Did you know your skin is the largest organ in your body?
Skin is an organ!! – really?
Yes, really!!! Not all of your body’s organs are internal like the brain or the heart. There’s one we wear on the outside. Adults carry some 8 pounds (3.6 kilograms) and 22 square feet (2 square meters) of it. This fleshy covering does a lot more than make us look presentable. In fact, without it, we’d literally evaporate.
Skin acts as a waterproof, insulating shield, guarding the body against extremes of temperature, damaging sunlight, and harmful chemicals. It also exudes antibacterial substances that prevent infection and manufactures vitamin D for converting calcium into healthy bones. Skin additionally is a huge sensor packed with nerves for keeping the brain in touch with the outside world. At the same time, skin allows us free movement, proving itself an amazingly versatile organ.
What is an organ?
Skin is considered an organ because it meets the definition of an organ, which is a group of related cells that combine together to perform one or more specific functions within the body.
More about the skin…
Skin is made up of three layers.
The outer layer we see is the epidermis. Underneath is the Dermis and then a fatty layer of tissue called the Subcutaneous Layer.
This consists mainly of cells called keratinocytes, made from the tough protein keratin (also the material in hair and nails). Keratinocytes form several layers that constantly grow outwards as the exterior cells die and flake off. It takes between 21-55 days for newly created cells to work their way to the surface. This covering of dead skin is known as the stratum corneum, or horny layer, and its thickness varies considerably, being more than ten times thicker on the soles of the feet than around the eyes. The epidermis harbors defensive Langerhans cells, which alert the body’s immune system to viruses and other infectious agents.
This process can become sluggish as we age and sometimes needs a helping hand. This is where a gentle exfoliation can help. If our cells don’t shed it can lead to a grey like complexion and a dull tone.
The epidermis is bonded to a deeper skin layer below known as the dermis, which gives the organ its strength and elasticity thanks to fibres of collagen and elastin. Blood vessels here help regulate body temperature by increasing blood flow to the skin to allow heat to escape, or by restricting the flow when it’s cold. A network of nerve fibres and receptors pick up feelings such as touch, temperature, and pain, relaying them to the brain.
This is the layer we need our products to be able to penetrate to. This is all in the science of the molecules and atoms and the way the ingredients work. It is the dermis where the production of collagen is increased. We need products that stimulate the production of collagen to help heal skin and help with anti ageing.
The skin’s base layer is the subcutaneous layer, which includes a seam of fat laid down as a fuel reserve in case of food shortage. It is the fatty layer. It also works as insulation and cushions us from knocks and falls.
Have a little watch of this presentation about the skin:
I believe we can help our skin more if we just listen to it more. By being educated on what your skin needs it can help save you time, effort and above all MONEY!!
Your skin can and does heal itself. However, some of, the things we do to it don’t help it. We do need to clean all make up off and help protect it from environmental changes. This is why products and diet and lifestyle can help. Just be aware, not all skin problems are down to skincare and they cannot all be cured with skincare. But, skincare can and does provide us some help.
Just because it works for your friend
I have heard a 1000 times. My friend has amazing skin and he/she uses this…
Just because it works for your friend, does not mean it WILL for you. We are all unique and individual and when it comes to skin, we have to listen. If something feels wrong IT IS!! Nothing should hurt or cause damage.
That is not to say some products, like enzyme peels, do cause redness. This is not always a bad thing. Be aware of this as some redness actually is increasing blood circulation. This feeds your skin and helps with collagen production. See, it is not ALWAYS bad. But we need to learn the difference.
This is not to say you can’t use the same products as your friend. You just may need to adapt them to your skin not their skin. What works for them, does not always work for YOU!!
For example, we can adapt the way we use LA Skincare products to suit your skin. So if you are severely oily and congested, you will probably leave the chocolate enzyme mask on for up to 20 mins. Where as if you are dry, mature or tender skins, you may only leave for 5 mins. Both are correct it is just what your skin needs at any given time.