Over recent years, it has been established that deposition of various types of pollutant aerosols (e.g., radioactive) on human skin can have serious deleterious effects on health. However. only few investigations in the past have been devoted to measurement of deposition velocities on skin of particles of the potentially problematic sizes. An experimental programme has shown the deposition velocities on skin of particles in the ca. 0.5-5 mu m AMAD range to be high and generally associated with great variations. A series of investigations have been made to identify some of the factors that lead to this variation. Part of the variation was found to be caused by differences between individuals, whereas another part was found to be related to environmental factors, The identification of major influences on skin contaminant deposition is important in estimating health effects as well as in identifying means for their reduction. (c) 2005 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.