Here we report on investigation of the role of the POU domain genes Skin-1a/i (Skn-1a/i/Epoc/Oct-11) and Testes-1 (Tst-1/Oct-6/SCIP) in epidermis where proliferating basal keratinocytes withdraw from the cell cycle, migrate suprabasally, and terminally differentiate to form a multilayered, stratified epithelium. The expression of the Skn-1a/i and Tst-1 genes is linked to keratinocyte differentiation in vivo and in vitro, whereas the ubiquitous POU domain factor Oct-1 is expressed highly in both proliferating and post-mitotic keratinocytes. Analysis of Skn-1a/i gene-deleted mice reveals that the Skn-1a/i gene modulates the pattern of expression of the terminal differentiation marker loricrin and inhibits expression of genes encoding markers of the epidermal keratinocyte wounding response. Although epidermis from Tst-1 gene-deleted mice develops normally, epidermis from mice deleted for both Skn-1a/i and Tst-1 is hyperplastic and fails to suppress expression of K14 and Spr-1 in suprabasal cells when transplanted onto athymic mice. This suggests that Skn-1a/i and Tst-1 serve redundant functions in epidermis. Therefore, at least two POU domain genes, Skn-1a/i and Tst-1, serve both distinct and overlapping functions to regulate differentiation of epidermal keratinocytes during normal development and wound healing.