The beginning of summer in the city is great. The sun is out, people are in better moods, ice cream trucks soundtrack the weekends. Once you get past July 4th though, summer in the city is... hell. The air is sticky, the subway platforms are unbearable, and the sweat doesn’t stop. Enduring all of that sans air conditioner is borderline masochistic; and so, enter me, a masochist.
There are a couple of ways to cope when the inevitable heat wave washes over the city: Keep a big cup of ice near your bed, prop a fan right in front of your face and never move, and refrigerate your beauty products. I’ve been doing the latter for a couple of years now and, though it’s not a permanent solution, it helps. And, more than that, certain items benefit from being cooler than room temperature.
For example, items with natural ingredients, which often have a shorter shelf life since they don’t include traditional preservatives, shouldn't get overheated. Cosmetic chemist Ni’Kita Wilson says you can pop them in the fridge to “slow down microbial growth.” Then, there are eye creams or gels. Wilson says these are “sometimes [benefited by being] refrigerated as the cold can shrink tissue which can temporarily alleviate the puffiness.” Nail polish is also another one that people often cool down to prevent it from drying out too fast. “Solvents evaporate faster in warmer conditions,” Wilson explains.
And while I'm not a cosmetic chemist, I can still testify to the fact that it feels amazing to use sheet masks, face mists, and vitamin C products fresh out of my fridge. Not many things are better than laying a cool slimy sheet mask on your face at the end of the day and pretending you’re anywhere but your muggy fourth-floor walk-up apartment in Brooklyn. The mist is also a great wake-me-up in the morning. It depends who you ask, but you can also try putting your perfume in the fridge during the summer, just make sure that the fridge isn't too cold; it shouldn't be much less than 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
Maybe you’re convinced that the cold confines of a refrigerator could be what your beauty routine needs, but you’re not into storing your rose water next to your Sriracha. In that case, a mini-fridge is always an option. Cosmetic mini-fridges have been a thing in Korea (where else?) for a while now, and so there's no doubt the trend will catch on here too.
Is storing your products in a refrigerator—mini or otherwise—a necessity? Probably not. Does doing so provide a brief reprieve from oppressive temperatures for those unwilling to give Con Ed any more of their money? Definitely yes.