40 years of faulty wiring

63 Utterly Cool, Disgusting and Practical Skin Facts

  1. Your skin – your body’s fragile envelope – is your largest organ.
  2. Skin needs to breathe – hence the pores and ability to allow perspiration to leave the body.
  3. Your skin is made of 5 layers, 3 of which are considered to be “main” layers:  outside skin:  epidermis    2nd layer:  dermis    3rd layer:  hyperdermis or subcutaneous layer  watch understanding the layers of the skin
  4. Sunburn is anything from a 1st degree to a 2nd degree burn although a 2nd degree sunburn isn’t typical ….  nasty stuff …  ages the skin, causes burning and itch, if a sunburn is bad enough the skin blisters and peels and possibly scars
  5. 2nd degree burns may require skin grafts….they might occur from hot or scalding fluids or flame injuries.
  6. 3rd degree burns are serious stuff…always require skin grafts since they affect all 3 layers of skin…steam, scalding liquid or chemicals can cause 3rd degrees
  7. 4th degree burns … the weird thing about 4th degree burns is you can’t feel them…nerve endings are destroyed and the burns require surgery.  Electricity, and flame can cause 4th degree burns.  4th degree burns may require amputation of damaged limbs. A long healing process lies ahead.
  8. Your skin protects your inside organs.
  9. Skin keeps out infections.
  10. A suntan is a bad sign …  it happens in order to protect the skin from further burning….the brown colour which some people foolishly find so sexy is a message that your skin is quite damaged and you need to avoid the sun before it gets worse. watch what is a tan
  11. One truly bad sunburn in childhood makes you more susceptible to melanoma cancer for the rest of your life.
  12. You should exfoliate your skin daily. watch why you should exfoliate your skin every day
  13. Your skin loses 30,000 to 40,000 dead cells every minute – gross!
  14. You shed one billion skin flakes a day.
  15. Your skin swells when it absorbs water even though it cannot hold onto it.  Weird.
  16. Goosebumps are little pimples that help retain heat.
  17. Skin cancer is more prevalent in white skin …  but everyone should be alert to moles and unusual skin growths.
  18. Your skin ages and is susceptible to UV rays through office and car windows…..always wear sun block.
  19. A sunblock of 50 isn’t stronger or more protective than a sunblock of 30 or 40. watch dermatologist answers sun protection questions
  20. Consider the 5 S’s – sunblock; sunglasses; sun protective clothing; shade and sombrero
  21. Sunblock spfs means number of minutes you can be exposed to the sun before you begin to suffer skin damage.
  22. You should apply sunblock products first – before makeup or other skin care products. watch why you should apply sunscreen first
  23. 80% of household dust is your skin cells.  Ick.
  24. Your skin helps regulate your body temperature.
  25. Provides a waterproof barrier to prevent excessive loss of body fluids.
  26. An adult has more than 20 square feet of skin…  hence you can subtract how much your skin weighs (9 pounds) when you step on a scale …..  as if…
  27. Breasts are a type of sweat gland.
  28. White skin only emerged about 20,000 to 50,000 years ago as dark-skinned people migrated up north (god knows why) and their skin lost unnecessary pigment.
  29. Globally skin accounts for one billion tons of dust in the atmosphere.
  30. Tigers have striped skin, not just striped fur.  watch cool cats and cold cats….just because they’re cute
  31. Glaborous skin is non-hairy.
  32. There are 45 miles of skin in a human adult.
  33. Albino skin or albinism is a congenital disorder (meaning it develops in utero, at birth, or within one month of birth).
  34. It is the complete or partial absence of pigment in the skin.
  35. A person with only partial absence of pigment is called albinoid.
  36. Wax and oil are natural protective layers and waterproofers.
  37. There are one million dust mites on your pillow and your mattress that eat your shedding skin cells.  Egad.
  38. Psoriasis is an immune-mediated disorder that speeds up the growth cycle of skin cells.
  39. Psoriasis is linked to an increase in stroke.
  40. Dandruff is the shedding of dead skin cells from the scalp. It is not the same as dry scalp.
  41. As you age your skin thins and you become more susceptible to UV rays….sigh..one more thing
  42. Polar bears have black skin….black absorbs heat and help keeps the bear warm.
  43. Scar tissue happens when skin forms a healing layer.
  44. When skin is exposed to constant friction it toughens and forms a callous.
  45. Itching, or pruritus starts with external stimuli such as bugs, dust or hair.
  46. Scratching an itch relieves it for 2 reasons: the irritant is usually very mild and it is easy to quell; if the scratching hurts it diverts your attention from the itch
  47. You cannot tickle yourself because your brain is programmed to know what to feel when you move or perform any function. This is known as expected sensation.
  48. Your brain pays attention to other people’s touch because it is unexpected sensation.
  49. An involuntary reaction of your sympathetic nervous system causes the blood vessels in your face to dilate.  This increases blood flow to your face causing you to blush….aw, shucks.
  50. A scab on your skin begins to form as soon as you injure yourself. Blood cells called platelets stick to each other at the cut, forming a clot. The clot keeps body fluids and blood from seeping out. When the clot hardens and dries it is a scab.
  51. Underneath a scab, new skin cells are being made to repair the torn skin.
  52. When you pick a scab you undo the repair work and cause a rip in your skin again…..this rip can turn into a scar.
  53. Don’t pop blisters or pimples if you can avoid it – pus from either one can infect other unaffected areas of your skin.
  54. A pimple forms when there are irregular amounts of hormones in the body; genetics; poor skin care; medications and stress.
  55. You are not supposed to pop a pimple because it forms (not a scab) a stain.  But since you do pop them Watch How to pop a pimple the right way
  56. There are bleaching creams, glycolic peels and cosmetic lasers that can fade freckles and age spots.
  57. A wart is a viral infection that are often contagious and enter the body through broken skin.
  58. Herpes blisters are the most common signs of herpes in the body.
  59. Herpes 1  usually occurs on the mouth.
  60. Herpes 2 blisters are very painful and occur in the genital area.  They do not go away on their own.
  61. Illegal substances such as meth, cocaine and crack can cause skin sores or blisters on the face and other areas of the body.
  62.  Drug users also frequently experience rashes, open sores, lesions and itchy skin.
  63. When the drug user scratches skin blackheads and pimples it becomes infected and pocked. Watch how to extract a blackhead from your skin properly

