Often, the simplest things in life are the things we need to hold the closest, whether it’s the subtle gatherings with family and friends, or immersing ourselves in the basic tasks that bring us joy. This rule of simplicity often applies to health as well. Why soak your pores in man-made chemicals when you can use frozen water?
What is Cold Therapy?
Cold Therapy (sometimes called cryotherapy) is applying frozen objects to our body to provide benefits – in short, putting ice on skin. Dr. Prima Vig, of Beyond MediSpa, explains, “Therapies that use cold temperature can stimulate circulation”. In fact, some have even developed an “ice cube facial” to help reduce puffiness, calm irritated skin, and achieve a refreshed overall look.
If you’re looking for a simple, all-natural way to look young and healthy, here are three ways putting ice on skin can help with acne, wrinkles, and puffy eyes.
1. Cold Therapy for Acne
Acne emerges when your pores are filled with debris and oil. As a response, your skin gets inflamed, resulting in pimples.
Many people use chemicals like Benzoyl peroxide, Salicylic acid, and oral antibiotics to treat outbreaks. However, soaking chemicals in skin doesn’t promote overall skin health – instead it often irritates and makes it dry. Cold Therapy or ice cubes are an effective response because it challenges the acne directly without adding chemicals to the equation.
How it works: When you rub the ice in a circular motion on the pimple or blemish it tightens the blood vessels underneath and reduces the inflammation surrounding the pimple, making it much less prominent[i].
You can also try adding a few drops of tea tree oil to your ice cube tray before freezing (you can try mixing the tea tree oil with a carrier oil and freezing that instead of water). Tea tree oil is effective in treating acne naturally, although it takes slightly longer to act than benzoyl peroxide, for example.
2. Cold Therapy to Reduce Wrinkles
High doses of retinoids or anti-aging creams can cause more issues than they solve. Side effects include burning, redness, itching, peeling and scaling.[iii] Medication can make you seem younger, but the added damage is not worth it. The more invasive option, Botox, comes with side effects like pain, swelling, bruising and more.[iv]
How it works: Dr. Yannis Alexandrides, of Myoscience Inc., explains how putting ice on skin can help you look younger. “This puts the nerves into temporary hibernation, so muscles relax and wrinkles disappear. Unlike Botox, which takes four days to work, the effects can be seen immediately and last up to four months.”
3. Cold Therapy for Puffy Eyes
Using ice cubes in cold therapy is a good way to reduce inflammation, whether it’s from allergies, a rough night’s sleep, or crying. You’re already familiar with reducing swelling and inflammation with ice when you use an ice pack (or a bag of frozen peas) on a bruise or some other injury. The same principles are at work here, but at a smaller scale.
How it works: The ice reduces inflammation by restricting blood flow and letting your eyes recover their natural look.
Green Tea Popsicles for Acne
Green tea is filled with antioxidants which combat acne causing free radicals. Caffeine in green tea has also been proven to reduce the risk of skin cancer in mice. [x]
DIY Green Tea Ice Remedy from Home Remedies for Life.
One organic green tea bag
2 vitamin E capsules
500ml of water
Boil the water
Steep the tea bag for a minute
Dissolve the Vitamin E capsules in the tea
Let tea cool down then pour into an ice tray
Freeze the ice
Once the ice is ready:
Wash your face with soap and warm water, then pat dry
Use green tea ice cubes to massage pimples in a circular motion, using as many ice cubes as necessary
Finally, pat dry once the ice has melted
Repeat 2-3 times a day for the best results.
After all, our skin and face is one of the most sensitive areas of our body and is regularly exposed. It is important that we find the best ways to take care of it. It is always best to try natural and straightforward solutions like ice to rehabilitate your skin before moving on to more extreme methods.
[i]How To Get Rid of Pimples Quickly with Ice. Home Remedies For Life. 2016. Available at: http://homeremediesforlife.com/ice-cubes-for-pimples/. Accessed March 10, 2017.
[ii] Gavin M. What Can I Do About the Rough Skin on My Arms?. Kidshealthorg. Available at: http://kidshealth.org/en/teens/keratosis-pilaris.html. Accessed March 10, 2017.
[iii] Perkins S. Topical Retinol’s Side Effects. LIVESTRONGCOM. 2015. Available at: http://www.livestrong.com/article/390433-topical-retinols-side-effects/. Accessed March 10, 2017.
[iv]Risks – Botox injections – Mayo Clinic. Mayoclinicorg. 2017. Available at: http://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/botox/details/risks/cmc-20196372. Accessed March 10, 2017.
[v] Gosai A. The cool way to smoother skin: Face-freezing treatments are the latest anti-wrinkle trick. Mail Online. 2013. Available at: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2291274/The-cool-way-smoother-skin-Face-freezing-treatments-latest-anti-wrinkle-trick.html. Accessed March 10, 2017.
[x] Alison F. Stallings M. Practical Uses of Botanicals in Skin Care. PubMed Central (PMC). 2017. Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2958188/. Accessed March 13, 2017.