The Best LED Face Masks to Help Boost Your Glowing Complexion
Dermatologists have used LEDs for decades to help reduce post-procedure inflammation and to galvanize the formation of face-firming collagen and elastin. Now, like so many in-office marvels that have been recalibrated and re-sized for at-home use (see: microdermabrasion, microneedling, etc), there’s an array of illuminated gizmos designed for us to use on our own faces while we watch Killing Eve. But should we invest? Light may seem so…light-weight; yet, say dermatologists, the spectrum of skin-improvements it can spark make it as powerful a beauty-regimen player as the most potent of serums.
“LED light converts electrical energy into non-coherent spectrums of light, which emit different wavelengths,” seen by the eye as colors, says Manhattan dermatologist Marnie Nussbaum, MD. Each wavelength penetrates a specific depth of skin tissue and possesses unique qualities that can affect various skin conditions. “Blue light sets off a chemical reaction that eliminates acne-causing bacteria (P. acnes),” says Nussbaum, while red light "promotes collagen and elastin production by stimulating the mitochondria and fibroblasts.” Additionally, “by promoting circulation, red light can reduce redness and inflammation of the skin.”
At-home devices are nowhere near as powerful as those used in dermatologists’ offices, but they can still deliver—if you stick with them. “They’re a great way to maintain the results from professional treatments,” says Nussbaum. “But the benefits of light therapy are cumulative, so for LED treatments to be effective, there needs to be adequate time spent under the light for continuous periods of several weeks.” In other words, compliance is key, and don’t expect to see an immediate transformation. Stick with it, though, and chances are you’ll glow forth with healthier, bouncier, and clearer skin.
Here, six of the best that the market has to offer.
1. LightStim for Wrinkles LED Light Therapy Device
SHOP NOW: LIGHTSTIMnordstrom.com, $249.00
This lightweight hand-held device is a bit more time-consuming (you move it over your face and hold it for three minutes in each treatment zone) than a mask, but it comes with a pedigree: It’s made by the company that created the first FDA-approved full-body LED bed, the likes of which are now a fixture in luxury spas and celebrity homes. The LightStim emits multiple wavelengths of glow-boosting, puffiness-deflating, and collagen-galvanizing light, and can be used in conjunction any favorite facial serum.
2. Light Shield
SHOP NOW: Skin Caredmhaesthetics.com, $2,800.00
Horizontal rows of diodes make this the most Tron-like in appearance, but ample (safety-tested) eye openings make it easy to scroll Instagram for like-minded mask obsessives while you use it. Recommended sessions are 10 minutes, with three light settings to address inflammation, acne, and hyperpigmentation.
3. The MMSphere
SHOP NOW: MMSkincaremarmurmetamorphosis.com, $495.00
Created by New York dermatologist Ellen Marmur, MD, the MM Sphere is unique not only in its donut-like shape: It can be synced with your phone to customize treatment, and used in conjunction with specially formulated masks (also from Marmur Metamorphosis) in order to super-charge efficacy. In addition to red, green, and blue light, there’s also an amber setting to help improve symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder.
4. Déesse Pro Mask Next Generation
SHOP NOW: shanidarden.com, $1,900.00
The Rolls Royce of DIY LED comes with a splurgy—but for those who swear by it, such as celebrity facialists Shani Darden and Joanna Czech—$1,900 price tag. The Deese packs in 770 LED lights and six treatment modes, including green light for brightening, and a combo of near-infrared, blue, and red to quell post-procedure inflammation.
5. SpectraLite™ Faceware Pro
SHOP NOW: Dr. Dennis Gross Skincaresephora.com, $435.00
This full-face LED mask makes you look like a glowing cyborg (potentially terrifying to children and pets, but also Instagram gold) for the 3 minutes a day you’ll need to wear it in order to see results. Developed by tech-wiz dermatologist Dennis Gross, MD, the mask has three settings—full-spectrum red light to address fine lines, boost collagen, and reduce redness; blue light to battle break-outs; and a dual red and blue light setting to tackle everything at once.
6. lumiNIR + WAND Bundle
SHOP NOW: Sunlightensunlighten.com, $499.00
One wand with a number of attachments that feature a specific light frequency for the condition you want to tackle. There's one for anti-aging, one for cell-repair, one for clearing acne—even one for pain relief, all of which you can use around your body, not just on your face. Targeted treatments based on your day-to-day needs, with the ease of clicking out an attachment. What could be better?
*This story originally appeared on Townandcountrymag.com
*Minor edits have been made by the Townandcountry.ph editors