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When it comes to treatments in my skin-care routine, acne patches are probably the most used item in my bathroom vanity. My fiancé and I both reach for them on a regular basis and after trying a bunch of different types over the years, I definitely have my favorites. The Hero Cosmetic Mighty Patch Original never disappoints, but now, brands are innovating the category in fun new ways. I’ve started to notice light-up LED acne patches hit the market, so when I came across the Light Activated Beauty (L.a.b.) Acne Light Therapy Patch ($20), I couldn’t wait to try it.
LED light therapy is already an important part of my beauty routine. I have the Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Mask that I use whenever my skin needs a little extra TLC, like when I spot a new breakout coming on. The idea of getting the same benefits from an acne patch intrigued me and sounded like a great way to target specific areas of concern, so I tested it out.
Ahead, read my full review of the new Acne Light Therapy Patch by L.a.b. and learn if LED pimple patches are the way of the future.
About the L.a.b. Acne Light Therapy Patch
- It’s an FDA-cleared light therapy patch.
- It combines blue and red light to target acne-causing bacteria.
- The patch adheres to the skin using a reusable sticker that the brand calls a HydroGrip.
- It works in three-minute increments with an auto-shut-off feature.
- A box comes with one light pod and four HydroGrips, which can be used up to eight times.
What I Like About the L.a.b. Acne Light Therapy Patch
As I previously mentioned, I’ve been a long-time fan of LED light therapy for treating a myriad of skin concerns, from acne to hyperpigmentation and redness. Whenever I sense a hormonal breakout coming on, I pop on my LED face mask and let it work its magic in hopes of clearing up the spot fast. However, sometimes I don’t feel like doing a full treatment or I simply don’t have time. Plus, when I use the mask, it’s treating my entire face, even if I only really need it for one tiny pimple. So with that in mind, the L.a.b. Acne Light Therapy Patch seemed genius.
I decided to give the microdevice a spin for the first time on a small pimple located on my chin. I had been applying spot treatments to the area for a few days now with no success and was hoping the LED patch would bring down some of the redness and speed up the healing process.
After the treatment was over and the patch shut off on its own, I peeled it off and found it removed quite easily with zero irritation or tugging. The pimple that it covered looked less red and slightly smaller, just like when I do a full-face treatment with my larger mask. The brand states you can do up to three consecutive treatments a day on the same breakout, but not to exceed that time. You can, however, use the device more than that if you’re applying it to multiple different breakouts.
How to Use the L.a.b. Acne Light Therapy Patch
The step-by-step instructions in the box are quite simple. To start, take a HydroGrip, peel off the side that says “Apply to Pod,” and stick it onto the back of the device. Fair warning: if you have long nails like I do, you may want to use tweezers for this because I had some trouble. The other side says “Apply to Skin” in tiny letters, which is the side you put on your face. You’re instructed to save the film for the skin side so you can put it back on for future use.
You’ll want to clean and dry the area around the pimple to ensure the patch stays put, just like with a regular pimple patch. Then, you press the LED device into the skin, simultaneously hitting the power button on the front, and hold it in place for a few seconds to make sure it’s secure.
When I tried it, I decided to let it run for a full three-minute treatment while I went about my work at my computer. The device adhered to my face pretty well but I did need to press it into my skin a few times over the course of the three minutes to ensure it didn’t fall off. This is likely due to the location of my pimple on the curve of my face.
To remove it, you simply peel the sticker off after the LED automatically turns off and recover the adhesive with the film you saved. Each box comes with one light patch and four HydroGrip stickers that can be reused up to eight times before you’ll need to swap in a new one.
What to Consider Before Trying the L.a.b. Acne Light Therapy Patch
There are a few things to consider when using the L.a.b. Acne Light Therapy Patch. First, keep in mind that the location of your pimple will determine how easily the device stays in place. The adhesive wasn’t as secure on my chin due to the curve of my face as it was when I later tested it on my forehead, which is flat. It’s also important to ensure your skin is clean — otherwise, the sticker may not be as effective.
It’s also worth noting that after 30 uses, the LED patch runs out of juice and there isn’t a way to swap out the batteries or recharge it. It needs to be discarded and repurchased. My hope is that in the future, a software update will be made so that they can be enjoyed indefinitely.