Ten Less-Known Fascinating Facts About Your Skin

5. Skin aging.

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Alpha hydroxyl acid (AHA) is a substance that gives skin a more youthful appearance. As you get older, new skin cells are not as easy and rapidly made. AHA, which are used as ingredients in skin creams, removes dead cells and give the body signal to attempt and make new cells. When your skin is exposed to too much sun or if you are a smoker, it can result to arterial aging; which in turn can break elastin, the substance responsible for keeping the elasticity of your skin. When this happens, you see wrinkles appear on your skin. Eye bags are genetic in nature and usually results from the accumulation of fats around the eyes, excessive alcohol drinking and poor sleeping habits.

4. Goose bumps.

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When you’re out there in the cold, ice-skating or maybe sledding, have you noticed those tiny bumps on your skin? Most people call these goose bumps but if you want to sound impressive you can call it by its fancy name, which is pilomotor reflex. So what causes them? When you feel cold, your body’s mechanism lets your blood vessels keep you from losing heat by narrowing as much as possible and try to keep the warm blood away from the skin surface. During this process, goose bumps or pilomotor reflex create special tiny muscles called the erector pili muscles that pull on your hairs so they stand up very straight. Simply put, the contraction of muscle fibers in the skin prevents your body from losing heat and in fact produces more heat to raise the body’s temperature; thus your skin puckers in the cold.

3. Fingerprints as ID.

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Your fingerprints become your own unique identity from when you were a three-month old fetus as this is the time when fingerprints are acquired. No two people in the whole universe ever have the same fingerprints – not even identical twins; though with identical twins the differences are often so subtle only fingerprint experts can usually detect them. In very, very rare circumstances, some people never develop fingerprints at all. This is brought by two rare genetic abnormalities known as Naegeli Syndrome and Dermatopathia Pigmentosa Reticularis Syndrome. They can leave carriers without any identifying ridges on their skin.

2. Bath tub wrinkling.

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Why do your toes and fingers wrinkle in the bath tub after prolonged soaking in the water? To be more accurate, your fingers and toes aren’t really wrinkling but puckering from swelling. The top layer of your skin is composed of tough, scaly cells collectively called as the stratum corneum. This layer is mostly spread thin on other parts of the body (just about .015 mm) but it’s 40 times thicker (.06 mm) on the palms and soles. The stratum corneum is relatively dehydrated under normal conditions but it absorbs moisture and swells up when soaked for quite some time, especially around the areas of fingers and toes because of the limited dimension. The skin underneath and the connective tissue around the layer doesn’t absorb water and therefore doesn’t swell along with it; thus the swollen area seem puckered, or wrinkled as we call it. When you see your fingers and toes do this, take it as a sign that your body’s defense mechanism is on the alert, preventing water, soap, dirt and germs from invading through your skin.

1. Human sweat.

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The skin releases as much as three gallons of sweat each day in a hot weather. The areas of the body that don’t sweat are the margins of the lips, the penis tip, the eardrums and the nail bed. Body odor comes from a second kind of sweat secreted by the body, specifically; it is a fatty secretion from the apocrine sweat glands, which are mostly found in the armpits, genitals and anus areas. It is not the sweat that causes body odor; rather, it is caused by bacteria on the skin eating and digesting the fatty compounds secretion.

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