Wait, What? Electronic Devices Accelerate the Aging Process

The pandemic has had people glued to their screens for a long time now, and it’s not over yet. Whether it is your laptop, smartphone, or TV, if you’re like most people, you’ve been spending more time on your devices lately. It’s unavoidable.

You’ve probably heard that the blue light emitted by the screens wreaks havoc on sleep patterns, but did you know that it also has negative effects on your skin? If this study from the Journal of Biomedical Physics and Engineering (JBPE) is correct, the high-energy visible light from our LED screens contributes to premature skin aging and could be giving you more wrinkles with every selfie you snap.

Recent studies have found that blue light released by our beloved devices stimulates the production of free radicals, which are largely responsible for sped up aging. Free radicals work by causing accelerated degradation of elastic and collagen, leading to hyperpigmentation and reduced skin elasticity.

That’s not all, either. Blue light exposure can also cause skin inflammation. Though milder, the effect is similar to when you spend too much time under the sun without protection. The outermost layers of your skin can become visibly damaged from excess exposure.

Xenon Photo Flashes vs. LEDs

Xenon flash tubes are commonly used in white LEDs and flashbulbs in digital cameras. White LEDs are mostly used in camera phones, and the xenon flash is used in digital cameras across all price ranges. LEDs offer a range of advantages over xenon flashes on a technological level, but the peak spectral intensity for LED lights lies in the blue region. And it’s that blue light that’s harmful to the skin.

In short, while taking selfies and videos with your LED right might be more fun, traditional photography is probably better for your skin.

Preventive Measures

Don’t worry, there’s no need to cancel your streaming subscriptions and eschew technology in favor of looking out the window (which could still damage your skin). Instead, protect your eyes and skin from the blue light emitted by your devices with preventative measures such as these:

1. Wear Blue Light Blocking Glasses

The next time you see an ad for blue light blockers, don’t scoff. Blue light doesn’t just affect the skin adversely, it also affects your eyes and the delicate skin around them. Your best bet for protecting your eyes is to wear glasses with blue-light blocking lenses to protect this whole area of your face.

2. Use Sunscreen

It might sound crazy, but some experts recommend that you wear sunscreen when operating your laptop, watching TV, or using your phone/ If you want to avoid harmful chemicals, steer clear of sunscreen containing avobenzone or oxybenzone as the main ingredient in favor of more natural options that use minerals like zinc or titanium oxide.

3. Use Antioxidant Products

If you spend a lot of time on your electronic devices, you might want to invest in a high-quality skincare routine. Serums and other skin products that contain anti-oxidants as their main ingredient can help fight oxidative stress. Look for products that contain hyaluronic acid and vitamins A, C, and E. Apply these products as recommended to keep your skin protected and youthful.

4. Use Night Mode

The easiest way to avoid exposing your skin to blue light is by using the night mode on your device. Night mode provides a gentle, warm-toned display light that can reduce the effect of blue light.

So, although screens keep us entertained for hours and allow many of us to pay the bills, they can impact our skin in ways you’d never expect. It’s highly recommended to limit your screen time and adopt other preventive measures to control your exposure so you can look youthful for years to come.

Leave a Reply