Every so often, a new skincare trend surfaces on our social media feeds that seem equally as satisfying as it is promising. In this case, red light therapy has been gaining popularity due to its non-invasive and painless approach. With benefits like reduction in wrinkles, acne scars, and fine lines, it has us asking: Is red light therapy (RLT) the beauty secret that you should know, or just a passing fad?
What Is Red Light Therapy?
Red light therapy (RLT) is a treatment that uses low-level red light wavelengths to help promote skin health, reduce inflammation, and relieve pain. The treatment is typically performed by exposing your skin to a red light lamp, device, or laser to your skin.
Within the cells of our skin are tiny powerhouses called mitochondria that soak up the red light and generate more energy. Experts say the benefits of red and near-infrared light therapy on a cellular level, include promoting the growth and function of mitochondria and promoting wound healing.
How Does Red Light Therapy Work?
Red light therapy works by penetrating the skin at a depth of around 5mm, where it stimulates the production of collagen and ATP (adenosine triphosphate). Collagen is a protein that gives skin its elasticity and helps to reduce the appearance of wrinkles, while ATP is a molecule that provides energy to cells, which helps them to function more efficiently. So you can kiss those acne scars, and premature fine lines goodbye.
What Are The Benefits of Red Light Therapy?
One of the most significant benefits of RLT is its ability to improve skin health. It has been shown to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and improve the texture and tone of the skin. It can also help to reduce the appearance of scars, stretch marks, and age spots.
RLT has also been found to have anti-inflammatory properties, which can help to reduce pain and swelling in joints and muscles. This makes it an effective treatment for conditions such as arthritis, fibromyalgia, and other chronic pain conditions.
Beyond the enhancements it can make to your skin, RLT can also help to improve sleep quality. We know that getting our beauty rest is just as essential to our skin health as our skin routine, so using red light to stimulate the production of melatonin, can be an impactful way to regulate sleep patterns and reduce insomnia.
Is Red Light Therapy Worth Trying?
Although there is promising research and results around the usage of, according to experts, it is still uncertain whether red light therapy (RLT) is effective for all of its claimed uses. Despite this, the benefits that have been linked to this device are reason enough to test it out on your own.
If you’re looking to get try red light therapy for yourself, there are many at-home devices that you can use to test out the treatment. However, it’s always recommended that you consult a board-certified dermatologist prior to attempting red light therapy on your own.
Still, if red light therapy sounds like it could be the next best skincare treatment you need in your routine, we’ve provided a list of the best masks, wands, and devices to get your hands on.
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Aley Arion is a writer and digital storyteller from the South, currently living in sunny Los Angeles. Her site, yagirlaley.com, serves as a digital diary to document personal essays, cultural commentary, and her insights into the Black Millennial experience. Follow her at @yagirlaley on all platforms!
This article is in partnership with Sensodyne.
Our teeth are connected to so many things - our nutrition, our confidence, and our overall mood. We often take for granted how important healthy teeth are, until issues like tooth sensitivity or gum recession come to remind us. Like most things related to our bodies, prevention is the best medicine. Here are five things you can do immediately to improve your oral hygiene, prevent tooth sensitivity, and avoid dental issues down the road.
1) Go Easy On the Rough Brushing: Brushing your teeth is and always will be priority number one in the oral hygiene department. No surprises there! However, there is such a thing as applying too much pressure when brushing…and that can lead to problems over time. Use a toothbrush with soft bristles and brush in smooth, circular motions. It may seem counterintuitive, but a gentle approach to brushing is the most effective way to clean those pearly whites without wearing away enamel and exposing sensitive areas of the teeth.
2) Use A Desensitizing Toothpaste: As everyone knows, mouth pain can be highly uncomfortable; but tooth sensitivity is a whole different beast. Hot weather favorites like ice cream and popsicles have the ability to trigger tooth sensitivity, which might make you want to stay away from icy foods altogether. But as always, prevention is the best medicine here. Switching to a toothpaste like Sensodyne’s Sensitivity & Gum toothpaste specifically designed for sensitive teeth will help build a protective layer over sensitive areas of the tooth. Over time, those sharp sensations that occur with extremely cold foods will subside, and you’ll be back to treating yourself to your icy faves like this one!
