LED Treatment Face Mask

If you follow celebrities on the internet you may have seen the deluxe spa version of this mask pop up in a story or snapchat. You may have wondered what is happening here? And then assumed it was something crazy and/or ridiculous. You would be half right. There is some science behind these goofy/scary looking things, but also it is ridiculous - so take it all with a grain of salt, because this is definitely a nice to have, not a need to have.

Here's how it works (according to Acne.org) :

At-home light therapy attempts to help prevent papules and pustules, the everyday "zits" that many people get that are inflamed and red. Smaller acne lesions such as non-inflamed whiteheads and blackheads, as well as severe acne lesions such as cysts and nodules tend to respond more poorly. Light therapy, usually administered with at-home devices is normally performed twice per day, and uses blue and sometimes blue + red light. When blue light reaches the sebaceous (oil) glands in the skin, it can help excite porphyrins, which are compounds inside acne bacteria.1-3 When activated by light, these porphyrins kill the bacteria from the inside out.4Red light, while it is less studied in at-home devices, penetrates deeper and may help reduce inflammation and improve healing.5-6 Certain light spectrums may also inhibit sebum (skin oil) production and lessen inflammation. Exactly how light therapy exerts its effects is still not understood.7 Tabletop light therapy devices normally require 10-15 minutes of treatment, with the user sitting very close to the device.

Now, I've tried the handheld ones but they are a serious pain in the ass. If you have more than one, cute pimple, it's basically more of an arm workout than a skin treatment. It's annoying. They are never charged when you need them, and for spot treating a single spot I honestly think you get more bang for your buck (and time) with a high frequency machine.

That said, I have found that light therapy, when done consistently (5 times per week - at least 5 minutes per area) actually has a  preventative effect on the formation of spots. That is what we want, right? Not trying to get rid of them, but trying to prevent them in the first place. That's where the mask comes in. It's hands free, which means I can wear it while working. Yes, I am wearing it right now. It has a timer, it has three colors, it has a plug (no charging or batteries!) and when I actually use it everyday I notice a difference in about two weeks of consistent use.

You can also blast your face with just the red light at high power for as long as you can stand it and it will impart an instant glow, akin to a good facial. I tried it on a few willing friend/volunteers and they confirmed the instant "radiance boost" but I'm wondering if a similar effect could be achieved by just sitting over a steaming bowl of water like my mom used to recommend (about 100x cheaper than this device...)

It's also supposed to help with Seasonal Effective Disorder (it is light after all!) and I do find that I have to use it in the morning, because I can't sleep after I use it. I couldn't find any reputable sources to back this up, so take it with a grain of salt.

The downside is of course in the consistency. It can get claustrophobic. It can get hot and a little sweaty (I try to wipe it down with bleach wipes every 2-3 uses) and of course, you look like a horror movie villain while you are wearing it. The novelty of the mask selfie wears off fast. Trust.

I also find it can be a little snug, but the comfort level is increased by about a billion x if you wear it over big headphones. My awesome facial playlist also helps.

So would I recommend it? If you've got the time and the bank (it runs about $100) and you know you can commit to doing something every single day then yes. If you get S.A.D. and light zits this may be what has been missing your whole life.

LED Treatment Face Mask - available for free one day shipping if you need a last minute gift for a beauty junkie!