Did You Know? Rough skin can be safely smoothed by algae, enzymes, and acids.
Objectives After viewing this course, you should have an understanding of the following: Part I: Skin Texture. Learn about the factors that can alter skin texture. Part II: Retexturization Methods. Learn about two retexturization methods: physical and chemical.
Skin texture refers to the look and feel of the surface of the skin. Skin texture can be smooth or rough. Smooth skin texture is uniform and even. Light is reflected uniformly. Rough skin texture is uneven and has raised areas or depressions. Light is reflected non-uniformly. Rough skin texture that results in uneven light reflection can cause the skin to appear dull or dark.
Skin Texture and the Skin’s Moisture Barrier The skin’s moisture barrier is responsible for maintaining optimal skin texture. Also known as the stratum corneum, the moisture barrier is the outermost layer of the epidermis. Composed primarily of 25–30 layers of flattened, dead cells, the skin’s moisture barrier is the protective layer of the skin.
Factors Affecting Skin Texture Dry skin Sun exposure Acne Aging Nutritional deficiencies Medical conditions Skin conditions
Dry Skin Dry skin is a result of the skin’s moisture barrier (stratum corneum) being depleted of water and not functioning properly. As a result, the skin can be rough in texture. Some external causes of dry skin include the following: Long, hot showers Cold, dry air Solvents and soaps Chaffing and scrubbing
Sun Exposure Sun exposure is the skin's most dangerous enemy. Accumulated over a lifetime, sun damage causes most of the changes to the skin associated with aging, such as lines and wrinkles, discolorations, broken blood vessels, roughness, and cancer. For a dramatic contrast, compare the color and texture of your skin where it has been exposed to the sun with an area that has been protected, such as the abdomen. Compared to the protected skin, exposed skin is rougher and shows more signs of discoloration.
Acne Acne causes destruction of skin tissue and can result in scars and enlarged pores that alter skin texture. Acne enlarges the pores when they are repeatedly clogged, leaving acne sufferers—even those with oily skin—with skin texture that is coarse or rough.
Aging With age, the skin’s natural cell renewal process slows. As a result, the outer layer of skin cells remains longer on the skin’s surface, giving skin a dull look. This causes skin to be rough and scaly.
Nutritional Deficiencies Good nutrition is important for healthy skin. Nutritional deficiencies, such as low levels of vitamin A, can cause the cell renewal rate of the skin to slow and damage the skin’s delicate moisture barrier. This can lead to a build-up of skin cells on the surface of the skin, giving the skin a rough texture.
Medical Conditions Certain medical conditions directly affect the skin’s intercellular matrix. When the intercellular matrix is changed, the moisture barrier is damaged, giving the skin a rough texture. Examples of such medical conditions include the following: Hypoglycemia Hypothyroidism Autoimmune thyroid diseases
Skin Conditions Skin conditions can alter the skin’s texture through irritation, dryness, and a damaged moisture barrier. Some skin conditions are chronic, while some are temporary. Examples include the following: Eczema Dermatitis Rosacea Ichthyosis Skin cancer
Review Skin texture is maintained in the skin by the moisture barrier. Anything that damages or alters the moisture barrier will change the skin’s texture from smooth to rough. The major contributors to rough skin are: Dry Skin Sun Exposure Acne Aging Nutritional Deficiencies Medical Conditions Skin Conditions
For skin that is rough in texture, two main methods for smoothing and retexturizing the skin exist: physical and chemical exfoliation. * *Exfoliation refers to the removal of the uppermost layers or sheets of dead skin cells. The word folio (a root word in exfoliation) has many meanings, including: leaf, thin leaf-like sheet, or layer.
Physical Exfoliation Physical exfoliation can smooth and soften the skin by removing the uppermost layers of dead skin cells. Physical exfoliation can be accomplished in the following three ways: Mechanical action : rubbing facial skin with hands while washing. Abrasive texture : rubbing the face with a rough textured washcloth. Abrasive particles : exfoliating with granular particles, such as walnut shells and marine diatoms.
More about Abrasive Particles Definition: Abrasive particles can be derived from many sources and can range in size, shape, and number. Function: They work by removing the uppermost layers of dead skin cells from the surface of the skin. Particle choice depends on desired retexturization result. Some examples of particles used for exfoliation include the following: 1. Walnut shells – semi-smooth particles effectively scrub away layers of damaged, dead skin cells. 2. Marine diatoms – small, smooth particles gently remove upper layer of dull, dead skin cells.
Chemical Exfoliation Chemical exfoliation works to encourage the removal of dulling, dead skin cell layers by loosening and dissolving the dead skin cells with a nonabrasive solution. Acids and proteolytic enzymes are the main methods used for chemical exfoliation.
More about Acids Definition: An acid is a corrosive substance that releases hydrogen ions when present in a solution. Function: An acid works by chemically dissolving the connection between the cells in the outer layers of the skin’s surface. Result: Evenly reveals younger cells on the surface of the skin for soft, smooth skin and glowing, uniform light reflection.
More about Proteolytic Enzymes Definition: A proteolytic enzyme (or protease) is a type of enzyme that breaks down protein into smaller units. Fast becoming the retexturizer ingredient of choice by skin care products manufacturers, enzymes are gentle to the skin, yet work effectively. Function: Break down the proteins that bind cells together in the outer layers of the skin, readying them for removal. Result: Evenly reveals younger cells on the surface of the skin for soft, smooth skin and glowing, uniform light reflection.
Review Two main methods for retexturizing the skin: Physical (mechanical action and abrasives) Chemical (acids and proteolytic enzymes) The skin’s moisture barrier protects optimal skin texture. Influences such as dry skin, sun exposure, acne, aging, nutritional deficiencies, medical conditions, and skin conditions alter skin texture. You can effectively smooth and soften your skin through physical or chemical methods of retexturization.