Researchers from Lund University in Sweden can now explain how the properties of the skin can change depending on the environment. Through a combination of X-ray and microscopy, the team examined changes in the nanostructure inside the barrier film. They observed on a molecular level how the skin regulates itself according to changes in the environment and the influence of food and skincare. As a result, they uncovered the underlying mechanism of the barrier function of the skin. "Our results increase our understanding of skin functions," says Emma Sparr, professor in the Department of Chemistry at Lund. “The results are relevant for the development of cosmetics and pharmaceutical preparations of which certain substances are intended to penetrate the skin.” The researchers discovered that by changing the external conditions, it is possible to increase or decrease the number of molecules that penetrate the skin.