Not to brag, but when that time of the month rolls around, my skin goes bonkers. It breaks out; it looks tired; it loses the radiance that I have the other three weeks of the month—it's pretty remarkable, actually. This month has been no exception—looking in the mirror, I knew right away that my period was around the corner. My skin can predict the future and completely change texture overnight—but like I said, I'm not here to brag.
Right in the midst of my monthly panic while looking at my reflection and seeing this shift in clarity, coupled with the new fine line that's taken up residence on my forehead (we've become so acquainted I've named her Linda and make her pay rent), I received an invite to get a facial cryo at The Fuel Stop in NYC with Allies of Skin. I was so psyched, I replied with something along the lines of, "YES OMG THANK YOU #BLESSED."
For any of you wondering what on earth a facial cryo is, it's basically dry ice that's pumped out of a hose and onto your skin. It sounds a bit like a science experiment or something you'd do to a raw piece of steak, but the benefits are unreal. Allow me to explain.
The goal of the liquid nitrogen is to help tighten pores, soothe inflammation, and fill in wrinkles, much like giving your face an ice bath in the morning tightens the skin and encourages lymphatic drainage. In fact, I was told that some women will come in with a full face of makeup before a night out and get the treatment to make their skin glow like crazy (fascinating). The treatment has gotten praise from celebrities like Jennifer Aniston and Gigi Hadid (Hadid got a full-on body cryo treatment before the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show in 2015), and those facts alone are enough for me to give it a shot.
The day of the facial, I met with Nicolas Travis, the founder of Allies of Skin, to talk the brand's new launch (The 24/7 Kit, which is so good it's currently out of stock). Travis has skin like an actual infant (it's shocking, really) and honestly swears by his own product to achieve his otherworldly glow. His process is a mist-mask-mist triage in the morning with the All Day Mask and at night using the Overnight Mask, both paired with a few spritzes of the Molecular Saviour Toner Mist. All three products are incredibly hydrating and glow-inducing, so pairing them with an ice-cold facial only seems like proper protocol for cherub-like skin.
I couldn't wait to get started.
Similar to any ol' facial, I laid down on a bed while the esthetician removed my makeup—this time with the toner mist (which smells incredible, by the way). She then followed up with the Overnight Mask, and finally came the pièce de résistance: the liquid nitrogen. It seemed rather unkosher to put my skin through arctic temperatures (-250°F, to be exact), but the esthetician assured me it was safe. (She also moved the hose quickly over my face and held it far enough away that it wouldn't give me freezer burn.) Also, because the room is spacious and ventilated, there is no harm in breathing in the chemicals.
And, to be honest, it really wasn't even that cold. It actually felt refreshing and calming rather than holy sh*t, that's freezing. Only a few minutes passed, and I was totally done. Easy.
I checked myself out in the mirror and was completely shocked—the lackluster skin I had come in with was replaced with an unreal level of glow. Later that evening, I came home and my boyfriend even commented on the luminescence my skin was exuding, and he isn't the most generous with compliments. Even Linda was less noticeable. (She still better pay rent, though.) The next morning, to my complete delight, the breakout that I admittedly decided to pop in a moment of desperation a few days prior was but a small spot on my face.
Call me a sensationalist, but I was already hooked.
If you're looking to try a facial cryo yourself, they run about $45, which, when you think about it, isn't too expensive, especially given the results. I'd also really recommend pairing it with the Allies of Skin products (and just using them daily in general) because if Travis's skin is any indication of what I'll look like after repeated use, I might start getting carded at bars again.
For more crazy (but effective) beauty treatments, check out the weirdest ones we've ever tried.