Introduction to Structure and Function of Skin

Describe the layers of the skin and the functions of each layer

The skin is composed of two major layers: a superficial epidermis and a deeper dermis. The epidermis consists of several layers The topmost layer consists of dead cells that shed periodically and is progressively replaced by cells formed from the basal layer. The dermis connects the epidermis to the hypodermis, and provides strength and elasticity due to the presence of collagen and elastin fibers. The hypodermis, deep to the dermis of skin, is the connective tissue that connects the dermis to underlying structures; it also harbors adipose tissue for fat storage and protection.

What You’ll Learn to Do

  • Describe the different layers of the skin
  • Describe the epidermis and identify its different components
  • Describe the dermis and identify its different layers
  • Identify and describe the hypodermis and deep fascia
  • Describe the role of melanocytes in skin pigmentation

Learning Activities

The learning activities for this section include the following:

  • Layers of the Skin
  • Epidermis
  • Dermis
  • Hypodermis
  • Pigmentation
  • Self Check: Structure and Function of Skin