Is Dust Mostly Dead Skin?

People claim that 70-80% of household dust is dead skin, but is it true?
Thanks to Google for sponsoring this video! Learn more about Search here:
Special thanks to J.M.E.H van Bronswijk, author of 'House Dust Biology'. We exchanged emails to make sure I got my facts straight for this video. Below is an excerpt from her email to me, responding to my claims that start with a dash:
- Around half of airborne dust particles under 100um are skin scales
This is true for climates, regions and seasons where people live mostly indoors.
The 1 to 2 g of skin scales shed each 24 hours will end up in places where people are present (and rub their skin or have textile moving over the skin).
You can also look at it from a different angle: What else has the same size and could contribute? That will usually be pollen from outdoor sources, also depending on season, region and climate, as well as the ventilation regime of the building.
However, taken as the median value over a whole year, I consider your statement correct for regions with a temperate climate.
- 53% of dust particles vacuumed from a mattress were found to be skin scales
It depends a little on the type of mattress. For polyether mattresses the amount may even be larger.
For mattresses made of natural material it could be less since the mattress-material will also give off small particles.
- larger particles consist mostly of fibers, eg. cotton, paper, wool, synthetics
That's true .. including bread crumbs ..... 🙂
- skin scales seem to form a larger fraction of dust where we spend more time, e.g. in or near bed.
..... and on the couch used to view television or be active in gaming.
It has to do with the constant production of skin scales over the 24 hours.
- skin scales form a smaller fraction of dust if there are significant other sources, e.g. carpeting, dirt from outside etc.
Yes, everyting you walk on with your shoes or that recieves dirt from the outside with other means, will have a lessr percentage of human skin scales.
However, do not forget the skin scales of pets that will also be an active allergen for many people, and a food source for house dust mites.
Information on dust particle size ©ISO. This material is adapted from ISO 7708:1995, with permission of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) on behalf of the International Organization for Standardization. All rights reserved.
Research and Writing by AJ Fillo and Derek Muller
Editing, Audio Mix & Master, and Computer animations by Jonny Hyman
Dust and character animation by Ivan Tello
Filming by Raquel Nuno
Thumbnail by Fictionalhead
Intro Music composed by Jonny Hyman
Additional Music from Epidemic Sound: Colored Spirals, Observations


  • Sean B
    Sean BOrë më parë

    53% of the dust in a BED!

  • Sean B
    Sean B2 orë më parë

    The f@dk you say! Google scholar is NOT a great resource for research papers! Google Scholar is where the Moon Landing is fake and the Earth is Flat came from.

  • Sean B
    Sean B2 orë më parë

    Google is anecdotal evidence at best ... altogether myth, a common misconception, an urban legend, old wives tale, and most notably a millennial research paper.

  • Sean B
    Sean B2 orë më parë

    Google shoves at you what they think are the most relevant information related to a topic, so no wonder you get it wrong that dust is mostly dead skin.

  • Joj Cees
    Joj Cees10 orë më parë

    QueensU rep!!!

  • Andrew Comparison
    Andrew Comparison11 orë më parë

    You lost 180,000,000,000 skin cells sheding per year

  • Andrew Comparison
    Andrew Comparison11 orë më parë

    You lost 120,000 skin cells during the lifetime

  • Akshat Singh
    Akshat SinghDitë më parë

    "Unbelievable".... and the video goes on

  • D3w10n
    D3w10nDitë më parë

    Well I have dermatitis and psoriasis, I shed more in minute than average person in a year...

  • Fireplace
    FireplaceDitë më parë

    Doesn’t google own yt lol

  • Lavavex
    Lavavex2 ditë më parë

    "is dust 2 T sided" Hello from CS:GO lol

  • Skip Grappotte
    Skip Grappotte2 ditë më parë

    The 50% in the mattress isn’t necessarily significant. Mattress is protected by coverings so a higher concentration of skin would likely be in mattress “dust”

  • Teddy Flood
    Teddy Flood2 ditë më parë

    Dust doesn't exist until you observe it.

  • QuadCopter
    QuadCopter2 ditë më parë

    this video was sponsored by *G O O G L E*

  • Jay Bee
    Jay Bee3 ditë më parë

    Google has ruined this comment section 🤣🤣🤣🤣😎

  • Jay Bee
    Jay Bee3 ditë më parë


  • insecure intellectual
    insecure intellectual3 ditë më parë

    eveyones talking about the google sponsorship but i don't see anyone talking about how this man turned LITERAL DUST into a beautiful artistic and philosophical insight into the world. :]

  • sam rood
    sam rood3 ditë më parë

    That hair!

