Here i cover how to use Sub surface scattering to get a softern skin effect. Also cover using Inverse AO as an alternative and using fresnel in both hair and silk materials.
Check out my glass render tutorial here: http://ace5studios.com/glass
and the progressive render stuff at: http://ace5studios.com/progressive-rendering-and-render-settings/
rigged stock characters: http://ace5studios.com/5j