What Is The Skin Barrier?

female applying moisturizer on her arm

Have you noticed that more and more people are talking about the skin barrier and the importance of taking care of it and protecting it? For good reason. Our skin is made up of layers, each one playing a vital role in protecting our body. The outermost layer of the skin—the skin barrier—is constantly defending the body against environmental threats while also protecting the body’s water balance. It is the hardest working part of the skin, keeping things from getting into the body as well as getting out!

The outermost layer is called the Stratum Corneum. Often described as a brick wall, it is made up of strong skin cells called corneocytes that are bound together by lipids. Think of it as a brick wall where the skin cells act as bricks and the lipids act as the cement, keeping the bricks (or skin cells) together. The skin cells contain keratin and natural moisturizers while the lipids encompass cholesterol, fatty acids and ceramides. It is this structure that keeps the water in our bodies while protecting us against environmental factors, bacteria and allergens. The skin barrier is essential to our health and needs to be protected to function well.

When our skin barrier is working at optimal levels, it retains water and maintains vital hydration, making our skin strong yet flexible. It’s that elasticity and bounce that keeps skin look smooth, firm, and glowing. When the lipid barrier is not working, skin looks and feels dry and dull, even scaly. A compromised or damaged skin barrier can lead to issues with the skin including increased sensitivity, irritation, redness, itching, and breakouts. There are a lot of things that can affect the skin barrier. External factors include living in an environment that is too dry or too humid, too much sun exposure and even over-exfoliation or over-washing the skin. Internal factors include psychological distress, steroids, and even genetic factors that make some more prone to certain skin conditions.

So what can you do to protect your skin barrier? Experts recommend simplifying your skin care routine. Too many products or the wrong products can actually weaken the skin barrier. Studies have shown that using plant oils, like Pili Oil, can help repair the skin barrier while preventing it from losing moisture. Some of these oils, like Elemi Oil, also have antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant effects too.

girl applying face oil

Pili Ani’s Ageless Concentrate is a great way to protect the skin barrier. Ageless was created to nourish skin deep from within using Pili Oil concentrates that produce anti-aging and moisturizing benefits while relying on its Elemi Oil elements for its firming properties. This powerful combination moisturizes and restores skin’s youth and vitality, leaving it soft, smooth, and supple.

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Another great item to help protect the skin barrier is Pili Ani’s Intense Hydrating Facial Cream. Pili Oil contains high concentration of antioxidants and essential fatty acids. Antioxidants protect cells from the effect of free radicals and other external aggressors that cause aging. Fatty acids, meanwhile, are essential for keeping skin nourished and hydrated at the cellular level. Elemi Oil has antiseptic and antimicrobial properties that are significant in improving skin health, ensuring fast healing, regeneration and purification.

Essential for good health, your skin barrier is your body’s frontline defense— make sure you are protecting it so that it functions at optimal levels. It will repay you with healthy, glowing skin!