Structure and Function of the Skin
The skin consists of different layers. The innermost layers are subcutaneous connective tissue, dermis and epidermis.
The superficial horny layer contains dead skin cells embedded in lipids. It provides protection against pathogens that cause disease, irritants as well as pollutants and dehydration. This function is supported not only by the horny cells and the horny layer fat but also by natural moisturising factors that bind water in the skin and by the hydrolipid film or acid mantle, a mixture of sweat and sebum which covers the whole skin surface.
The horny layer also determines the appearance of the skin: smooth, silky and firm or rough, spotty and loose.
Daily stress due to influences that affect the skin on the job, in the household or during leisure time disturb the skin barrier. As a result, the skin dries out, becomes rough, chapped, flaky and itchy. Penetrating irritants and pollutants can cause skin irritations, inflammations and allergies.
Right skin care can reinforce the skin’s function as a barrier, while wrong skin care weakens it.