Determining the mechanical properties of an individual's skin is important in the fields of pathology, biomedical device design, and plastic surgery. To address this need, we present a finite element model that simulates the skin of the anterior forearm and posterior upper arm under a rich set of three-dimensional deformations. We investigated the suitability of the Ogden and Tong and Fung strain energy functions along with a quasi-linear viscoelastic law. Using non-linear optimization techniques, we found material parameters and in vivo pre-stresses for different volunteers. The model simulated the experiments with errors-of-fit ranging from 13.7 to 21.5%. Pre-stresses ranging from 28 to 92 kPa were estimated. We show that using only in-plane experimental data in the parameter optimization results in a poor prediction of the out-of-plane response. The identifiability of the model parameters, which are evaluated using different determinability criteria, improves by increasing the number of deformation orientations in the experiments. © 2011 Biomedical Engineering Society.