Light Therapy Treatments – Everything You Need To Know About LED Skin Treatments

We’ve all seen the Hannibal Lecter-esque light-up masks on Instagram but do we actually know what they are and how they work? Not so much.

We’ll level with you, they’re not just creepy looking masks, but actually the secret to giving acne-prone and dull skin a good old glow boost. Still not with us? We caught up with Kate Moss and Sienna Miller’s go-to facialist, Teresa Tarmey, plus skincare expert Natali Kelly and facial aesthetics doctor, Dr Nina Bal, to give us the pro lowdown on all things light therapy and LED skin treatments.

Whether you’re going in-salon or trying it at home, here’s everything you need to know about light therapy for your skin…
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Everything You Need To Know About Light Therapy

What is light therapy?

‘Dermalux™ LED Phototherapy is a non-invasive hand and facial treatment that uses narrow band, non-thermal LED light energy to trigger your body’s natural cell processes to accelerate rejuvenation and repair of the skin,’ explains Tarmey. ‘It’s recommended for skin rejuvenation, sun damage, acne, rosacea, eczema, psoriasis, dermatitis, sensitive and inflammatory conditions, wound healing and scarring as well as anyone looking to restore skin’s radiance.’

Filippo Fortis/Imaxtree

What does light therapy do?

LED Light Therapy is great in every single facial to calm any areas of irritation and it’s also brilliant at brightening the skin.

When used consistently, over time, LED lights are thought to penetrate your skin at different depths and cause various reactions in your skin, such as fighting acne-causing bacteria, plumping skin and reducing wrinkles.

‘A course of treatments offers corrective and long-lasting results, although you’ll be able to see a difference after the first session. Light therapy is also particularly calming, so you’ll leave feeling refreshed,’ says Tarmey.

light therapy for skin

Elisabetta Franchi

What are the benefits of light therapy?

‘Light therapy for the skin can speed up wound healing and improve skin conditions such as rosacea or dermatitis,’ explains Dr Nina Bal. ‘It’s also used to improve acne and as anti-ageing device.’

How does light therapy work?

LED Light Therapy uses colour wavelengths of visible light which have specific skin benefits. As a result of ageing, skin disorders or trauma, healthy skin cells are compromised and unable to renew themselves normally.

‘The skin uses the light as a source of energy to fuel the repair and rejuvenation of damaged cells, or, in the case of treating acne, kill bacteria,’ reveals Tarmey. ‘The energy stimulates the production of collagen and elastin, boosts circulation and accelerates tissue repair. During the treatment, you’ll simply lie underneath a light screen while the device does all the work.

light therapy for skin

Valentina Valdinoci/Imaxtree

‘We use LED in every single facial. We start with the cleaning of the skin which includes a Lactic brightening peel and extractions if needed. We then go onto the advanced side of the facial and finish with a full session (20 minutes) of LED.

If someone is coming only for LED we clean the skin, then apply LED and SPF to finish.’

light therapy for skin

Andrea Adriani/Imaxtree

What types of light are there and what do they do?

Blue Light

This is a powerful antibacterial properties for the treatment of acne without irritation, reduces oil production, prevents future breakout and offers a UV-free alternative for the treatment of eczema and psoriasis.

Red Light

This increases natural hydration levels, reduced redness and inflammation, shrinks the appearance of pores, regulates oil production, improves circulation, accelerates skin repair as is a medically-approved treatment for rosacea.

Near Infra-Red Light

This is the most deeply absorbed wavelength, it increases cell permeability and absorption, smooths lines and wrinkles, improves elasticity, reduces pain and inflammation, accelerates wound healing and heals cystic acne.

What aftercare should you use after light therapy?

‘Stay away from the sun for 48 hours and apply SPF,’ advises Dr Nina Bal.’You can take an anti-inflammatory in case of swelling and redness (rarely needed), or apply cold packs.’

How long does it take for light therapy to work?

‘You can see results from the first treatment, however we would recommend a minimum course of six,’ explains Kelly. ‘If you would like to super charge your skin for specific skin concerns, an intensive course of twelve treatments is advised close together.’
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What skin types should try light therapy?

Light therapy is good for all skin types, literally everyone, and incredible for rosacea.

Does light therapy hurt?

No, LED light therapy is completely non-invasive and does not hurt. All you’ll feel is a tiny bit of warmth.

Can you get a tan from light therapy?

Nope! Light Therapy doesn’t use UV light so there’s no risk of tanning whatsoever.

How much does professional light therapy cost?

‘In clinic we offer Dermalux at £70, including skin consultation and assessment in a private treatment room with a heated bed and cosy duvet,’ says Kelly. ‘We also advise light therapy after most of our facials, which is a £50 add on.’

You’ll also find light therapy treatments offered in great salons nationwide, but we particularly rate The Light Salon The Bespoke Light, £45, Sarah Chapman High Definition Facial + LED, £185, and Dr. Maryam Zamani LED Light Therapy, £70.

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