What is HEV Light ? And can Blue Light affect the skin?
The HEV light
Today, we are well educated that we have to protect ourselves from the sun’s rays and thus from harmful UV radiation is nothing new for us. In recent times, however, there is always talk of another term: the HEV light. And this is by no means a novel fad, but a scientifically sound fact. HEV is the abbreviation for High Energy Visible and translates to high-energy visible light. Colloquially, it is also referred to as screen light or ultra-blue light, especially since it actually turns blue to purple. In the light spectrum, HEV light is located directly next to the UV radiation. However, in contrast to UV radiation, which has been studied extensively over years, scientists did not see much importance to HEV light for a long time. This has changed (fortunately) in the recent years, because the light has some negative impact. But first a few words about the composition of the sunlight.
The three components of sunlight
The sunlight that we perceive consists of three different components. On the one hand, there is the UV light, which is invisible to the human eye. It splits into the three segments UV-A, UV-B and UV-C radiation. Then the infrared light, which we know as heat radiation. It is also invisible and accounts for around 45 percent of the total solar radiation. The third component comprises the visible light, i.e. the proportion that the human eye can visually perceive. The visible light has a share of 50 percent within the solar radiation. Since it has a particularly high-energy radiation, it bears the name High Energy Visible Light (HEV light). In this case, it is the completely natural occurrence of HEV light. But it is also produced artificially and occurs, inter alia, in smartphones, tablets, notebooks, computers and TVs. According to an American study, this artificial HEV light is even more harmful to our skin than the sun’s UV rays.
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The effects of HEV light
HEV light impacts the skin’s regeneration process and damages the cells. For example, while UV-B rays primarily affect the outer layers of the skin, the HEV penetrates light far deeper into the lower layers of the skin. Although it is not associated with sunburn, it can, according to studies, generate immense oxidative stress and thus adversely affect the cells. This means that over time free radicals destroy the complex cell structures and, at the same time, the important collagen and elastin formation that gives our skin its youthful and full appearance. These damages are ultimately the cause of premature skin ageing. In addition, HEV light is associated with uneven skin pigmentation, which is known in the trade as hyperpigmentation. Thus, HEV light can be associated with three unsightly effects: the appearance of wrinkles, the formation of age spots and pigmentation disorders.
Even blemishes are often responsible for the blue glowing light.
Thus we set us the goal to find an botanical ingredient that can support your skin from our modern day life protecting you from HEV.
Modern technology may make us older
The blue-ish shimmering light of our smartphones, tablets and screens is nothing but HEV light. Many people sit in front of the screen for more than eight hours a day, either professionally or in their free time. In addition, we use the smartphone virtually around the clock. Thus, we are exposed to the HEV light unprotected, which leads to the above consequences. In this regard, a case from the UK caused a lot of attention: A blogger made about 50 selfies daily … and at some point found ugly changes to their skin with which she had never before struggled. The skin became pale and impure, wrinkled and prone to blemishes. Overall, the complexion of the still young woman gradually tired more and more. Her dermatologist quickly discovered the cause: The HEV light of her smartphone was the trigger. With newer mobile phones, the blue tones in the display can be reduced within the settings. But hardly a smartphone user thinks about it, furthermore, not every mobile phone offers this option. Whether the reduction of blue tones as protection against HEV light is sufficient, so far not yet known.
Since the state-of-the-art flat screens as well as new smartphones, tablets, computers and light bulbs have really spread in the last ten years, there are currently no long-term studies on the exact risks and side effects of HEV. However, it is already clear that this light is not completely safe. On our skin, larger amounts of HEV, as they are on normal office days in front of the PC are common as in the now-widespread excessive use of mobile phones, wrinkles and blemishes as well as some dry and reddened areas, which often heal even worse.
And not only that: HEV light may also be harmful to our eyes because it is now believed that the blue radiation favours the formation of cataract in the long term.
Effective substances that protect light from HEV: the cosmetics of the future
Relatively safe protection against HEV light is provided by special cosmetic products containing highly effective substances.
Although sunscreen products generally provide good protection against UVA and UVB rays, additional protection against the harmful effects of HEV light is still a rarity. A truly effective protection against the oxidative stress caused by both HEV light and UV radiation is provided by innovative formulations and formulas containing specially adapted bioactive substances.
Based on this recent knowledge, we have formulated a “protective cream” to shield your skin from those lights. Whenever you see the symbol above, we will have our Photo-Protector complex formulated into the products to give this additional protection. Remember: Our lifestyle has changed, from once being outdoors to today, being more indoors. So for your everyday life, if you are indoors a lot and in front of the screen, is not the answer. You will need to turn to other ingredients to protect you from your everyday lights that you face indoor including your screen light but also lights we never thought could harm us such as LED and halogen Light.
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