How to Thicken Skin: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment

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We were all born with firm skin but over time, things change and you should learn how to thicken skin if you want your once firm skin back.

Skin thins with age, or due to UV exposure, medicine, or lifestyle factors.

Although it is not generally reversible, there are certain techniques to protect the skin.

What is thin skin?

Some parts of the body have skin that is naturally thinner than other parts like the arms and the legs.

The skin on your eyelids is only about 0.5mm while that on the heel is 4mm thick.

The skin s made up of three parts:

The hypodermis, the skin’s deepest layer is made up of tissue, fat, and glands that produce perspiration.

Dermis; the nerves and blood supplies are found in the dermis.

Epidermis; keeps dirt and germs away.

If you have thin skin, it means your epidermis is thin.

There may be less fat in the hypodermis, resulting in a thinner layer here as well.

Although thin skin does not pose a health risk on its own, a person’s skin may be more prone to injury or bruising as a result of this condition.

Why Is My Skin So Thin? Causes of Thin Skin

Here are the causes of thin skin.

1. Aging

Your skin’s elasticity and texture may change as you get older.

your body generates less collagen, which may cause your skin to seem thinner and drier.

The skin’s elasticity, firmness, and suppleness are all due to collagen, a structural protein.

The strong columns of collagen fibers that support the epidermal layer keep the skin from sagging.

You should know that your collagen reserves depletion is due in large part to your inherited traits.

Related: What Causes Oily Skin? | 10 Tips To Control Oily Skin

2. Sunlight

Over time, exposure to sunlight contributes significantly to skin thinning.

Ultraviolet (UV) rays have the potential to harm or destroy skin cells.

Age spots, drooping skin, wrinkles, and skin cancer are all signs of sun damage.

The regions of your body that are exposed to the sun the most, such as your face, arms, and hands, may have thinner skin due to prolonged exposure to sunlight.

3. Genetics

Fat distribution in your body is a function of genetics. Even if genetics may play a role in having thin skin, it is not the most essential one.

4. Lifestyle factors that cause skin thinning

Smoking and alcohol

Smoking and drinking alcohol could accelerate skin aging and may eventually cause thinning of the skin.


The epidermis’ cells might shrink when treated with steroid creams.

The tissue that connects the skin cells may also be affected by the medicine.

As a result, the skin may seem wrinkled or saggy.


Skin thinning may also be an adverse effect of other drugs.

Topical steroids which are applied directly to the skin have the potential to cause this side effect.

To treat skin disorders such as eczema, this drug is frequently used in the form of a cream or ointment.

Only if you take topical steroids for a long time will they induce thinning. This is why it is critical to follow the medication’s directions.

After stopping the drug, the skin should return to its normal thickness.

This, however, might take a few weeks due to the time it takes for skin cells to regenerate.

Symptoms of thin skin

Thin skin may seem more transparent, allowing a person to see veins, bones, or tendons clearer.

Skin that is too thin might be easily harmed. Following mild injuries, a person’s skin may bruise or rip.

The loss of fat from the hypodermis causes the skin to seem less plump or full, making it appear thinner.

Aside from thinning skin, if you don’t care for your skin at all, its barrier may be weakened.

A weakened skin barrier will not protect you from possible skin problems including irritation, inflammation, or dryness.

Thin skin is already delicate, but if you don’t moisturize extremely dry skin or exfoliate too much, you may irritate it.

How to thicken skin: Coping with thin skin

There’s not much you can do to reverse the effects of thin skin once it’s happened.  The importance of prevention cannot be overstated.

It’s impossible to prevent all aging indicators.

As a person gets older, fine lines or wrinkles appear, and their skin thins and becomes drier.

However, some of the apparent indicators of aging may be lessened or slowed down.

UV rays do not completely harm your skin in a single day. It’s a compounding effect.

This is why you should apply sunscreen to your face, neck, chest, hands, and arms every day.

Any substance that causes the skin to become inflamed or irritated is likely to harm your skin if it’s thin.

Your skin may need a layer of protection.

Avoid exposure to strong chemicals.

Bleeding or injury to the skin might be a problem for someone who has a thin outer layer. 

Wearing long sleeves and long skirts or pants may help protect the skin from the sun’s harmful rays.

Avoid consuming too much alcohol since it dries out the skin. 

In between alcoholic beverages, a glass of water may assist a person keep hydrated.

Related: Vitamins to Tighten Loose Skin: 5 Foods for Firm Skin

How to thicken skin

Here’s how to thicken skin.