  • Ryan McClenathan
    Ryan McClenathan3 ditë më parë

    Makes me wonder how we lived before the COVEY.......

  • 20vTouge86
    20vTouge863 ditë më parë

    You lost me at “Sponsored By Google” 😣

  • Tarzan Ghimire
    Tarzan Ghimire4 ditë më parë

    Research is re search

    BRAAAPNATION TJ5 ditë më parë

    Me on Google at 2am: what is what?

  • Erin
    Erin5 ditë më parë

    Still gonna use duck duck go as my search engine.

  • Rishab Tirupathi
    Rishab Tirupathi5 ditë më parë

    When google sponsors you instead of paying you through adsense

  • Susan Amber Bruce
    Susan Amber Bruce5 ditë më parë

    cool vid, especially the reading from the book

  • Seven Aries
    Seven Aries6 ditë më parë

    My question is why Google thinks people watching ALthe (which is owned by Google) don't know what Google is

  • Peter Gambier
    Peter Gambier6 ditë më parë

    Thanks for this, but why does Google need to advertise, their name is a verb and therefore needs no introduction.

  • Pickleknotts
    Pickleknotts6 ditë më parë

    1:40 Lol "Is dust 2 t sided"

  • Mensa X
    Mensa X6 ditë më parë

    Maybe the ghosts and spirits were shedding their “dead” skin cells in abandoned/unoccupied buildings

  • Drew M
    Drew M6 ditë më parë

    Is that percentage based upon volume, mass, or number of particles regardless of size? Because it could be argued there's more skin because there's for example 100 million individual skin cells but that weigh on average 0.000001g. 1 gram of skin cells is that more than 2 grams of lets say dirt because there's only 60 million of dirt but it weighs double making the weight more but not the amount. What is really the bigger percentage?

  • deep purple
    deep purple6 ditë më parë

    This is a subject close to my body. I live on my own in a corner apartment. The amount of dust I get in my place is of the wall. I'm sick of having to clean it day after day dust dust dust my head is done in. Body skin is a lot of the dust I clean. I think where I live and having windows open doesn't help. 😷🤧. Can I get a grant for a cleaner to come in. 🤔

  • Bread On Deck
    Bread On Deck6 ditë më parë

    2,6 people lmao this had me weak lol

  • YouTube Succs
    YouTube Succs7 ditë më parë

    Is dust 2 t sided lmaoooooo CSGO moment

  • BigMackdombles
    BigMackdombles7 ditë më parë

    I itched myself during this entire video

  • Sarah Roberts
    Sarah Roberts7 ditë më parë

    My mattress is covered with a dust shield that zips up. Dust is not getting into my mattress.

  • Sarah Roberts
    Sarah Roberts7 ditë më parë

    So we need to wash our sheets more often.

  • Dean0ne
    Dean0ne7 ditë më parë

    i am so frustrated about the fact that he used the "there is about 50% dead skin in the dust on a bed" as a basis for the statements that followed where he claimed that dust is mostly dead skin everywhere. but it needs to be adressed, that of course there will be a higher percentage of dead skin on a bed than let's say pollen for example, it simply makes sense that the dead skin we shed in bed, remains on our beds. but what about the dust in a abandoned house where no one has lived for decades? what about the top of that wooden shelf in your living room? do dead skin cells make up 50% of the dust there as well? because i honestly doubt it. and would love to know what dust is made of in other places then a bed.

  • Sarah Roberts
    Sarah Roberts7 ditë më parë

    Dust in the Arizona desert is a real problem.

  • Robert Drake
    Robert Drake7 ditë më parë

    You want the truth? You can't handle the truth!!

  • Daniel Lee
    Daniel Lee7 ditë më parë

    The dust inside mattresses might be, well a lot of dustmites too

  • John Paul
    John Paul7 ditë më parë

    Thanks Dave

  • Shankar Roy
    Shankar Roy8 ditë më parë

    Never shave...

  • Q34RW9FH5U
    Q34RW9FH5U8 ditë më parë

    is dust 2 t sided

  • GreenStrqfe
    GreenStrqfe8 ditë më parë

    1:46 is dust 2 t sided

  • John Lynch
    John Lynch8 ditë më parë

    REALLY appreciate it. Thanks for this. Of course now I feel REALLY gross🙃💨

  • John Lynch
    John Lynch8 ditë më parë

    5:43 wow. If you lose 9 lbs in 3 days you can't GIVE plasma. THATS what GETTING ONES heart broken over limerence will do. I know its not the same thing

  • Utkarsh Kamat
    Utkarsh Kamat9 ditë më parë

    I was thinking about dust, what is it? How tf does it accumulate so much? And here the algorithm gods have given me a clue

  • allp84
    allp849 ditë më parë

    But if a wood chuck could chuck would, how much wood would a wood chuck chuck?

