How Neutrogena Treats Acne Spot With Light Therapy

Light therapy in salons takes a lot of time and money. Now there are devices for home treatment. But are they effective and safe?

Acne treatment includes topical and oral medications that counteract the formation of microcomedones (sebaceous gland plugs), sebum production, and inflammation.

But because of the short-term effects and long-term consequences of many such methods, much research has been done to find new safe and effective treatments for acne. Among these is light therapy, which has equal and sometimes greater efficacy, safety, and convenience than traditional approaches. 

Now everyone can easily use light therapy thanks to home devices like the Neutrogena Light Therapy Acne Spot Treatment. But are they really that good?

Why do you need to use Neutrogena light?

Neutrogena light is a very popular product that can be used to help improve your skin. There are many reasons you might need or want to use a light therapy device like this.

Acne is the most common reason that people use light therapy devices. The blue and red light that is emitted from these devices can help to kill the bacteria that cause acne. It can also help to reduce inflammation and swelling. In addition, the light can help to shrink the sebaceous glands, which produce oil. Thereby preventing new breakouts from occurring.

Besides helping to clear up acne, Neutrogena can also help to improve the overall appearance of your skin. The light helps to stimulate collagen production, which can help to reduce the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines. It can also help to even out your skin tone and give you a more radiant complexion.

So if you are struggling with acne or want to improve the overall appearance of your skin, you may want to consider using a light therapy device like Neutrogena.

need to use Neutrogena light

What light therapy works for treating acne

The efficacy of light therapy, its non-invasive nature, and the almost complete absence of side effects have led to active trials of light therapy in various fields, including dermatology. As a result, dermatologists have learned to integrate this type of therapy into the context of more established treatments. Nowadays, light therapy is actively used to treat a variety of skin conditions.

For the treatment of acne, two types of light are useful — red and blue.

Light penetration into skin illustrating the depth to which wavelengths penetrate human skin. 
Red light is extinguished some 4–5 mm beneath the surface of the skin and blue -1 mm into tissue [*]

Source: US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health

Red light, thanks to its penetrating ability, affects cells by activating them, which promotes faster tissue repair and healing, relieves pain, and reduces inflammation. It is used to treat inflammatory conditions such as acne, reduce acne scars as well as hypertrophic scars, and heal burns [*]

Blue light has a significant antimicrobial effect. It is also called antimicrobial blue light (aBL). aBL is attracting increasing attention because of its inherent antimicrobial effect without the involvement of exogenous photosensitizers (substances that increase tissue sensitivity to light exposure). The mechanism of action of aBL is still not fully understood. A common hypothesis is that aBL excites natural endogenous photosensitizers (not containing iron) in microbial cells and subsequently causes membrane damage in bacteria [*]. It is also reported to allow monitoring of the condition before an acne outbreak occurs [*]

Red and blue light, when used in combination, have a synergistic effect in treating acne. That is, the red light stimulates healing by reducing the size and redness of existing acne, while the blue light kills the bacteria (p.acnes) that can cause spots [*].

Illustration of acne treatment with red and blue light
Source: US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health

You can read more about the trials of light therapy for the treatment of acne in our analysis: Treating Acne with Light Therapy. Clinical Studies

How long does Neutrogena light therapy take to work?

Neutrogena light therapy is a popular choice for people looking for an effective and affordable way to treat skin conditions like acne. But how long does it take for Neutrogena light therapy to work?

For most people, it takes about two to four weeks of regular use to see significant results from Neutrogena light therapy. Some people may see results sooner, while others may need to use it for a longer period to see the full benefits. Ultimately, the answer to how long Neutrogena light therapy takes to work will vary from person to person.

If you’re thinking about trying Neutrogena light therapy, it’s important to be patient and consistent with your treatment. Don’t expect to see results overnight, but don’t give up if you don’t see significant improvement after a few weeks of use. 

Also, keep in mind that Neutrogena is just one part of a good skincare routine. In addition to using light therapy, be sure to cleanse your face regularly, use an acne-fighting face wash or cleanser, and apply a light moisturizer to keep your skin hydrated.

Neutrogena light therapy take to work

Does Neutrogena light therapy work for acne?

Neutrogena light therapy is a popular choice for treating acne, but does it actually work? Let’s take a closer look at the science to find out.

The study [1] included 21 patients with mild to moderate facial acne who were treated with blue light therapy. All patients received treatment twice a week for 4 weeks. The results showed a significant improvement in skin condition. The number of inflammatory and non-inflammatory lesions decreased by an average of 60%.

The next study [2] evaluated the effectiveness of home use of blue light devices in improving damage and reducing the time it takes to heal.

For 30 patients, two identical lesions were selected, one on each side of the face, for treatment with either blue light or a simulated device (placebo). The treatment was carried out twice a day. As a result, there was a significant difference in lesion response to blue light versus placebo in terms of reduction in lesion size and erythema and improvement in overall skin condition. Signs of improvement were observed after two treatments.

Neutrogena light therapy work for acne
The result of using light therapy for acne treatment

The following study [3] involved 24 patients with mild to moderate facial acne. They were treated with LED therapy with alternating blue (415 nm) and red (633 nm) light. The treatment was carried out twice a week for 4 weeks. The results showed an impressive improvement in non-inflammatory and inflammatory lesions, which were 34.28% and 77.93%, respectively. Measurements also showed that melanin levels dropped significantly after treatment. As a result, 14 patients reported improved skin tone and texture.

Overall, the evidence suggests that Neutrogena light therapy is an effective treatment for mild to moderate acne. Also, the majority of people who use it experience few or no side effects.

Can light therapy make acne worse?

There is no definitive answer to this question since everyone’s skin reacts differently to light therapy. 

However, it is generally accepted that red and blue light therapy can help improve acne by reducing inflammation and killing bacteria. Some people may experience an initial worsening of their acne before seeing improvement, but this is typically not a long-term effect. If you are concerned about light therapy making your acne worse, speak to a dermatologist about your specific skin type and condition.

❗ Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully and avoid overexposing your skin to the light, as this could potentially cause skin irritation.

light therapy make acne

Does Neutrogena light therapy work for sensitive skin?

Neutrogena light therapy is designed for all skin types including sensitive skin. You may experience a tingling sensation when first using the device, but this should dissipate within a few minutes. If you have any concerns, please consult with your dermatologist.

If you have sensitive skin, it is always best to do a patch test on a small area of skin before using any new product or device.

To do a patch test with the Neutrogena, simply use the device on a small area of skin for a few minutes. If you experience any irritation, discontinue use immediately.

Home Light Therapy Devices for the Treatment of Acne

Red light therapy to treat acne at the dermatologist or in the salon is quite time-consuming and costly. But it’s also not necessary. Now there are many devices for home use.

One of the most well-known devices that use red and blue light therapy to treat acne is Neutrogena products.

Neutrogena® is a brand of the Johnson & Johnson family of consumer companies. It specializes in facial skincare. It currently manufactures and sells products in more than 70 countries around the world. 

The company launched Neutrogena Light Therapy Acne Mask in 2016 and Light Therapy Acne Spot Treatment in 2017.

In 2016, a 12-week, blinded, randomized trial was conducted that demonstrated the efficacy of an LED device emitting red (630 nm) and blue (445 nm) light to treat mild to moderate common acne in subjects of different ages, races, and skin types [*]. Johnson & Johnson has also conducted some internal clinical trials on patients with mild to moderate acne to confirm the effectiveness of the devices [*, *].

But in addition to effectiveness, it is important to pay attention to safety and precautions.


LED skin devices don’t have much power, so they are unlikely to burn your skin. However, it is important to protect your eyes from the light when using them. 

Neutrogena recalled its Light Therapy Acne Mask in 2019 in response to concerns about the device’s ability to damage the eyes of people with underlying eye conditions or those who take medications that make their eyes more sensitive to light.

