Scientists in Germany say they may have an alternative to Botox and cosmetic surgery; high-intensity light from light-emitting diodes (LEDs) and a lotion made of green tea extract.

Like all miracle products must, they say in Crystal Growth&Design that it works ten times faster than anti-wrinkle treatment that uses LEDs alone. 

Researchers have used light-therapy, or phototherapy, for more than 40 years to help heal wounds.  Andrei P. Sommer and Dan Zhu showed that use of high-intensity LEDs, similar to those used in automotive tail lights and computers, could help reduce skin wrinkles when applied daily for several months - though exposure to intense LED light is also involved in generating high levels of reactive oxygen species as byproducts that can potentially damage cells.

To combat that effect, the researchers combined the LED with a potent antioxidant in green tea extract called epigallocatechin gallate.

epigallocatechin gallate remove wrinkles
A combination of LED light exposure and green tea extract significantly reduces skin wrinkles (right image) when compared to treatment with LED light alone, scientists are reporting.  Photo Credit: Crystal Growth & Design

They applied a daily combination of LED light and green tea extract to the facial wrinkles of a human volunteer one month. They say the combination treatment resulted in smoother skin, including "less pronounced wrinkle levels, shorter wrinkle valleys, and juvenile complexion."

The treatment showed promising results in only one-tenth of the time it took for LED therapy alone to reduce wrinkles. The study could form the basis of "an effective facial rejuvenation program," and lead to a new understanding of the effect reactive oxygen species on cellular aging, they note.