First, make an appointment with your dermatologist to discuss the areas where you have thin skin. Treatments must be customized to the specific area of concern.

Some problem locations may be alleviated using creams.

1. Eat collagen-rich foods

By taking omega-3 fatty acids, as several studies have shown, you could improve collagen formation and the skin’s barrier function.

The vitamin C found in leafy greens, and citrus fruits are also essential for collagen synthesis.

2. Don’t skip moisturizer

Instead of exfoliating your skin, focus on moisturizing it instead.

Hydration is the first step to skin health and the development of a healthy skin barrier, no matter what kind of skin you have.

It’s possible that your dry skin is merely a natural trait you were born with.

Air conditioners and hot showers may both induce dryness in those with normal to oily skin, but they can also be brought on by the weather if you have one of those skin types.

After cleansing, follow up with a moisturizer to keep your skin healthy.

This procedure aids in the preservation of your skin’s hydration and shields it from the elements.

Skin that is well-hydrated is more elastic and healthier.

Related: Deodorants and Antiperspirants: Differences, Benefits, and Risks

3. Use Peptide-Based Skincare Products

Skincare products containing peptides might help your skin feel stronger.

Peptides, according to dermatologist Dr. Trisha, “are basically pieces of proteins.

As a result, the goal of their usage in skincare is to encourage the development of new collagen.

Smaller fragments of non-fragmented proteins (like collagen) are able to penetrate the skin’s outer layer and reach the cellular level.”

How to thicken skin: Supplements to thicken skin

Diet plays a major role in your skin’s well-being.

Selenium, zinc, vitamin A, vitamin B2, vitamin B3, vitamin B6, vitamin C, and vitamin E all have an effect on your skin.

The health of your skin might be harmed if you don’t get enough of certain critical fatty acids and amino acids.

Even if you follow a healthy diet, your doctor may suggest some supplements to help with your thin skin.

A variety of supplements, including vitamins and fatty acids, are available in tablet or capsule form.

Thin skin therapy supplements may be used topically in certain situations.

Vitamins A, C and E

Additionally, you may ingest vitamins A, C, and E in addition to applying them to your skin.

Vitamin C, for example, is available in a number of forms, including synthetic ascorbic acid, buffered vitamin C, and an injectable supplement.

When taken orally, vitamin C and vitamin E seem to be equally effective.

Researchers found that these therapies can prevent UV damage, skin cancer, and other skin disorders. 

Oral vitamin C supplementation has been shown to provide health benefits.

As a result of vitamin C’s fast degradation, most cosmetic products cannot safely use it.


You can also ingest antioxidants.

A, C and E are all antioxidants; polyphenols, flavonoids, and other bioactive chemicals are also good for the skin because they protect it from damage.

These nutrients may be found in plant-based diets or taken as a supplement.

Aging skin may benefit greatly from silymarin, apigenin, and genistein.

Polyunsaturated fatty acids

These are other forms of supplement that may improve the health of the skin and are regularly ingested.

Omega-6 fatty acids, in particular, are good for your skin. Linoleic acid ingestion has been found to minimize skin atrophy and dryness.

Frequently Asked Questions

We came across some frequent questions on how to thicken skin, here are the answers you’ve been looking for.

What makes skin thick?

Those with thick skin have an additional layer of epidermis known as the stratum lucidum, which makes it seem thicker.

Thick skin has a thinner dermis layer than thin skin, yet it is nonetheless thicker because of the stratum lucidum layer in the epidermis.

What supplements can I take to thicken my skin?

Vitamin D, along with C, E, and K, is one of the greatest vitamins for your skin.

Vitamins may help keep your skin looking young and healthy.

Related: What Does Niacinamide Do For Skin?

How can I improve my skin thickness?

Include a variety of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and proteins in your diet.

Vitamin E, which may be found in foods like almonds and avocados, can also help with skin health.

These foods’ fats may assist to keep the skin smooth. Drinking enough water aids in keeping the skin moisturized.

Why is my face getting skinny?

As you become older, your face begins to lose volume.

Sun exposure and poor nutrition may accelerate aging.

The thinness of your face may also be a side effect of weight loss.

Can retinol thicken skin?

Retinoids assist to alleviate these problems in a number of ways.

They thicken the epidermis by increasing cell proliferation at the surface.

Retinoids stimulate the synthesis of natural substances in your skin that keep it firm and moist.


Thinner skin is inevitable because we will all age. However, our diet and skin care products may help us reduce those signs of aging and maintain our firm skin for longer.

If you still have questions about this article? Kindly drop it in the comment box below, we will be happy to help you.

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