What Is Blue Light Therapy?
Blue light therapy has recently shown promising results in treating acne, especially mild and moderate acne, by reaching underneath the skin surface. With continuous usage it can help clear breakouts, reduce inflammation, and clear skin.
Bonus – quality home devices are out there!
Studies have found that with five weeks of continuous blue light therapy, acne lesions decreased by 64%. And, undergoing therapy twice every week reduced the severity of acne present on the back and face. (References below)
How Blue Light Therapy Works
Visible blue light kills the acne-causing bacteria – pigments in bacteria’s protective cell membranes start resonating due to the particular frequencies of blue light. As a result, the membrane is broken down by the pigments and gradually the bacteria is killed off. (Cool huh?!)
What Does This Mean For You??
Blue light therapy can reduce the acne that has already appeared on the skin or is about to break out. Many have reported favorable outcomes in one day since the inflammation stops when bacteria are killed.
Benefits for Acne and Skin
First – it is essential that you are consistent with the therapy to get positive results (like anything in skin care). You might need anywhere between four to six sessions, depending on the severity of your acne.
- Gentle and safe
- Painless acne solution
- Drug free
- It can be used on all parts of your body
- There is no need to avoid sun exposure after treatment, unlike photodynamic therapy
- Aside from treating acne, it also reduces sun damage (anti-aging bonus!)
- It is especially effective in the treatment of cystic acne
Do consult your dermatologist before starting.
How To Use Blue Light Therapy
You can get this treatment at a dermatologist office or do it yourself at home. Doing blue light therapy at home is best when you are dealing with papules and pustules (and whiteheads), the typical zits – rather than the more severe forms of acne like deep cysts.
Here are the steps you can follow to properly use blue light therapy:
- Start by washing your face properly with a soft cleanser
- Avoid applying any skin care products like moisturizers beforehand
- Place the LED lamp about four to six inches away from your skin
- Make sure you wear the goggles that come with the lamp for protecting your eyes!
- Switch the lamp on and let your skin absorb the blue light for five minutes
- Use the same steps for different parts of the body
- Make sure you immediately apply a moisturizer or serum after treatment
- Wait about 30 minutes to use or apply other acne treatment or medication
Blue light treatment is a noninvasive and painless treatment for acne.
Kawada, A., Aragane, Y., Kameyama, H., Sangen, Y., & Tezuka T. (2002). Acne phototherapy with a high-intensity, enhanced, narrow-band, blue light source: an open study and in vitro investigation. J Dermatol Science; 30(2): 129-35.
Noborio, R., Nishida, E., Kurokawa, M., & Morita, A. (2007). A new targeted blue light phototherapy for the treatment of acne. Photodermatol Photoimmunol Photomed; 23(1): 32-4.
American Academy of Dermatology. Lasers and lights: How well do they treat acne? Retrieved from https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/acne-and-rosacea/lasers-and-lights-how-well-do-they-treat-acne