Skin barriersHautbarriereLa barrière cutanéeHudens barriereKožna barieraHuidbarrièreBarrieri tal-ġilda

The cornified layer – the body’s wall

The cornified layer is the upper layer of the epidermis and thus the extreme outer layer of our bodies. It forms the protective barrier against chemicals, water and microorganisms. Simultaneously, it guards against loss of moisture. Its construction resembles that of a wall, therefore its structure is compared to the “brick and mortar model”. The skin cells correspond to the bricks and the fat between the cells corresponds to the mortar.

Our cornified layer also has “plaster”. Its components include water from the sweat glands and fat from the adipose bodies. For that reason the plaster is also referred to as “hydrolipid” or “water-lipid film”. The water-lipid film reacts chemically mildly acidic, with a pH value of about 5.5.

What is the pH value and what is its importance?

Why is the protection from moisture loss important?