The skin care power of a cool facial massage is iconic at this point — remember throwing spoons in the freezer to clear away under-eye bags? Admittedly, the skin care and beauty industry has since come up with a version of that DIY that is a tad more elevated. Meet ice globes, a futuristic-looking beauty tool you might've spotted on celeb Instagrams, TikToks, or while reading up on Cindy Crawford's skin care routine. And while their celebrity fans are impressive, the benefits of ice globes for the face are even better.
Ice globes are glass or metal wands that are used as facial tools to help soothe and de-puff the face. And they’re usually filled with a gel-like consistency to prevent them from expanding when put into the fridge or freezer, as Elizabeth Parrish, esthetician and founder of EE Esthetics, explains to TZR. “The best way to describe ice globes is literally like rubbing an ice cube on your face without the mess,” Parrish says.
Andy Hamm, marketing coordinator for the beauty brand Aceology, notes the increase in cooling-tool services at spas, "as the benefits are immediate — not to mention, they feel incredibly soothing," leading to the desire for at-home tools. Outside of just professional facial settings, ice globes have gained popularity as an easy-to-use self-care tool.
"Cooling facial massage tools have gained significant popularity over the last decade, and it’s likely due to the impact that K-beauty has had around the world," Hamm tells TZR. "Many have heard of the trendy 10+ step skincare regimes practiced by Korean women, and using ice water [or] skin icing has frequently been mentioned as one of the many vital steps in achieving perfect, glass-like skin."
The Benefits Of Ice Globes
So, what happens when you glide one of the Instagram- and TikTok-friendly beauty tools along your skin? According to Hamm, quite a bit: Benefits include minimizing inflammation or puffiness, helping lymphatic drainage and sinus pressure, reducing redness and pore size, and kick-starting circulation — "which helps to provide a radiant glow to the skin,” says Hamm.
The cooling facial tools work by constricting blood vessels and thus tightening and toning the skin. As Parrish explains, heat causes the skin’s blood vessels to dilate and increases sweating, which can clog up pores and make your skin dehydrated, whereas cold slows down and prevents the secretion of sebum, in addition to reducing swelling and inflammation by slowing blood flow. “Once cold of any kind touches the skin, blood rushes away from the face, decreasing swelling, and returns renewed with new, fresh red blood cells and nutrients for a brighter healthy glow without the redness or irritation,” says Parrish.
Ice globes were created in part from the need to upgrade traditional skin icing, a classic skin care technique that involves swirling an ice cube on top of your skin. "While skin icing provides many of the benefits of ice globes, it also has its downsides. As the skin is in direct contact with ice, it’s possible to damage skin cells if left in one spot for too long," explains Hamm. "[Ice globes] are designed to stay cold, mess-free, and drama-free throughout the entire duration of the massage, all while providing the same benefits of skin icing."
You have options, too, when it comes to your globe style. Below, you’ll find a few ice globe facial tools to consider adding to your routine (and fridge).
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The Best Ice Globes For Your Face
French beauty brand Fraîcheur is dedicated completely to crafting high-quality ice globes, which are available in a wide variety of sparkly colors.
Ice the Cindy Crawford way with Glycelene's Golden Ice Globes, which are as pretty as they are powerful.
These bright pink facial globes from indie beauty brand The Gnarly Beauty are made with Borosilicate glass, making them smoother and more resistant to thermal shock than other common glass.
Aceology's proprietary liquid blend — suspended within the ice globes — helps keep the cooling tool "colder for longer periods of time," says Hamm.
From the NYC-based spa company, Chillhouse’s version of the ice globe tool features a colorful two-piece set perfect for personal chill-out time.
These hand-blown glass globes from Jenny Patinkin feature a slightly different shape than others, designed to hug the contours of the face as it glides.
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