Green Light Therapy: How It Works & What It Can Treat

We’re reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Wondering if green light therapy is right for you?

A growing body of scientific research is demonstrating that exposure to green light can provide effective relief for chronic pain conditions like migraines and fibromyalgia, as well as improve skin health.

In this guide, we’ll dive into the mechanisms behind how green light therapy works, the conditions it can treat, and how you can use this therapy for yourself at home.

Top Picks
Best for Migraines: Hooga Green Light Therapy Lamp
Best for Pain: Green Light Therapy Bulb
Best for Face: LED Green Light Therapy Facial Mask

What is Green Light Therapy

What is Green Light Therapy, closeup of green light therapy panel

So what makes green light uniquely therapeutic compared to other colors of light?

Several lines of evidence suggest that green light has an inhibitory effect on certain pain and sensory pathways in the brain:

  • One study found that green light exacerbated migraine pain much less than white, blue, amber or red light. Neuroscientists discovered that thalamic neurons involved in sensory processing were least responsive to green light compared to other colors.
  • Exposure to green LED light significantly reduced pain and improved quality of life in fibromyalgia patients in a preliminary clinical trial. Green light was more effective than placebo white light.
  • In vitro studies show that certain wavelengths of green light increase proliferation of fibroblasts and keratinocytes involved in wound healing and tissue repair.

The exact reasons green light has these beneficial effects are still being unraveled.

FeatureGreen LightRed LightBlue Light
Wavelength495-570 nm620-750 nm450-495 nm
Potential Benefits– Relieves migraine pain
– Reduces fibromyalgia pain and improves quality of life
– Promotes wound healing and skin rejuvenation
– Reduces inflammation and pain
– Promotes wound healing
– Improves joint and muscle health
– Enhances circulation
– Helps with acne and oil control
– Reduces inflammation
– Improves mood and sleep quality
Optimal Wavelength for Benefits525-535 nm660 nm and 850 nm415 nm and 495 nm
Recommended FrequencyDaily for chronic pain; 3-5 times per week for skin3-5 times per week3-5 times per week
Recommended Duration1-2 hours daily for chronic pain; 10-30 minutes per session for skin10-20 minutes per session3-15 minutes per session

However, the evidence points to green light having an inhibitory influence on certain neurons in visual and pain processing pathways and stimulating the release of factors that promote cell growth and healing.

Green Light Therapy for Migraines

Green light therapy, science, particles

Migraine headaches are notoriously difficult to treat and are easily triggered or worsened by light sensitivity (photophobia).

One pioneering study found that narrow-band green light was much less likely to intensify migraine pain compared to every other color tested.

By recording responses in the retina, thalamus, and cortex of migraine sufferers, the researchers traced this back to cone-driven pathways and thalamic neurons outside the main visual pathway that are finely tuned to respond differently to different colors.

Blue light triggered the strongest response in these pathways, and green light was the weakest.

Green light was the only color that reduced headache pain in a subset of patients.

The authors concluded that migraine photophobia likely originates in cone-driven retinal pathways before being modulated by the thalamus and cortex in a color-dependent fashion.

Best for Migraines
Hooga Green Light Therapy Lamp
$79.99 ($79.99 / Count)

04/05/2024 05:06 am GMT

For some migraine patients, exposure to pure green light could be a drug-free way to obtain relief during an attack.

Green Light Therapy Fibromyalgia Pain

Fibromyalgia is another condition that causes chronic widespread pain that is challenging to manage with currently available treatments.

An early stage clinical trial found that daily exposure to green LED light significantly decreased pain and improved quality of life in fibromyalgia sufferers.

In the study, patients were exposed to white placebo light for 10 weeks and then switched to green LED light for 1-2 hours per day for another 10 weeks.

The green light treatment phase resulted in:

  • Average pain intensity decreased from 8.4 to 4.9 on a 10-point scale
  • Significant improvements in pain frequency and duration
  • Better sleep quality
  • Enhanced ability to exercise and do chores
  • Overall improved quality of life

No side effects were noted from the green light therapy.

Best for Pain
Green Light Therapy Bulb by Hooga
$39.99 ($39.99 / Count)

04/05/2024 05:15 am GMT

While larger trials are still needed, this provides encouraging evidence that green light could be an effective and safe home treatment for managing fibromyalgia pain.

The researchers are still working to characterize the precise biological mechanisms.

Green Light Therapy for Skin Rejuvenation

Green Light Therapy for Skin Rejuvenation

Green light also appears to have benefits for skin health and healing.

Laboratory studies have found that certain wavelengths of green light can:

  • Stimulate proliferation of fibroblasts, the cells responsible for producing collagen and other components of skin
  • Increase migration of keratinocytes, the main cell type in the epidermis
  • Boost levels of growth factors involved in skin repair like VEGF

One study in mice found that green LED light accelerated wound healing compared to placebo, and worked as well as red light which is more commonly used for this purpose.

The effects seemed to be mediated by green light increasing expression of certain cytokines in the skin like leptin and IL-8.

Best Green Light Therapy for Face
04/05/2024 05:04 am GMT

While human studies are still limited, some estheticians have started incorporating green light therapy into treatments for rejuvenating and healing the skin.

When used consistently, green light may help reduce inflammation, promote collagen production, speed healing, and give skin a healthier glow.

Choosing an At-Home Green Light Therapy Device

If you’re interested in trying green light therapy for migraines, fibromyalgia, skin health, or general wellness, a high-quality home device allows you to reap the benefits conveniently and cost-effectively.

Here are some of the top devices we found in our research.


While research into green light therapy is still in early stages, a growing number of laboratory and clinical studies support its potential to relieve certain types of chronic pain, accelerate healing, and rejuvenate skin.

It appears to work by modulating specific retinal and neural pathways and promoting release of healing factors.

Medical Advice Disclaimer


The information, including but not limited to text, graphics, images, and other material contained on this website, are for informational purposes only.

No material on this site is intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment before undertaking a new health care regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

About the Author

Drew Wilkins is a fitness and nutrition expert with a Master's in Biokinesiology (emphasis in Sports Science) from the University of Southern California and over a decade of experience as a personal trainer, nutrition consultant, and wellness coach. An avid surfer and soccer player, he brings a unique perspective to his research, advocating for a balanced approach to health that includes physical fitness, nutrition, and mental well-being.

Related Posts