Going Beyond the Surface: An Introduction to Skin

Did you know? Your skin stretches over 20 square feet!

Skin = Health?

When we talk about physical health, we think of detoxifying our kidneys or doing cardio for a healthy heart—but what most people don’t realize is that skincare plays a huge role in our physical health!

In fact, skin is the largest organ of our body, as well as our immune system’s primary defense against dirt, illness, and disease.

Photo by Aiony Haust on Unsplash

It’s well-known that skin is one of the first and most telling markers of poor health. Lack of sleep leads to dull skin, while dehydration can cause dryness and breakouts. But skin is more than just vanity or a harbinger of health doom: skin health is essential to keeping the rest of our body healthy, too.

Unhealthy skin is more susceptible to infection, allowing bacteria to enter the body and multiply. On the other hand, healthy skin cells combat UV damage, help regulate hydration, and prevent cancerous cell carcinoma.

Understanding Our Skin

Diagram from WebMD

The skin is made up of three main layers: the 表皮, 真皮皮下組織 (or the “superficial fascia”). Each layer of the skin has a different—though equally crucial—function in healing, regenerating, and keeping our skin healthy. 

表皮: Skin-Deep

Photo by 亞倫伯登 on Unsplash

表皮 is the outermost layer of the skin, with “epi-” meaning “upper” or “over” and “dermis” meaning “skin.” Distributed across the epidermis are 退黑激素, which dictates our skin tone, and 角蛋白, which defends against environmental irritants. Epidermal skin cells, also called squamous cells, are continuously shed and regenerated to form a waterproof moisture barrier that locks in hydration.

Dermis: A Cushion of Collagen

Photo by 羅迪恩·庫特薩夫(Rodion Kutsaev) on Unsplash

As it lies directly underneath the epidermis, the 真皮 is often called the “true skin.” The dermis is a major 膠原 彈性 storage source: these two major proteins keep our skin smooth, elastic, and supple. Home to the skin’s blood vessels and 淋巴系統, the dermis helps to heal wounds and deliver nutrition to the epidermis. Sebaceous glands, which produce 皮脂, a waxy substance responsible for skin moisture and oiliness, are also located here. 

Hypodermis: Soft on the Inside

Photo by 蒂爾扎·範·迪克(Tirza van Dijk) on Unsplash

Every time you sit on a hard surface, you’ve got your 皮下組織 to thank! The hypodermis is also known as the subcutaneous layer, which means “under the skin.” Fittingly, it’s a layer of 體內脂肪 and connective tissue located under the dermis that absorbs shock: think of it as a protective pillow between sharp bone and delicate skin. This is also where our 汗腺 reside, making the hypodermis doubly crucial for 調節體溫.

Did you know? 20% of all the water in your body is stored in the skin!

Photo by 烏木之眼 on Unsplash

 

Why Does Skincare Matter?

Just like sleep, nutrition, and exercise, good skincare habits go a long way towards maintaining healthy skin and bodies as we age. Facial skin is particularly delicate and sensitive, making a skincare routine an essential part of a healthy lifestyle, especially for busy city-dwellers. Skincare and beauty can also boost our confidence and provide a smooth, clear canvas for self-expression through makeup!

從裡到外

A curated skincare routine starts with understanding the skin and how we can protect, support, and care for it. Knowing which areas to target with the right ingredients will help you build an effective regimen that’s right for your skin, to bring out your inner glow. 

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To clear up acne-prone skin

Whiteheads, pimples, and cysts develop when sebaceous glands in the dermis get clogged with sebum and dead skin cells. 


To balance hydration

Hydrated skin is healthy skin! From oil production to texture and suppleness, keeping your epidermis and dermis hydrated is key.

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To rejuvenate aging skin

Collagen production in the dermis slows with age. Combined with sunlight, pollution, and dry air-conditioning, this can cause dullness and fine lines. 

 

仍然對 what your skin type is,為什麼 vegan beauty is best, 或者 why some alcohols are good for your skin? You’ve come to the right place—check out our 博客 更多!

Written by Fion Tse