Breakthrough Therapies For Migraine: Green Light Therapy – A Review

Allay lamp on regular light setting being used as an extra light while installing a light fixture
The Allay Lamp being used on the regular light mode as a functional and portable light.

This post contains an affiliate link, although this review is not sponsored by Allay.

The last few years have been full of breakthroughs in migraine medicine and treatments. In addition to new medications, a variety of devices have become available and the Allay Lamp captured my attention immediately.

This year’s Migraine World Summit had a special segment highlighting the promising research of green light therapy. The research out of Harvard University narrowed in a specific wavelength of green light that proved to not intensify photosensitivity while also providing relief from pain and symptoms.

Additional research notes an overall calming effect on our nervous system resulting in lower pain and a reduction in anxiety.

For many people living with migraine, the idea of using a light to manage the disease appears counterproductive. Often we want to retreat to a cool, dark room and try to sleep away the pain.

Marketing of the Allay Lamp invites us to “Escape the Darkness” and allow us to continue our daily lives under the green light.

Let’s meet the lamp and how it should be used:

Allay has two settings – headache and regular mode – which can be accessed by flipping the lamp. Headache mode is the green light which I will be discussing today. You can see the light being used on the regular mode in the photo above – I opted out of photographing the green lamp as the green light on a screen can be much harsher than in person.

The lamp also offers different light levels, allowing a range of dim to bright depending on your needs for using the lamp.

A shade that clips onto the side comes with the lamp.

It’s recommended that the lamp be the only light source in the room.

The lamp charges, so you don’t have to rely on it being plugged in to use it. Although, if you forget to charge it you can charge while the lamp is in use!

Suggested use is 30 minutes for relief, 2 hours for the ultimate calming experience.

My Experience With Using the Allay Lamp

I’ve had the lamp since the beginning of June and have discovered two main functions for it: not being in the dark and added relaxation while going to bed.

Not being in the dark…

I tend to always have some sort of ambiance light on, but during bad attacks I can confirm that the Allay Lamp provides a much more gentle light than traditional lamps.

I haven’t at any point during the last 3 1/2 months used the lamp consistently in this way – as if you’ve been following along with things outside of my blog I’ve been in non-stop renovations and rest time has been cut out of my routine.

In comparison to an abortive, I’m not sure how I can rate this lamp. It has on occasion dulled the pain but in my opinion it isn’t a total pain relief tool.

Added relaxation…

This is where I find the lamp to be incredibly effective in an additive effect. Some of my worst migraine attacks start as I’m going to bed and then are ragers by the time I wake up.

Since Spring, I’ve really put an emphasis on catching attacks early and managing them before they get bad. I find that combining my overnight aromatherapy (combo of frankincense and peppermint) with the Allay Lamp has been successful in preventing the painful following mornings.

You don’t have to be looking directly at the lamp for it to work, so having it on a low setting next to your bed certainly is effective.

I’ve fallen asleep with the lamp on multiple times and then when I wake up a few hours later, I’ll turn it off and drift back to sleep. On these nights I notice I’m sleeping much deeper earlier in my sleep cycle.

Pros and Cons of the Lamp Design:

I’ll start with the positives:

  • Allay has a 40 day money back guarantee if you don’t like the lamp. For a product in this price range ($100+) there’s some added comfort in being able to get your money back if it doesn’t work how you need it to.
  • It’s a non-invasive therapy option which means you don’t have to worry about side effects you would consider with medical intervention.
  • You don’t need a prescription in order to access this device – contrary to neuromodulation devices like Cefaly.
  • It’s small and portable with an attractive modern design.
  • The 32 hour battery life means you can use it every day for a month at the suggested 30 minutes without charging it.
  • It continues to work while being charged.
  • There’s no need to purchase replacement parts for continued use.

And for my personal cons:

  • There is no timer so if you use the device to fall asleep it doesn’t auto-shut off.
  • Although the lamp can be used in combination with other therapies, an icepack across your face interferes with the green light reaching your eyes – there is no solution to this conundrum.
  • I don’t find the brightest option on the headache mode to be bright enough to read with as advertised. It causes additional eye strain so the advertised “continue on with your day” doesn’t seem as realistic.
  • The use parameters are limiting in suggesting not using other screens – in our modern era we use our computers and phones for everything from work to relaxation so the treatment does make you choose between continuing with your day and resting with the lamp.

Final Notes

Overall, I think the Allay Lamp is a great tool for everyone to have in their migraine toolbox. My success has mostly been in aided relaxation and sleep, while others have experienced pain and symptom reduction.

The lamp and the research surrounding green light therapy isn’t solely focused on migraine, so I believe the benefits can vary from person to person and the opportunity to return the lamp if the benefits aren’t worth the cost for you make it a really valuable product to try out.

Currently the lamp is advertised at $149, regularly $249. You can get $25 off your purchase of the lamp using this link.

Finally, I’d like to personally thank my Patreon supporters as their patronage helped to cover the cost of my lamp and I wouldn’t be able to try out new technologies like this without their assistance.


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