ICE: Cleanser, Toner, et al

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Well, since the Ice Bucket Challenge has been doing rounds in every corner of the world, I thought why not emphasize a little more on the ‘ice’ factor of the whole theme. Of course I’m pro for their cause (ALS), but here’s a bit more you need to know-If you’re one of the many who has taken up the Ice Bucket Challenge, then you’ve unconsciously contributed to beautifying your face in numerous ways. Yes, ice for the face-that’s right. Most of the beauty salons these days even consist of varied lists of ‘Ice Facials.’

It is a known fact that water is one’s best friend when it comes to both body as well as beauty. When a single component, H2O, can make such a difference in one’s life, then why not embrace it?
Not only does water hydrate the body and enhance its metabolism, it also flushes away the toxins and gives skin a supple texture. Dehydrated skin looks dry and battered, lacks moisture, cracks the lips, and sometimes leads to dry eyes. Water also helps prevent dark circles and acne. What’s more? It also prevents wrinkles!

Just like water, ice is also highly beneficial to the skin. It is useful for all skin types-be it oily, dry, combination or otherwise. But no, ice is not to be in taken like water, it is to be externally used to stimulate the skin cells and relax the facial muscles. Ice not only massages the facial muscles but also reduces pore sizes and is said to reduce sebum secretion. In this process, it tightens the skin, and improves its texture. Ice is said to eradicate fat cells, not only healing blemishes but also rejuvenating the skin and giving a fresh appeal to the face. It is believed that ice reduces puffiness of eyes by reducing the swelling, and improving circulation. It gives temporary relief from sun tanned or sun burnt skin, and gradually heals the tan.

Toning, priming and circulating- a single ice cube does it all. It can be used as an excellent toner for the face and it makes the skin visibly smoother. Another addition is that it can be used as a primer before beginning with one’s makeup. It preps the skin and reduces the pores, thus giving a smooth finish and texture to the skin. It also helps in spreading the foundation evenly, throughout the face and neck areas. Ice gives a natural blush to the skin, by constricting the blood flow such that less blood goes to the skin, which in turn makes the body respond with increased flow of warm blood/blood cells to the face. Thus, ice enhances blood circulation. Above all, it is a stress free way to visibly wash away one’s stress in life.

Alternatively known as the chilly facial or ice therapy, this regime can be used both during the morning or evenings of a day, every day.  It can be followed randomly during one’s free time or can be adhered to on a weekly basis. It works just fine either ways!
It can be companioned with fruits (/fruit juice), green tea, lime water or rose water, herbs, etc. A few drops of any ingredient can be mixed along with water and frozen. These additional flavors will add more benefits to the skin accordingly.

How to use ice on the face?
It is primarily important to keep the ice cubes neat. Secondly, get rid of any traces of makeup that are present on the face. Gloves can be used to keep ice neat, and for using ice for a longer duration, without hindering one’s fingers or hands. In case gloves aren’t available or preferred, hands are to be kept neat at any cost. If one is not comfortable with the idea of direct contact of ice on face, a washcloth or normal cotton cloth can be wrapped around the ice cube. The ice that is straight out from the freezer is not meant to be used. Leave the cubes outside, for a few seconds, so that it is cold water acting on the skin rather than the hard ice.


Pick up the ice and rub gently against the surface of facial skin. Circular motions can be used to enhance blood circulation. However, do not exceed this process for more than 2-3 minutes (maximum 5 minutes) in a single area of the face. Shift to the next portion of the face and repeat the process. One has to be cautious while applying ice on the face- the skin has to be cold, but not too cold to the extent of complete numbness, because this indicates freezing of facial muscles that could lead to dry skin. Prevent the eye area during this process, but a slight massage in the under eye area wouldn’t cause any harm. Be extra gentle and careful when it comes to this. Like all face packs, or face regimens, the lips and eyes can be excluded from this facial exercise.

It is of utmost importance that the entire process is to be completed with the regular skin routine of cleansing, toning and moisturizing. Since ice comprises of both cleansing and toning activities, a regular moisturizer is advised to be applied on the skin. If one prefers a toning moisturizer instead, that could be used. Moisturizer seals the entire process of cleaning and concealing the skin pores. It is not to be forgotten since forgoing this would ruin the entire effort.

Another important factor to be considered while committing oneself to this ice facial is to make sure that it’s compatible with one’s skin. Like all facials or skin creams, even this facial is suitable to preferably all skin types, but people with sensitive skin have to be precautious. If the skin reddens excessively or skin irritation is caused, this process is to be avoided. People with sensitive skin or blood vessels close to the skin surface should choose an alternative course, in order to avoid skin eruptions or harming of muscles.

So what’s the wait for? Let’s give the Ice Bucket Challenge a facial twist!