In Good Light

These products block out the blue light which can cause pigmentation and oxidative stress.

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These products block out the blue light which can cause pigmentation and oxidative stress.

There are products that work to prevent blue light damage, and yet, conversely, there are treatments and gadgets which harness blue LED light to treat skin. What gives? The difference lies in the wavelength of these lights and how much you are exposed to. 

Blue light therapy, which is beneficial for skin, uses blue LED light with a wavelength between 405 nm to 420 nm to target acne. The Propionibacterium acnes (P. acnes) bacteria, which causes pimples, contains an abundant amount of the molecule porphyrin. These molecules absorb blue light to create free radicals, eradicating the bacteria in the process. 

Blue LED light also contains anti-inflammatory properties which soothes redness.

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The blue light which has often been demonised is also known as High Energy Visible (HEV) light. HEV light has been shown to penetrate deeper into skin compared to UVA and UVB rays, and can cause damage which shows up in the form of wrinkles and pigmentation. It has a wavelength which ranges from 380 nm to 500 nm, and as mentioned in the introduction, you will find that this includes the range of light that is used for blue light therapy treatments as well. 

That is because blue light is not inherently bad for you. Research has shown that exposure to HEV light can boost mental alertness and elevate your mood, but the problem comes from over-exposure to blue light in the form of computer and mobile phone screens. Unlike UVA and UVB rays, which disappear after the sun sets, the threat from HEV light extends well into the night. 

1 Cover FX Water Cloud Primer, $58 (30 ml).

This makeup primer dispenses as a lightweight mousse to form a smooth canvas for your foundation to go on. In addition, its antioxidant-rich formula also helps skin defend against pollutants, environmental stress and blue light.

2 This Works Morning Eye Cream, $53 (15 ml).

This refreshing eye cream comes with its own metallic applicator to de-puff and brighten skin around the under-eye area. It contains cocoa seed peptides which can protect against blue light damage, especially around the thin under-eye area. 

3 Alpha-H Essential Skin SPF 15, $65 (50 ml).

Providing essential hydration to the skin, this lightweight moisturiser is formulated with peptides and potent antioxidants to strengthen the skin against the ravages of pollution and blue light. Plus, it also has SPF 15 to shield against UV rays as well. 

4 Chantecaille HA Blue Light Protection Hyaluronic Serum, $250 (30 ml).

Packed with botanical ingredients which improve skin’s ability to produce hyaluronic acid, this lightweight serum also protects against blue light. A combo of hyaluronic acid with different molecular weights hydrates the skin at different depths.

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As with most things in our lives, balance is the key when ascertaining if blue light is good or bad for you. Blue light can be both a friend and a foe. If you spend long hours in front of your computer or mobile phone screen, it may be wise to consider some form of protection against the risk of over-exposure, be it putting on a pair of yellow-tinted glasses for your eyes or applying skincare products which can shield your skin against HEV light.

5 Crystal Tomato Beyond Sun Protection SPF 75+ PA+++, $78.80 (50 ml).

While providing excellent defense against UV rays, the Crystal Tomato Beyond Sun Protection also blocks out 54.1 per cent of blue light. Its lightweight formula absorbs quickly without leaving any white cast or stickiness, perfect for use under makeup.

6 IDS Skincare DermaShield Serum, $99 (30 ml).

The IDS Skincare DermaShield Serum is one of the first beauty products in the market dedicated to protecting the skin against blue light damage. It is concocted with buddleja officinalis flower extract and alteromonas ferment extract as well as ectoin and calendula officinalis flower extract, which stave off blue light while neutralising free radical damage.

7 Murad City Skin Age Defense SPF 50, $112 (50 ml).

Formulated to provide a wide-spectrum shield against daily stressors, this lightweight sunscreen has been tested to block against 89 per cent of blue light from electronic devices as well as 96 per cent of pollution. It forms a barrier on skin so heavy metals, carbon particles and chemical pollutants are not able to penetrate it. 

8 Sisley Paris SisleYouth Anti-Pollution Blue Light Shield, $245 (40 ml).

This fluid moisturiser contains plant-based sugar and organic buckwheat seed extract to restore hydration to skin. Ginkgo biloba leaf extract protects skin from free radical damage while shielding against blue light. 

9 Supergoop! Superscreen Daily Moisturizer SPF 40, $55 (50 ml).

This all-in-one moisturiser simultaneously hydrates and protects skin against UV rays, blue light and pollution. Blue-green algae extract leaves the skin hydrated without clogging pores while cerium shields against blue light from electronic devices.

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Turn to these blue light treatments to improve acne-prone skin

Using Optical Lens Array Technology, the Radium Aesthetics LED Blue Acne Clear, $108 (20 mins), delivers blue light at 415 nm to effectively eliminate the Propionibacterium acnes (P. acnes) bacteria. 

Suitable for sensitive skin, the IDS Aesthetics Cryo Therapeutics Treatment, $220 (45 mins), infuses skin with vitamins to strengthen and brighten the skin. The CryoProbe device cools skin with cryotherapy technology, and emits blue light to calm and soothe redness.

Using a combination of blue and red LED lights, the Aeras Acne Solutions Healite Light Therapy, $75 (20 mins), can help treat acne. Besides using blue light to eliminate the P. acnes bacteria, the addition of red LED light targets oil glands more effectively to control excess sebum production.