You’ve probably established a fairly regular face care routine. You wash each day and night, you exfoliate a few times a week and you never, ever leave the house before applying sunscreen.
Are you skipping a step? What about toner? Is it necessary? What does it do, and how should it be used? Toner is critical to your daily skincare routine! Here’s what to look for in a toner and what to avoid.
What Does Toner Do?
Toner is a liquid that you apply to your face after washing. Weather it gets misted, or applied with a cotton disc, it serves quite a few purposes as a part of your skin care routine.
- Shrinks your pores. Using a gentle toner will minimize the appearance of large pores and prevent dirt, grime and oils from entering.
- Toner balances your skin’s pH. Throughout the day our skin's production of oils changes based on activity, diet, and external factors. For instance when you use regular soap, or any other product that has harsh chemicals, it often messes up the natural pH balance of your skin. An application of a good natural toner will bring your skin to its normal pH, between 5 and 6.
- Toners add a dose of hydration to your skin, helping to protect and refresh your skin giving you smoother, firmer looking complexion.
So is it necessary?
No, you won't die without it. But yes, it's part of a simple, healthy beauty routine and it truly helps prepare it for your next steps. It's such an easy yet effective action!
What Ingredients Should I Avoid?
There are a few ingredients that make a toner super nourishing to your skin. But first, let’s talk about what ingredients you should not use.
Some toners you’ll find in drug stores contain alcohol. Alcohol is very harsh on your skin, drying it and leaving it susceptible to germs and bacteria. Because your skin is so dry, your body will overcompensate in producing protective natural oils. In other words, alcohol can actually leave you with oily skin.
Mineral oils and petroleum products should also be avoided. These can block your pores, causing breakouts and blemishes. The same is true for lanolin, particularly if you have an allergic reaction.
Finally, stay away from artificial fragrances. These are packed with allergens and are generally comprised of harsh chemicals.
Of course, you probably already steer clear of products which contain phthalates, parabens and other carcinogens. To make a long story short, the more natural the toner, the better it is for your skin.
Ingredients to Look for in a Toner
There are so many wonderful natural alternatives that do the job. Vinegars, hydrosols and some essential oils are just a few. These are natural, plant-based ingredients refresh, hydrate and nourish your skin while they tighten the pores.
Witch hazel is an amazing, alcohol-free astringent that is used around the world to treat acne. It’s even been shown to help fight skin cancer!
Rose water has anti-inflammatory properties. That means you’ll notice bumps, acne and even eczema disappear when you use a product with rose water. It’s also got anti-aging properties. That means fewer fine lines and wrinkles.
Apple cider vinegar, when diluted, is highly effective as well.
Coconut oil has many, many benefits for your skin. It’s a natural sunblock and may help fight skin cancer. Coconut oil is also antibacterial, which means you’ll be less likely to suffer from acne and blemishes. You’ll find coconut oil in products like Tone’N’Clean Stuff, an all-natural toner and cleanser that you can use day and night.
Finally, look for organic ingredients as you’re able. Often, plants are sprayed with dangerous pesticides and herbicides. Using an organic toner means those chemicals won’t enter your skin through your pores.
Want to make your own? Buy some pure rosewater and infuse it with green tea leaves and rosemary leaves for about 1 week. Mist on your face morning and night.Have you tried adding a toner to your routine yet? How did it go?