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What is the skin barrier, what is its function and how to protect it?


What is your skin barrier and what is its purpose?

The skin barrier refers to the outermost top layer of the skin, and is sometimes also referred to as the "moisture barrier". This layer, also known as the stratum corneum, is composed of tough skin cells bound together with lipids.


The skin barrier serves as a protective shield. It has two essential functions: keeping the "bad stuff" out and the "good stuff" in. It protects the body from toxins such as pollution and harsh chemicals and ultraviolet radiation from excessive sun exposure. It also locks in the body's natural moisture by preventing water loss. If this outermost layer of the skin does not retain enough water, the skin loses its elasticity. If the skin barrier is poorly hydrated, it will be significantly more vulnerable to external toxins.


What damages your skin barrier?

There are a variety of symptoms of a damaged skin barrier. These can include dryness, inflammation, redness and increased sensitivity. This damage is caused by environmental conditions, harsh chemicals and excessive exfoliation (Exfoliation is good, but too much? Not so good).


Environmental conditions

Environmental conditions such as excessive sun exposure, pollution and smoking can affect the skin barrier. Even low levels of sunlight exposure can cause damage. This type of damage can lead to photoaging, which will result in wrinkles and age spots. Air pollution, such as smoking, causes oxidative stress, which has detrimental effects on the skin. These environmental factors can produce free radicals, which further contribute to the degradation of skin integrity.

A dry or low humidity environment can also damage the skin barrier. It can lead to a decrease in the skin's barrier function and strip your skin's barrier of its natural moisture.


Physical damage

If you over-exfoliate your face or use harsh skin care products. Harsh chemicals in skin care products can strip the skin of its natural oils. Excessive exfoliation can also create tiny cracks in the skin barrier, leading to moisture loss and increased inflammation.


Ways to protect the skin barrier

Protecting your skin barrier is critical. Moisturizing your skin and protecting it from the sun are practical steps you should take right away.


Moisturizing your skin

Hydrated skin is happy skin, and the skin barrier must be kept adequately hydrated to protect the body from harmful toxins.


Protecting your skin from sun exposure

Getting too much sun can drastically damage the skin barrier. Fortunately, you can protect your skin barrier from sun damage and pollution with Thom Elzner Total Defense. It's infused with HydroTech Complex botanical ingredients that protect against sun damage and pollution.


Start protecting your skin's moisture barrier, if you need information about products that can help you for this purpose feel free to ask me.

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