You must have heard of or used skincare products that promote skin barrier protection and restoration. However, not many people are aware of this skin layer that plays a crucial role in skin health. Most people tend to neglect the importance of the skin barrier and go with their desired skin goals, namely brightening, glowing, and reducing dark spots. Little did they know that their skincare products won't work effectively if the skin barrier is not taken care of. So, here is the basic information for you regarding the skin barrier that everyone should pay attention to.
The skin barrier is the outer layer of skin bound together by lipids. The core function of this skin layer is, of course, protection. As you already know, the skin's structure generally consists of various layers, each of which plays a prime role in protecting the body. The outermost layer (stratum corneum) is the skin barrier described as a brick wall and consists of hard skin cells (corneocytes). Then, you will find keratin and natural moisturizers in the skin cells. This lipid layer which contains cholesterol, fatty acids, and ceramides, is called the skin barrier.
Despite their thin appearance, this skin barrier helps protect you from a variety of harmful toxins and pathogens that can penetrate your skin. Without the skin barrier, moisture in the skin can escape and evaporate, putting your skin at risk of dehydration-dry skin. In conclusion, the skin barrier is the outermost protective layer of the skin that is important to maintain so that it functions properly to optimize your skincare effect.
If you haven't taken care of your skin barrier at this point, you have a high chance of having your skin barrier damaged. Skin barrier damage may change how the outer layer of skin looks. According to webmd, the symptoms can include:
- Lack of skin elasticity
- Itchy, dry skin
- Water loss (called trans-epidermal water loss)
- Thinning of the epidermal layer
- Visible bacterial or viral infection
Good for you if you haven't come across these symptoms, so the only thing you need to do is to maintain taking care of it. Yet if your skin barrier has come to a point where it's damaged, you need to step up your skincare game. Here are things that you can do to maintain and repair the health of your skin barrier:
- Simplify your skincare routine; some people may not realize that sometimes complicated skincare can weaken their skin barrier. Some experts recommend using a soft cloth and mild chemicals when exfoliating the skin, especially on sensitive skin.
- The normal pH level of the skin should be around 5.7 to maintain the skin pH balance. However, the pH of some skincare products can range from 3.7 to 8.2. Therefore, choose a cleaning product close to your skin's natural pH.
- Choose products with ceramide due to its ability to imitate the waxy lipid in your skin barrier. Meanwhile, products containing this ingredient have been shown to relieve symptoms of dry skin, such as itching and crusty skin. Moreover, moisturizers containing ceramides provide other benefits for skin health, such as strengthening skin structure.
- Try a moisturizer with certain ingredients, and choose the right moisturizer to lock the skin moisture, such as petrolatum and humectants. Some of the recommended substances in moisturizers include; glycerin, hyaluronic acid (hyaluronic acid), and honey.
All in all, the health of the skin barrier should be considered a top priority and never to skip in your skincare routine as it serves a great purpose for your skin in general.