Does skin really breathe?

DaveStoneDaveStone Member
edited October 2021 in General
If so, wouldn't applying an occlusive like petrolatum on the skin "suffocate" it? Does that further explain why women's skin allegedly ages faster, because the makeup they use stifles respiration?

Comments

  • PharmaPharma Member, Pharmacist
    Let's call it gas exchange. Better occlusives are silicones which allow for gas exchange whilst keeping water in the skin.
    What breathes are for example microbes aka skin flora which can tilt under anaerobic conditions in favour of more prblematic germs.
  • Lively skin cells uses so called cellular respiration via the Citric Acid Cycle (or Krebs cycle). This process completely depends on the blood supply and microcirculation in the dermis, since the oxygen is brought from the blood vessels, not from the air. The better microcirculation defines the better skin condition and function. As @Pharma said, only gas exchange takes place in a contact with the air, but it can not be called "breathing". 

  • PerryPerry Administrator, Professional Chemist
    The outer layer of skin is dead. It does not breath any more than a pair of leather gloves. No, you can't suffocate skin.

    I've not seen any evidence that women's skin ages faster. This sounds like a marketing story that helps convince women to buy more products.


  • Bill_TogeBill_Toge Member, Professional Chemist
    not unless you're an earthworm, an amphibian or a newborn Julia Creek dunnart
    UK based formulation chemist. Strongest subjects: hair styling, hair bleaches, hair dyes (oxidative and non-oxidative) I know some stuff about: EU regulations, emulsions (O/W and W/O), toothpaste, mouthwash, shampoos, other toiletries
  • ngarayeva001ngarayeva001 Member
    edited October 2021
    Perry said:
    The outer layer of skin is dead. It does not breath any more than a pair of leather gloves. No, you can't suffocate skin.

    I've not seen any evidence that women's skin ages faster. This sounds like a marketing story that helps convince women to buy more products.


    Perry, collagen in men’s skin intersects and men’s skin is thicker. I would think that thicker pair of gloves should last longer but it’s just a guess.
  • @ngarayeva001 This article summarizes sex-related differences in the skin.  
  • PerryPerry Administrator, Professional Chemist
    @ngarayeva001 - the glove analogy breaks down because unlike skin, it is not constantly renewed.

    So, it may be true that male and female skin is of different thickness, but the surface is constantly being removed and the lower layer is constantly replaced. In a system like this it is not obvious that thicker is better. 

  • not sure what men’s skin intersects means, both men and women should look like this.

    for fun reading
    https://www.jcdr.net/article_fulltext.asp?id=9296
    https://www.karger.com/Article/Fulltext/477854
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4038633/

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