparkle Wellness Collagen

Sparkle Wellness Collagen

Closing off our list is a Collagen supplement from Sparkle Wellness. This is the only product on our list to contain alternative forms of Collagen, Fortigel & Tendoforte.

Initial studies show that Tendoforte in particular may be especially effective at strengthening ligaments, although these studies do appear to be sponsored by Tendoforte’s manufacturer. 

Each serving of the Sparkle Wellness supplement contains 5g of Fortigel and 5g of Tendoforte. Although this may seem low, it appears that 5g of Tendoforte is the standard dose for aiding in tendon repair.

In addition to this unique form of Collagen, parkle Wellness also contains additional Vitamin C dosed at 111% of your DV, which is great because Vitamin C is an important cofactor in collagen synthesis.

Like the options above, this is a simple supplement that contains no unnecessary artificial ingredients. It’s also up there with Vital Proteins in terms of flavor variety with 5 different options to choose from!

In terms of price, at ~$1.33 per serving, this is one of the cheaper supplements on our list. Overall, its value is determined by whether or not a smaller dose of Tendoforte is truly as effective as a larger dose of standard collagen.

47.5 EXPERT SCORE

If you’re interested in trying Tendoforte, an alternative form of collagen designed for tendon repair, Sparkle Wellness is a great choice.


Ingredient Breakdown:0
Stimulation:0
Taste/Flavor:0
Label Transparency:0
Value for Money:0

Positives:

  • Only supplement on our list with Tendoforte
  • Great flavor variety
  • Contains additional vitamin C

Could be better:

  • You may be more interested in using a more standard form of collagen
  • Some reviews suggest the flavored options are too sweet

Subscribe!

The latest reviews of must-have home gym training equipment, apparel, and supplements that will enhance your performance and bring you new results.

What Is Collagen and Do You Need Supplementation for Tendons?

Collagen is the most common form of protein found in the body. It’s largely responsible for forming connective tissue, being used in many tissues like bone, skin, and as we’ll be focusing on in this article, tendons. 

Before going any further, it’s important to note that collagen supplementation will only be effective with a high-protein diet rich in micronutrients, mainly Vitamin C, Zinc, and Silicon. 

While collagen is mainly produced by the body, as well as being be found through animal products in the diet, supplementation has become increasingly popular. Collagen as a supplement is typically sourced from the connective tissues of animals. It’s most commonly sourced from cows, hence the term “bovine collagen”. 

Tendon Injury

So, is it a good idea to use collagen for tendonitis, as well as tendon repair after injury?

Based on a systematic review on the effects of collagen relating to joint repair, it was shown that collagen supplementation is beneficial in improving joint function and reducing pain. Furthermore, collagen supplementation prior to exercise will likely work better with exercise, as it is thought to both support tissue integrity, and support tissue repair in bones, skin, and tendons during rehabilitation. This makes a good case for the use of collagen for tendon healing.  

Overall, for both joint and tendon repair, collagen appears to be a beneficial supplement when used as part of a greater rehabilitation program.

How to Choose the Best Collagen Supplements for Tendon Repair?

While collagen does appear to be beneficial for aiding tendon repair, there are a few things you’ll want to keep an eye out for before deciding on a supplement. This includes the type of collagen you’re buying, as well as any additional third-party certifications.

1. Look For Type I Collagen

There are ~28 types of collagens, with Type I being the most common in most tissues, including the tendons. As a result, this is thought to be the best source of collagen for aiding in tendon repair. 

Most of the collagen supplements on our list don’t explicitly state what type they are. However, because collagen supplements are typically sourced from the connective tissues of animals, we can assume they are made up mainly of Type I collagen.

Man Takes Collagen Powder from Bottle

2. Consider Tendoforte® if Possible

An alternative to standard Type I collagen is Tendoforte. This is a patented form of collagen specifically designed for tendon repair and function. It is manufactured by Gelita alongside other Bioactive Collagen Peptides designed which are meant to differ in physiological functionality and target specific cell types such as the skin, joints, bones, and tendons. 

In one study examining the effects of Tendoforte on subjects with Achilles tendinopathy, a dose of only 5g/day was shown to be effective in building strength and rehabilitation. It’s worth noting this study was funded by Gelita, the manufacturer of Tendoforte.

3. Look for Collagen Certified by a Recognized Third-Party

As with any supplement, it’s always a good idea to find a product with third-party certifications. While there are several forms of certification, any GMP certifications or Third-Party lab results are a good indication of quality.  

One of the most common certifications to look for is Informed Choice which ensures that products are made with a high-quality manufacturing process, and are tested for any potential contaminants.

Informed Sport is a certification from the same brand, which ensures that supplements are free of any banned substances, and are safe for competitive athletes.

Kettlebells Training

What Is the Best Way to Take Collagen for Tendons?

If you’ve decided that you want to use collagen supplements as part of your rehabilitation process, there are a few steps we recommend taking to ensure their effectiveness. These include dose, timing, and how long you take the supplement for.

1. Use 15-20g of Collagen

According to the Australian Sports Commission, the recommended dose for Collagen supplements is 15-20g/day. This is thought to be a sufficient dose for supporting the repair of tendons during rehabilitation, as well as a sufficient amount to reduce joint pain. 

It’s worth noting that Tendoforte has been shown to be effective with a much lower dose of ~5g/day but more/larger studies are needed to draw any conclusions. However, for more basic collagen supplements, we recommend getting at least 15g.

Vital Proteins Collagen Mixing

2. Use Collagen 40-60 Min Before or After Exercise or Rehabilitation Sessions

The best time to use collagen for tendon repair is 40-60 minutes before exercise. This is thought to be the optimal time for these amino acids to be delivered to the targeted areas after exercise or rehabilitation. 

