While we often associate the word “fancy” with thoughts of excessive opulence (and a hefty price tag), one of the latest social media trends stars a simple, one-ingredient treasure most of us have the luxury of accessing for free. Yes, “fancy ice” has entered the chat.
Thanks to the rise of TikTok, hobbyists with very specific passions have become internet celebrities seemingly overnight. Whether it’s an entire account solely dedicated to poking globs of glittery slime to ASMR mukbang food accounts, there’s an audience for everything. Of note is one hyper-specialized topic that always seems to get folks riled up with fervent passion both on and off the web: discussions about homemade ice cubes. (On TikTok alone, there live over 950 million videos about ice under the tag #icetok.)
So, what exactly is fancy ice? In a recently published piece by The New York Times, the publication delves into the ways that ice has transformed from a means to keep beverages cold to a luxury item and symbol of domestic opulence, thanks to innovations in the category ranging from high-end craft ice-making machines to freezer-friendly ice trays that can mold water into giant frozen orbs or baby butterflies.
Here’s the thing: While some may say that stockpiling a small buffet of strangely-shaped ice cubes is trivial or time-consuming, you can’t deny the fact that an iced matcha latte or cold brew swimming in A+ ice cubes sipped through a glass straw absolutely slaps. More ahead on how making fancy ice can potentially be the low-lift, high-vibe way to give your beverage (and mood) a much-needed boost.
@kami.larae INFUSED ICE DRAWER🍓🍊🍋🍍🫐 #restock #asmr #asmrsounds #fyp #ice #icedrawer #coffeeice #infusedice #fruitice #icetok #chocolateice ♬ Clouds – Luke Faulkner
The psychological perks of fancy ice
When the topic of fancy ice came up on our office Slack channel, my colleagues were quick to jump in with their—very positive—thoughts. Amelia McBride, an editorial assistant on the team, said: I love that when someone says “the good ice,” we all know what they’re talking about. Meanwhile, Zoë Weiner, a senior beauty editor, said: When we make fancy ice, I call us ice-rich.
May it be the perfect crunchiness (sorry, dentists) or the sheer beauty of hand-crafted ice cubes with floating dainty flowers (we invite you to check out the work of Disco Cubes, a Los Angeles-based luxury ice company), fancy ice can have the transformative power of making you feel some type of way. (Usually, it’s very positive.)
It’s no secret that acts of self-care are central to many of the conversations we have at Well+Good. Life tends to throw curveballs our way, and finding simple tasks that can elevate our mood is top of mind. And according to mental health experts, this is especially true when experiencing a loss of motivation, passion, and purpose—otherwise known as languishing, the midway point between flourishing and depression.
“With this languishing that many people are probably experiencing [post-COVID], it’s really great for us to find different ways to reward ourselves throughout the day. And recognizing that as people who are worthy and deserving, we don’t have to necessarily earn good moments in life—we can cultivate them,” Minaa B., LMSW, a mental health, writer, wellness coach, and licensed therapist, previously shared with Well+Good. “If you find that your days are starting to feel mundane, chances are you’re not rewarding yourself with some sort of mood-boosting activities.”
We’ve learned that rewarding ourselves—with acts big or small—can positively affect our mental well-being. In a recent piece by Hannah Schneider, a W+G health writer, she explored healing (and loving) her inner child by taking a trip to Build-A-Bear. During the mood-boosting experience, the act of self-care made her feel “cared for” and “excited” as she engaged in a fun activity outside of her usual routine—not to mention going home with an adorable stuffed animal frog. So why not try an economically friendly, potentially mood-boosting activity, like making fancy ice at home, next?
TL;DR: Consider this a case for restocking your ice drawer like TikTok’s ice queen, @kami.larae shows us how to do with fancy ice in the shape of hearts, honeycombs, pineapples, sand dollars, strawberries, and more. And—since the sky’s the limit—why just stop at plain ol’ frozen water? Instead, infuse your DIY fancy ice with any freezable liquid or ingredient of your desire to keep your beverages tasty, exciting, and, most importantly, iced cold.
This de-stressing raspberry mocktail would pair perfectly with some fancy ice cubes: