I remember years ago hearing that a blast of ice cold water just before getting out of the shower stimulated blood flow and would give a perkier bust and tighter limbs - I tried it once and swore never again but it is a good way to wake your body up, especially on a cold morning! I also read that a splash of cold water after cleansing closes pores, but as Caroline Hirons says - pores are not doors! That being said, they do appear tighter after a quick splash of cold water so when I first read about cryotherapy, it wasn't an entirely alien concept. When I read that it can help to reduce inflammation, it made sense because ice packs are used to reduce swelling, therefore when I was offered the chance to try CRYOpress, which is a gadget that allows you to perform cryotherapy at home, I jumped at the opportunity. Because of my illness, my inflammation levels are high and I often have redness in my skin that isn't necessarily a reaction to a product. If something aims to help reduce the redness and inflammation then I absolutely want to try it! I also have a discount code if you would like to buy a CRYOpress to try for yourself - enter LYME10 to get 10% off the regular price with free worldwide postage.
Cryotherapy improves blood circulation, helps to eliminate toxins and reduce sagging in the skin. The CRYOpress combines cryotherapy with a facial massage. I'm no stranger to the benefits of facial massage (post here) and have definitely noticed a difference in the contours of my face since it became a regular part of my routine. The CRYOpress is described as a gym for your face. On the back of the box, are instructions on how best to use it - ideally you would allow 15 minutes but if you don't have that time to spare, 5 minutes would give a quick work out. It needs to be kept in the freezer (in the cotton bag provided) at all times and it should be wiped and rinsed after each use. Instead of just using for a facial massage, I use it to apply my serum for deeper penetration - more on the serum I have been using with it later. It can be used both morning and night but I generally just use it once daily as that's what fits with my routine. I start by patting my serum into my skin and then I use the CRYOpress roller in a zig zag motion up and down on my forehead and then from left to right, then I move down to beside my nose, lower cheek (working upwards and I apply a little extra pressure in this areas as I really want it to be lifted), outwards on the sides of my mouth, then down to under my chin, which I particularly enjoy and spend most time on and then I finish with my neck. It can also be used on the collarbone and upper chest but I personally don't find it comfortable to use in that area as I have swollen lymph nodes there. I then pat some more serum in and continue with my skincare routine. My skin does look a little red afterwards but that is due to the increased blood flow so it's nothing to worry about and it soon fades - similar to how your face would look after a workout - some people probably don't experience any redness. I'm enjoying using this as part of my routine because I find it soothing on my skin and a relaxing ritual. It also keeps my skin looking fresh, plump and firm - well it is getting a daily workout! It is only with consistent use that you will get results so don't expect miracles (apart from fresh looking skin) after just one use. Think of the time as an investment in yourself. If you are worried about some sagging creeping into your skin (the dreaded jowls), I would highly recommend the CRYOpress - I'm going to give mine to my mother for a month to see if she notices any difference because it would be nice to get the opinion of someone in their 60s. I'm also tempted to use it on my thighs to see if it makes any difference there. Don't forget to use LYME10 at the checkout if you decide to buy the CRYOpress.
Although you can use any serum with the CRYOpress, I have been using one from the same brand - Alpha-Glow Flash Facial. This is a seriously powerful serum that tackles four skin concerns that occur as we age - loss of moisture, collagen depletion, inflammation and melanin irregularities, with 9 active ingredients.
To tackle loss of moisture, the ingredients are sodium hyaluronate, which is a low molecular form of hyaluronic acid that can deeply penetrate the skin due to its size and phospholipids, the head of which attracts water and the tail holds water.
To combat collagen depletion, it contains Vitamin A in the form of retinyl palmitate, which is a gentle form of retinol that can deeply penetrate the skin due to its small molecular size, and salicylic acid, which is a BHA that can deeply penetrate the pores and is oil soluble.
To address melanin irregularities (hyperpigmentation), it contains alpha arbutin, which hinders melanin production and vitamin C, which brightens the skin.
Finally, to tackle inflammation, it contains aloe polysaccharides, which makes cell production work 8 times more quickly, vitamin E, which is an anti-oxidant that helps to protect against environmental damage and rose stem cells, which help to constrict over-active capillaries to calm down redness in the skin.
A pretty powerful serum, right? It is also described as a primer and mask but I personally reserve it for use as a serum as I have other primers and masks that I love and because this serum is pricey, I want to reserve it for my skincare routine. So, what results have I had? I have one little stubborn patch of pigmentation on my cheek that appeared again after a holiday in September and it is fading nicely (long term use should see it disappear again). I have noticed that my pores are definitely less visible in my cheek area and my husband has commented on my skin glowing - even though I have been pretty unwell in recent weeks and would usually look grey under those circumstances. My skin appears less inflamed although the inflammation hasn't disappeared completely but that would be a miracle due to how ill I have been so this is something I will update you on in the coming months when I will (hopefully) improve healthwise. Overall, I am loving the combination of the CRYOpress and Alpha-Glow Flash Facial. I think that if you aren't a skincare addict with a product for every problem, like myself, you will really love the serum as it addresses so many issues with just one product so although it may seem expensive at £85, it will replace the need for possible two or three products.
Have you ever tried cryotherapy or facial massage? Would you be tempted to? I would love to hear your thoughts!
Thanks for reading!