Skin And Hair Color Essay

573 WordsFeb 26, 20123 Pages
Skin and hair react differently to sunlight. Typically, the skin darkens and the hair lightens, a result of a pig ment in the human body called melanin. Melanin darkens the skin to protect it from harmful solar radiation. Because hair cells are not alive like skin cells are, melanin cannot protect hair from sun damage. Hair takes on a bleached appearance, while skin becomes darker. Precautions should be taken to limit exposure to ultraviolet light to prevent skin and hair damage. Some of the sun's rays are beneficial, but others, such as ultraviolet rays, are hazardous. This radiation comes in three forms: ultraviolet A (UVA), ultraviolet B (UVB) and ultraviolet C (UVC). The earth's atmosphere filters out UVC radiation, but UVA and UVB affect you every day. UVB affects the top layers of skin, while UVA penetrates to the deeper layers. Your hair and your skin are negatively affected by these UV rays, although they appear to react differently. A pigment called melanin determines the color of your skin and hair. One form of melanin is a reddish-yellow color, while the other is brownish-black. The amount of each type of melanin you have in your skin and hair is genetically determined. Melanin protects your skin from the sun's harmful ultraviolet A and B rays by turning it a darker color. People with very little melanin often acquire no tan and are at the greatest risk for sunburn, premature skin aging and skin cancer. People with dark skin should also be cautious about sun exposure Your skin is the largest organ in your body. It protects you from the sun's harmful rays by producing the pigment melanin to darken your skin. Ultraviolet rays in sunlight destroy the melanin in your skin, which triggers your body to produce more and darker melanin. This melanin reaction to ultraviolet rays can cause sunburn or suntan. UV radiation also causes the skin to coarsen and

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