Everything You Need to Know About LED Light Therapy

One yellow light bulb standing out against 5 other pink light bulbs

Light-emitting diode therapy (or LED for short) is nothing new. Having long been used in professional treatments, the benefits of LED for acne-prone, rosacea-ridden, discoloured, dull and ageing skin come with regular use. While this might deliver great results, it has previously been a costly and time-consuming approach in the pursuit for healthy skin.

And thus, the emergence of at-home skincare devices, led by LED treatments in the form of targeted on-the-spot gadgets and full face masks, are becoming popular for consumers who want to maintain the results of in-clinic treatments and the efficacy of carefully curated skincare routines. According to global market researcher Mintel, 41% of beauty consumers use skincare devices to prolong the effects of professional treatments. With better access to information, technological advancements and more transparency from brands, high-performance products are no longer exclusively available in costly facials and specialist clinics. Plus, LED light treatments are the most pain-free facial you can have, with no tingling, side effects or downtime needed. What more could you want?

Here are all your questions about LED light therapy answered:

What are the benefits of LED for the skin?

“LED light emits therapeutic wavelengths of light energy to energise cells,” explains Laura Ferguson and Hannah Measures, co-founders of The Light Salon. In doing so, the light energy stimulates the production of collagen, elastin and antioxidants while improving blood and lymphatic circulation. It’s a treatment that is suitable for all skin types and is designed to be used after cleansing and exfoliating, followed by your serums and moisturiser.

How many different types of LED lights are there and what is the difference between them?

“Different light spectrum penetrates the skin in different depths and has different effects. Red and blue LED light therapy combat numerous issues, including but not limited to, dullness, fine lines and wrinkles, inflammation, redness and swelling. They replenish dermal and epidermal cells, stimulate the natural production of collagen and elastin and speed up the recovery process,” explains Dr Dennis Gross, dermatologist, dermatologic surgeon and founder of Dr. Dennis Gross Dermatology.

Near-infrared light is another option, suiting inflamed skin best as it stimulates the skin’s healing and regeneration process by delivering nutrients and oxygen to problem areas, leaving you with strengthened and brightened skin. If acne is a concern, Ferguson and Measures recommend red light as it has an antiseptic effect on blemishes and reduces inflammation and painful swelling within the spot to help speed up the healing of the area. Impressively, when used together near-infrared and red light are clinically proven to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

What’s the difference between an LED treatment in a clinic and an at home device?

At-home devices don’t have the power of the professional machines used in LED light therapy treatments, but Ferguson and Measures explain that if you use an LED light mask three times a week over a four week period, it delivers the equivalent cumulative dose of light as one salon treatment, if you went once a week for the same period. “Results are instant and long-term and because LED light therapy works on a cellular level, so you leave with a glow, which becomes more pronounced with each treatment. Think of it in terms of a workout – going once is better than not going at all, but if you make an effort to stick to regular sessions, you’ll get great cumulative benefits.”

How To Find The Right Liquid Exfoliator For Your Skin

Garden of Wisdom

Unless you have been living under a rock for the past two years, you will have noticed a sharp increase in the amount of acid-based skincare products hitting the shelves. While scrubs might have been the tried and tested method of sloughing away dead skin a few years back, now it is all about the liquid exfoliator. So much so, Pinterest has seen a 58% increase in searches for liquid exfoliators. Read More…

Azelaic Acid: Why You Should Be Using It

Azelaic Acid

Yes, there has been a lot of chatter about acids over the past year or so, and yes, there always seems to be a new one that you should be using. But, Azelaic Acid genuinely should be on your radar regardless of your skin type or concern because it has an impressive skill set and helps to soothe and smooth skin. Read More…

Shabir And Trinny On Skincare Concerns

Trinny and Shabir

Shabir was back in the bathroom with Trinny Woodall over the weekend discussing more common skincare concerns. If you battle with hyperpigmentation, rosacea or have unwanted scarring, it’s definitely worth watching.

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Is There a Natural Treatment for Hives

nettles

Q: My daughter suffers with hives – red lumps over her body – when she overheats. Her doctor prescribed an antihistamine, which takes out the itch but not the lumps.

A: I used to get similar weals from monosodium glutamate, which is often added to Chinese and Thai foods. If she doesn’t suffer from any food sensitivity, pharmacist Shabir Daya advises that she uses Stinging Nettle Extract by Swanson, £14.95 for 120 capsules. Nettles are excellent at detoxifying the bloodstream, inhibit the formation of histamine and have an anti-inflammatory effect, he adds.

SKIN SAVIOUR

Jane Iredale, founder of the eponymous mineral make-up range, tells me she has seen good results on the faces and bodies of acne- and rosacea-prone adults with a course of Skin Accumax. This supplement contains vitamins A, C and E and a nutrient complex found in broccoli.

MY HEALTH: SARAH PARISH, 44, ACTRESS

I never go on the scales: doing the right exercise and eating good food is the key to being in great shape.

I fell in love with barre exercise classes in Vancouver, when my husband [actor James Murray] was filming there in 2011. It was so different from the gym and it worked muscles I didn’t know I had.

I was at the age where everything drops a few inches. The barre exercises are fantastically toning for trouble spots – bingo wings, bottom, waist, tummy and tops of thighs – giving you the lifting and firming you never get on a treadmill. Read More…

Why can’t we shift the tummy weight?

vegetables

My 50-year-old friend has intractable weight gain, particularly round her tummy. I’m 45 and have good and bad tummy days, which can vary from flat to fat in a day. Exercise isn’t shifting it at the moment. Is it the same cause?

‘These are different but both common problems,’ says women’s health expert Dr Marilyn Glenville, author of Fat Around the Middle* (marilynglenville.com). ‘Leading up to menopause, extra pounds often settle around the middle because your body tries to compensate for declining oestrogen. Some oestrogen is manufactured in the fat cells there, which offsets some of the loss from the ovaries.’ Read More…