Histology of the skin; Skin Basics & Skin Anatomy

The Epidermis – This is the outer layer of the skin. It is around 0.1mm thick and has five layers and no blood vessels. The body produces a new epidermis every 30 days. When damaged epidermis is able to heal usually without scarring.

The Five Layers:

  • Horny layer (stratum corneum) – water repellent
  • Clear layer (stratum lucidum) – in the thicker skin of fingertip. Palms and soles.
  • Granular layer (stratum granulosum) – the middle layer. It releases lipid rich secretion which is water repellent, preventing loss of body fluids and preventing the entry of foreign particles.
  • Prickle cell layer (stratum spinosum) – gives strength and flexibility to the skin
  • Basal layer (stratum basale) – contains melanocytes which produce melanin (absorbs UV light)

Factors affecting the health of epidermis:

  • Medical conditions
  • Outdoor, wind and sun dehydrates, constant water, harsh cleaning fluids, chemicals.

The Dermis (Cutis) – The layer below epidermis. Contains

  • The sense organs for touch, pressure, pain and temperature
  • Nerve fibres and blood vessels
  • Sweat glands begin in the dermis

The Subcutaneous layer of the skin. Below the dermis. It is made of loose connective tissue including adipose tissue, helping to insulate the body. Hair roots contained in the hair follicle are in this layer. Hair roots have oil glands producing secul which conditions the hair and skin. Important features in the skin Sweat glands – tube shaped. Some open into hair follicles and some to the epidermis. Sebaceous glands – sack shaped. Connected to hair follicles, release oils to lubricate the hair and skin.

Eccrine glands – in deep dermis, regulates body temperature and waste removal

Hair follicles – tube shaped sheath surrounding the root of the hair in the dermis and epidermis.

Hair shaft – the hair above the skin

Blood vessels – tubes which carry blood. Arteries bring nutrients and oxygenated blood from heart and lungs and veins return the oxygen depleted blood.

Pacinian corpuscle – Ovary capsules of sensory nerve fibres that respond to pressure.

Tattooing is when pigment or ink is deposited in the dermis just below the epidermis.

  • What happens if the ink or pigment is deposited in the epidermis?
  • What happens if the pigment or ink is deposited deeper in the dermis or subcutaneous tissue?

Further study – this short tattoo course cannot cover everything. Learning and studying should be lifelong process for anyone who is interested in the best practice and developing their knowledge. If you have no recent qualifications or studied Anatomy & Physiology it is recommended that you complete a course. These can be done online with https://vindocaestheticacademy.com/

In order for pigment or ink to be held in the skin we need to tattoo into connective tissue of the dermis just below the basal layer of the epidermis. As tattooing is a process which pierces or cuts the skin, the skin is open to infections.