Young Angelo Espinosa grew up in the Barrio in South Central Los Angeles and saw his father killed in a drive-by shooting. Having had violence forced on him at such an impressionable age, Angelo joined a gang and fell in love with a fellow member named Tores. Following one particularly violent shoot-out with a rival gang, Angelo was forced to fake his own death and entrusted his cousin Gil with the knowledge that he was still alive.
Later, Angelo was one of several young mutants kidnapped by the techno-organic alien race the Phalanx. Angelo and his fellow prisoners were rescued by the team of mutant adventurers the X-Men, and soon after became the founding members of Generation X, a team of mutants enrolled in Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters at its new branch in the re-opened Massachusetts Academy. Angelo was given the codename Skin as a result of his mutant ability.
During his time with Generation X, Skin was targeted by the armored vigilante the X-Cutioner, who believed him to be responsible for the death of Angelo Espinosa, not knowing that they were the same person. This prompted Skin to return home where he disguised himself as an old man and visited the grave that bore his name. There, Skin encountered both his mother and Tores, though they were unaware of his true identity.
On a later trip to Los Angeles, Generation X were attacked by cybernetic Prime Sentinels from the government-sponsored anti-mutant Operation: Zero Tolerance. Skin was reunited with Tores when he sought help from her and her own gang and learned that she too was a mutant.
Following the closure of the Academy and the disbanding of Generation X, Skin headed home to Los Angeles with his teammate Jubilee. He took up a job in a fast food restaurant whilst Jubilee aspired to a career as an actress. During this time, Skin displayed amorous feelings for Jubilee, but she did not reciprocate them.
Skin was later captured by the anti-mutant religious organization the Church of Humanity and crucified on a cross on the lawn of the X-Men’s mansion. Despite the X-Men’s best efforts, he died from his injuries. Skin was buried in his family plot in the Beverly Glen Cemetery in Los Angeles, however the cemetery did not allow mutants to be buried on its grounds. His body was ultimately exhumed and cremated, and his ashes were given to Jubilee.
However, Skin was revived with an alien techno organic virus.