Women are dunking their faces in sparkling water in the name of skincare. Let us explain.

Put down that fancy moisturiser, toss out your serum, and say good riddance to face masks. Apparently the miracle, cure-all skincare ingredient has been hiding right under our noses.

Quite literally if you’re a fan of a vodka soda.

When it comes to multi-step skincare routines and innovative products, Korean women are all over it, but their latest skincare hack promises smaller pores, better active ingredient absorption, deeper cleansing and increased collagen for firmer and plumper skin. And all you need is a bottle of carbonated mineral water.

Speaking to the Coveteur, Alicia Yoon – owner of online skincare boutique, Peach & Lily, and the woman who’s been credited with bringing Korean beauty to the US – said she’s an avid fan.

“Mineral water is popular in Korea as a base and simple treatment in a lot of ways,” she said to the Coveteur, noting its many uses.

Sparkling from the ground up.

A post shared by CAPI (@capisparkling) on


For example, some women use sparkling water as a base for DIY face mists, others add it to their baths or use it as a toner. If you want to go all the way you could even fill an entire pot with a bottle of San Pellegrino (or similar) and dunk your entire head as an all-over face and scalp treatment.

“The idea is that instead of using just plain mineral water, they use carbonated water as well, creating a treatment that is even more nourishing and beneficial,” says Alicia.

Why is sparkling water beneficial for the skin?

According to the Korean skincare expert, the bubbles cleanse the skin, while the mineral content keeps the cells between collagen fibers strong, firming and plumping the skin.

This treatment should be suitable for all skin types – those with sensitive skins can dilute the excess carbonation with plain water to dull down the fizz.

How do I use sparkling water in my beauty routine?

Alright – the answer we’ve all been waiting for. If you want to give this trend a go there are a few ways to do it.

You can use sparkling water as a toner by applying it directly on a cotton pad and dabbing it onto your face. Just make sure you’re using carbonated mineral water that contains added minerals like magnesium sulphate, potassium bicarbonate and calcium chloride and not soda water which is just plain H20 with the added bubbles.

If you’re game, you can give yourself a sparkling water facial bath with equals parts plain water and carbonated mineral water or equal parts carbonated mineral water and soda water for more fizz. Possible side effects include: a tingly, bubbly sensation and fizzy water up your nose.

“You have to be in the mood for it because it takes a little bit of work (clean basin, get the mixture right, etc.), but when you are, it’s a lot of fun and it always leaves your skin feeling revived,” said Alicia, who recommends people do it once or twice a week for no longer than 15 seconds at a time.


Road testing the skincare trend for herself, Bustle’s Zoe Weiner noticed that her pores were evidently smaller after her sparkling water experiment.

Using a mixture of half soda water and half mineral water, this is what she had to say:

“As much as I hated (hated, hated, hated) the way the experiment felt, I do have to admit it kiiiind of worked,” she wrote.

“After my dunk, the pores on my nose were noticeably smaller and clearer — even if the blackheads may not have been totally gone, they were definitely less noticeable. Beyond that, my skin felt tighter and looked brighter for the next few hours, but that may just have been because I shocked it into submission.”

While we’re not sure we’re game enough for the experiment, we are very intrigued.

Would you incorporate soda water into your skincare routine? Tell us in a comment.