Little is known about the functional differences between the human skin myeloid dendritic cell (DC) subsets, epidermal CD207(+) Langerhans cells (LCs) and dermal CD14(+) DCs. We showed that CD14(+) DCs primed CD4(+) T cells into cells that induce naive B cells to switch isotype and become plasma cells. In contrast, LCs preferentially induced the differentiation of CD4(+) T cells secreting T helper 2 (Th2) cell cytokines and were efficient at priming and crosspriming naive CD8(+) T cells. A third DC population, CD14(-)CD207(-)CD1a(+) DC, which resides in the dermis, could activate CD8(+) T cells better than CD14(+) DCs but less efficiently than LCs. Thus, the human skin displays three DC subsets, two of which, i.e., CD14(+) DCs and LCs, display functional specializations, the preferential activation of humoral and cellular immunity, respectively.