We’ve always lived with blue light from the sun. Now we’re getting it from our electronic screens too. So we’re exposed to a lot more blue light than we used be.
And it’s crazy how much time people are spending on their phones these days! Depending on which poll you read, people are averaging anywhere from 3.25 hours to 5.7 hours each day on their smartphones…every day.
Do the math and that adds up to between 53 and 86 days a year on their phones.
You already know it’s bad for your eyes. You can tell that by the eye fatigue and strain you experience.
But did you know it’s also secretly aging you?
Just think about it. When you’re on your smartphone, tablet or computer the blue light is shining directly on your face and neck. It’s up close and personal. Even the flashes from taking selfies can accelerate skin aging.
This blue light can drill all the way down to your dermis. That’s where your collagen and elastin are. They are what make up your skin. They keep it firm and elastic. But when blue light penetrates the dermis, it starts breaking them down.
Your skin loses its elasticity and firmness. It starts sagging. Wrinkles begin to show. Age spots and hyperpigmentation make their presence known.
What’s interesting is this…
You can Repair Blue Light Skin Damage
If you sprayed some copper directly onto your skin, or increased your oral intake of copper, you would help repair your skin.
That’s because copper aids in the cross-linking of elastin and collagen to repair connective tissues and make new skin. It is also vital to the melanin that maintains the pigmentation of your skin. (Copper also plays a role in maintaining your natural hair color.)
There are several brands of copper facial sprays available on the internet. I haven’t tried one yet, but If you decide to give one of them a try, look for one that doesn’t contain a lot of extra ingredients. The more names you can pronounce and the shorter the ingredient list, the better off you are.
Eating the right kinds of foods can also help repair and ward off damage from blue light.
In general, a diet high in vegetables, fruits, olive oil, nuts, legumes and fish is going to offer protection against skin aging.
A diet high in meat, dairy, sugars, processed foods and fried foods is going to have the opposite effect.
It’s as simple as that.
What about Your Eyes?
I protect my eyes at work with a blue blocker. These are regular glasses that have the lenses that block blue light. I get awful headaches and blurred vision without them.
And here’s an interesting tidbit.
These types of lenses started with the NASA space program. As you can imagine, the astronauts needed some pretty strong protection for their eyes while up in space, where ultraviolet rays are a lot stronger than they are down here.
You also have a few other protective options besides light blocking glasses.
A lot of smartphones have a blue light filter setting on them these days. Even if your phone doesn’t have one, there are plenty of apps for them that you can download.
For your larger devices, a blue light blocking screen protector might be a good option. (You can probably find these for more popular smartphones too, like Samsung Galaxy and iPhone.)
Regardless of which option you choose, it’s always a good idea to protect your skin and eyes from blue light as much as possible – whether at your computer or outdoors in the sun.
Arjmandi N, et al. Can Light Emitted from Smartphone Screens and Taking Selfies Cause Premature Aging and Wrinkles? J Biomed Phys Eng. 2018 Dec; 8(4): 447–452.
Smith-Mungo LI, Kagan HM. Lysyl oxidase: properties, regulation and multiple functions in biology. Matrix Biol. 1998 Feb;16(7):387-98.
Purba MD, et al. Skin wrinkling: can food make a difference? J Am Coll Nutr. 2001 Feb;20(1):71-80.