New to the world of light therapy? It’s easy to get overwhelmed by the amount of information out there. And even after sifting through thousands of reviews and search results to choose the perfect at-home treatment device, you may discover the product is no longer available. How frustrating!
We understand you’re in a hurry to start this potentially life-changing treatment. That’s why we’ve aggregated the best acne light therapy devices available for purchase right now. Once you get a general sense of their features and drawbacks, you can make an informed decision about which is best for you.
Remember, the best option for you will depend on your unique situation and overall goals, so read carefully!
How to Find the Best Acne Light Therapy Device
Clinically speaking, it’s tough to say which light therapy device definitively provides the best results without conducting a fair scientific comparison through unbiased studies. Even if we did so, however, the results would still depend on each individual participant.
The type of acne that needs treatment, the severity of the acne breakouts, and a person’s lifestyle choices and skincare routine can all skew results. Other important factors include a person’s hormones and gender. Women are more likely to experience adult acne than men, for example, as women are more likely to have the fluctuating hormones that lead to breakouts.
Keeping these factors in mind, you’ll discover the best acne light therapy device by comparing products from well-established brands and reading reviews from users whose acne is similar to yours.
Here are the three best FDA-cleared acne light therapy devices available today.
The Luminance RED Acne Device
Users have seen impressive results from the Luminance RED Acne Device, a handheld spot treatment that provides targeted blue and red light therapy. Participants in an in-house case study saw a 77% reduction in pimples with just two treatment sessions delivered within 24 hours.
The device applies blue light first, which destroys the acne-causing bacteria on your skin in a 90-second treatment. Then, 90 seconds of red light promotes cell turnover and healing and reduces inflammation.
If you’re unsure about this device, the manufacturer offers a six-month, 100% money-back guarantee, making the Luminance RED Acne Device a virtually risk-free purchase!
LightStim for Acne
LightStim for Acne is another handheld spot treatment device that uses both blue and red light therapy to treat and prevent breakouts. You may have seen this device featured on the popular Netflix series Skin Decision. It’s also a go-to for celebrities like Vanessa Hudgens and Kate Bosworth.
Instead of a precision design, the LightStim features a larger treatment head that emits different wavelengths of light simultaneously. According to the manufacturer, 100% of participants in their in-house study saw positive results in just two to four weeks.
As of June 1, 2022, the LightStim device no longer comes with a 90-day satisfaction guarantee, so it may be one of the more risky investments on today’s list. To balance that, however, LightStim is also one of the less expensive top options out there.
Dr Dennis Gross DRx SpectraLite FaceWare Pro
Unlike the previous two devices, the DRx SpectraLite FaceWare Pro is a face mask that emits light through 162 light-emitting diodes (LEDs): 100 red and 62 blue.
The convenient mask design straps on and treats your entire face at once, allowing you to prepare a meal, surf the web, or read a book while targeting your acne. Celebrities like Charlotte McKinney and even Jimmy Fallon have shared images of using the SpectraLite as part of their skincare routine.
Because the SpectraLite FaceWare Pro is covered under accident protection, you can return it for a full refund up to 30 days after purchase.
Honorable Mention: Neutrogena Light Therapy Acne Spot Treatment
The Neutrogena Light Therapy Acne Spot Treatment is a small handheld device that’s easy to use and convenient for travel. It provides targeted spot treatments through a gentle combination of blue and red light therapy for sensitive skin.
While most handheld devices need to be used twice a day for optimal effectiveness, this device can be safely used up to three times a day. Treatment sessions last only two minutes.
While the Spot Treatment device has been popular, Neutrogena no longer seems to sell it on their company website. You can still purchase the Acne Spot Treatment through other retailers, including Walmart and Amazon, but no warranty is available.
Neutrogena also used to offer a popular light therapy product called the Neutrogena Light Therapy Acne Mask. Based on the illuMask Anti-Acne Light Therapy Mask, the Neutrogena Acne Mask was voluntarily recalled in 2019 “out of an abundance of caution” after the company received complaints from approximately 0.02% buyers. These buyers expressed concerns over eye issues, such as blurred vision, eye pain, and seeing spots, that they believed to be related to the Acne Mask.
You can read more about the reasons behind the Neutrogena mask recall here.
The Big Bonus of the Best Acne Light Therapy Devices: Wrinkle Reduction
We all know that wrinkles come with age, but acne itself can cause a facial phenomenon known as acne wrinkles. When an acne breakout heals, it can leave behind dark spots, scars, or even tiny craters on your skin. These small craters worsen as your skin ages and can make natural wrinkles appear more severe.
Fortunately, light therapy can help! More specifically, red light therapy has been shown to increase blood flow and collagen production in the skin. Together, these help plump the face, restore a youthful complexion, and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Since the best acne light therapy devices use both blue and red light for treatment, you get the double benefit of acne fighting and wrinkle reduction at the same time — whether those wrinkles are caused by acne or age!
All the devices above fall into this category, though the ones with a larger coverage area will offer more total wrinkle-reduction benefits. There are also numerous light therapy products designed specifically for their anti-aging benefits, including wrinkle reduction.
Best Acne Light Therapy Device: Final Thoughts
Like any new frontier, the world of light therapy devices can be tumultuous. Some products appear, become popular, then disappear again, like the Neutrogena Acne Mask. Others pop up from dubious sources, and user reviews show problems with product quality, effectiveness, and longevity.
To find the best acne light therapy device for you, stick with trustworthy companies that have a history of offering quality products, and always pay close attention to user reviews. Do the buyers’ breakouts sound similar to your own? That should give you some insight into how the product will work for you.
You can also search for clinical studies involving the device you’re researching. Quite a few studies have featured commercial, at-home light therapy devices and are available to read online.