Your face is the most expressive and sensitive part of your body, and generally reflects your health and wellbeing. Mostly we just take it from granted that we have facial features, skin, and facial expressions, but the interesting thing is the science behind the different parts of your face.
We have all experienced blushing at one point of another. Our cheeks flush red when we feel embarrassed. But did you know that the amount you blush differs for each person and is dependent on the sensitivity of the autonomic system, which uses smooth muscle fibers to control the blood vessels. These muscles widen to release more blood and this is when our face reddens. Blushing is actually a very intricate biological response to emotional situations.
Our eyebrows are not there just to look pretty. Their primary role is to protect the eyes. They prevent sweat from the forehead dripping into the eyes and they cast a shadow over your eyes which help to protect them from harsh sunlight. When women pluck their eyebrows, they are minimizing this shadow which makes the face appear brighter and more open. Eyebrows also contribute quite considerably to our facial expressions.
Our skin is made up of three layers. The outermost layer is called the epidermis and is comprised of about 5 sub-layers. As disturbing as it sounds, the top two layers are made up of dead skin cells, which are held together by a mixture of oils, water, peptides, and acids. Together, these outer layers provide a barrier against the environment.
We all know that we have to exercise our body to maintain our health, but it is a little known fact that our facial muscles need to be exercised too. Doing so can slow down the signs of aging, reduce tension in your head and neck, and liven up your complexion by encouraging oxygen to flow to your face. Facial exercises are simple and involve working each area of your face for a few seconds each day. For example, practice wide smiles, frowning, flicking your eyes upwards, and pouting your lips.
You should always wash your face thoroughly each morning and night. Nevertheless, did you know that your skin cleans itself while you sleep? As you sleep, your body is working to expel toxins from your body. One of the ways it does this is to push toxins out through your skin. This can cleanse your face from the inside out, but can leave you with a substance build-up on the surface of your face so it is crucial to wash your face when you wake up.
The Skin/Hair Relationship
Did you know that the link between skin and hair is very close? The sebaceous gland (which secretes oil) grows out of the hair follicle. The type of hair we have on each part of our body is directly associated with the size of the oil gland in these areas. Our oil glands are larger on our face so the hair here is finer, whereas the oil glands on our heads and legs are much smaller which results in thicker hair.
We know that the appearance of our face can be a clue to our overall health; for example, bright, clear skin signifies health, but dull, blemished skin does not. However, each specific area of our face is actually associated with different parts of our body. The face can be used as a diagnostic tool to point out which areas of your body’s health you need to work on. For example, the area underneath your eyes is associated with your kidneys, your nose is associated with your heart, and your bottom lip is associated with your intestines. Problems in these areas might indicate specific health concerns.
Melanomas are malignant moles that might be cancerous. We should all be checking for these on a regular basis. However, these spots are not always darker than your normal skin tone. Sometimes they are flesh-colored and other times they are reddish or whitish. Be sure to check thoroughly as they do not always look the way you expect. Pay special attention to any moles that are itchy or painful, or any mole that grows.
Your skin type is determined by how active your sebaceous (oil) glands are. If you have oily skin then your oil glands are over-active. Another factor at play is how well your skin seals in moisture (using fatty lipids). Dry skin is usually caused when this second function is deficient, along with under-active oil glands.
Finally, let’s talk about spots. Your skin contains two kinds of pores; the first are for excreting perspiration and the second are for excreting sebum. When sebum production is high, pores can become clogged up and bacteria can be trapped. This can easily result in the development of spots. Inflammation occurs when white blood cells flood towards the infected area
Our face is not as a straightforward as we assume it is. It can signify specific health problems in specific areas of our body, it self-cleanses and excretes toxins as we sleep, and our eyebrows have important protective functions. Blushing, spots, and skin type are all determined by a complex series of biological responses. Be aware that cancerous moles can sometimes be flesh-colored and require you to look closer to spot them.