The Cold Treat­ment

Keep­ing your cool is now as good for your skin as it is for your heart and mind. The lat­est sk­in­care and eye-care prod­ucts prom­ise to re­fresh and in­vig­o­rate us.

Herworld (Singapore) - - F / TO BUY - – KT

Dif­fer­ent de­grees of cold do dif­fer­ent things to our body.

In one cat­e­gory is the hard­core swim-in-near­freez­ing-lakes type for mind-over-mat­ter phys­i­cal en­durance. It’s a sim­i­lar idea to cryother­apy, where you’re blasted with air at tem­per­a­tures of mi­nus 110 to mi­nus 150 deg C in a cham­ber for about three min­utes. Pro­fes­sional ath­letes like LeBron James and Cris­tiano Ron­aldo are fans, us­ing it for mus­cle re­cov­ery and to boost alert­ness. The mod­ern-day ver­sion evolved from Whole Body Cryother­apy, in­tro­duced in 1978 by Ja­panese re­searcher Dr Toshima Ya­mauchi to treat rheuma­toid arthri­tis and re­lieve pain.

In an­other cat­e­gory are milder meth­ods: an ice pack to ease swelling; a cold shower to get you mov­ing; or a cold press “to give im­me­di­ate re­lief from se­vere itch­ing from hives or atopic der­mati­tis, red­ness and swelling”, says Dr Rachael Teo, der­ma­tol­o­gist at The Der­ma­tol­ogy Prac­tice @ Gle­nea­gles. “Cooler tem­per­a­tures soothe skin by re­duc­ing the blood flow there.”

That chill fac­tor is what beauty brands are cap­i­tal­is­ing on now. Why? Be­cause when skin is calm and soothed, it re­port­edly “be­haves” bet­ter.

Re­search from Laneige sug­gests that heat stim­u­lates hy­per­pig­men­ta­tion, so cooler skin = less ab­nor­mal pig­men­ta­tion. An­other Korean brand, Cre­mor­lab, says that when skin is less in­flamed by heat (and in­flam­ma­tion af­fects skin’s gen­eral health), it ages nat­u­rally as op­posed to un­nat­u­rally.

Clar­ins’, La Mer’s and Chris­tian Dior’s takes are more straight­for­ward: make prod­ucts with a cooler feel, be­cause this is bet­ter in our cli­mate – when skin is cooler, it has less of a ten­dency to grease up, itch or red­den.

While most of these prod­ucts cool skin mildly (that means no more than just a few sec­onds to a cou­ple of min­utes), Fresh’s Black Tea In­stant Per­fect­ing Mask – de­signed to re­fresh and soothe tired and ir­ri­tated skin with the ad­di­tion of men­thol – feels so air­con cool that you don’t want to wash it off. The in­vig­o­rat­ing sen­sa­tion lasts 20-30min even after you’ve re­moved it. Now, that’s cool.

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