Should you store your skincare in the fridge?

Skincare fridges are rising in popularity but should we really be keeping our skincare refrigerated? The experts weigh in...

skincare fridges
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(Image credit: Yulia Lisitsa/Getty Images)

There's already a lot to consider when it comes to our skincare (ingredients/skin type/day routine/night regime/maskne). Now you can add skincare fridges to the list, too.

But do you actually need one? Should we be storing all our skincare in the fridge? The short answer: Probably not. Most products contain preservatives and, if not, clearly display an expiry date.

The exceptions are retinol and vitamin C. "These are extremely unstable ingredients, which degrade easily when exposed to sunlight, air and warm, humid environments like your bathroom," says cosmetic doctor, Dr Rachael Eckel. In which case, refridgerating these serums and creams could extend their shelf life.

You also need to be wary of small-batch, 'farm-to-face' skincare or handmade organic products. The preservative power of the cold is key when buying from brands such as Tata Harper, which don't use chemical preservatives. 

In fact, Lush co-founder Helen Ambrosen actively encourages customers to "pop your fresh face masks in there fridge as each mask is packed with fresh, active ingredients that should only be used up to 28 days after manufacture."

If in doubt, this is a good general rule. "Never keep skincare on a sunny windowsill, in a steamy bathroom or near radiators as excessive heat could degrade the active ingredients,” says skin expert Debbie Thomas.

Slipping certain products in the fridge could, however, deliver some bonus sensorial experiences. 

A puffy face's worst enemy is cold, as it reduces blood flow and inflammation. So refrigerated eye creams and sheet masks will always be more effective at de-puffing than a room-temperature one. 

Ditto a facial roller such as Beauty Bio's Dual-Ended Cryo Roller. Made of stainless steel, it naturally harness ice-cold temperatures in order to boost lymphatic drainage for more sculpted facial contours and to help stimulate collagen production. 

Pretty cool, no?