Flexible, waterproof, and tough, the skin is the body’s largest organ and its multiple layers comprise about 15% of an adult’s total body weight. The dermis is the skin layer that lies between the epidermis — the tough, outer layer of the skin — and the subcutaneous layer, which consists mostly of fat.

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1. Composition of the Dermis

Thicker than the epidermis, this connective tissue layer contains both elastic and fibrous tissue, which give the skin its strength and flexibility. Collagen is the primary structural component, but the dermis also contains hair follicles, sebaceous glands, blood vessels, nerves, specialized cells, and structures that serve a variety of essential functions.

collagen epidermis tissue strength dermis Ed Reschke / Getty Images
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This site offers information designed for educational purposes only. You should not rely on any information on this site as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, or as a substitute for, professional counseling care, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you have any concerns or questions about your health, you should always consult with a physician or other healthcare professional.