Blue Light Therapy for Acne?

When I went to the dermotaligist I made a appointment to get the blue light therapy every week for 5weeks.. They let me get one done the day I went in.. But I wasn't red and didn't see much of a difference or anything after that treatment and the days after, I got worried because i wasnt sure if it was working for me.. but then again it was the first treatment lol ..Is it possible that it won't work for me and if so does this treatment really work for acne ?

Doctor Answers 4

Red Light better for Acne

As it turns out, though Blue Light (used after aminolevulinic acid (ALA) also called Levulon) can help acne, Red Light, also called Methyl aminolevulinate (MAL), works significantly better. The MAL penetrates deeper into the skin and can be absorbed by the oil or sebaceous glands better. When the light is shone on the skin the red light actually penetrates further.
Another way to treat acne is to use the solutions of ALA and MAL, but then use an intense pulse light (IPL) to activate them.
If you have the option between Blue Light and Red Light for acne, I would recommend red light. Chemical peels, usually salicylic acid, can help also.

Salt Lake City Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

Blue Light for Acne

Studies show that blue light can improve acne by about 20% overall. I find that they are best combined with chemical peels for greater improvement. I would not expect dramatic improvement after one treatment.  You will see the best improvement if treatments are done 2-3 times a week rather than once. When your acne is flared up, consider red light as well as it is calming to acne.

Cheryl Lee Eberting, MD
Salt Lake City Dermatologist
4.7 out of 5 stars 3 reviews


Difficult acne is often treated with multiple modalities that may include lasers, chemical peels, microdermabrasion, prescription and non prescription products.  It is recommended to discuss these options with your physician.

Craig Mezrow, MS, MD, FACS
Philadelphia Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Blue light therapy for acne

I used blue light therapy (called blu u) without levulan but just the lights for acne for several years. I would say the results were minimal, at best. For blue light therapy to be effective it has to be used with other topicals and oral medications, and then yes, it does help. But just alone, it's not worth your time, as your acne will improve maybe 15-20% max.

F. Victor Rueckl, MD
Las Vegas Dermatologist
4.6 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.