Composite with woman wearing pink plastic face mask with holes showing eye, surrounded by a LED light panel and small facial wands.

LED lights may be the backbone of the high-definition TV and smart home lighting industries, but the bright little bulbs also may just be the secret to glowing skin. 

Celebrities like Shay Mitchell and Chrissy Teigen have long been wearing cyborg-like face masks on Instagram, quite literally lit from within, and boasting about their unbeatable skin benefits. These masks usually emit a red or blue light, are worn for short periods of time, and seem to scream “celeb gimmick.” But it’s not just the celebs — some skincare professionals and dermatologists also tout LED light therapy for skin, as used both in spa settings and in at-home devices. 

“Light is able to actually change the way that skin functions in a temporary manner,” Dr. Jared Jagdeo, board certified dermatologist, told Mashable. “Light is actually able to upregulate or modulate the function of the mitochondria through stimulating what’s known as the electron transport chain. This helps generate more energy.” And when our skin cells produce more energy, the thinking goes, positive health and aesthetic effects can happen. 

Depending on what skincare benefits you are looking for, the color of your LED light therapy can play a big role according to Dr. Jagdeo. Blue light functions a little more closely to ultraviolet light, he said, and can help treat acne and improve the appearance of acne prone skin. Red light, on the other hand, is believed to have anti-inflammatory properties. These are the two most common colors used in skincare practices, but some home devices also include a mid-range amber color and a colorless infrared. 

LED skin therapy also comes in many forms. Consumers can choose from the aforementioned full face masks, stationary light panels, or small portable wands to deliver their preferred colored light regimen. To wade through the options, we here at Beauty, Hacked tested out one of each kind over the span of several weeks: the SkinGym Wrinklit LED Mask, the SolaWave Red Light Therapy and Blue Light Therapy Wand, and the TrophySkin Rejuvalite MD Panel

Tune in here to see how each different method of LED therapy affected Jennimai’s skin, and which device she deems the most useful, easiest to use, and delivers the best results. 

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