The Cleveland Clinic

An Overview of Skin

Your skin is the largest organ on your body, made up of several different components, including water, protein, lipids and different minerals and chemicals. If you're average, your skin weighs about six pounds. It's job is crucial: to protect you from infections and germs. Throughout your life, your skin will change constantly, for better or worse. In fact, your skin will regenerate itself approximately every 27 days. Proper skin care is essential to maintaining the health and vitality of this protective organ.

How Can I Keep My Skin Healthy?

It's easy to forget to drink that glass of water or to cleanse yourself at night when you're tired. But over time, those bad habits can take a toll on your skin. Each day, provide your skin with:

  • Plenty of water.
  • Thorough cleansing. You should perform this twice daily. At night, make sure you remove all your make-up and cleanse properly before going to bed.
  • Balanced nutrition.
  • Toning. After you cleanse with your bar soap or other cleanser, make sure you use a formulated toner or astringent to remove fine traces of oil, dirt and make-up that you may have missed when cleansing.
  • Moisturizing. This is necessary even for those who have oily skin. There are plenty of moisturizers on the market that are oil-free.

Over the course of your life, you should pay attention to all parts of your skin. Familiarize yourself with it, so you'll notice any changes that might occur, such as different moles or patches that might indicate skin cancer. Whenever you have a question or concern, make sure you see your doctor.