Sign in

Lighting the Way to Beautiful Skin

Wendy Reichert February 2006 issue of Skin Inc. magazine

Get the Skinny! This is just part of the article. Want the complete story, plus a host of other cutting-edge articles to make your job easier? Sign up!

Although light therapy has been used worldwide for more than 40 years, its popularity for cosmetic enhancement only recently has increased exponentially. In fact, it has become so popular so quickly that most skin care professionals aren’t educated on the variety of light-based technologies available, as well as informed about who can use them legally. Lasers, intense pulsed light (IPL) and light-emitting diode (LED) treatments are three current light-based technologies that are used commonly for skin rejuvenation.

A brief review of the physics of light

The visible light spectrum is the most familiar—the wavelengths are from 400 nanometers (nm) to 765 nm, which are seen combined as white light and diffracted as a rainbow. White light is composed of colored light. Daylight and standard light bulbs give off light in this range.

Estheticians already should be familiar with the ultraviolet (UV) portion of the spectrum: 0–400 nm. These are the invisible wavelengths that cause UV damage, such as sunburns and photoaging. UV light also is used by estheticians to kill bacteria on their instruments.

Want the rest of the story? Simply sign up. It’s easy. Plus, it only takes 1 minute and it’s free!

Related Content



Visible and Infrared Wavelengths

UVC 290 nm
UVB 320 nm
Visible 400–765 nm
Infrared 2,000 nm

Common Lasers and Their Wavelengths

In general, the longer the wavelength, the deeper it penetrates into tissues.

UVAI—400 nm
Argon—488–514 nm
KTP—532 nm
Dye—585–600 nm
Ruby—630 nm
Alexandrite—755 nm
Diode—810 nm
Nd:YAG—1,064/1,320 nm
Er:YAG—2,940 nm
CO2—10,600 nm

Common IPL Wavelength Ranges

Redness and rejuvenation: 560–1,200 nm

Pigment and rejuvenation: 590–1,200 nm

Darker skin types: 640–1,200 nm

Hair removal for light skin types: 695–1,200 nm

Hair removal for darker skin types: 755–1,200 nm

Next image >



Welcome to the new!

Delivering the best information on the spa, skin care and wellness industry is our passion, and we’ve worked hard to design a powerful new website that incorporates cutting-edge technology to bring you:

  • Mobile-friendly Design
  • Integrated Sample Request
  • Refreshed Look and Feel
  • Dynamic Content
  • Free Registration

Mobile-friendly Design

Providing a unified experience from mobile to desktop, responsive design allows you to access Skin Inc. content from any device, whether you’re in the treatment room, at home or on the go!

Integrated Sample Request

Visit Featured Product pages to quickly and easily identify new suppliers and request product samples and information.

Dynamic Content

Articles are now linked with relevant products so you can find the products and treatments you need to provide the best results for your clients.

Free Registration

Create your user account to gain unlimited access to Skin Inc.’s unparalleled content.

Enjoy the New!

Thank you for joining the Skin Inc. community of passionate skin care professionals. We look forward to providing you the best information to enhance your career!