If I told you that studies have shown that a whopping 90pc of all skin ageing occurs from exposure to light rays, would you be surprised to learn that our digital devices also emit rays that have now been shown to create skin damage? How? High-energy visible (HEV) rays – aka blue light – from our laptops, TV screens, phones, electronic devices, fluorescent and LED lights can damage our skin and cause visible signs of ageing (including uneven skin tone, dullness, hyperpigmentation, fine lines and wrinkles).
his is a relatively new phenomena and research is still ongoing, but skincare brand SkinCeuticals recently teamed up with John Hopkins University to run a clinical trial to quantifiably measure how HEV light affects our skin. They found that it increases pigmentation in the skin by 4.3pc in lighter skin tones (Fitzpatrick I & II), and by 18.1pc in darker skin tones (Fitzpatrick V & VI) – in other words, the darker your skin tone, the more HEV will affect your skin.
With so many of us using our devices more than usual these days, is there something we can do to combat this exposure to blue light, easily, efficiently and as fuss-free as possible? Yes!
By simply popping a mineral, physical sunscreen every day on our faces and backs of hands, we can shield our skin from not only the blue light from our screens indoors, but also from sun exposure outdoors. It’s a win-win situation that protect our skin health all through the day.
For indoor and outdoor protection from sun damage and HEV (blue light), try this mineral-based all-in-one daily cream that acts as a moisturiser, skin protector and foundation all in one. This award-winning option from Bare Minerals is actually the No1-selling tinted moisturiser in the UK, giving skin a pearly, ‘lit-from-within’ BB glow (not full coverage), combined with rock-solid protection. This multi-tasker acts to smooth, hydrate, even out skintone, and shield against both blue light from our devices and as a sunscreen outside. Bare Minerals Complexion Rescue Defence Radiant Tint Protective Moisturiser, €45, from arnotts.ie, brownthomas.com, millies.ie and Boots nationwide.
Physical sunscreens used to be thick, took an age to absorb into the skin and gave faces a white-as-a-ghost appearance. New formulations have changed all that, and this new Dermalogica physical screen is one of the best I’ve tested. It protects against UVA/UVB and blue light from our devices, sinks in in seconds and is completely invisible on the face. It’s also suitable for sensitive skin. Dermalogica Invisible Physical Defence SPF 30, €59, from department stores.
I think you’re going to love this brand new beaut from La Roche Posay. Why? It’s a foundation with five matte shade options that acts as hybrid skincare and mineral skin protector – and at a brilliant price. This has a pared-back ingredient list (using only one filter – titanium dioxide) including skin-plumping hyaluronic acid, Vitamin E and pollution protectors. This is a full-coverage foundation that still keeps its glow and also gives a whopping 50 SPF (sun protection factor) and guards from IR (infra red) and blue light. It’s hypoallergenic, so even sensitive faces will love it. La Roche Posay Mineral One 50+ Daily Cream, €21, from pharmacies nationwide.
This a super lightweight, fast-absorbing primer cheats your way to a smoother face and gives foundation a brilliant ‘canvas’ to go over. This is also a broad-spectrum skin protector that is invisible on the skin, and leaves your foundation to do its work. It’s also paraben-, sulfate-, phthalate- and mineral oil-free. Bobbi Brown Primer Plus Protection, €28, from arnotts.ie, brownthomas.com, theloop.ie and selfridges.com.
I’ve covered this tinted moisturiser from Avène before on the beauty page, but to be honest it deserves another mention because it’s still one of the absolute best options available – especially for dry, dehydrated, mature skin that’s thirsting for some TLC and much-needed glow. This is a super-light, glowy, dewy sunscreen that’s wholly mineral based (ie guards skin also against HEV), with a warm tinted undertone that gives skin a teeny bit of coverage and way more life. Avène Mineral Fluid SPF, €21, from pharmacies nationwide.
This is a mousse-type texture designed for all skin types but much loved by those with dry skin. This primer blurs fine lines, minimises the look of pores and fakes your way to a filtered-looking face, but more importantly also defends our skin against blue light and environmental pollutants. Can be used alone or under your usual foundation. Cover FX Water Cloud Primer, €35, from spacenk.com, harveynichols.com and beautybay.com.