Ever thought why we need to use a toner on clean, dry skin? Toners work in a few different ways to keep acne in order, minimise pores, and even help to control the vapid pH levels on our skin.
Although they might take a while to work, they are an essential part of a balanced skincare routine – just as much as cleansing and moisturising!
How do they actually work?
Toners are made from super-fine formulas which look and feel like water (but there are also cream toners) and work best when applied to clean, dry skin. Firstly, they help to balance the pH level on skin to 5.5 which is ideal for clear, healthy skin. Sometimes using too many chemicals and even tap water can turn the pH level too acidic, and this in turn creates redness, irritation and even increased amount of pimples.
Does my skin need a toner?
Your skin doesn’t need a toner, but is it important to use one. Over the years, toners have been used after cleansing to remove any extra bit of makeup or residue from the skin. Apply a few drops onto a cotton pad, and gently swipe upwards to the forehead. Take special care when using around the mouth, hairline, and eyes since it is ultra sensitive.
Toners are also used to tighten the skin, and minimise the appearance of enlarged pores. Think of it this way; hot water has the ability to open pores and remove any excess dirt and bacteria, but toners close them up afterwards. Don’t let this scare you! They are really easy to use, and help to remove any excess build-up of bacteria which cleansers can miss.
Can toners over-dry my skin?
Most toners are made from natural, plant-based ingredients and help to tighten the appearance of pores. Your skin might feel a little tight afterwards, but this is just because the toner is working! Only apply a few drops over problem areas such as the t-zone – you don’t need to apply a toner all over patches of skin that don’t require are not problematic.
Despite this, there still are a number of toners which are packed with alcohol to tame oily skin. This is probably why toners are initially feared in the beauty community, because some can completely dry the skin out and create extra irritation. Use a fragrance and alcohol-free formula if you suffer from extra-dry or sensitive skin, just to be safe. Follow-up with a hydrating moisturiser to lock-in a soft, smooth texture which is perfect for any skin type.
How can I use a toner?
The best time to use a toner is after cleansing the skin. Make sure your makeup has been completely removed (even that pesky mascara), and dry your face with a towel. Apply a few drops of toner onto a cotton pad (or between your palms), and gently pat onto your problem areas. As a general rule, don’t apply any type of skincare product over inflamed or damaged skin, since it could only make the area more irritable. Follow up with a serum, eye cream, and finally a hydrating moisturiser on both your face and neck.
Shop from three of our all-time favourite toners below:
1. Aesop B & Tea Balancing Toner, $55
2. Puretopia Refresh & Balance Hydrating Soothing Mist & Toner, $14.99
3, Kiehl’s Calendula Herbal Extract Alcohol-Free Toner, $30
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