It’s worth noting that collagen supplementation for rehabilitation and recovery appears to be most effective when paired alongside a targeted program for the injured area. Exercise will help  further stimulate collagen production, which is why it’s important to time your intake alongside your recovery regime.

3. Use Collagen for at Least 3 Months

Finally, based on the systematic review mentioned earlier, it appears collagen supplementation is most beneficial when taken for at least 3 months. Of the 5 studies on recovery from injury, all of them lasted for a minimum of 3 months, with several lasting for longer than 6 months. 

While improvements in recovery could be noticed sooner, we can use 3 months as a general timeline for noticing the beneficial effects of collagen on recovery and rehabilitation.

Taking Collagen Powder

FAQ

What Type of Collagen Is Best for Tendon Repair?

Because tendons are largely made up of Type I collagen, this is the form we recommend seeking out. While it's not always clear what type of collagen you’re getting, Bovine Collagen is likely made up of majority Type I. 

If you’re interested in trying something different, consider Tendoforte, which is a patented form of collagen specifically designed to target the tendons. It appears a lower dose of Tendoforte (5g/day) may be effective in reducing symptoms of tendon pain but we need studies on a larger group to say more about that.

Can Collagen Supplements Repair Tendons?

So, is collagen good for tendons? While collagen supplementation on its own likely won’t have a major effect on tendon injury, when paired with a proper rehabilitation program it does appear to improve results.

So, as with many supplements, using collagen for tendon recovery won’t be a magic cure, but it can be an effective tool in supporting tendon repair.

How Much Collagen Is Needed for Tendon Repair?

When using collagen for ligaments or tendon repair, 15-20g daily, taken after exercise appears to be the sweet spot for assisting in the rehabilitation of injuries. 

Regardless of what form you’re using, we recommend taking collagen for at least 3 months when working on rehabilitating an injury or preventing pain. 

We recommend consulting with your doctor if you’ve experienced a tendon injury. Not only can they help guide your use of collagen, they should also be able to help you create a more complete rehabilitation plan.

Conclusion

Overall, when paired with proper rehabilitation, collagen appears to be beneficial in supporting the repair and recovery of injured tendons. Remember that collagen isn’t a magic solution, but it may be beneficial in speeding up your recovery process. It’s also important to get enough total protein in, as this is necessary to support collagen synthesis in your body.  

While collagen is generally safe, talk to your doctor or physiotherapist about whether collagen will be beneficial for your specific injury or condition. 

If you do decide to take collagen, we recommend taking 15-20g per day about 40-60 minutes before exercise for at least 3 months. We also recommend choosing a high-quality collagen supplement like COLLAGEN HYDROLYSATE by Transparent Labs, or any of the other options on our list.

Have you recently experienced any tendon injuries? Have you ever tried collagen supplementation for something other than tendon repair? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

Also read:

References:

  1. The Nutrition Source, “Collagen,” Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/ nutritionsource/collagen/ (Accessed Dec. 9, 2023)
  2. Mishti Khatri, et. al, “The effects of collagen peptide supplementation on body composition, collagen synthesis, and recovery from joint injury and exercise: a systematic review” Amino Acids; 53(10): 1493–1506. (2021).
  3. AIS Sports Supplement Framework, “Collagen”, Australian Sports Commission, https://www.ais.gov.au/__data /assets/pdf_file/0009/ 999954/36194_Sport-supplement-fact-sheets-Collagen-v3.pdf (Accessed Dec. 9, 2023)
  4. Products & Brands Overview, “Tendoforte: Strengthen Ligaments and Tendons”, Gelita, https://www.gelita.com/en/ products/collagen-peptides/tendoforte (Accessed Dec. 9, 2023)
  5. Stephan F.E Praet, et. al, “Oral Supplementation of Specific Collagen Peptides Combined with Calf-Strengthening Exercises Enhances Function and Reduces Pain in Achilles Tendinopathy Patients”, Nutrients, 11(1), 76 (2019).

Why Trust Us?

With over 20 years in Olympic Weightlifting, our team does its best to provide the audience with ultimate support and meet the needs and requirements of advanced athletes and professional lifters, as well as people who strive to open new opportunities and develop their physical capabilities with us.

All products we select are primarily approved and tested by the Olympic Weightlifting Champion Oleksii Torokhtiy. Under his guidance, we provide honest and reasonable assessments of the products we review by checking their characteristics, packaging, design, comfort and durability features, and general product rating. We select products from only high-quality and trusted sports brands, thus vouching for their quality.

The product testing process is described in more detail here

Camila Parente Santos

Author: Camila Parente Santos
Nutrition and Sport Nutritionist

Experience: 7 years

Camila has worked as a Nutritionist for 7 years. In addition to being a nutritionist, she is an amateur weightlifting athlete for 2 years. Camila has experience at Flamengo’s football base and in a food supplement company and currently provides services at a clinic. At the moment she is coursing a postgraduate study in Sports Nutrition.

View author’s page

Jacek Szymanowski

Reviewed by: Jacek Szymanowski

Certified Nutritionist,
M.Sc.Eng. Biotechnology
Performance architect
,
Strength and Conditioning Specialist

Experience: 20 years

With over 30 years of fighting experience, specialization in nutrition coaching for athletes, and expertise in metabolic health and dietary strategies, Jacek offers a comprehensive approach to optimizing your performance and well-being. Backed by a Master of Science degree in Biotechnology, Jacek remains at the forefront of scientific advancements, ensuring that his coaching is always evidence-based and up-to-date.

View reviewer’s page


If you have any questions/suggestions/any other inquiries considering product reviews, you can reach out to us via email – [email protected]

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *