Screen eyes

It’s skin month here on The Tonic, and as part of skin month I visited Kiran Sethi Lohia of Isya Aesthetics to talk about pollution, rosacea, and inflammation, but within seconds of me walking into her office she looked at me and proclaimed that I had “screen eyes” – the dark circles and general ugh of someone who spends, you guessed it, way too much time looking at screens.

By this point I assume we all know that the amount of time we spend staring at screens is making us dumber, attention deficit, less social, anxious, wrecking sleep,  and probably a million other things we just haven’t clocked as yet. But vanity is a powerful motivator so this might help you pull back a little where even the threat of all that other stuff didn’t: all that blue light from our screens is also probably making you look older, and if Kiran’s 2-second assessment of me is any indication, it is definitely doing something funky to your eyes.

The culprit is high-energy visible light (HEV, aka blue light) that all our devices emit, higher-frequency, shorter wavelengths of light that’s emitted by fluorescent lighting, LEDs, TV screens, smartphones, tablets and computers... when it just can’t be helped and when your work involves endless hangtime with screens of all sorts, she has two tips that are pretty easy to quickly put to use: get f.lux or some other blue light blocker on both your phone as well as computer, or just swap (on iPhones) to night mode and choose a warmer colour setting, and find Refresh eye gel (not the drops) and leave that in your eyes overnight.

The getting dumber and anxious bit though, we’re on our own for that.