Nessie Sightings logo

I first learned what a SAD lamp was in college. At the time, I was living in San Diego, where it was perpetually sunny. My good friend was living in Canada, where it was perpetually not. We were catching up on the phone, and she told me she was sitting in front of a little light box. The intent was to mimic the absent sunlight to lift her spirits.

Basking in front of a little box that shines a light on your face for 30-ish minutes a day to feel less sad might sound like a piece of misinformation that would float around health TikTok, but it’s legit.

“Research shows that daily exposure to light therapy has been proven effective and is now recognized as a first-line therapeutic modality for the treatment of SAD, as well as other disorders that include symptoms of circadian rhythm disruption [including] bipolar disorder, ADHD, [and] depression,” psychotherapist and brain health expert Teralyn Sell told us.

SAD, or seasonal affective disorder, is a diagnosable type of depression someone might experience with the changing seasons and diminishing sunlight. A SAD lamp is an over-the-counter device that uses fluorescent lights and a diffusion screen (this filters out UV light), emitting 10,000 lux (that’s how much light falls on an area).

It essentially tricks your brain into making the chemicals and hormones that it normally would if you had been exposed to sunlight.

I still live in SoCal, so I admittedly have not used one. But I have a lot of loved ones who have turned to these devices as a way to fend off some of the mood changes brought on by dreary seasons. And so I love these little light boxes, sitting atop my friends’ desks and vanities, shining little lights on their faces and making them feel a little bit better. And they’re over-the-counter. (Read: You can buy one online today and have it in front of you before the end of the week.)

That being said, a SAD lamp is not the cure-all for all types of depression and mood disorders, so speak with a qualified mental health provider to find out the best plan for you.

If you are looking to add a little (fake) sunshine to your morning, we’ve got a few recommendations.

Melanie, editor at Nessie Sightings

PS: A SAD lamp rules, but it doesn’t provide you with any vitamin D. You’ll need the actual sun or a supplement for that.

First Sightings header with a grocery bag and protein bar

It’s so important for pregnancy care to include those who have incomplete pregnancies, and Frida has a recovery kit to deal with all the common physical symptoms that might occur in that event

Alison Mariella Désir, an activist and founder of Harlem Run, talks about how the running industry unjustly (and harmfully) centers whiteness in her book Running While Black, and what we can do to make the space more inclusive

I learned about slugging on TikTok this year. Or, when you slather your face in an occlusive moisturizer overnight. But it dates back to the 15th century when the Native American Seneca tribe used petroleum jelly to keep wounds moist. And now the practice has inspired a new skincare brand, Future Wise, which has an entire product line dedicated to slugging

I really want to try this mouthrinse that sounds like it’ll taste like a mouthful of the sea (in a good way)

Labcorp OnDemand’s Food Allergy Test makes it easy to understand your immune response to some of the most common foods known to trigger an allergic reaction. There’s also a newly launched Celiac Disease Antibody Test that helps determine if your discomfort from consuming gluten is caused by celiac disease. Just some fun and useful insights you can glean as we head into festive meal season

Adidas and 11 Honoré dropped a collection designed for sizes 1XL-4XL. The color palette is inspired by the earthy tones of sunrises and sunsets and the way light scatters and reflects

Therabody’s Black Friday sale offers up to $150 off on its recovery devices

And Girlfriend Collective’s Black Friday sale gets you up to 70% off some of its community favorites (like the compressive pocket leggings and racerback dress)

Should I bring green bean casserole sparkling water to Thanksgiving this year? It is apparently refreshing and not extremely gross, as I imagined

Nike’s Pegasus 39 road running shoes are on sale right now, down to $110 from $130

I had never heard of the Stealth Squat, a $99 squatting device (it looks like a big yellow futuristic steering wheel) that you attach to a door and stick your phone in. You then play games on a synced app that gamify your movements. If I hadn’t read this pretty glowing review, I’d be a little suspect, because the website is giving me scammer vibes. But it sounds legit and apparently makes squatting fun?? Intrigued

In the Wild header with a hiking boot
A Deal header with gems and flowers

Luxury athleisure always looks so comfy, like I should be draped in the functional, beautiful monochrome sets while reading a newspaper and sipping an espresso out of a tiny ceramic cup after my morning stretch. But they usually don’t come cheap, as the lifestyles they exude seem to mirror. So I’m stoked to offer our readers $50 off Alala, a luxe apparel brand that wants to be your wardrobe staple. Just use the code NESSIE50 at checkout (Applicable for a cart minimum of two full-priced items)

Did a friend forward this to you? Subscribe to Nessie Sightings to get issues directly to your inbox!

We write for people looking for approachable health and wellness finds and insights. All products and services are independently selected to provide recommendations you can trust. We may receive commission on purchases made from some of our links, but that’s not why we’re here. We just want to help you find good stuff.

Copyright (C) 2022 Ness Well, Inc.. All rights reserved.

Update Preferences | Unsubscribe