How old you are is your business. How young you look, and feel, is our business!
Our skin, is one of the least understood yet one of the most important organs in the human body. Weighing approximately 3.6 kg or 8 lbs, it covers an area of 2.5 square meters or 225 square feet. It is the envelop that acts as an interface between the noisy outside world and our silent inner world. It is fundamental to our survival; it is how we assert our identity, our individuality and our distinctiveness. On the downside, skin is also an object of prejudice, repression and discrimination. Strip away the skin and underneath we are all the same.
Our skin protects us from harmful electromagnetic and environmental pollutants; specialized cells, called Langerhan cells, alert the immune system of possible intrusions by harmful pathogens. Specialized pigment in the skin, melanin, protects us from harmful ultra-violet radiation that can damage DNA and create an inflammatory cascade that can cause serious skin damage.
Our skin helps control our internal body temperature (thermoregulation). We perspire when we get too hot; we shiver when we get too cold.
Skin is permeated by a huge and extensive network of nerves and receptors, relaying information to the brain: touch, temperature, texture, weight and pain.
Exposing skin to sunlight stimulates the production of vitamin D3 which enters into circulation through the thousands of
blood vessels in the skin. Vitamin D3 is shunted to the liver and kidneys where it is metabolized into its more potent forms of Vitamin D assuring optimal calcium metabolism and optimal bone health.
Skin is permeated by specialized cells that promote wound healing, tissue repair and reduction of inflammation.
Skin stores lipids (fats), sugars and salts as energy supplies against times of famine. These fat supplies also act as insulation against heat and cold, and cushion the body against knocks and falls.
Skin absorbs life-giving oxygen and nitrogen from the atmosphere, but also pollutants and harmful chemicals, which find their way to the liver and other vital organs causing serious damage if they are not immediately eliminated via the body’s detox system.
In modern times, the skin has also become a canvas for body art. The body piercing and tattoo industry generates over 50 billion dollars annually in revenue.
Skin is also an expression of beauty – cosmetics, hair, nail products, perfumes, deodorants and health spas generate well over 500 billion dollars of revenue annually.
Because we are a “naked species”, with no luxuriant or fluffy fur, the fashion industry has been more than happy to supply us with interchangeable “skins” – clothing generating over 5 trillion dollars in revenue annually.