Since at least 2021, the benefits of cold for the skin have been among the most discussed topics on social networks, with beauty influencers sharing their ice-cold tips that combine the effects of cold with those of well-known skincare ingredients like aloe vera or cucumber.

New beauty tips

Benefits of cold are well known in the beauty industry. Cold would help burn fat and eliminate toxins, and would also improve blood circulation. On top of that, cold could also act as a decongestant, making it an ideal ally in the fight against puffiness and dark circles.

At first, it was a matter of putting creams, masks and other cosmetics in the refrigerator for a few minutes to boost their benefits, but this has now given way to the emergence of new beauty tips and tricks that have propelled ice cubes to the rank of must-have beauty essentials.

Skin-icing and the powers of the ice cube

There are now dozens and dozens of hashtags related to these beauty hacks, totalling several hundred million views on TikTok. Some tips are shared by dermatologists, who also highlight some of the limitations of using ice, especially in terms of skin sensitivity and dryness.

On TikTok, skin-icing, which simply involves applying an ice cube to the face, is the most widespread practice, and the most popular (23 million views). But there are now many variations on this theme, such as frozen cucumber, which involves applying frozen cucumber to the face (39 million views), frozen lipstick, which is the same as skin-icing but using an empty lipstick tube (400,000 views), or the frozen beauty blender, which promises to facilitate the application of foundation (9.7 million views). A more recent viral craze is frozen aloe vera, consisting this time of making aloe vera ice cubes to combine the effects of cold with the moisturizing properties of the plant (3.2 million views). So many ideas that have become popular go-to tricks, and which have not escaped the attention of the beauty industry.

From social media to the bathroom cabinet

While it’s always possible to put cosmetics – serums, creams, masks, make-up removers and other products – in the refrigerator to enhance their properties, brands have gone even further in the last few months by offering tools directly inspired by cryotherapy, to be used at home. This started with ice globes at the beginning of 2022, a tool that takes the form of water-filled spheres that are placed in the refrigerator or freezer and then applied to skin. The aim is to soothe the skin and reduce dark circles and inflammation. One year after first gaining popularity, these accessories seem to have a host of fans, with no less than 60 million views on TikTok.

But, more simply, massage tools like a jade roller, a Gua Sha or a quartz roller can also be placed in the refrigerator to obtain the same results. And to combine the virtues of cold with other properties, brands now offer cooling masks, roll-ons and cooling-effect sticks, for an even more optimal result. Examples include Charlotte Tilbury’s Cryo Recovery Mask, the Dr. Jart+ Cryo Rubber mask, the Cryo-Freshening stick by Holidermie, the Cryo Anti-Puffiness roll-on from Sothys Paris, or the Akane Skincare Ice Therapy Kit.

To combine beauty, pleasure and travel experience, there are now many wellness getaways that focus on the virtues of the cold, whether in Sweden, Norway, Iceland, or France. In Finland, ice swimming – or avanto (’hole in the ice’ in Finnish) – is a traditional ritual known for its benefits for the skin as well as for health, and even for busting stress and generally promoting well-being. On social networks, there are more and more daring influencers that simply get into their swimsuit and slip into one of the country’s countless lakes and rivers for a refreshing blast!