What is better for acne: Neutrogena mask or pen?

There are many different products on the market that claim to be effective in treating acne. Neutrogena is a company that produces both face masks and pens that say they can help clear up pimples. So, which product is better for acne-prone skin?

Neutrogena Light Therapy Acne Mask

Neutrogena Light Therapy Acne Mask

The Neutrogena Light Therapy Acne Mask is best for treating frequent breakouts. While Neutrogena Light Therapy Acne Spot Treatment Pen is for those who have only a few pimples. Also, the device can be used on the entire face, while the pen should only be used on small areas.

The Neutrogena Light Therapy Acne Mask uses LED light therapy to target acne-causing bacteria and reduce inflammation. In addition, the mask is FDA -cleared and clinically proven to be safe and effective.

The Neutrogena Light Therapy Acne Mask comes with a controller with three settings: low, medium, and high. It is recommended to start with the low setting and increase it as your skin gets used to the light. 

Also, this mask is easier to use, since you don’t have to apply it directly to your skin like the pen. It is held in place by two straps that go over your head. 


For best results, follow these simple instructions:

  1. Before using your mask for the first time, charge it for 10 minutes. To do this, plug the included USB cord into a power source and then insert the charging connector into the charging port on the side of the mask. The white charging light will turn on, indicating that the mask is charging;
  2. Once the mask is fully charged, press the power button on the side of the mask to turn it on; 
  3. The LED light will turn blue, indicating that the device is working;
  4. To begin your treatment, put on the mask so that the blue LED light is in front of your nose and mouth;
  5. The mask should fit snugly but comfortably on your face. If it is not fitting properly, adjust the straps accordingly;
  6. Once the device is in place, press the power button again to start your session;
  7. You will feel a tingling sensation as the device emits light. This is normal and indicates that the device is working; 
  8. Each session lasts for 10 minutes. At the end of the session, the device will automatically shut off;
  9. Wash your face with a gentle cleanser and apply sunscreen if you will be going outside. 

Repeat this process once per day for the best results. You should start to see a reduction in acne within 2-3 weeks. 

Neutrogena Light Therapy Acne Spot Treatment Pen

Neutrogena Light Therapy Acne Spot Treatment Pen

The Neutrogena Light Therapy Acne Spot Treatment Pen is best for treating a few pimples quickly. But if you have a lot of acne – the Neutrogena Acne Mask is a better solution. Also, this pen is more durable than other light therapy devices. It will last for 150 treatments, which is 5 times more than the Neutrogena mask.

It is a battery-operated device that targets acne breakouts with blue light therapy. It has a narrow beam of light that penetrates the skin to kill acne-causing bacteria and reduce inflammation.

The Neutrogena Light Therapy Acne Spot Treatment Pen is very portable and can be easily taken with you on the go. So, if you plan to travel – this device is an excellent solution for you.

The LED light will turn


Use the Neutrogena Light Therapy Acne Spot Treatment Pen to target and treat breakouts quickly. Below you will find instructions on how to use this product effectively.

  1. Cleanse your skin thoroughly before using the pen because that will help the light to better penetrate your skin;
  2. To open, twist the top of the pen until you hear a click;
  3. Apply the tip of the pen directly to your acne spot and press down on the button for two seconds to start the timer. The light will automatically turn off after two minutes;
  4. Repeat the process until you have treated all of your acne spots;
  5. After use, twist the top of the pen to the “off” position and replace the cap.

You should see a noticeable improvement in your acne within a few days of use. However, it may take up to four weeks for the full effects of the light therapy to be visible. 

Another device that impresses with its effectiveness in the fight against acne is SolaWave wand. Discover in-depth information on its performance, results, and user reviews in our article.

How often can I use Neutrogena?

Neutrogena light therapy is safe and effective for daily use.