  • jeremy nom
    jeremy nom9 ditë më parë

    sponsored by google.. proceed to take a book 9:00

  • Prithhviraaj chattopadhyay
    Prithhviraaj chattopadhyay9 ditë më parë

    hey , I will also be 21 years of age when I graduate out of university ... YAY

  • Master Wu
    Master Wu9 ditë më parë

    If u have dog, no, a dog can make a sun of dust

  • TheJ0026
    TheJ00269 ditë më parë

    Wtf is a ”google”?

  • Bob John
    Bob John9 ditë më parë

    The government is releasing nanodust on us

  • HDTomo
    HDTomo9 ditë më parë

    Being sponsored by google is basically like being sponsored by youtube

  • Fahd Abdullah
    Fahd Abdullah9 ditë më parë

    What the hell does google need to sponsor people for

  • Kris Marks
    Kris Marks9 ditë më parë

    11:14 I think you just gave people round the world a real, science-based reason NOT to make the bed.

  • Kris Marks
    Kris Marks9 ditë më parë

    I hate bagless vacuums so much that just the sight of one compels me to remind everyone that bagged vacuums are STILL available and STILL way better than any bagless on the market--not to mention they are considerably cheaper, perform consistently better, and are less work to maintain. Have you ever tried cleaning the bagless filters? Not only absolutely disgusting, time consuming, and often Sisyphean, but also dangerous if you're not some sort of particle filter mask.

  • ꪜiktꪮr_ᠻ
    ꪜiktꪮr_ᠻ10 ditë më parë

    7:40 так может пыль....это микровселенные😂

  • F L A
    F L A10 ditë më parë

    This video shows googling is not really research.

  • Paulo Jose Castro
    Paulo Jose Castro10 ditë më parë

    most thought that's been thought that has access to the internet and has access to create content is within google assuming it has been visited frequently that it becomes relevant but some thoughts that has no access are still out there.

  • Dean Cooper
    Dean Cooper10 ditë më parë

    He didn't Ask Jeeves.

  • Habb
    Habb10 ditë më parë

    i wonder how much dead skin is dust

  • Hosvile Toku
    Hosvile Toku10 ditë më parë

    i just saw "how to get pregnant"

  • samantha ferrell
    samantha ferrell10 ditë më parë

    I swept my house yesterday and I noticed that something I swept up that looked like flakes of skin. I think Google can read my mind.

  • Illuzination
    Illuzination10 ditë më parë

    You should have put a disclaimer in front of the video, saying: "not suited for hypochondriacs".

  • Will Cashmore
    Will Cashmore10 ditë më parë

    Why is there lots of dust in places that are rarely used by people, such as a loft?

  • Ymis ymis
    Ymis ymis10 ditë më parë


  • Athanasia
    Athanasia11 ditë më parë

    It's dust mite carcasses. They're made of cellulose and never, ever decompose. Those evil little bastards thrive in carpet and bedding. And explain why abandoned houses become dusty.

  • redf
    redf11 ditë më parë

    There must be forensic research into this somewhere as the dna to be found at a crime scene in this would need to be understood

  • James
    James11 ditë më parë

    they said it's a cosmic dust from space.

  • Bruce Kempf
    Bruce Kempf11 ditë më parë

    Where can I get that Science shirt. It looks awesome!

    SARO SHOW11 ditë më parë

    Very Dusturbing video

  • Misu Satriyo
    Misu Satriyo11 ditë më parë

    21 year old you looks exactly like 21 year old Joji.

  • Ouis Sandy
    Ouis Sandy11 ditë më parë

    A wood chuck can chuck as much wood as a wood chuck can chuck. Sir

  • TripleZs
    TripleZs11 ditë më parë

    I know I hear Halo Reach music in the background.

  • Let's make a mess!
    Let's make a mess!11 ditë më parë

    I love your videos man. Thanks for your contribution!

  • Alex
    Alex11 ditë më parë

    How much of that microbial cloud do we inhale everyday? And what happens to it in the lungs? Do we, break it down and reabsorb it?

  • Правдиил Шпак
    Правдиил Шпак11 ditë më parë

    В английском языке очень странная поэзия

  • 1milk2gram
    1milk2gram11 ditë më parë

    I smoke like a chimney. I know for a fact that the majority of the dust in my room came from the cigarette's ashes.

