There are plenty of novel beauty treatments out there. Some of them seem like they might be interesting and make sense such as micro-needling, where minor damage is done to the skin to engender broader healing, while others like the vampire facial, where blood plasma is applied to the skin, are…a bit out there. Trying to find the line between the plausible and the far-fetched can be difficult in beauty sometimes because everyone is looking for the next big thing. Despite all the fads, there are reliable and somewhat novel skin treatments available. The continual process of weeding out the entirely useless ones leaves just enough that you can generally find at least some treatments to suit most of your skin needs. Light therapy, for instance, is a somewhat interesting treatment that people are still talking about with just enough evidence for it that there might be something to it. Let’s take a closer look to learn what we can about the benefits of light therapy.
What Is It?
Simply put, light therapy in beauty has several names. LED Therapy, red light therapy, and blue light therapy are some of the most common names. They all utilize LED panels regardless of the actual treatment though. LEDs are small, intensely bright lights that actually get used in many circumstances. Beauty is simply one of their more recent applications. The panels of LEDs are lit either to shine either red light or blue light depending on the goals of the treatment. The idea here is to offer a simple treatment that offers some of the benefits of sunlight exposure without the downsides brought on by UV rays. How does it work though? Light is a complex thing that operates at many wavelengths both visible and invisible to our eyes. Some of the wavelengths are actually beneficial to our skin. Light therapy is the equivalent of isolating useful compounds from a plant and using the part that helps our skin in a product. The only difference is what is being isolated are wavelengths of light.
Red Vs. Blue
Light therapy is, as highlighted, divided into two major color types. There can be others, but the key is that the lights are generally regarded as entirely free of damaging UV rays. That is what allows them to be used in this fashion. Red light therapy tends to focus on helping to reduce the signs of aging. The red light helps to stimulate the skin in such a way that it helps increase the production of collagen while reducing some internal factors that can lead to more collagen breaking down. This makes it particularly useful to anyone who wants a non-invasive procedure to use for reducing fine lines that isn’t as potentially harsh as a deep peel. Blue light therapy, by contrast, tends to focus on antibacterial properties. Most specialists use it to help managing acne. The results vary from person to person, but in most cases people credit it as being at least somewhat effective on mild to moderate acne. It is worth noting that the color light therapies can and sometimes are combined. The effects aren’t as intense as with a single focused color, but you do seem to get a general sampling of the expected effects from all colors.
A Light Touch
Light therapy is a recognized treatment by some dermatologists and many cosmetic professionals. These therapies do appear to have an effect on the actual skin, but there is some debate on how pronounced the effects are. Various factors can complicate matters and lower the apparent effectiveness of the treatment. There does always seem to be at least a minor effect for most people though and there are no real side effects to light therapy. It is important to note that you do want to ensure that the technician performing the light therapy is at a reputable location. Poorly done light therapy can hurt your skin simply by poor calibration or timing on the part of the technician. Additionally, while you may see some immediate effects from the therapy, the majority of them will be spread out over the next week to week and a half after the treatment. As with most skincare treatments, a little patience is necessary.
Light therapies are an interesting addition to the world of cosmetic procedures. They offer a relatively natural way to help our skin help itself using entirely natural processes. The effects don’t last forever, but while they do you can generally expect your skin to be just that much healthier. Don’t forget to talk to your dermatologist to make sure you’re a good candidate for such treatments though.