Cucumber has long been deployed in skincare regimes to cool and calm the skin—from its slices being used to de-puff and brighten under-eye dark circles (Mia Thermapolis did it first!), to the vegetable finding its way into rejuvenating sheet masks, gel moisturisers, serums, and lotions.
Recently though, it has been used in a whole new way—in its frozen form, all thanks to the internet. So, what is this frozen cucumber trend all about? And will it leave your skin feeling cool like a cucumber?
We dug deep to get to the bottom of the trend.
What is the frozen cucumber trend?
In this viral skincare hack that started on TikTok, but quickly gained steam throughout other social media platforms, people massage a chunk of frozen cucumber on their face, just like how you would a roller, for a few minutes. According to those on the internet who’ve tried it, gently rubbing the cold vegetable on your skin can help remove blemishes, reduce puffiness, brighten, and reduce acne-caused inflammation.
How do I incorporate the trend into my skincare routine?
Want to try this trend? All you have to do is pick a cucumber, cut off a sizeable chunk that will be easy to hold, and freeze it for at least an hour in a clean plastic bag. Then, remove it from the freezer and let it warm up slightly—massaging extremely cold cucumber on your face could lead to a burn! Once it’s at a comfortable temperature, start rubbing it in either a circular or sweeping motion. Before you start though, don’t forget to wash your face, to avoid spreading bacteria all over.
Can rubbing frozen cucumber on your face actually be beneficial?
Now you know what the trend is and how to add it to your routine, but does it really do what it claims to? Turns out, there might be some truth behind this hack. Using a frozen cucumber can have multi-fold benefits, from the cucumber itself and its cool temperature. The vegetable is packed with skin-nourishing nutrients and vitamins like vitamin C, vitamin K, and folic acid, among others that are known to reduce irritation and inflammation and soothe acne-prone skin along with hydrating it (since cucumber is almost 95 per cent water).
Plus, the temperature causes the blood vessels on your face to constrict—resulting in reduced redness, puffiness, and inflammation. The jolt of coldness will also instantly make you feel more refreshed!
Should it replace your trusty gua sha or ice roller?
Not so soon! Unlike cucumbers, ice rollers, jade tools, and gua sha have a smooth surface that makes them easier to use and clean. This means you are less likely to introduce bacteria to your face that could do more harm than good. And owing to the water content of cucumber, it will turn mushy if you freeze and re-freeze it multiple times, potentially losing its benefits and making the whole process messy.
On a deeper level, applying a frozen cucumber directly, especially if you have sensitive skin, can be irritating. And, the rough texture of cucumbers can cause microtears in the skin that you might not be able to spot but can cause infection in the long run.
The verdict? While using the hack occasionally when you want to de-puff your face and feel more awake is okay, it’s better to stick to eating cucumbers than applying them on your face. Stick to a tried-and-tested skincare routine that works for you!