How often you can use Neutrogena light therapy will depend on your specific condition. If you are using it to treat acne, for example, you may only need to use it a few times a week. In addition, how often you use Neutrogena light therapy may also depend on how well your skin responds to treatment. 

There is no limit to how often you can use it. But if you find that your skin is getting used to the light, you can take a break for a few days. Also, if you have a sensitive skin type, you may want to use it every other day or every third day.




The best results are achieved when using this product 3 times a day. Some see the first small results immediately after use, with noticeable results as early as two days later.

“I started really seeing results within two days, and my really bad acne, which usually lasts about 1 month, was practically gone in two weeks. I think this product is awesome!!!”


*Click or hover to unblur the image

The result of using Light Therapy Acne Spot Treatment
Source: Walmart

Convenient and easy to use

The device is simple enough without any modes. The device has one button that turns it on with a beep and automatically turns off after the desired time (after 2 minutes).

“It’s so simple. The device has a built-in timer, so you don’t have to keep track of the time, it will automatically turn off when needed.”


“I would buy it again anytime. They use a battery that is easy to replace at any time!”



Because of its small size, the light therapy pen is easy to find a place and can be taken anywhere.

“It’s easy to carry in my purse, but I can’t imagine using it outside the house, it’s just a little weird for me.”


Neutrogena Light Therapy Acne Spot Treatment
Source: Dri Lopes


The coverage area is very small

This device works by pinpointing, which means that you have to treat each pimple separately. If you have a lot of inflammation, it can be quite time-consuming, and in such cases, it is better to use a light therapy mask. 

“I bought this thing a week ago and so far it has worked wonders. I only recommend it if you get 1-2 pimples at a time because it’s definitely not meant for a lot of breakouts.”


Not suitable for difficult cases

Spot treatment does not get to the heart of the problem and is generally not ideal for patients with chronic acne. It can be useful when used in addition to the entire preventive acne process to treat small areas of acne.

“I don’t have the patience to see results (but I think it still helps me a little) because I have tons of pimples on my face.”


Drains the battery quickly

It uses a single AAA battery and drains quickly.

“If I didn’t use rechargeable batteries, it would really annoy me how often I would need to replace the battery!”



Neutrogena light therapy is a clinically proven, FDA -cleared treatment that uses special light devices to target and treats acne. Also, this therapy is safe for all skin types, including sensitive skin.

Two Neutrogena devices are available: the Light Therapy Acne Mask and the Light Therapy Spot Treatment. 

If you need to quicken the pace of your results or treat a few pimples, you can purchase the Neutrogena Light Therapy Acne Spot Treatment Pen for the targeted acne. It is important to note that this device is not to be used on the entire face, but only on problem areas as needed. But, if you’re looking for an all-over treatment, the Neutrogena Light Therapy Acne Mask is for you.

So if you’re looking for an alternative or complementary acne treatment, give light therapy a try.


🧐 Can you use Neutrogena light mask twice a day?

Yes, you can use the Neutrogena light mask twice a day if you feel like your skin needs it. But make sure to cleanse your face thoroughly in between uses and apply a good moisturizer afterward.

❓ Does Neutrogena light therapy work for cystic acne?

Many people who have tried Neutrogena light therapy for cystic acne report seeing positive results. However, as with any treatment, results may vary from person to person.

🔍 Is Neutrogena light therapy effective?

Neutrogena light therapy is a clinically-proven, effective treatment for acne. Also, this therapy is FDA-cleared, so you can trust that it is a safe and effective treatment option.

👀 Why was the Neutrogena light therapy pen discontinued?

Neutrogena is constantly innovating and bringing new products to the market. The Neutrogena light therapy pen was discontinued because a newer, more advanced product, the Neutrogena light mask, was developed. This new product is more targeted and effective than the pen.

🧐 Does Neutrogena help to get rid of dark spots?

Neutrogena light therapy can help to get rid of dark spots by increasing cell turnover and brightening the skin. Also, using sunscreen during the day will help to prevent new dark spots from forming.

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