The reach of direct detection experiments for dark matter (DM) candidates with masses below a GeV faces limitations stemming from two critical challenges. Firstly, prevailing light-DM experiments grapple with a substantial number of unexplained background events that severely limit their sensitivity. Secondly, sub-GeV DM detectors lose sensitivity
towards low DM masses due to constraints in detector thresholds. In this talk we discuss these issues and introduce two novel technologies aimed at their resolution: the Dual-Sided Charge-Coupled Device (DCCD) and doped-semiconductor DM detectors.The DCCD is a new type of imaging apparatus with the potential to deliver multiple-order of magnitude improvements in background rejection and timing capabilities. Doped-semiconductor detectors, on the other hand, are low-threshold devices that have the potential to test DM
candidates with sub-MeV masses. These advancements translate into significant improvements in the discovery reach for concrete DM models. Moreover, the impact of these novel devices is wide-ranging; the unparalleled imaging capabilities of DCCDs, in particular, could facilitate substantial progress in near-IR, optical, and X-ray astronomy.