These Tiny 8-Legged ‘Face Mites’ Live On Your Face

By: | June 5th, 2019

Image courtesy Wikipedia

Believe it or not but most of our faces are home to many “face mites,” little creatures live in our facial pores, feasting off of our hair grease and reproduce when we sleep. They’re known as Demodex or eyelash mites, and almost every human being has them.

These creepy-crawlies are eight-legged, their size is too small, about 0.3 millimeters long and are mostly transparent. They are that small that it would take about five adult face mites laid end to end to stretch across the head of a pin.

They sleep in our pores during the day, and become active during night when we are sleeping. They feed off our natural sebum and breed on our faces. They live near the roots of facial hair follicles.

Entomologist Michelle Trautwein, of the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco, said, ““They tell a story of your own ancestry and also a story of more ancient human history and migration,”

“Face mites are definitely the species of animal that we have the closest connection with as humans, even though most of us don’t know about them or ever see one in our lifetime,” she says. “We still have this very ancient and intimate relationship, and it seems clear that we’ve had these face mite species with us for all of our history. So they are as old as our species, as old as Homo sapiens.”

Nidhi Goyal

Nidhi is a gold medalist Post Graduate in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences.

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