What is Toner and Do You Need It?

The questions I get asked most when it comes to a personal skincare regime is “what is toner?” and “do I need it?”, and these question have many answers.

What is Toner?

First of all, “Toner” can mean many different things. There are several different types of skincare products that classify themselves as toner and they all do very different things for the skin.

Secondly, every skin is different and has different needs.

For the most part a toner is a watery like product that you apply after cleansing to prep your skin for corrective products. Some will be astringent-like to reduce sebum production and kill bacteria. Others will sooth and calm irritated skin. And some will hydrate. The best ones will do it all!

Do I Need It?

I prefer and would recommend using a “toner” to help spread products on the skin. Good quality, highly active corrective products such as retinol, vitamin c and hydrating serum are not cheap, using the correct “toner” will help them last much longer while providing pH balance.

They should ALL help restore the skins pH post cleanse. The pH of the skin is of the utmost importance when is comes to consistency of home skincare, but that’s for another post…

If you’re oily and or acneic, do not use anything with denatured alcohol in it.  Remember Sea Breeze? If you’re over 40 like me, you do. It was the go-to toner in the 80’s and dried the skin out terribly! While that feels and looks good temporarily, drying the skin out disrupts the pH, throws oil production out of whack, causes inflammation and irritation and just makes every skin issue worse. I would recommend oily and acneic skin use a toner with witch hazel.

Good quality witch hazel not only has astringent qualities which fight bacteria and lessen sebum production, but also acts as an anti-irritant and anti-inflammatory which is essential when dealing with acneic skin. Witch hazel is derived from a plant and contains tannins. These tannins are responsible for decreasing swelling, speeding wound healing, warding off infection and the added bonus of antioxidant protection!

what is toner

We recommend Meg 21 Moisturizing Toner. Witch hazel is only 1 of the stars of this toner. It contains sodium hyaluronate, derived from hyaluonic acid to bind essential moisture to the skin but is a smaller molecule that can more easily penetrate the skin deeply. It also contains several antioxidants, lemon peel for brightening the skin, especially post inflammatory pigmentations from acne, and then of course, their signature ingredient supplemine.

Supplemine is an anti-glycation ingredient, breaking down toxic sugars in the skin before they can break down it’s collagen and elastin, making it the perfect “toner” for anyone fighting aging. It is also the perfect “toner” for anyone fighting with acne because it provides the skin with essential hydration it needs to maintain a healthy pH which helps decrease a KEY component of acne which is inflammation.

what is toner

Another amazing one we recommend and carry is Revision Skincare Soothing Facial Rinse. This “toner” is a little thicker, still water-like consistency but slightly more dense which I LOVE because I’m SO dry. It contains many plant extracts including algae which leaves the skin smooth and plump, not dry and tight. 

Arnica which is high in flavanoids giving it a high antioxidant property, and quickly sooths the skin. Grapeseed extract which is rich in antioxidants to prevent oxidative stress to the skin. Pro-vitamin B5 which intensly hydrates and nourishes the skin. And Vitamin K which speeds wound healing, decreases the appearance of dark spots, bruises and scars.

Using one of these products before my Vitamin C in the morning and my Retinol at night not only help spread the product ensuring I use less and that these correctives last longer, but they also create a blanket of hydration to the skin sealing more moisture in which every skintype desperately needs here in Colorado!

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