What is Red Light Therapy, and How Does It Work?

Red light therapy (RLT) uses a specific natural wavelength of light (630-660nm) for therapeutic benefits which are both medical and cosmetic.

Light can penetrate the top layers of our skin and directly influence the functions of the cells there, increasing the production of collagen and elastin. It increases the supply of oxygen to the skin as well as improving the circulation. All these processes serve to repair damaged tissue and thus improves the skin’s texture as well as enhancing wound healing. Red light can also decrease inflammation and bacteria as well as help to treat pre-cancerous lesions.

It's important to note that this particular light wavelength is different to the UV rays from the sun or tanning beds, and there is no increased risk of cancer or UV damage.

So, specifically, red light therapy can be used in the following ways:

  1. Reducing inflammation
    When skin has been damaged by underlying skin conditions such as rosacea or even following an intense skin treatment such as a peel or microneedling, the RLT helps to calm and reduce redness.
  2. Improving acne
    RLT can effectively reach the sebaceous glands, reducing inflammation and excessive oil production as well as helping to destroy bacteria. Of note, acne and sensitive skin are often associated due to the involvement of an impaired skin barrier in both conditions, which can be further aggravated by certain topical acne treatments. Therefore, a non-topical, chemical-free treatment that is well tolerated by patients with self-perceived sensitive skin for use in the treatment of acne is highly desirable.
  3. Decreasing the signs of ageing
    As a result of sun exposure, exposure to the free radicals in environmental pollutants, natural ageing and smoking, collagen and elastin production are reduced leading to a loss of elasticity – and the skin appears to sag and develop wrinkles. A course of red light treatment has been shown to increase collagen density and to result in visible reduction in wrinkles as well as improving the skin’s texture and complexion.
  4. Promoting wound healing
    Research suggests that red light can accelerate the healing process and minimise any scarring by increasing collagen production and enhancing the blood supply.

So, in summary, when your skin cells are hit with the correct red light wavelengths, a host of regenerative effects occur, leading to potential benefits which include a clearer, calmer complexion, younger-looking skin and diminished scarring.

Visit our light therapy page to find out how Temple Clinic can help improve your skin.


Back to Insights