7. The skin and brain are one when it comes to emotions.
Humans have many skin receptors that help us perceive what’s happening in both the outside and the inside of our bodies. Most of these receptors are found on the skin. They’re partly responsible for making us experience cold, heat, and many other things we experience every day.
This connection can be seen when we get goosebumps, for example. As we mentioned in a previous point, the chills can be perceived as either pleasant when the stimulus is a caress, or as threatening when we’re scared by something. That could be related to our ability to discern both situations. Our brain allows us to rationalize the situation and experience it that way.
8. Why our fingertips wrinkle in the water
The outermost layer of the skin is covered by a special oil that, in addition to moisturizing and protecting the skin, makes it waterproof. When we wash our hands, we can easily see that the water does not penetrate the skin, but instead, slips off. This is because the oil works as a barrier that prevents skin from acting like a sponge that immediately absorbs any liquid. But when we soak our fingers in water for a long time, like when we swim or take a relaxing bath, that oil disappears. Then water can easily penetrate the outermost layer of the skin, and as a result, it starts absorbing water.
There are several theories that could explain why skin wrinkles when it absorbs water, but there’s still no clear conclusion. One theory says that it’s a way of adapting ourselves to the environment. Wet objects are difficult to pick up and wrinkled skin could make the task a little bit easier.
9. Skin, nails, and hair are all part of the same team.
Hair and nails are actually just 2 different types of skin. They’re more like skin extensions if you will, and they’re meant to protect some parts of our bodies. Hair grows everywhere on the body except for our lips, the backs of the ears, the palms of hands, the soles of the feet, the navel and scar tissue. And nails provide protection to the sensitive tips of the fingers and toes.
Surprisingly, neither hair nor nails are living cells, so you might be wondering why they still grow every day. But the fact is, they actually don’t. When new skin (which is alive) is created, it pushes out dead cells. Those dead cells, by the way, used to be skin. It’s this process that makes your hair “become longer” even though it’s just being pushed out. A similar process happens to the nails. Skin cells grow and accumulate on the ends of our fingers, resulting in a thick layer of keratin. Those are our nails. The fact that hair and nails are made of dead cells explains why we don’t feel pain when we cut them.
Are there any facts that caught your attention more than others? Do you know any other curious facts about the skin that we haven’t mentioned? Share them with us in the comments!