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Skincare and technology have always made for companionable bedfellows and the newest must-have to come our way from this merry union are LED face masks. Having found a fan in A-list celebrities and skincare savants alike, these masks employ red light therapy to leave the skin reinvigorated—without ever having to step off the couch. If you have been planning to invest in one, here’s what you need to know.
What is red light therapy?
“Red light therapy is a low-level, light-emitting diode (LED) that emits a narrow spectrum of red wavelength. This near-infrared light is not potent as a laser and is usually within the range of 620-750 nm,” explains Dr Madhuri Agarwal, founder of Yavana Aesthetics Clinic.
LED face masks are often used in facials after cleansing and the same applies to its at-home application. Generally designed as portable, cordless face masks with a rechargeable battery for hands-free usage, adding an LED face mask to your skincare routine can help minimise fine lines and wrinkles, slice through bacteria build-up on acne-prone skin and reduce
How to use LED face masks
To get started, sufficiently cleanse the skin to ensure that there are no barriers. The mask can then be applied on bare skin for 15-20 minutes in a session. This can be followed by massaging in a retinol serum or light moisturiser afterwards.
If you are looking for incentive to add a red light therapy mask to your skincare routine, consider this: reduced inflammation and a helping hand with anti-ageing concerns. Dr Agarwal adds, “Red light is claimed to generate energy levels in the skin cells by stimulating the mitochondria of the cells. This leads to improved functioning of cells and helps with healing and regeneration of the skin tissue.”
Who is an ideal candidate for red light therapy and who should avoid it?
For starters, it helps to bear in mind that the benefits of a red light therapy mask are cumulative and gradually visible over a period of time. After its safety was proven by use in space by NASA astronauts, several FDA-approved devices started flooding the skincare aisle for at-home use. As a consequence, it has been proven that all skin types can use a red light therapy mask but the Mumbai-based dermatologist intones that it is essential to choose the appropriate device to get optimal benefits of the therapy.
“Individuals with photosensitive skin conditions or taking photosensitising medications should avoid red light therapy. There have been some reports of red light therapy increasing pigmentation and melasma in darker skin types but there are no concrete studies supporting this finding,” she observes.
Dos and don’ts to keep in mind with LED face masks
As a painless and mild therapy, LED face masks are generally suitable for everyone. If you are looking to make the most of this technology, here’s what Dr Agarwal would like you to keep in mind:
- At-home devices need to be used regularly at least 5-6 days a week for visible results.
- It is advisable to combine red light therapy with good skincare products and in-clinic procedures with a dermatologist for long-term results.
- Wearing the eye goggles or shield provided with the device is essential while using an LED face mask.
- Don’t overdo the red light therapy in hopes of more results. Always adhere to the guidelines given with the device to be safe.
Ready to get started? Here are all the best LED face masks that are worth investing in: