This also uses blue light rather than the white light many other SAD lamps use and this is further discussed in the review below.
At the back of the product is a pull out stand to hold the GoLITE BLU at a comfortable angle and a strip of rubber lines the base of the unit and the stand to make a good grip so it will not slide or wander around.
The power port is placed under the stand and there are two buttons on the front of the unit you can use to increase or decrease the light intensity.
There are five light intensities in total. If you are new to light therapy then you are probably best off starting at the lowest light intensity setting. The power button is on the thin edge of the device.
Charging the battery takes three to four hours and provides enough energy to use the light for about an hour at full intensity or for three to four hours at the lowest intensity.
This doesn’t have a timer you can set as such but it does have, on the front, a gauge made up of six small segments. These segments light up every ten minutes you have the light on, so when all six segments are lit you know you have been using the light for an hour.
It comes with a detailed manual that recommends usage for 20 to 30 minutes each day, although it is safe to use it for longer if you wish. The manual also indicates that you may start to see results in anything from 7 to 21 days.
You should place the device at arm’s length (so around 50 to 75cm from your eyes) and within your field of vision so the light bathes your face without you staring directly into it.
Then switch it on to the highest light intensity setting that is comfortable to your eyes and off you go!
So as mentioned before the big difference between this and the GoLITE BLU HF3422 is that this has a rechargeable battery. This has the obvious bonus of meaning you can use the light anywhere, not just near a power source.
If needed of course you can also use it plugged into a socket with the power lead. The battery lasts around 60 minutes on the highest intensity and around three to four hours on the lowest. It takes three to four hours to charge.
The rechargeable battery really aids another of this SAD lights plus points – it is very small and compact, thus very portable. It is so easy to carry around to any other part of the home or to the office and is very light. It takes up very little room so you can pack it for a vacation quite easily.
The light also has five adjustable intensities so you can choose the one that suits you. Most people start on the lowest and work their way up to the highest slowly. But it is great to have a range to choose from.
The unit also has a neat little timer bar on the front. It is split into six segments and whenever one lights up it indicates ten minutes have passed. So when all six are lit, you’ve had the light on for an hour. This is a step up on the HF3422, and you can quickly see how long you’ve spent in front of the light.
As the light is so portable and designed for travel the people at Philips have added a travel lock, which makes sense, so it can be locked to ensure it doesn’t turn on when you are travelling with it.
The Philips GoLITE BLU Rechargeable is extremely easy to use. Simply prop it up using the pop out stand and turn it on using the button on the side. Then use the plus and minus buttons on the front to adjust the light level. The controls are touch sensitive.
The instructions are really good and include a chart with the recommended time of the day you should use the light according to your needs.
This chart is broken down into five categories – morning person, evening person, have an afternoon energy dip, suffer from the winter blues or have a lack of daylight indoors.
The device looks appealing too. Everything about it exudes quality – it is stylish and smart and you can tell a lot of thought has been put into the design. It has a real high quality look and feel.
Finally this uses blue light. Research is showing that this is the one specific bandwidth on the spectrum that is most effective to impact on internal circadian rhythms and help combat Seasonal Affective Disorder.
Whereas many devices throw out the whole light spectrum and hope the user gets the right wavelengths the Philips GoLITE BLU concentrates on this blue spectrum (446 – 466 nm) so that it takes only a fraction of the exposure to get the same results that white light offers.
There have been concerns about the safety of blue light but Dr David Sliney, a physicist with the National Institutes of Health, has stated that the light spectrum emitted by the GoLITE is well below the thresholds set by government for ocular safety.
One of the main problems with the GoLITE BLU Rechargeable is that the rechargeable battery does have a relatively short charge. As mentioned, most people will work their way up to the highest light intensity and the battery will only last for an hour or less on that setting.
However that would be enough for two sessions of light therapy and it is quite easy to leave the battery charging overnight.
Several users experienced problems with the stand, with some calling it flimsy after the stand broke and others upset that you cannot adjust the angle of the stand.
However as the device is so small, even if your stand breaks it is quite simple to prop it up against some books, or something similar and angle the light so it hits your face.
There is also a slight design flaw with regards to the placement of the On/Off button. It is placed on the side of the unit and to turn it on/off it requires two hands – one to hold the device steady and another to press the button.
Try it with one hand and you will inevitably end up pushing the unit off of the table! But this isn’t a major issue – more of a small annoyance.
A couple of extra features could have been incorporated to make this light even better. First of all there is no brightness indicator, so you aren’t sure which of the five brightness level you have on unless you recognise how bright it is.
There is also no battery life indicator other than a green light that turns orange when it is running low, so when you start a session you don’t know exactly how long the battery has left.
Also a travel case would be a nice extra as well considering this has been designed with travelling with it in mind.
Blue light therapy is the subject of much debate within scientific communities. Mainly because the use of white light is backed up with much more research as it has been around longer and there is a concern that blue light could cause macular degeneration of the eyes.
However this is actually associated with blue light within the full spectrum of sunlight. That is white lights contain the same blue light as the blue only lights, like the GoLITE BLU, so theoretically they pose the same risk. As mentioned above this device has also been declared safe by an eminent physicist from the National Institutes of Health.
If you want a portable SAD Light that provides white light then you migght want to try the Circadian Optics Lumos, which is really compact and portable.
As mentioned earlier in the review one of the plus points is that the GoLITE BLU looks so damn good! It is well made, obviously of high quality, small, sleek and stylish. To look at it looks fantastic. Well done Philips!
And Does It Work?
Like the corded version of the model the GoLITE BLU has some really positive feedback. Many users feedback on the increased energy levels they have after using the device on a consistent basis so that although they still feel tired come bedtime, it is more of a natural tiredness rather than an all-out exhaustion!
In short – the chances are it will make a difference for you!
Battery life is short
Small, compact and portable
Stand prone to breaking
Five light intensities
Awkward to turn on and off
No brightness indicator
Very easy to use
No battery life indicator
Concerns over safety of blue light
Blue light more efficient at combating SAD
Another well designed SAD Light by Philips that is really easy to set up and can be used pretty much anywhere.
If you are interested in blue light therapy then either this or the corded power version would be a really worthwhile investment. You are paying slightly more for the rechargeable battery, but the price is still reasonable and it is still highly recommended.
This has the edge on the GoLITE BLU Corded Power Unit (HF3422) as it has a rechargeable battery, along with a timer indicator and five light intensities other than three. However you are paying more for it.
The GoLITE BLU Light Therapy Device (HF3332) actually has more features than either the HF3422 or the HF3429. It has a timer, clock and alarm functioning as well as four adjustable light intensities, however it doesn’t look nearly as nice and is far and away the most expensive of the three.
If you think you can put up with always needing to be near a power source I would recommend the HF3422, but if you like the idea of ultimate portability and are prepared to splash out a bit more then go for this one – the HF3429.
If you would like to leave your personal review or experience of this product, or if you have any questions, please do leave them below. I would love to hear your feedback!