What is Skin Icing?

Tori Douglas

Global Digital

2 min read

Skincare Education

Discover the benefits of the latest skincare trend—skin icing.

skin icing

Have you ever enjoyed the feeling of ice on your skin? Well, it’s now a TikTok trend where people apply ice directly onto their skin or submerge their faces in icy water for a period of time. Of course, it is done to achieve various benefits, such as decreasing inflammation and puffiness. By far, skin icing isn’t a new skincare hack; similar beauty techniques have been practiced throughout history and in various cultures. However, more people are trying skin icing for themselves thanks to social media.

What is skin icing?

In its most basic form, it involves using an ice cube to reduce under-eye or facial puffiness. We’ve all used a refrigerated spoon or cucumber slice on our eyes. Well, there’s actual science behind it. When ice is applied to the skin, it constricts blood vessels, which helps soothe inflammation and tighten the skin. Also known as an ice facial, skin icing acts as a cryotherapy treatment which includes vaporized nitrogen being used to cool the skin of the scalp, neck, and face. You can also use skincare products to “ice” your skin. Just cool it in the refrigerator before applying.

What does icing do to the skin?

If you experience a muscle ache, applying ice can help to numb the pain and decrease inflammation. The cold temperature temporarily reduces the pain by confusing the message from the pain nerves to the brain. Similarly, in skincare, it can reduce blood flow to the area by temporarily causing the surface blood cells to constrict. This is why using icing methods for puffy eyes is a popular practice.

The benefits of skin icing

There are various benefits of putting ice on the skin or applying cold skincare products. Take a look at some of the benefits below:

  • Reduce pore size: It minimizes the appearance of enlarged pores and can help to unclog pores that may appear larger due to excess sebum and debris. Icing ultimately tones the face, which makes your skin and foundation look smoother.
  • Reduce inflammation: People who suffer from inflammatory skin conditions can greatly benefit from cold therapy. As mentioned above, it constricts your blood vessels and soothes inflammation.
  • Exfoliates the skin: Doing a cryofacial can help to remove the outer layer of dead skin cells and stimulate new ones underneath to grow more evenly.
  • Helps with blemishes: The ice can help reduce the swelling and the redness of pimples. Icing can help antibacterial agents get into the pores since it also exfoliates.

How to apply ice to your skin

There are various ways that you can apply ice to your skin. Some people use tools, while others simply grab an ice cube from the freezer.

  • Facial ice rollers: Ice rollers and ice globes can be smoothed over the skin and deliver a desirable chilly temperature. This way, you don’t get an overly cold temperature while gently applying pressure to your skin.
  • Ice cube: If you want to use an ice cube, consider putting it in a plastic bag to avoid it dripping on your face and clothes as it melts.
  • Frozen spoon: A frozen spoon works incredibly well. The shape of the spoon is great for addressing puffy under-eye bags.

Tips for facial icing

It is always best to discuss skin icing with your healthcare or skincare professional before doing it. Here are some tips for when you’re ready:

  • If you’re using ice directly, make sure that the ice tray is clean at all times.
  • Wash your face before icing.
  • Have a clean washcloth or tissue to wipe the excess liquid that might drip from your face.
  • Use a cloth or some form of barrier between your skin and the ice. It will protect your face and hands.

When to avoid ice on skin

It is safe for most people to do, but it is best to avoid if you experience any of the following conditions:

  • Sensitive skin: It can cause irritation and redness in people whose skin is already susceptible.
  • Broken capillaries: If you can see little red lines under your eyes, avoid ice as it can prevent healing.
  • Facial procedures: If you’re recovering from cosmetic surgery, peels, or lasers, do not do skin icing, as you should allow your skin to heal naturally.

Get the best skincare education at fresh

In addition to purchasing skincare products that will improve your skin’s appearance, we also provide you with guides on skincare. You can learn more about antioxidants and how to use them, inquire whether ice is good for your skin, or learn about new trends such as skin cycling and skin flooding. There’s so much more to know!

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blog author tori

Tori Douglas

Global Digital

Written by Tori Douglas for Fresh. Tori is a NYC-based digital and brand strategist. Tori has worked for various publications and brands such as Kiehl's, The Body Shop, Deux Hommes Magazine, and Elite Daily with her expertise lying in the fashion & beauty space.