Light Therapy for Acne

Red & Blue Light for Acne

Red and near infrared light therapy is the application of artificially generated light in the red and near infrared spectral bands. Other forms of light therapy include light in the blue spectrum, which is often used in light therapy for skin conditions. Blue light has the shortest wavelength, red light is intermediate, and near infrared light wavelengths are the longest. Different colors of light have different depths of skin penetration, with red and near infrared penetrating the deepest. Blue light from light therapy devices mimics the blue light generated from the sun, without any harmful UV rays. In contrast, artificial blue light generated from electronic devices has different spectral properties and can be harmful to the skin.

Red, near infrared, and blue light have all been found to effectively treat acne. Acne is a common skin condition, affecting nearly 10% of people worldwide. Prevalence is highest in adolescents, with up to 85% having acne at some time during this period. Acne is not only painful, but it can also have adverse effects on many aspects of life, including social, psychological, and economic. Since acne has been observed to respond positively to sun exposure, a variety of treatment approaches using light therapy have been used.

Light therapy for acne is treated in a variety of ways. Molecules in the skin called porphyrins absorb blue light which has antimicrobial effects that kill the bacteria associated with acne. Red and near infrared light also have antimicrobial effects but work via a different mechanism. The longer light wavelengths also reduce the activity of sebaceous glands, which are responsible for oil production. Treatment with blue, red, and near infrared light has been found to effectively treat acne, especially when used in combination. 

The Fringe Red Light Face Mask delivers both red and near infrared light as well as blue light to support skin health, including the treatment of acne. Made of soft silicone and battery powered, the mask is comfortable to wear and easy to use. The mask has three modes of use, which can deliver blue, red, or red and near/infrared. These can be combined in sequence for exposure to multiple wavelengths. Our recommended treatment protocol of light therapy for acne is to use blue daily and follow this with red/near infrared 3 to 4 times per week.  

Dr. Genevieve Newton, DC, PhD  spent close to 20 years as a researcher and educator in the field of nutritional sciences before joining Fringe as its Scientific Director. Gen’s job is to “bring the science” that supports Fringe’s products and education. She is passionate about all things Fringe, and is a deep believer in healing body, mind and spirit using the gifts of the natural world. 

The contents in this blog; such as text, content, graphics are intended for educational purposes only. The Content is not intended to substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your healthcare provider.

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