Acne Light Therapy – the Latest and Greatest? How To Manage Your Acne From Home
One of the most frustrating things about any self-help industry, such as those made by acne sufferers, is the focus and wish for a magic treatment of some sort. This is where you get into snake oil salesmen determined to sell you on the next best thingand sometimes its hard to tell what theyre actually talking about. One treatment that I was suspicious about, acne light therapy, has been gaining credibility in my eyes, and I want to share what Ive found.
The first part of acne light therapy to understand is that there are two types: blue light and red light. They work in different ways, and from studies one is clearly better for acne.
Blue light is the bacteria killer, which will literally destroy the acne vulgaris lurking on your skin waiting to cause mischief. In this respect its similar to benzyl peroxide in the affect it has on your acne infections: it will slow down active ones and retard the next outbreak by killing off the disease causers before they get started.
Red light is used in other medical circles to accelerate wound healing and clean-up wrinkles, as it directly stimulates skin growth. Think of it as more of a repair option, which will help your skin heal afterwordsso long as you killed off the acne in the first place.
This is why you should only use red acne light therapy if youve first used other means (either blue light therapy of benzyl peroxide) to kill off active bacteria on your skin. Otherwise, you wont have a lasting impact on actual levels of acne infectionthough the red light will improve the appearance of skin.
Anyway, Im always a skeptic so I did some research on acne studies to find out how well both worked. I found a couple where the researchers would cleverly use acne light therapy on just one side of the patients face, then compared how the two sides looked after the study period.
The one testing blue light fared quite nicely: after 12 weeks, acne levels on the treated half of the face dropped 39% compared to the other side, making it a worth option. Red lightnot so well: it did reduce acne lesions, but had side affects including darkening of the skin and causing some follicle infections that, ironically, looked like acne. It was found to be more effective if used following blue light.
After researching acne light therapy, Id consider it cautiously worthwhile. If the usual over-the-counter treatments of salicylic acid and benzyl peroxide arent doing it for you, try an acne home treatment kit using blue light (and potentially red light as a follow-up) for another angle of attack on the problem.