This is old news in Finland by now, but I don't know if these products are well known elsewhere yet.
The idea of Valkee headsets is bright light therapy with a twist—the light is channeled through the ear canal, directly to the brain. It should come as no surprise that the products have been greeted with great skepticism.
What is a bit surprising is that a nontrivial amount of scientific evidence is given to support the headsets' efficacy. The major claims made are as follows:
Valkee’s scientific program has discovered the following:
- Human brain is sensitive to light, not just our eyes
- Valkee is effective for seasonal affective disorder ("winter blues")
- Valkee affects body’s circadian rhythm, and therefore can be an effective tool for sleep problems and circadian rhythm disturbances such as jetlag
I'm specifically targeting the second claim in this question. The evidence for the photosensitivity of the brain doesn't imply that pointing LEDs in your ear canal is beneficial in any way. And it seems the evidence for the benefits is significantly thinner.
Is the evidence Valkee produce good enough, or is the methodology and the connections between the industry and the researchers problematic? Have the results been verified independently?