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Let’s kick this LED light therapy discussion off with some disclaimers. Number one: At-home LED therapy, to any degree, is not nearly as strong as an in-office treatment. Number two: DIY devices require many more, consistent treatments in order to provide results. But, perhaps most importantly, is number three: The best at-home LED devices can make a difference in your skin tone, your acne, your lines, and your overall appearance—depending on the product.
Now let’s get into the nitty-gritty of, in my humble opinion, one of the most exciting new LED devices: The CurrentBody Skin LED Lip Perfector. It’s a hand-held, well teeth-held, tool that promises to target lip tone, fullness, and lines on the lips and nasolabial folds. How, you ask? Via a three-minute-a-day treatment (results are at their full effect around the eight week mark) that leverages a combination of red and infrared wavelengths. “Red light has been shown to increase fibroblasts, the cells in the skin that are responsible for making those healthy proteins that make your skin supple and soft, such as collagen and elastin,” explains board-certified dermatologist and founder of Entiére Dermatology Dr. Melissa Kanchanapoomi Levin. “It also has been shown to increase the production of collagen and alter the amount of enzymes in your skin called MMPs that keep the skin young-appearing.”
That said, Dr. Levin emphasizes that at-home variations are not nearly as powerful as in-office lasers, require regular treatments, and should only be used under the guidance of a dermatologist. So, after triple checking on the FDA approval (we’re good to go, people), a quick touch base with my doctor, and a patch test on my forearm to test my light sensitivity, I embarked on a journey towards better lips.
Why I’m Obsessed
Put a shiny, new, tech device in my hand, and I’m automatically in. I have an inherent need to be a guinea pig when skincare is involved. So even though I’m not necessarily dealing with deep lip lines and wrinkles at this stage in my life, I still like to see what’s up—and what’s worth it. For me, the most enticing claim on the label was the whole “fuller, more even-toned lips” situation. I’m still a bit too ~nervous~ to get on board with lip filler or a lip flip. So up until now, lip liner and plumper have been my BFFs. But, I’m always game for an upgrade.
Even though Dr. Levin pointed out that she wouldn’t recommend LED light therapy as a plumping method (filler is obviously going to be more effective), she did explain to me that LED therapy can “alter collagen production, stimulate blood vessel growth, and increase blood flow.” That in mind, I wasn’t disillusioned or expecting to wake up with a Restylane-plumped pout in eight week’s time. But I was hopeful—and rightfully so.
I started this journey the second the product dropped and have been religiously using it for almost seven weeks. The process itself is so simple—a hallmark trait of all CurrentBody products. Think: LED Devices for Dummies. The contraption looks a bit spaceship-y, but it’s really quite simple. The LED functionality is attached to a tongue rest that is inserted into your mouth (your lips should be wiped clean and dry). It feels a little funky, but it’s a time-limited treatment and 100 percent doable. Then, you just press the bottom on the front and the red light appears. After holding the machine steady for three minutes, it’ll automatically shut off. Pop on some lip balm and you’re done.
There’s no oh-my-god-I’m-a-new-person moment right off the bat; it takes time. For a while, I didn’t notice anything—status quo. When week four rolled around, I did a more intense inspection. Did the little lines on my lips look a little smoother? Did the white-ish tint at the corners of my lips look a little pinker? Or was I straight up imagining things?
Fast forward an additional three weeks, and I told everyone and anyone who would hear me out about this tool. My little lip lines? They were without a question a little less inset. My color? It was more even–no question. And, I still have a week to go until the full results kick in. This is by no means a filler-substitute and it is a commitment, but it does a damn good job if you’re in the market for a little boost.
Samantha Holender is the Beauty Editor at Marie Claire, where she reports on the best new launches, dives into the science behind skincare, and keeps up with the latest trends in the beauty space. She has previously written for Us Weekly, Popsugar, Makeup.com, Skincare.com, and Philadelphia Wedding. Follow her on Instagram @samholender.
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