How To Use Red Light Therapy At Home For Best Results
Red light therapy has become a popular way to improve skin health and reduce the signs of ageing. It’s also used to help with various other health issues, such as muscle pain, seasonal affective disorder and acne. With the increasing popularity of red light therapy and the availability of purchasing RLT devices, many people are looking for ways to use RLT at home. But can you get the same results as if you'd done your treatments in-office? It’s entirely possible if you follow these simple tips!
Determine Your Treatment Area/Condition
Many people wonder how to choose the best red light therapy device but this is often dependent on what you are treating. For example, if you're hoping to improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, you'll want to focus on using the red light therapy device on your face, in which case a device like the Aduro LED Mask would be the best choice for you. If you're dealing with sun spots on your arms, chest and legs, you will need to treat a larger area of your body and choose larger red light therapy panels.
Once you've determined the treatment area, it's important to understand how long you need to use the device in order to see results. Generally, most people will see some improvement after just a few sessions of red light therapy. However, for more stubborn conditions, it may take longer to see results. Be patient and consistent with your treatments, and you should start to see some positive changes over time.
How To Use Red Light Therapy At Home
As a cutting-edge treatment for anti-ageing and a host of other conditions, red light therapy is non-invasive, safe and pain-free. But some preparation and diligence is required in order to see the best results. Now that you have chosen your red light therapy device, there are a few important points you should consider:
Prepare Your Skin
It is always best to start with clean skin, as certain cosmetic products can affect how the red light penetrates your skin. Cleanse with a non-greasy formula and skip the creams, make-up and sunscreen to ensure maximum absorption of the red light. These products could block your pores and decrease the effectiveness of your treatments.
Follow The Recommended Frequency
Many people also wonder about red light therapy frequency and while this varies between devices and the condition you are treating, the general recommendation is a minimum of 2-3 times a week. For optimal results 3 - 5 times a week brings better results. If you've got the time and are after faster results, you can choose to use the red light therapy device daily, even multiple times a day.
Session duration is generally 5 to 10 minutes but can be up to 20 minutes long depending on the area of treatment and your condition. For example, a stubborn muscle ache may respond faster to daily or twice daily 20-minute sessions than short, sporadic sessions.
So, I bet you are wondering, can you overdo red light therapy? Yes and no. Yes, in that you won’t reap any additional benefits from a one-hour session than you would a 20-minute session. No, in that it is a very safe treatment with no side effects or risks.
Use Your Device At The Correct Distance
Red light therapy is most effective when used at the correct distance from the device. For the treatment of skin issues, it is recommended to keep a distance of between 30 cm and 90cm. For stubborn areas or where deeper light penetration is required, you can position yourself 15 cm to 30cm from your red light therapy panels. This is the optimal red light therapy distance to keep for the best results.
If you were wondering, "does red light therapy work through clothes?" The answer is no! If you are treating areas of the body or full body, the areas will need to be fully unclothed to be properly exposed to red light. Clothing can block the light from entering the skin.
Don't Stare Straight Into The Light
While red light therapy is generally safe, there are a few things you should keep in mind if you're thinking about using it at home. Don't stare directly into the light source, as this could damage your eyes, especially if they are sensitive to light.
Set A Schedule & Reminders
If you want to use red light therapy at home for the best results, it is important to set a schedule and reminders. By setting a schedule, you will ensure that you are consistent with your treatments. Reminders can help you stay on track with your treatments and make sure that you do not miss any sessions.
It is important to find a time that works for you to do your treatments to improve adherence. You may need to experiment with different times of day to find a time you are most likely to stick to.
Take Progress Pictures
Because results can be subtle at first, it is important to take progress pictures to remain consistent. This will help you track your progress and see if the treatment is working for you.
If you are not sure how to take progress pictures, here are some tips:
1. Use a digital camera or smartphone.
2. Take a picture of your face or the area you are treating from the same angle each time.
3. Use natural lighting whenever possible.
4. Take pictures every week or two weeks for the best results.
Consider Combining Treatment With Supplements and Skin Products
When it comes to skincare, there are a lot of products and treatments out there that promise to give you the best results. But what works for one person might not work for another. So, it's important to find what works best for you and your skin type.
- Using a quality anti-wrinkle skin cream or serum like Retinol can also help maximise the effects of red light therapy.
- Products containing Green Tea Extract can bring about results 10x faster than light therapy alone, according to the American Chemical Society.
- Supplements like collagen or vitamin C can help improve the appearance of your skin by boosting skin hydration and collagen production.
Other Useful Tips
1. Follow the manufacturer's recommendations: Every device is different, so it's important to follow the manufacturer's instructions on how to use it safely and effectively.
2. Stay Hydrated: Dehydration can lead to dull, sullen skin and muscle aches, which will not positively contribute to your progress. Staying hydrated can help amplify results and improve your overall health.
3. Be patient: Don't expect overnight results - it takes time for skin changes to occur from red light therapy as well as any of the other red light therapy benefits. However, you should start seeing some improvement in your skin within 4-6 weeks of consistent treatment.
Armed with this information, you should have a good understanding of how to use red light therapy at home for the best results. Here are some final takeaways:
- It is important to choose an FDA-approved red light therapy device that emits the right wavelength of light for your specific needs.
- Be sure to follow the manufacturer's instructions carefully when using red light therapy at home.
- You may need to use red light therapy several times a week for best results.
American Chemical Society. "LED Light And Green Tea Cream Smooth Facial Wrinkles." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 September 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/09/090909103013.htm>.
Ablon, Glynis. “Phototherapy with Light Emitting Diodes: Treating a Broad Range of Medical and Aesthetic Conditions in Dermatology.” The Journal of clinical and aesthetic dermatology vol. 11,2 (2018): 21-27.