The reproducibility of the pulsed ultrasound technique for the determination of skin thickness was investigated, using two independent observers. No systematic difference was found and a high correlation was obtained. Studies were also undertaken to validate the pulsed ultrasound technique as a measure of true skin thickness. Skin thickness determined in vitro was found to be greater than when in vivo determinations were made by either the pulsed ultrasound or a xeroradiographic technique, probably due to the release of in vivo tension within the dermis after excision. Skin thickness was found to increase linearly with age up to the age of 20 years and to decrease linearly with age subsequently. Differences in skin thickness between the sexes and in different sites of the body were demonstrated.