TikTok’s frozen cucumber on face hack - a scientist reveals whether the bargain trick *really* works

We spoke to a skincare scientist to find out if TikTok’s frozen cucumber on face trick actually works

Slices of cucumber in ice to use in the frozen cucumber on face skincare trick
(Image credit: Future/Getty images)

TikTok has come through once again with a frozen cucumber on the face trick that’s either complete nonsense or just what you need to supercharge your summer skincare.

If you're a fastidious follower of a strict skincare routine and always looking for ways to give your complexion an added boost, TikTok might have the solution. And, yes, it involves a frozen cucumber. 

To cut through the hype and find out if it's worth adding this particular TikTok beauty product to your next grocery shop, we've asked a chartered scientist and skincare expert to break down the frozen cucumber on face craze once and for all.

Frozen cucumber on face, explained

What is the frozen cucumber on the face hack?

TikTok skincare trends often have misleading names (if you've ever wondered what is slugging you'll be relieved to know slugs are in no way involved) Conversely, this trick is simple and just as it sounds - you freeze a cucumber and then roll it over your face. The theory goes that by doing so, you can reduce puffy eyes, hydrate and boost glow. 

But do skin experts back this social media craze? Unusually, the answer is yes. "Using ice in general, whether it's as an icy facial wash, or roller, can tone the skin, close pores, and reduce puffiness. It also helps to rejuvenate the skin and make you feel and look more energized.” explains Bruce Green (opens in new tab), Chartered Scientist and founder of SOS Serum Skincare. "Pairing this with hydrating cucumber can be a match made in skincare heaven"

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What are the benefits of frozen cucumber on the face?

The science behind this viral hack stands up to scrutiny, according to Green, because cucumbers offer bags of skin benefits, including:

  • Hydration: "Cucumber is made of 95% water, talk about a moisture booster."
  • Skin-friendly nutrients: "Cucumbers contain Vitamin C and folic acid, which fight against any swelling and inflammation. Freezing them heightens this benefit."
  • Texture improvements: "Cucumbers also contain key components like vitamin K which stimulate cell growth and improve elasticity in the skin and can reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles."
  • Soothing: "Thanks to its anti-inflammatory properties, studies show that cucumbers can nourish and calm any irritated areas like acne-prone skin, sunburns, and redness."

How to use frozen cucumber in your skincare routine

two halves of a cucumber in ice blocks

(Image credit: Getty images)

Follow Green's simple step-by-step to get the best results from the frozen cucumber on face hack:

  1. "First, make sure you always cleanse your skin properly with one of the best cleansers that's both gentle and effective. 
  2. Make sure the cucumber you're using is cleaned properly too! Cut off the end and put it in your freezer for 30 minutes. 
  3. Keep the frozen cucumber moving on your face for no more than five to ten minutes each time. Pay close attention to how your skin reacts, because this hack may not work for everyone. 
  4. Once the immediate cooling benefits have gone away, wash your face again to get rid of any residual stickiness and then complete your skincare routine."

Finally, remember that this cucumber is now one of your best skincare products, and definitely shouldn't be chopped into a Greek salad. "Make sure to cut off the portion that has come into contact with your skin and discard it before refreezing the rest," advises Green.

3 ice-cool skincare buys to try

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SOS Cleanse | RRP: £5 (UK only)
A no-nonsense gentle cleanser that's PH balanced to help soothe sensitive skin. Its gel formula is designed to be cooling, so makes a great first step before trying the frozen cucumber on face hack. 

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Fraîcheur Ice Globes | RRP: $69/£59.99
Like a very fancy, eminently reusable version of frozen cucumber, these globes can be used for a de-puffing facial massage along with a hydrating serum or cream. They feel like heaven on hot skin and look ultra chic. 

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Skin Proud Frozen Over Gel to Ice Hydrator  | RRP: $17.95/£16.99
"If you want the cool effect without the cucumber, I recommend keeping your moisturizer in the fridge," advises Green. And if that moisturizer happens to be this ultra-refreshing gel packed with hydrating hyaluronic acid, so much the better, we say!


Jack Slater
Freelance writer

Jack Slater is not the Last Action Hero, but that's what comes up first when you Google him. Preferring a much more sedentary life, Jack gets his thrills by covering news, entertainment, celebrity, film and culture for woman&home, and other digital publications.


Having written for various print and online publications—ranging from national syndicates to niche magazines—Jack has written about nearly everything there is to write about, covering LGBTQ+ news, celebrity features, TV and film scoops, reviewing the latest theatre shows lighting up London’s West End and the most pressing of SEO based stories.

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