September 7, 2011 Posted by | Bizarre yet True, Health and Wellness, Human Biology | , , , | 2 Comments

SPFs, Sunburns, Sunlight and Summer

Do you remember the worst sunburn you’ve ever had? Even if you don’t remember some of the nastiest sunburns you’ve ever had, your skin does and if you are somewhere in your 40’s and over, you are only now beginning to display its effects. And it might get worse. You know why? All that confusing talk about UVA and UVB rays still amounts to one thing: radiation. So far-reaching is a UVA skin burn that it ages your skin and takes its toll for decades after exposure. Watch Quick sunburn relief – sunburn treatment and remedies Meanwhile since then you’ve had lots of exposure to UVA rays: carpooling when you got the window seat and thought you were the lucky one – you didn’t know UVAs were penetrating the glass and damaging your face. Same with driving on your own in the summer. Women wonder why they have red, saggy skin on their cleavage when the whole time they’ve been driving without sunblock on their chests. Discouraging isn’t it? And it is the UVA rays that are mostly responsible for this damage, not as much the UVBs. That’s because:

  1. UVB rays only penetrate the top layer of skin (epidermis), which is about as thick as a silk scarf and has no nerve endings or blood vessels…it has only basal cells and melanocyte cells (you’ll read about the importance of melanocyte shortly)…that’s the layer of skin you are damaging with sunburn.
  2. UVA rays act like a light x-ray – they penetrate to the 2nd layer of skin, the dermis, also called the “true skin” which replenishes and renews itself only once every 28 years. Seriously.   28 years. Watch how to eliminate under eye circles.
  3. We have a 3rd layer of skin that lies beneath the dermis – the hypodermis – but this doesn’t apply to sunburn, rather it is effected by third and fourth degree burns. Interestingly fourth degree burns cause so much damage they are painless.


The dermis is responsible for your face and body’s youthful look and damage to the dermis is what presents as “aging“. The dermis has all the collagen, elastin, blood vessels, and nerve endings in your skin, and prolonged exposure to UVAs cracks and shrinks the collagen and elastin, which in turn reduces the size of the DERMIS. This is what allows the top layer of skin (epidermis) to droop and hang off the face and body. Don’t get mad at the poor epidermis.  If you end up with saggy skin or other permanent blemishes, that’s the dermis talking:

  • Intensive UVA exposure causes blood vessels in the dermis to become permanently dilated (open) and that gives white or light skin a constant red appearance.
  •  The few melanocyte cells in the dermis either die, leaving white spots, or become overactive, leaving brown spots.
  • Watch Burns: Classifications and Treatments

Here’s even more good news: as of now there is no technology guaranteed to remove brown spots and for some people (although not everyone) some procedures make them worse. Watch how to remove brown spots. Remember in the 1980s when sun beds were touted as the safest way to tan because all you got in them was UVA rays? Even some dermatologists bought into that bull. In fact so strong are UVAs that they can penetrate light coloured windbreaker jackets and pants. UVAs penetrate the ozone layer all year round so even though you don’t “tan” in the winter, you are still getting exposure to this most damaging of damned rays. Read UVA-UVB SUN Rays


Thankfully we have protection from the evils of the UVAs (sort of like Raid scaring the bejappers out of bugs on those quacky commercials). Wear sunblock all year, even in winter when it’s sub-zero temperatures outside. How hot or cold it is has nothing to do with the strength of UVAs. During winter, the northern hemisphere turns away from the sun as earth rotates its little, round, fat self on its axis; this is what affects UVA strength and this is why you cannot get a sunburn. However even the earth’s turn away from Mr. Sunshine doesn’t entirely block those powerful UVA rays, so yep, your skin is still getting cooked.  Crazy. Even in spring when it’s raining? you ask. Yep – the weather doesn’t make a difference in damaging the dermis either. Watch does moisturizer with SPF work?


Usually I wear an SPF of 50 – 60. Starting in my early 20’s I used 25 and then into my 30’s it was 30. Now I’m using 110SPF and I have a friend who uses 70SPF.  Guess which one of us is getting the most sun protection? Neither. The person using SPF 30 trumps both of us. No kidding. After SPF 30 sunblock doesn’t get significantly more protective and in fact 50 or over may possibly, although not proven, damage skin in some manner. This is what the research said in the article I enclosed in this blog. Meh. The jury’s out. Here’s something I do sort of believe: you only need 1/3  –  1/4  tablespoon of sunblock to cover your whole face and a “shot glass of sunblock” will do for the body.  One problem: I can’t see how spreading such a minimal amount of sunblock can cover the whole bod, even on a small child. Scientists and their doctorate degrees. Pah. Watch Most common mistake when applying sunscreen.

Lately the protection to seek out in your sunblock isn’t only SPFs. The Japanese have invented a system known as PA, and it rates from one + to three +’s. The PA system indicates protection from UVA rays, thus protection for the dermis. Your ideal PA content is PA +++. Watch Understanding Sunscreen UVA ratings

June 21, 2011 Posted by | Human Biology | , , | Leave a comment