3) Floss, Rinse, Brush. (And In That Order!): Have you ever heard the saying, “It’s not what you do, but how you do it”? Well, the same thing applies to taking care of your teeth. Even if you are flossing and brushing religiously, you could be missing out on some of the benefits simply because you aren’t doing so in the right order. Flossing is best to do before brushing because it removes food particles and plaque from places your toothbrush can’t reach. After a proper flossing sesh, it is important to rinse out your mouth with water after. Finally, you can whip out your toothbrush and get to brushing. Though many of us commonly rinse with water after brushing to remove excess toothpaste, it may not be the best thing for our teeth. That’s because fluoride, the active ingredient in toothpaste that protects your enamel, works best when it gets to sit on the teeth and continue working its magic. Rinsing with water after brushing doesn’t let the toothpaste go to work like it really can. Changing up your order may take some getting used to, but over time, you’ll see the difference.
4) Stay Hydrated: Upping your water supply is a no-fail way to level up your health overall, and your teeth are no exception to this rule. Drinking water not only helps maintain a healthy pH balance in your mouth, but it also washes away residue and acids that can cause enamel erosion. It also helps you steer clear of dry mouth, which is a gateway to bad breath. And who needs that?
5) Show Your Gums Some Love: When it comes to improving your smile, you may be laser-focused on getting your teeth whiter, straighter, and overall healthier. Rightfully so, as these are all attributes of a megawatt smile; but you certainly don’t want to leave gum health out of the equation. If you neglect your gums, you’ll start to notice the effects of plaque buildup, which can irritate the gums and cause gingivitis, the earliest stage of gum disease. Seeing blood while brushing and flossing is a tell-tale sign that your gums are suffering. You may also experience gum recession — a condition where the gum tissue surrounding your teeth pulls back, exposing more of your tooth. Brushing at least twice a day with a gum-protecting toothpaste like Sensodyne Sensitivity and Gum, coupled with regular dentist visits, will keep your gums shining as bright as those pearly whites.
It’s almost as if most of the traditional sugary sodas that we grew up loving were swapped out for most health-conscious alternatives. If you walk into any grocery store and find yourself in the soft drink aisle, what you’ll discover is a new, fast-growing selection of gut-friendly drinks that are improving our digestive health, one sip at a time.
Probiotics are live microorganisms, often referred to as "good" bacteria, that help maintain a balanced and healthy microbial environment in our digestive system. With probiotic beverages that contain live beneficial bacteria, these drinks deliver probiotics to the digestive system in a convenient and enjoyable way.
Although it may seem as if probiotic sodas have had an instant surge in popularity, these low-sugar, tummy-soothing beverages have earned their position by tasting good and being good for you. From their support in maintaining good bacteria in the gut to keeping your immune system balanced and in check, there’s truly nothing like sipping your way to better gut health.
From fermented seltzers to probiotic pops, we’ve got the best bubbly, gut-focused sodas for you to try.
This sparkling soda from Poppi is packed with the good stuff to keep your immune system boosted, your stomach less bloated, and your digestive system flowing.
Flavor and fuel for your tummy, who could ask for a better duo to keep your digestive system happy?
Looking for a soda that puts your gut health first? Mayawell has all the good prebiotic fiber to keep your immune system strong and metabolism burning.
We love a silly little drink that’s serious about giving your gut the good bacteria it needs, with both prebiotics and probiotics packed in every can.
The secret behind KeVita’s sparkling refreshers is that it’s been fermented with their water kefir culture to keep the “good bacteria” happy and working for you.
Whether it's for the taste or its endless gut benefits, OLIPOP is providing a healthier alternative to sugary sodas with high-fiber ingredients that support your digestive system.
Sipping on your favorite soda is even better when you know that it’s juicy, fruity, and made with organic spices and herbs, along with billions of live probiotics that are as soothing as it is satisfying.
If you’re looking for a seltzer that’s good for you and loaded with two billion probiotics in every can, you’re gonna love these seltzers from Humm.
Featured image by Stefania Pelfini, La Waziya Photography/Getty Images