Whether it was working from home, or tuning into binge watching on OTT platforms or staying connected with friends and family through phones and tabs, they became an inherent part of our lives.
And they still are. Despite knowing that prolonged exposure to blue light emitted from these gadgets can cause irreversible damage to the skin, we still indulge in mindless scrolling. Let’s not even get to the bit where there is damage to the eyes as well.
When the lockdown started over two years ago, we stayed glued to our gadgets keeping ourselves updated with the happenings around the world; a desperate attempt to keep up with what was happening because we were unable to go about with our ‘normal’ lives.
What experts opine is that this significant level of exposure to blue light, will slowly start to show on our faces.
But First, What’s the Big Deal About Blue Light?
The ability of blue light to penetrate deeper into the skin causes it to cause stress. And with the increasing dependency on gadgets and digital devices, it is slowly causing our skin to age faster and this is common in our generation.
What Are the Likely Skin Concerns With Digital Ageing and Exposure to Blue Light?
There are many possible long-term effects that come with the exposure to blue light and these may or may not be limited to:
Dryness of the skin: Since the blue light has the ability to penetrate deeper into the skin, it can cause dehydration. Extreme dryness of the skin can make it look sallow and dull.
Can cause hyperpigmentation: These electronic screens produce a lot of heat, which causes a rise in the body temperature. This heat then activates melanocytes, causing the body to create a dark pigment.
Inflamed and flaky skin: All digital devices have an electrostatic field which tends to interfere with the natural acid and the protective barrier of the skin. This leads to a pH imbalance of the skin.
Fine lines and dark circles: Free radicals promote oxidative stress while the gamma light from the blue light strains the eyes making the dark circles more prominent.
Dr. Vrinda Thorat, a dermatologist says, “There is no escaping the lure of gadgets today, it has become an inherent part of our lives. However, blue light emitted through these gadgets has many side effects on your skin like premature aging and pigmentation to name a few. With incessant exposure, it can interfere with the natural repair mechanisms of your skin.
“To avoid the side effects of blue light, taking additional protection like placing a blue light protective screen on your laptop or switching to dark mode, wearing blue light protection glasses and applying a light, chemical-free sunscreen can help minimalize the effects of digital ageing.”
Dr Vrinda Thorat, Dermatologist
But like everything else, there is hope to rectify this with a few simple skin care tips to combat digital ageing. Here are some products that you need in your beauty cabinet to keep the skin glowing.
A chemical-free sunscreen | It is a myth that a sunscreen is used only when you have to step outdoors to protect your skin from the environmental stressors. In reality, you need a bit of the sunscreen everyday even if you are indoors. And more so, if you have a job that exposes your skin to blue light. The sunscreen acts like a protective barrier to deflect the blue light from the gadgets.
A spritzer to keep your skin calm and hydrated | You can make your own hydrosols of spritzers to keep your skin hydrated. Take a glass bottle with a spray nozzle. Add to it 200 ml of distilled water, a few drops of almond or marula carrier oil. Add 2 drops each of lavender and juniper berry essential oil. Shake well before every use. Keep it in a cool place. The oils will form a very fine layer of protection while the cool water will soothe inflamed skin as well as keep skin hydrated.
Add a Vitamin C Serum to your skin care | As much as it is touted as the next big thing in skin care, Vitamin C has the potential to offer many skin benefits that include reducing hyperpigmentation, promoting an even skin tone. From face washes, to serums, toners and more. You can use Vitamin C in your daily skin regime for that extra boost of radiation.
Use a gua sha for a massage | A gua sha is a tool that is typically made with crystals. It is used to massage the skin after it has been moisturized or oiled well to boost the circulation of the skin and aid in lymphatic drainage. Using a gua sha to massage the skin also helps to relax the skin and relieving the pent-up stress.
Other skin care products | A regular use of an under-eye cream, a sleeping mask and regular scrubs can help to keep your skin clean and healthy in the long run.
(Pratibha Pal spent her childhood in idyllic places only fauji kids would have heard of. She grew up reading a variety of books that let her imagination wander and still hopes to come across the Magic Faraway Tree.You can view her blog at www.pratsmusings.com or reach to her on Twitter at @myepica.)