Toner 101

Toners weren’t something I had used in the past because for one I wasn’t entirely familiar with them, and as a product it seemed to have a bad reputation for drying out skin instead of providing hydration.

However toners have turned around and now formulations are hydrating, brightening, skin soothing, exfoliating, ph balancing and filled with better ingredients that help remove excess impurities and those last traces of makeup and dirt that your cleansers might have missed. They’ve truly turned the corner!
The first toner I tried was Andalou’s 1000 Roses Renewing Toner, which I just spritzed on my face and used more like a moisturizer option. I love anything with rose water and my skin loves it too. Eventually I also started using straight rose water as a hydrating refreshing mist.


Formulations are hydrating, brightening, skin soothing, exfoliating and ph balancing.


Thayers Witch Hazel Aloe Vera Formula – Astringent Lemon

The game changer for me was the Thayers line of toners. One hot summer I was looking for something refreshing to add to my skincare routine and picked up one of their products on a whim while at Whole Foods. The ingredients list looked clean and straight to the point, and at under $10 the price was right.

Toners are great for those with oily skin or those who’re acne prone.

The first time I used it I took one look at the dirt and makeup on the cotton pad and was like oh my god! Even after double cleansing and exfoliating you can still have some residue leftover on your skin. This is when you really start to see why it’s worth investing the time in the cleansing portion of the routine.

Thayers Witch Hazel Aloe Vera Formula Organic Astringent – Lavender Mint

Currently I’m using the Lavender Mint toner which has a nice relaxing spa-like quality to it. Both lavender and peppermint oil are great for those who’re prone to acne and blemishes. In the past I’ve used their Lemon toner which includes blackberry, lemongrass, orange peel, chamomile, nettle and grapefruit extracts. Their line of toners also includes aloe vera for soothing the skin. I definitely notice a difference if don’t use one of these toners, my skin gets unhappy real quick.


Belif Bergamot Herbal Extract Toner

Other toners that I’ve tried include Belif’s Bergamot Herbal Extract Toner, which is nice, but I only had a sample size so I haven’t used it long enough to form a strong opinion, although I do love Belif products in general. This toner is formulated for combination skin and has a sort of thick consistency as it’s meant to be hydrating not cleansing. It has bergamot and sage which help clarify and hydrate skin.



Kensington Apothecary Rose Water Exfoliating Tonic

I also tried Kensington Apothecary’s Rose Water Exfoliating Tonic, I liked the results but was not a fan of the stinging sensation it left in my eyes, super unpleasant. The product description sounds phenomenal and it does deliver, the bilberry and citrus extracts dissolve dead skin, it has calming rose and ph balancing witch hazel and moisturizing aloe vera.
Toners are great for those with oily skin or those who’re acne prone. Depending on the brand it can be a multitasker, so to answer the question, do you need to use toner? Well it all depends on your skin’s needs! But, it is a nice part of the routine for that extra layer of moisture and to rebalance your skin’s ph after cleansing. The Thayers line of toners are all within the 5.5 ph range which is optimal for your skin.
Next up, essence and serum! I have been super satisfied with the results when using them, read up on what products worked.

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