Our skin is the largest organ of our body but have you ever thought how much you really know about it?
· The structure of the skin
The skin consists of three main layers: the epidermis, the dermis and the subcutaneous layer.
-The epidermis is the outermost layer and is nourished by the blood vessels in the dermis since it does not have its own blood supply. Keratinocytes, melanocytes and langerhans cells are three types of cells that epidermis consists of.
-The dermis is the middle layer and the thickest one of the three. This layer consists of five other layers. From the most superficial to the deepest, they are: Stratum corneum, stratum lucidum, stratum granulosum, stratum spinosum and stratum basale. Dermis is mainly consisted of collagen and elastin fibers which are both important proteins for the health of the skin. The dermis also contains sebaceous glands (producing sebum), sweat glands (producing sweat), hair follicles and nerve and muscle cells.
-The subcutaneous layer or hypodermis is the innermost layer of the skin and consists of connective tissue and fat molecules. This layer is mainly responsible for protecting underlying tissues from cold and trauma.
There are four different skin types: normal, dry, oily and combination.
-Normal: normal skin type is usually found on younger ages; it is a term used to describe well- balanced skin. People with normal skin will have fine pores, good blood circulation, smooth skin texture, no blemishes, healthy looking skin in general.
-Dry skin: this skin type lacks sebum, meaning that it produces less sebum than normal skin. Because of the lack of sebum there are not enough lipids to retain the skin’s natural moisture and have a protection against the external influences. People with dry skin may experience a tight feeling, rough skin, dull look, itching, milia, dry flakes, fine lines, broken capillaries.
-Oily skin: oily skin type on the other hand is the skin type with excess sebum production. This over-production of sebum is also known as seborrhea. You can identify oily skin from some common symptoms such as open pores, shiny look, thicker skin, breakouts, black pores, skin breakouts.
-Combination: this skin type as the name suggests, is a combination of skin types. Usually oily T-zone and normal or dry rest of the face.
· Skin conditions
There are also some common skin conditions and many internal and external factors that can affect someone’s skin condition. Some of them factors are climate and environmental pollution, diet, medication, stress, hereditary factors, skin’s natural moisture as well as products and skincare choices we make.
Ageing skin: skin types can change during lifetime. People with oily skin type can find their skin going dryer after puberty. Others with normal skin can find their skin getting drier with time.
As we age, it’ s normal that our skin loses some of its elasticity, volume and density so as a result, free lines and wrinkles can appear and changes in pigmentation can occur. By understanding and measuring these signs of ageing we can control better the condition of our skin.
Sensitive skin: A sensitive skin can be easily irritated by different factors that would be bearable for a non- sensitive skin. Some causes of irritation can be skin products or even the extreme temperatures. Some people find their skin always being sensitive when some others’ sensitivity can be triggered by certain, limited factors.
Dehydrated skin: healthy skin normally has its natural moisturizing mechanisms that help to keep water into the skin, maintain its elasticity and suppleness and of course prevent it from becoming dehydrated. When skin’s barrier is damaged it is often unable to retain its natural moisture and as a result, the condition is affected.
At Skin Care Clinics we provide free skin care assessments and detailed skin analysis to make sure we always recommend the best products and treatments according to the needs of your skin. Contact us today if you would like to learn more about your skin and how to look after it.