Blue Light Skin Damage: Is Your Cell Phone Screen Ruining Your Skin?

We’ve known for a long time that technology isn’t all good. Phones and laptops promote poor posture, carpal tunnel, and can have devastating emotional effects via social media. But our skin? Really, universe? New studies have created an increasing fervor that the blue light skin damage from our phones is a real, and dangerous, thing. Read on for more on why this happens, and how you can protect yourself from blue light skin damage.

The dangers of blue light

Before we talk about our phone screens in particular, it’s important to understand blue light skin damage. It’s not a new concept that light can affect skin health – think about UV rays and that sunscreen you put on every morning (we hope). What is new is the hot topic of blue light.

New research has found that blue light penetrates the skin deeper than the sun’s UV rays. Blue light has similar aging effects to UV rays, but the results could be worse because of the deeper layers of skin that blue light reaches. Blue light can also disrupt sleep patterns, and fatigue leads to distressed skin.

What kind of skin damage are we talking about?

Studies show that blue light can prematurely age the skin, similarly to UV rays from the sun. Furthermore, there is contention that it can also lead to skin cancer just like UV rays. Other studied effects include increased dark spots and hyperpigmentation.

How our phones are causing blue light skin damage

So blue light is terrible, we got that. But how are our phones damaging our skin? Your phone screen and laptop screen emit blue light, the specific wave of light that is damaging. To add onto that, these screens are also reflective. This means that your phone and laptop screens are also reflecting UV rays straight at you. One study found that laptop users received 85% more UV rays than non laptop users during the same time frame. 

How to save your skin from blue light skin damage

The idea of blue light skin damage from your cell phone is scary, but don’t throw away your phone and become a hermit quite yet. Despite these serious findings, there are things you can do to protect yourself from blue light skin damage from your phone. Here are some of our tips:

  • Continue wearing sunscreen
  • Limit your screen time, and when possible use smaller screens (a phone is better than a laptop, for example)
  • Hold your phone or laptop further from you (studies show the closer the device, the worse the damage)
  • Limit screen use outdoors where the sun’s UV rays can be reflected on you
  • Install F.Lux on your devices, which will limit blue light emission
  • Purchase and use a blue light screen protector
  • Use skin and beauty products high in antioxidants

Did you know the blue light from your phone could be damaging your skin?

Sarah Bence