A recent study by Unilever showed that 64% of people are unaware of the effect that blue light can have on their skin, leading the company to raise awareness of the negative impacts.
According to Unilever, 60% of consumers are spending more than six hours a day in front of a digital device. Five working days on a phone or laptop can reportedly have the same impact on the skin as spending 25 minutes in midday sun without any protection.
The blue light emitted from screens can induce both immediate and persistent pigmentation, which can still be present after three months. The rays can also inhibit melatonin generation, increase stress hormone levels and excite nerves, which can disturb sleeping patterns and circadian rhythm.
Consumers who are exposed to 30 hours of blue light from a smartphone or laptop screen can increase their inflammation level in skin cells by 40%.
Unilever suggests consumers use products with the following ingredients to protect themselves against blue light:
- Optics, which minimize visible light to prevent skin tanning
- Zinc Oxide, which creates a protective barrier for the skin
- Vitamin C, which protects and recovers skin cells from blue-light-induced oxidative damage
- Vitamin B6, which combats visible-light-induced antioxidant depletion and effectively suppresses oxidative stress caused by visible light
- Niacinamide, which restores skin surface cells from blue-light-induced oxidative stress and provides strong protection against skin damage caused by blue light
Samantha Tucker-Samaras, global vice president science & technology, beauty and personal care said:
Long-term exposure to blue light has the potential to have a significant negative impact on people’s well-being, and we’re concerned people are simply unaware of the risks.
It is highly likely that exposure to blue light has increased this year, as many previously office-based workers have increased their time in front of a screen, as face-to-face meetings have moved to virtual. People should be looking for skin care products loaded with antioxidants, as well as niacinamide and zinc oxide. Limiting screen time also helps, not only for our overall skin health, but our general well-being too.