  • 0000song0000
    0000song000011 ditë më parë

    can anyone tell me *why tiny dust particles can be seen when a single bean of light light enters a room?* (as in 7:32 but way tinier, lighter particles than seem to float forever) i used to be mesmerized by it as a kid, as (as you may know) it is impossible to grab them cause the tiny air flow of your hand repels them

  • Risav
    Risav11 ditë më parë

    No one: Literally no one: People in comment: Sponsored by Google

  • Nachiket Subhash
    Nachiket Subhash11 ditë më parë

    Next on Veritasium :- How much Fart we inhale in 1 breath of Air.

  • Emile Fa
    Emile Fa12 ditë më parë

    Watching this just hoping that Google lose a little bit more money.

  • Bogdan Sabau
    Bogdan Sabau12 ditë më parë

    Why do you look 17 in this video?

  • Your Daddy
    Your Daddy12 ditë më parë

    LIAR-LIAR! "hundreds of billions of sites" that means your mom and my mom have AT LEAST 25 sites each... as Webdesigner I have made over 500+ in 10 years, and entirely tired U_U BESIDES! 60%+ domains sold are parked, empty... this channel is PSEUDO SCIENCE!

  • Gol D. Roger
    Gol D. Roger12 ditë më parë

    7:55 200? Naw I'll get your house dusty in 100 if I have someone helping me.

  • Risav


    11 ditë më parë

    Orewa kaizoku o ni naru

  • RTG
    RTG12 ditë më parë

    From the moment I understood the weakness of my flesh, it disgusted me. I craved the strength and certainty of steel. I aspired to the purity of the blessed machine. Your kind cling to your flesh as if it will not decay and fail you.

  • samantha ferrell

    samantha ferrell

    10 ditë më parë

    @RTG i figured it was somthing like that

  • RTG


    10 ditë më parë

    @samantha ferrell Videogame. Its from the intro (you can find it on youtube) for mechanicus. Search Warhammer 40,000: Mechanicus | Teaser Trailer

  • samantha ferrell

    samantha ferrell

    10 ditë më parë

    Wtf is this a quote from and anime?

  • lietunantURNER
    lietunantURNER12 ditë më parë

    It's funny how you can tell when something was filmed during 2020 just by their hair

  • Othai Maru
    Othai Maru12 ditë më parë

    Poetry and science combined through dust.

  • John Ghost
    John Ghost12 ditë më parë

    I thought this was a very good video. In particular, I applaud your doubling down on the research and not settling on the first search engine hits. I agree that nowadays you can usually find someone somewhere on the internet who will say pretty much anything you want to hear, so just typing in your guess at the answer and getting a hit or even a few hits doesn't necessarily mean that it was the correct answer. Not to mention that it matters how that someone somewhere on the internet presented the answer and whether and to what extent they cited their references. There can also be a sort of ideology of skepticism. Don't get me wrong, I think the average person would do well to be more skeptical, but at the same time it can feel safe to disbelieve pretty much everything as a sort of security blanket against being duped. The fact of the matter is though that to recognize what's actually real and true often just takes some serious critical thinking.

  • Marta Bogusławska
    Marta Bogusławska12 ditë më parë

    Waiting 10 minutes for the answer :)

  • AsianRider
    AsianRider12 ditë më parë

    is aeroplane basically "dust"?

  • Alain Koch
    Alain Koch12 ditë më parë

    It’s basically a 15 minutes long google ad using emotional dust...

  • Harold Elias
    Harold Elias12 ditë më parë

    The glossy castanet radiographically kneel because viola partially fill barring a likeable division. scandalous, festive offer

  • Eric Johnson
    Eric Johnson12 ditë më parë

    Speaking of stars (and meteors and meteorites), the Earth is like a (well medium sized) vacuum cleaner of space. Thus some of our "dust" comes from space, and it is actually gradually increasing the size of our planet.

  • Elektric Skeptic
    Elektric Skeptic12 ditë më parë

    I never knew you're a fellow Canuck ❤

  • Matt H
    Matt H12 ditë më parë

    Dust is crazy in my house. Then I moved for 14 months. Covered my furniture and came back 14 months later to literally no dust. I then realized it was true about what they say. Yuck.

  • D3r
    D3r13 ditë më parë

    is dust 2 t sided?

  • Muhammad Syafiiq
    Muhammad Syafiiq13 ditë më parë

    He made it so interesting that this is the first time I don't have the urge to skip a sponsor

  • Steve Nicholson
    Steve Nicholson13 ditë më parë

    It is a little known scientific fact that your body produces the exact weight in sticky buggers as it does in dead skin cells. Therefore, if you save and attach all of your self adhesive nostril dust magnets to the walls of your house,.....they will theoretically collect and hold all your floating dead skin cells. Buggers, the natural way to a clean house.

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