With the mercury at an everyday rise, there is only so much we even want to put on our skin. Endless battles with heat boils, hopeful experiments with new ‘summer’ products and fancy facials that promise to tackle that sunburn — we’ve all been there. But we never turn to the most basic, widely available and pretty much free (we didn’t even say ‘cheap’, we said ‘free’) alternative. We present (drum roll) — ice cubes! You just emptied a tray in that lemonade you made this afternoon, didn’t you? Here are 10 ways you can use ice in your beauty routine.
1. Before tweezing
Apply some ice to the eyebrows or upper lip if you intend on using the tweezers. The ice will numb the area and you don’t have to wince every time you tug.
Like hot water opens up pores, cold water helps to close them. It’s a pretty simple principle. Wrap some ice cubes in a soft cloth and gently press against your skin to tighten the pores. It works like a natural primer and gives your makeup a smooth surface to set on. The result? Flawless makeup that even lasts longer.
3. Helps you go natural
You can choose to skip the makeup completely if all your skin needs is a little cleansing. Take some ice cubes and massage it in a circular motion on your face. You can also dunk your face completely in a basin of ice cold water (You’ve probably done the ice-bucket challenge anyway, so this should be easy). It helps to increase circulation and instantly gives your skin a natural radiance-boost. It also combats dullness and gives a fresh glow to your face.
4. Counter sunburns
Had a tanning session that didn’t go as planned? Prolonged exposure to the sun (especially in this summer) can cause some serious damage to the skin. The most common is sunburn. Though you can’t undo a burn, treating it with ice immediately can help soothe the irritation, prevent further damage and reduce the inflammation.
5. Tackle tired eyes
Puffy eyes and dark circles? Concealers and abundant eye-makeup can hide the signs of tired eyes, but it doesn’t really solve the underlying problem. Using ice cubes before piling on the makeup will help reduce the puffiness. Take some ice cubes in a soft cloth (or even directly, if you please) and press it over your eyes gently for a few seconds and repeat until you feel the coolness. You might need to do it for about 10 minutes to see a difference.
6. Fight breakouts
It’s tempting to pop a pimple but pressing it back with ice is probably a better call. It reduces redness, inflammation, and can maybe also subdue your urge to tackle it inappropriately. Applying some ice cubes over the affected area also keep the pores closed, thus preventing more bacteria from seeping in and causing further damage.
7. Prevent oily skin
If you have oily skin, applying ice cubes can really help tackle excess oil secretion by acting on the sebaceous glands. You will probably end up having lesser breakouts too.
8. Dry polish
Wet nails holding you back? Ice cubes to the rescue. Dip your fingers in a bowl full of ice cubes or keep them below a tap of running ice cold water and you’ll see your nail-polish dry before you can say Jack Robinson.
9. Fight wrinkles
Because of the ability of ice to constrict pores, it’s also said to be able to prevent the appearance of fine lines to an extent. Alright, so maybe ice won’t be as effective as that anti-aging cream you got but considering its natural, harmless and free, there really is no harm in dabbing your face with an ice pack when you’re sitting around reflecting on how you’ve aged.
10. In a massage
There is nothing more revitalising than a massage. So if you’re suffering from soreness in the muscles, getting a rub with an ice pack can relieve that tension.
Antara Bose is a model turned fashion and beauty consultant. A popular blogger, anchor, and voice over artist, she maintains a deep connection with the local fashion industry and is passionate about discovering and celebrating aspiring talent as well as promoting animal rights. For fashion updates with a side of humour and sarcasm follow Antara on instagram @antarabose and on Facebook: Antara Bose.