Skin + Physiology

It’s a known fact that skin is the largest organ of the human body but interestingly, the physiology, and therefore condition of skin, varies greatly from our head to our toes. Caring for the skin on each place requires something a little different. To help you navigate your skin's physiology and function, we’ve compiled a comprehensive guide to help you pick the right products for your parts.

Scalp

Physiology: Medium skin thickness, high density of sebaceous glands, high density of hair follicles

Result: Low sensitivity, high oil production, and little natural exfoliation.

Skin: Wash as needed with gentle shampoos with or without natural scent.

Products:

+Care: Rinse hair in cold water to prevent scalp dryness and keep hair shiny.

Eye Area

Physiology: Thinnest skin on the body and few sebaceous glands. Often visible to light.

Result: Highly sensitive, prone to dehydration, often irritated by fragrance and exfoliating ingredients. Prone to dryness and dehydration lines. Prone to UV damage and photoaging.

Skin: Avoid using scented products and exfoliants around the eye, aim for pH balanced products and keep hydrated and moisturized. Always apply mineral sunscreen all around eye area and on lids.

Products:

+Care: Wear sunglasses outside wherever possible to help block UV light and prevent photoaging.

Face

Physiology: Thinner skin than on body, high number of sebaceous glands, densely-packed cells. Often visible to light.

Result: Prone to sensitivity, high levels of sweat and oil produced, influenced by hormonal fluctuations, prone to acne, increased cell turnover and fast healing. Prone to UV damage and photoaging.

Skin: Avoid using any kind of scented products, should be cleansed daily with gentle, pH-balanced cleanser, can tolerate regular exfoliation and higher concentrations of active ingredients than body, mineral sunscreen should be applied daily.

Products:

    +Care: Incorporate meditation into your routine to lower stress hormones and balance you skin.

    Neck and Chest

    Physiology: Thinner than skin on body but thicker than face, high number of sebaceous glands, loosely-packed cells, often visible to light.

    Result: Less sensitive than facial skin, high levels of oil and sweat produced, can be prone to acne/sebaceous filaments. Slower healing than face and less tolerant to exfoliants. Prone to UV damage and photoaging. 

    Skin: May be less sensitive to scented products, should be cleansed daily with gentle, pH-balanced cleanser, can tolerate gentle exfoliation and active ingredients, mineral sunscreen should be applied daily.

    Products:

      Hands

      Physiology: Thick skin, no sebaceous glands on palms, loosely-packed cells, backs of hand often visible to light.

      Result: Low sensitivity, prone to dryness and dehydration lines (common on backs of hands), slower healing times, prone to UV damage.

      Skin: Can tolerate scented products, more aggressive physical exfoliants and frequent washing with gentle surfactants. Requires regular moisturization with thicker creams, and sunscreen should be applied daily.

      Products:

        +Care: Wear gloves when working with your hands to prevent damage and protect the skin from harmful chemicals.

        Limbs and Torso

        Physiology: Thick skin, fair number of sebaceous glands and pores, loosely-packed cells, high number of hair follicles.

        Result: Less sensitive than facial skin, moderate oil and sweat production, little natural exfoliation.

        Skin: Can tolerate scented products and physical exfoliation, requires regular cleansing with gentle surfactants, regular moisturization, and exfoliation once per week.

        Products:

          +Care: Incorporate omega-3 fatty acids into your diet to help improve the condition and hydration of your body skin from the inside out.

          Genitals

          Physiology: Thin skin, high number of sebaceous glands, densely-packed cells, high number of hair follicles on pubic mound.

          Result: Very sensitive, high oil and sweat production, fast healing, prone to ingrown hairs.

          Skin: Do not tolerate scented products, requires daily cleansing with very gentle surfactants on external regions only, do not require moisturizers, gentle physical exfoliation on areas with hair growth may help prevent ingrown hairs.

           Products:

            +Care: Make regular self-pleasure part of your routine to boost confidence and improve the condition of your skin.

            Knees and Elbows

            Physiology: Low number of sebaceous glands, loosely-packed cells, no hair follicles.

            Result: Little oil production, slow healing, not protected from abrasion, rough skin prone to cracking.

            Skin: Easily tolerate scented products, requires daily moisturization, prone to damage and cracking, exfoliation once per week.

            Products:

              +Care: Shower with cooler water to prevent stripping the skin of natural moisture and keep skin soft and healthy.

              Feet

              Physiology: Very thick skin, no sebaceous glands, high levels of sweat glands. 

              Result: Very little sensitivity, prone to dryness, very sweat-prone. 

              Skin: Easily tolerate scented products, require daily cleansing and moisturization, exfoliate regularly. 

              Products:

                +Care: Hydrate from the inside out by incorporating juice fruits and hydrating beverages to keep your skin glowing all over.

                Now you have no excuse for using a 3-in-1 shampoo, body wash, cleanser again! Whether it’s picking the perfect product for your feet or your face, revisit this guide to find the optimal pairing to care for your skin.

                 

                [1] Tasneem Poonawalla, M.D., Pharm.D; Dermatology Resident, University of Wisconsin; and Dayna Diven, M.D., Clinical Professor; Department of Dermatology, University of Texas Medical Branch. Core Concepts of Pediatrics. 2008.

                [2] Chopra, K., Calva, D., Sosin, M., Tadisina, K. K., Banda, A., De La Cruz, C., ... & Christy, M. R. (2015). A comprehensive examination of topographic thickness of skin in the human face. Aesthetic surgery journal35(8), 1007-1013.

                [3] Duarte, I., Silveira, J. E. P., Hafner, M. D. F. S., Toyota, R., & Pedroso, D. M. M. (2017). Sensitive skin: review of an ascending concept. Anais brasileiros de dermatologia92(4), 521-525.

                [4] Bhawan, J., Oh, C. H., Lew, R., Nehal, K. S., Labadie, R. R., Tsay, A., & Gilchrest, B. A. (1992). Histopathologic differences in the photoaging process in facial versus arm skin. Am J Dermatopathol14(3), 224-30.