What is the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning?
You probably snooze the alarm and go back to sleep or spend 30 minutes scrolling on the screen. Just like any other addiction, screen time can also become an addiction. It can cause damage to both mental and physical well-being if not kept in check.
The screens have taken over our lives since the past year. We are using our phones and laptops more than ever. Be it for work or taking a break to watch some Netflix, the screen has become our best friend or our worst enemy?
There is no denying that increased screen time affects our mental health, eyes, sleep problems, and much more. This is why in today’s digitized world, increased screen time is a matter of concern. It is not only affecting your mental health but also your skin. And your skin deserves so much better than that.
What is blue light?
We have all heard about the harmful UV rays from the sun, that’s where sunscreen comes into the picture to save the day. But over time scientists have discovered that those are not the only rays that harm the skin. Each colored light has a different wavelength. The shorter the wavelength, the more harmful it is for your health. Violet and blue light have the lowest wavelength, i.e 400 nm, and 470 nm respectively.
All digital devices emit this blue light including TVs, smartphones, laptops, and tablets. According to an article, the average screen time per user in India was 6 hours and 36 minutes in 2020. And this number keeps going up as work from home continues to be the only practical way to deal with the pandemic.
How does blue light affect our skin?
There are several studies that show how blue light affects our sleep hormone; melatonin. And studies have further suggested that constant exposure to blue light can also affect the skin. People with darker skin experience pigmentation, dark spots, redness, and swelling.
This is because blue light penetrates right into the skin and causes multiple reactions. It also breaks down collagen which is the most essential protein for your skin, making up to 25% to 35% of the whole-body protein content. Less collagen means more dry skin and more wrinkles.
Blue light induces oxidative stress, which is defined as an imbalance between the production of reactive oxygen species and antioxidant defenses. This blue light-induced oxidative stress damage skin cells and can also speed up the aging process as the antioxidant defenses might fail. As blue light penetrates deep into the skin, it also affects other essential proteins and leads to wrinkles and loose skin.
All in all, blue light is the cause of premature aging, pigmentation, dark spots, wrinkles, dry skin. This does sound scary, which is why blue light isn’t the light that you want to find at the end of the tunnel.
Here is how you can protect your skin from the harmful effects of blue light:
1. Reduce your screen time
The best way to prevent damage from blue light is to reduce your screen time. There are plenty of apps that help you put a timer on your phone and block any activity. Trust us, you will be doing your skin a favor by decreasing screen time. You can also install a blue light filter app on your phone or tablet. When the sun goes down, make use of the night mode on your phone. This won’t eliminate blue light but will definitely reduce the exposure.
2. Invest in skincare
Antioxidants and vitamin C are the two main ingredients that will help your skin fight the effects of blue light. Choose skincare and make-up products that are enriched with vitamin C and antioxidants. These ingredients protect the skin and avoid further damage. DeBelle Skin Moisturizer Orange Blaze is naturally enriched with orange extract, contains antioxidants, and provides UV protection which is a must-have in your skincare routine!
3. Always wear sunscreen
Blue light is not only emitted from digital devices but also from the sun. Make sure you always wear sunscreen before you step out. Dermatologists recommend using a sunscreen with at least an SPF of 30 which blocks more than 95% of the ultraviolet and blue light.
So to answer your question, yes blue light from your screen does affect your skin health in more ways than one. It directly harms the skin by affecting skin cells and collagen and also indirectly by disrupting your sleep cycle. However, the effects are minimal but can go out of hand with long exposure to blue light, especially with the combined effect of blue light from sun rays.
Your skin will be healthy only when you make certain changes in your lifestyle. So, be good to your skin, you will wear it every day for the rest of your life!