15 Cooling Skin Care Products You Will Reach for All Summer Long
Whether you are searching for ways to help your skin withstand the dog days of summer or are simply hoping for a solution to your incessantly inflamed visage, cooling products deserve your attention. While most people immediately jump to menthol-laden pain relievers or old-school aloe vera when thinking of temperature-lowering skin care products, the category is much more encompassing these days: Cooling moisturizers, masks, and eye creams are at the ready. Of course, it helps to know what to look for.
"Ingredients such as menthol, cucumber, peppermint, aloe vera, and yogurt all provide a cooling effect when applied to the skin," says board-certified cosmetic dermatologist Dr. Michele Green. While these agents don't actually change the temperature of your face, Dr. Green explains that they interact with our cellular receptors, producing a cooling sensation. "They obstruct the calcium current along the nerves which is responsible for detecting temperature," she adds, noting that the nerve endings then receive a temporary signal that the skin is less hot.
The best part about cooling skin care products—apart from their chilly nature—is that they are universal. Anyone can enjoy their soothing benefits. That said, Dr. Green recommends them especially for those with sensitive skin (or, more specifically, those dealing with puffiness, redness, irritation, and general sensitivity). Now that you're up to speed on the how and why of cooling skin care, let's talk about the what. Ahead, discover several highly-rated formulas to reach for this summer and beyond.
Peter Thomas Roth
This popular cucumber gel mask is one of Dr. Green's favorites. "It contains aloe vera and cucumber, making it a great skin refresher for sensitive or irritated skin," she says, noting that it works wonders when refrigerated to instantly soothe and cool your complexion.
Shop Now: Peter Thomas Roth Cucumber Gel Mask Extreme Detoxifying Hydrator, $55, sephora.com.
Masks aren't the only product category that can give your skin the cool down it craves. This prebiotic redness relief cream is designed to soothe your visage all day long thanks to a mix of yogurt, ceramides, oatmeal, and cannabis sativa seed oil.
Shop Now: Dr. Brandt "Cool Biotic" Prebiotic Redness Relief Cream, $55, ulta.com.
Glo Skin Beauty
Board-certified dermatologist Dr. Dendy Engelman recommends Glo Skin Beauty's Phyto-Active Toning Mist, which she says is the perfect morning, midday, and evening refresher. "The mist contains plant stem cells to boost moisture and strengthen the barrier, along with cucumber extract, which cools and hydrates the skin," she shares.
Shop Now: Glo Skin Beauty Phyto-Active Toning Mist, $42, dermstore.com.
Another lightweight moisture option is this soothing gel designed for normal and combination skin types. For even more cooling action, consider popping it in a mini skin care fridge, which Dr. Green loves. "These tiny little gadgets complement your skin care routine, keeping your creams, masks, and serums cold and providing an instant cooling effect when applied. This minimizes the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and improves texture and pore [size]," she says.
Shop Now: Clarins "Hydra-Essentiel" Cooling Gel, $49, sephora.com.
Cooling creams are great on their own, but pair a temperature-lowering formula with a cold metal tip (as is the case with this yogurt-infused cream) and you have yourself a puffy eye miracle worker.
Shop Now: Elizabeth Grant Probiotic Yoghurt Eye Cream, $45, elizabethgrant.com.
After-sun products are common ground for cooling ingredients, but it's not just about yesteryear's bright-green aloe bottle. Case in point: This chic oatmeal-infused after-sun cream-gel.
Shop Now: Pai Skincare "British Summer Time" After Sun, $34, paiskincare.us.
Soap & Glory
If you are looking for an all-over cooling sensation, consider this coconut scrub, which smells like sweet summertime.
Shop Now: Soap & Glory "Call of Fruity Summer" Scrubbing Cooling Body Scrub, $12, ulta.com.
Another one of Dr. Engelman's favorite calming products? These eye masks. "They lift and firm the eye area, lock in hydration, and reduce fine lines," she notes.
Shop Now: Derm Institute Cellular Rejuvenating Eye Contour Masque, $120, diskincare.com.