Holly Willoughby Just Plunged Into An Ice Bath But Is This Wellbeing Craze Really Worth It?

Could cold water immersion be your next health obsession?

Holly Willoughby

by Sameeha Shaikh |
Published on

Holly Willoughby is often credited as a trusted source of hair and beauty inspiration, be serving up inspiration for your next make-up look or summing up a few of her daily beauty essentials in her new The Holly-Day Edit with Beauty Pie. And as of yesterday, the This Morning presenter also added extreme wellness activities into the mix. After recently interviewing ice bath aficionado Wim Hof on the show, Holly has seemingly taken to ice bathing herself and videoed one of her first proper plunges over the weekend.


Sharing the experience with her 8.2 million followers on Instagram, Holly wrote 'Right let’s begin this icy journey! After working with @iceman_hof and the whole #freezethefear team, it’s taken a year, but I’m finally doing it for you… didn’t last long but build up slowly right? Wow, that was bloody cold but I did feel incredible after…'

She makes a fair point. Ice baths have become increasingly popular in recent years, lauded for their countless mental and physical benefits, so much so much so that searches for 'ice bath' have reeled in a cool 2.4B views on TikTok and counting, with experts and influencers sharing their own icy plunges on the video platform.

Russell Brand, Nicole Scherzinger, Kendall Jenner and Harry styles are just some of the celebrities committed to this toe-numbing practice also known as cold-water immersion therapy.

Celebrity wellbeing expert Dalton Wong says, 'Cold water therapy is great to help reduce muscle soreness, cut down recovery time and reduce inflammation, as well as recovery and general wellbeing.' Keen to put yourself to the test? Here's everything you need to know first.

Main image: Instagram @hollywilloughby

What is cold water immersion and what are the benefits of ice baths?

Simply put, cold-water immersion involves exposing yourselves to cold temperatures for a limited amount of time. It doesnt just involve an ice cold bath, you could also get started by ending your warm shower with a blast of cold water, walking in the cold fresh air (where weather permits), or even dipping your face in cold water.

There are both physical and mental benefits to cold-water immersion and ice baths. Physically it can help muscles to recover, body soreness, boost your immune, improve sleep and even give you a glowing complexion. Mentally, it is known to help boost your mood by activating the sympathetic nervous system and increasing the availability of endorphins and norepinephrie, so expect to feel happier and more alert.

How to start cold water therapy

You could buy a high-tech bath tub which will probably set you back a fair bit. That being said, these tubs will probably help to motivate your next plunge and make the job easier thanks to their temperature setting abilities. Otherwise, start off with what is already at your disposal.

Dalton says, 'You can add a cold blast at the end of your shower or use a plunge pool. If you are new to cold exposure, just end your warm shower with 15-30 seconds with cold water only. Begin with your feet and then follow with your legs, your stomach, shoulders, neck, and back. An initial shock, shivering and hyperventilation is normal. Try to remain calm and breathe easily. Close your eyes and really try to embrace the cold. Try this for a week and then take it to the next level and try a bath.'

How long should you stay in an ice bath?

As Dalton says, start off with 15-30 seconds first, but once you become a seasoned ice water cold plunger you could take it up to 10-15 minutes, but be careful not to exceed this timeframe. Keeping your body immersed in 0-4 degrees temperatures for too long could lead to a state of hypothermia.

Shop: Ice Baths

Fill this tub with water and ice, and take the dunk. Just a few seconds (or minutes if you can hack it) will make a world of a difference.

Holly's preffered bath of choice is by Brass Monkey. If you loved the look of it, it's hefty price tag may have something to do with it. Though premium, with automated ice creation and always-on UV and filter cleaning modes, it costs an eye watering

This one is for those dedicated to the cold plunge cause. Lumi's Recovery Pod Ice Bath is totally portable and insulated with three layers of thermal insulated TPE protection which helps to keep water at the right temperature.

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