Overview

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What is the hypodermis?

Your skin has three main layers:


Function

What is the hypodermis’s function?

The hypodermis has many functions, including:

ConnectionInsulationProtecting your bodyStoring energy

What is in the hypodermis layer?

The hypodermis layer includes:

Adipose tissueBursaFibroblastsHair folliclesLymphatic vesselsMacrophagesNervesSweat glands

What is the hypodermis responsible for?

Together with your other layers of skin, the hypodermis protects your skeletal system, organs, muscles and tissues from harm.

Hypodermis thickness differs across your body. Fatty tissue amasses in different parts of your body according to hormones and genetics.

If you have a higher amount of testosterone in your body, your hypodermis is thickest in your abdomen, arms, lower back and shoulders.

If you have a higher amount of estrogen in your body, your hypodermis is thickest in your butt, hips and thighs.


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Where is the hypodermis located?

The hypodermis is the bottom layer of your skin, located below the epidermis (top layer) and dermis (middle layer) in your skin.

What color is the hypodermis?

The hypodermis is yellowish. Depending on how much of the pigment called carotene is in your hypodermis, it can be dark yellow or light yellow.

How big is the hypodermis?

The hypodermis varies in thickness across your body. It’s thinnest over your eyelids and external genitals, where it may be less than 1 millimeter thick. It’s thickest in your abdomen and butt, where it may be over 3 centimeters thick.

What is the hypodermis made of?

Connective tissue and adipose tissue mostly make up the hypodermis.


Conditions and Disorders

What are the common conditions and disorders that affect your hypodermis?

Some conditions and disorders that affect the hypodermis include:

Additionally, as you age, the hypodermis starts to thin. As a result, less connective tissue joins your dermis to your muscles, tissue and bones, and your skin starts to sag.

What are common signs or symptoms of hypodermis conditions?

Some common signs or symptoms of conditions that can affect your hypodermis include:

What are common tests to check the health of your hypodermis?

Your healthcare provider will conduct a physical exam to check for any possible symptoms or conditions. They may also perform the following tests:

Blood tests

If you have melanoma, you may need further imaging tests to determine if it has spread.

What are common treatments for conditions of your hypodermis?

Some common treatments for conditions that affect your hypodermis include:

DebridementDermal fillersSkin substitutesWarming your body

Care

Are there ways to keep your hypodermis healthy?

The following lifestyle tips help keep your hypodermis healthy and safe:

Properly treat your woundsAvoid sun damageTake precautionsto avoid burnsKeep your body warm

A note from Cleveland Clinic

The hypodermis is the bottom layer of skin in your body. It has many important functions, including storing energy, connecting the dermis layer of your skin to your muscles and bones, insulating your body and protecting your body from harm. As you age, your hypodermis decreases in size, and your skin starts to sag. Dermal fillers help restore volume to your skin as your hypodermis decreases.