Tech Talk: Are Blue Light & Constant Device Use Affecting Your Skin?
Here’s how to identify and protect skin from tech-related aggressors
Do you wince every time you look at the screen time stats on your phone? With so much time spent indoors and WFH, too much tech use is inevitable. From endless social scrolling to Zoom calls to never-ending news feeds, give your skin a status update, and protect it from our "always-on" lives.
So, let's talk tech.
Though there are many factors affecting skin function and aging, the science of epigenetics (how lifestyle and environment impact how we age) is crucial for understanding skin health at every age. If we look at life a few millennia ago, early humans had one light source: the sun. What followed was fire, candlelight, oil, and of course, the lightbulb. But in modern times, we have light of every variety and type. Blue light is one of the newest known to affect skin health and cause skin damage.
Your smartphone, flat-screen TV, laptops and tablets, plus LED and fluorescent lights emit blue light, which has a high energy concentration and short wavelengths. Sunlight (or white light) has most of the colors on the spectrum but is also our most significant source of blue light. Blue light is essential to regulate our Circadian rhythms; it helps us stay alert and supports cognitive function. However, the effects of too much blue light can strain eyes, disrupt sleeping patterns, and for our concerns, cause premature aging of the skin.
So, if you can't cut back, fight back. Here are some recommendations to protect against blue light exposure for healthy, younger-looking skin:
Don’t scroll after dark.
Try your best to resist perusing Facebook in the still of the night. Looking at a screen in your blacked-out boudoir may strain your peepers, resulting in tired or dry eyes, double vision, headaches, and a sore neck. If you must burn the midnight oil, consider lowering the brightness of your screen to the nighttime setting, or choose an app like Twilight to filter blue light. And don't forget an eye cream that helps protect against and reduces the impact of blue light and other lifestyle stressors to the skin. Our Hyaluronic Tripeptide Gel-Cream for Eyes hydrates and moisturizes the delicate eye area while neutralizing the visible effects of blue light exposure. Plus, you’ll love the cooling effect that soothes and calms tired eyes and is an excellent choice for day and night.
Put the "screen" in your sunscreen.
SPF is crucial in preventing premature aging, but UV rays are just one source of environmental damage to the skin. Aggressors like pollution and long-term blue light exposure can also contribute to skin damage and premature aging.
In this digitally obsessed world, studies show we clock more than 10 hours of screen time per day. Thanks to modern skincare tech though, the latest SPFs on the market actually offer blue light protection as well as defense against UVA and UVB rays. We know it seems weird to put on sunscreen when you’re indoors but trust us — you’ll love all the skin-saving benefits it offers when you wear SPF inside.
With our latest launch, we added French Rice Germ to offer this type of protection. We also left behind the stickiness and white residue commonly associated with sunscreens’ past. We’re partial to our Full Screen™ Broad Spectrum SPF 30 Illuminating Finish for a gorgeous, instant glow, or our Full Screen™ Broad Spectrum SPF 30 Clear Finish, which is great for minimal types. If makeup isn’t your thing, reach for Full Screen™ Broad Spectrum SPF 30 100% Mineral Sunscreen Vanishing Tint; it boasts a hint of tint for an even-toned finish. Bonus points for all three being free of Oxybenzone and Octinoxate so they’re reef safe.
Now about that (tech) neck.
Whether you feel bad about your neck or not, taking care of this oft-forgotten skin is not just about losing the lines and wrinkles. With studies showing that people look down at their devices over 200 times a day (and probably more now), avoiding tech neck should be top of mind. From horizontal lines on the neck to an overall loosening and slackening of skin, don't let tech take a toll on your neck.
Our much beloved and #1 selling neck cream for the neck and décolleté*, TL Advanced™ Tightening Neck Cream PLUS, improves skin elasticity and provides visible lift while smoothing the appearance of horizontal neck lines and sagging skin. It also helps to even and brighten skin tone on the décolleté while boosting moisture for a stronger skin barrier.
Whether you’re working from home or heading back to the office, it’s unlikely your screen use will slow down. As a society, our futures may hold even more screen-time in store, so protecting ourselves and preventing damage now can help with skin health over time. We may not know what the next big app or tech trend will be or what version of phone we'll be coveting, but we do know that in this brave new world, a little self-love and extra defense can help us face what's next.
*Source: The NPD Group, Inc. / U.S. Prestige Beauty Total Department/Specialty, Skincare Product Dollar Sales, Neck/Décolleté Exclusive Cream. Excludes hybrid face/neck products. Jan. 2017–Mar. 2020 Combined.
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