I get very excited about this topic! As a consumer and a beauty product curator, I've had my fair share of disappointments with products that promise miracles and deliver nothing. So, I've spent a great deal of time testing & discerning what really works and what doesn't.
I have personally struggled with sensitivity and Perioral Dermatitis for over a decade. My skin responds pretty angrily to products that have irritants, fragrance and toxins. I have been the guinea pig for the Beauty Doctrine curation -willingly :-). If my skin responds negatively to a product, it's surely not going to be featured on the site. So, you can probably imagine that I get skin reactions pretty often given it is my job to vet and test new products on a daily basis.
Each time I have a reaction, the first thing I reach for my LED mask. I am not sure I would have been so audacious testing so many products on my fragile skin had I not had this tool at hand. So there you have it- LED masks work!
What you need to know:
LED light therapy is an emerging treatment that costs $80 on average per session, at a spa. Since it is fairly a new treatment, there haven't been many studies outlining its exact impact on the skin and the long term effects. So this article is based on personal experience and my own research, taking into account top dermatologists' and plastic surgeons' viewpoints.
Some masks that are currently available on the market offer a slew of color options. However, the most used lights are blue and red.
Blue light: mostly used for acne and sensitivity-related rashes. It is superficial with short wavelength, making it ideal for targeting topical issues, and decreasing oil gland proliferation. I typically use it at the highest setting for 20 minutes, daily until the issue subsides. That's generally about 5 days.
Red Light: this is a long wavelength reaching deep into the dermis stimulating collagen production in the fibroblasts. I also use this, whenever I remember, for up to twenty minutes at a time.
I highly recommend that you exfoliate, prior to using the LED light therapy, just the first day, not daily. Having the top dead skin layer removed will enhance the light effect on the skin.
I like to prep the skin with a peptide-based serum for the red light treatment, and a Hyaluronic Acid serum pre- blue light treatment.
What type of devices are available and how to select one?
There are a number of devices that popped up in the market place, including a ton on Amazon. The mask that I currently use is similar to the one in the blog headline photo. My regret is that I didn't get the one with the neck piece. I feel that my face has improved greatly as far as firmness but looking quite inconsistent with the skin on my neck. So, My next purchase is probably going to be a hand held device to allow the option of using it anywhere on the body.
If open to getting your own device to use at home instead of spa treatments, I'd recommend getting a good quality one on Amazon. Dr. Gross has one that costs over $600. I don't believe you need to go that high with you investment, but the ones in the range of $90 - $230 that are FDA approved or cleared.
Here are the FDA approved / cleared options that I recommend:
My last note on this, is that you absolutely need consistency to get results using LED Mask Therapy. If you are using it to increase skin firmness and your collagen network, you want to keep a watchful eye on your diet and the products you use. There is never a singular answer to anti-aging, or good-aging as I like to call it. If you are skipping sunscreen, eating a lot of sugar and applying toxin-filled skincare, I'd hate to sounds harsh, but I would't bother with such a tool. Glycation and high-level oxidation cause irreparable damage that no tool or skincare product can fix. So be good to your body - you only get one ;-)
I have a detailed blog that covers product recommendations and lifestyle choices that improve your collagen production and keep your skin vibrant. Check it out here.
Be well. Be safe. Be beautiful