Toners are not all created equal! There are different types of toner that are appropriate for different skin types—read on for two of the most common types: Astringent toner and hydrating toner.
Best astringent toners for oily or combination skin
StriVectin Multi Action Clear Gentle Daily
The best astringent toner for oily or combination skin because it helps to control oil, remove dirt and debris, and shrink pores.
Best hydrating toners for normal, sensitive and dry skin types
Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow PHA + BHA Pore-Tight Toner
The best hydrating toner for normal, sensitive and dry skin types because it is gentle, hydrating, and helps to balance the skin’s pH level.
Table of Contents
Best for: Oily and combination skin types.
An astringent toner is a type of skincare product that primarily works by tightening and shrinking the pores of the skin. It may contain natural acids or witch hazel that help to remove excess oil and dirt from the skin. The major purpose of this product is to reduce the appearance of pores and improve skin texture by removing blackheads and dead skin cells. Since astringent toner mainly helps to control oil production, it is most suitable for people with oily or combination skin types.
People with dry skin should avoid this type of toner as it can cause further irritation and dryness. People with sensitive skin should also use a milder version of this product to avoid skin irritation.
The best astringent toners for oily or combination skin
StriVectin Multi Action Clear Gentle Daily Brightening & Retexturizing Toner for Acne and Breakouts
A daily exfoliating toner that visibly fades discoloration and renews uneven texture with a blend of tranexamic and succinic acids.
OLEHENRIKSEN Balancing Force™ Oil Control Toner
A slightly cooling and refreshing toner that’s designed to control oily skin.
Farmacy Deep Sweep 2% BHA Pore Cleaning Toner with Moringa + Papaya
An alcohol-free, 2% BHA toner that deeply exfoliates, unclogs pores and controls oil without over-stripping skin.
Best for: Normal, dry and sensitive skin types
A hydrating toner aims to provide moisture and nourishment to the skin. It contains ingredients like glycerin, hyaluronic acid, or aloe vera that help to soothe, hydrate, and balance the skin’s pH level. Unlike astringent toners, which typically contain alcohol or witch hazel, hydrating toners are gentle and do not strip the skin of its natural oils. This makes it suitable for people with dry or sensitive skin who may find astringent toners too harsh. Hydrating toners are also beneficial for oily or combination skin as they help to prevent the overproduction of sebum while keeping the skin hydrated.
The best hydrating toners for normal, sensitive and dry skin types
Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow PHA + BHA Pore-Tight Toner
A bestselling, gentle PHA- and BHA-infused watermelon toner that hydrates, gently exfoliates skin and minimizes the appearance of pores.
Dr. Jart+ Ceramidin™ Skin Barrier Serum Toner
A two-in-one serum and toner that supports the skin barrier, moisturizes, softens, tones, and preps skin for the next step.
Fenty Skin Fat Water Hydrating Milky Toner Essence with Hyaluronic Acid + Tamarind
A toner-essence with a thick, milky texture that’s packed with hydrating ingredients to visibly plump skin and support a strong moisture barrier.
Do you really need a toner for your skin type?
Toners are a staple in many people’s skincare routines, but are they really necessary? The answer depends on your skin type. If you have oily or combination skin, a toner can help to remove excess oil and dirt and balance the skin’s pH level. If you have normal skin, a toner can help to remove any leftover dirt or makeup and restore the skin’s pH level. If you have dry or sensitive skin, you may want to avoid using a toner, as it can strip the skin of its natural oils.
Here is a more detailed look at the benefits and drawbacks of using a toner for different skin types:
Oily and combination skin
Using a toner is beneficial for individuals with oily or combination skin. These skin types are more prone to producing excess sebum, resulting in clogged pores and acne breakouts. A toner helps in balancing the skin’s pH levels, reducing excess oil production, and enhancing the skin’s texture.
It also helps in removing any leftover makeup, dirt, or impurities from the skin, making it fresher and cleaner.
While you don’t strictly need to use a toner on normal skin, using a toner can provide additional benefits to your skin. Toner helps to remove any leftover dirt, makeup, and other impurities on the skin after cleansing.
It also helps to restore the skin’s natural pH level, which can be disrupted during the cleansing process. Additionally, toner can provide mild exfoliation, removing dead skin cells and leaving the skin with a smoother and more radiant appearance. However, it is important to choose a toner that is appropriate for normal skin and doesn’t cause any irritation or dryness.
Dry and sensitive skin
When it comes to dry or sensitive skin, some people may fear that using toner could further strip their skin of its natural oils and cause irritation. The good news is that there are toners specifically formulated for dry and sensitive skin types that are gentle and won’t exacerbate any existing issues.
These toners often contain natural ingredients like aloe vera, cucumber, or chamomile, which help to soothe and hydrate the skin—a necessary step if your skin is dry or sensitive.
Toners are an important part of a skincare routine, but it’s important to choose the right one for your skin type. Astringent toners are best for oily and combination skin while hydrating toners are best for normal, dry, and sensitive skin.
No matter what your skin type, it’s important to use a toner after cleansing. Toners help to remove any leftover dirt, makeup, and impurities, and they can also help to balance the skin’s pH level.
If you’re not sure which toner is right for you, talk to a dermatologist or skincare professional. They can help you choose the best toner for your skin type and needs.