Are Your Skincare Products More Effective If They're Chilled?
And, if so, should you invest in a skincare fridge?
If you prioritize caring for your skin, then you likely have a plethora of products all lined up inside your medicine cabinet, stashed in your purse, and placed on your nightstand. And while keeping your go-to formulas where you need them isn't a bad thing, it's important to make sure they're stored correctly to increase their longevity and effectiveness. Think of it this way: You wouldn't leave ice cream on the counter—and you shouldn't place products in a place where they could heat up (as in, next to a window).
In fact, keeping them colder than room temperature by storing them inside of your refrigerator might be the best course of action—which would definitely explain the influx of miniature beauty fridges—we love this colorful option by Cooluli ($59.95, urbanoutfitters.com)—on the market today. To discover whether or not chilling certain formulas actually increases their efficacy, we spoke to several industry experts, and here's what they had to say.
Cooler temperatures can extend a product's lifespan.
Skincare products are formulated with preservatives that maintain their stability and effectiveness, but keeping them cool can't hurt when it comes to increasing their lifespan. "Storing them in a beauty fridge can provide extra benefits, like extending the shelf-life of the product. We are not talking years, but a few extra weeks," explains Chelsea Scott, the founder of The Beauty Spy. "Cooler temperatures help slow down the degradation of products. The sun and heat are their worst enemies; they break down the formulas and wreak havoc on their efficacy," she continues.
Antioxidant-rich products really benefit from refrigeration.
Products packed with antioxidants, which are extremely unstable when exposed to heat and light, are best kept inside a fridge; think vitamin C serums and eye creams. "Another ingredient that serves well from being stored in the fridge is aloe vera," notes Kristi Dickinson, the spa director at Rancho Valencia Resort & Spa. When chilled, aloe can help soothe certain skin conditions, like rosacea and inflammatory acne.
As do organic formulas.
Keep your organic products good to the very last drop by popping them in the fridge. "All-natural beauty products tend to do better in the fridge. Cooler temperatures increase the effectiveness and longevity," notes Dr. Simon Ourian, a celebrity dermatologist.
Pop tools in the fridge, as well.
If you're going to refrigerate any element of your routine, let it be your facial tools. "Jade rollers are actually are the best products to chill as the colder the tools, the more they reduce redness and puffiness," says Dr. Ourian—plus, doing so will make your bathroom feel more like a spa.
Never chill these products.
"Sunscreens and products that contain oil, wax, and silicone should never be chilled—this can alter their consistency," explains Blair Armstrong, a dermatology physician assistant and the founder of Gilded. Monica Watson, of Berlin Skin, agrees, noting that cleansers are another product to leave on the counter. "Cleansers also shouldn't be chilled, as this is the first step in a good skincare routine. It's an opportunity to open the pores, not close them [with something cool]."
Skip most makeup.
Most makeup shouldn't be chilled—especially if the formula is water-based. The exceptions? "Eyeliner pencils can be [briefly] cooled to enhance a seamless application," notes Darlene Zembord, a beauty expert at AVegan Beauty. The same goes for nail polish: The cold helps preserve the stability of the formula, explains Scott.
Final verdict: Cooler products can be better for your skin.
According to our experts, chilled formulas can be better for your complexion. Refrigerating the appropriate products can ultimately perk up the skin, soothe redness, and reduce puffiness. "However, there is no data to show that products must be stored in the fridge," notes Dr. Josh Zeichner, the Director of Cosmetic & Clinical Research in Dermatology at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York.