I first saw the Neutrogena Visibly Clear Light Therapy Acne Mask on one of Caroline Hirons’ videos.
The mask instantly appealed to me because I always prefer non-pharmaceutical interventions if possible.
Plus, this was something I could do at home, with very little effort.
How light therapy works
Distributed across the back of the mask are red and blue lights. The idea is that these work together to treat acne by targeting and killing the Proprionibacterium Acnes bacteria which can cause acne.
Blue light can kill the bacteria, and red light can penetrate the skin more deeply, and help shrink the oil-producing glands.
Neutrogena recommend that you use the mask if you have mild to moderate acne. They define this as:
Mild acne: up to some blackheads and whiteheads, a few pimples and pustules, no nodules.
Moderate acne: up to many blackheads and whiteheads, some pimples and pustules, only a few small nodules.
They do not recommend people with severe acne to use the mask. They define severe acne as:
Severe acne: up to many blackheads, whiteheads, pimples and pustules, some nodules.
They do, helpfully, provide images of what they consider to be mild, moderate and severe acne, but they wouldn’t show up clearly when I tried to photograph them.
How to use the acne mask
You connect the mask to the Activator that comes with it. Wash and dry your face to remove makeup and oil, then slip the mask on, hold the activator button and the treatment begins.
Each session lasts for 10 minutes, and the mask is self-timed so will just turn off when it’s done.
It is safe to use with your eyes open and has been clinically tested.
The light didn’t hurt my eyes at all, but I did find I couldn’t really see much while I had it on. My phone was brighter than the light of the mask, so I usually used my 10 minutes to catch up on Twitter.
One down-side is the need to re-purchase the Activator. The one you get with the mask lasts for 30 sessions, after which you need to re-purchase.
I would advise, if you are going to try this, to use it when you know you won’t be interrupted for 10 minutes. If you turn off the mask, you lose a session.
Overall, I’m afraid I haven’t found it to do anything for me. I have used it as directed every day but it has not really made a difference to my skin.
The only thing I can say is that it might have reduced the number of tiny milia-type spots that I get.
As you can see, the spots from the before pictures have faded slightly; however, I’ve got more elsewhere.
My 30-day picture shows some improvement in some areas; however, the condition of my skin fluctuates throughout the month and is now pretty much the same as the beginning.
There is no advice on how long to try the mask for. I’ve used it for 30 consecutive days and, I would assume, I should’ve seen some results in that time since a skin cycle is around 6 weeks.
I’m thinking about trying it for another month and buying another activator but, if there is still no significant difference, I will not repurchase.
I was really excited about the prospect of having something non-topical or pharmaceutical to use and I was quite sure it would work for me, as I don’t have severe acne according to the pictures provided in the info booklet that comes with the mask.
If you have very mild spotty skin rather than acne, and if acne is not a long-term problem for you, as it is for me, then I think this might work better for you.
If you do want to try it, the mask is available from Boots. Click the link here to have a look & purchase.
Do let me know if you’ve tried this one, or are interested in trying it. I’m happy to answer any questions you might have.