The four basic steps to a good skin as recommended by most doctors will likely be cleanse, tone, moisturize and protect. While cleansing your face, replenishing the lost moisture and protecting your skin from harmful UV rays are essential steps in any skincare routine, is using a toner necessary?
In this article, we find out more about facial toners and whether it is essential or unnecessary addition to your skincare routine.
What does a facial toner do?
Facial toners are great for people who have oily and acne-prone skin. They also act as an additional step to cleanse your skin again, especially if you wear thick layers of makeup or heavy skincare products such as sunscreen.
In the past, facial toners contain high levels of alcohol to reduce sebum production and to fight blemishes. People who used facial toners regularly in the past found their skin to be very drying.
Nowadays, facial toners are gentler to the skin and they contain active ingredients that are beneficial for the skin. For a start, some facial toners no longer contain alcohol. Those toners that may still contain alcohol may have moisturizing or anti-inflammatory ingredients to clam the skin.
Benefits of using a facial toner
Some benefits for using a facial toner include:
- It shrinks enlarged pores. By applying a small amount to the skin using a cotton pad, it gets rid of excess oil and it gives the appearance of smaller pores.
- It hydrates the skin. Some toners contain moisturizing ingredients such as hyaluronic acid to bind moisture to the skin.
- It balances the skin’s pH level. Our skin’s natural pH is mildly acidic. After a shower, your skin tends to be slightly alkaline due to the exposure to the facial wash. Using a facial toner helps to restore the balance quickly.
So, is facial toner really necessary? The truth is that a facial toner is perhaps not one of the most essential steps in a skincare regime. However, if used correctly, it can help to restore balance to your skin.
How should you use a toner?
You should use a facial toner after washing your face, and before putting on serum or moisturizer. You can soak a cotton pad with the toner and dab on your entire face and neck.
Alternatively, you can put a few drops of toner into the palm of your hands and gently press them into your face.
Some people like to mix it with a serum and apply on the skin. We prefer to apply the toner separately because an important benefit of using a toner is to remove last traces of make-up and prep the skin to better absorb the serum and moisturizer which will follow.
Best facial toner for your skin type
There are many types of toners on the market. How do you know which one suits you best?
For oily skin and acne-prone skin: Liberty Skin Refining Toner (S$45) from Radium Skin contains AHA and BHA to eliminate clogs such as blackheads and whiteheads. They also have anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties which are suitable for people with acne-prone skin.
For sensitive skin: Serenity Calming Facial Toner (S$45) is a good option for people with sensitive skin. It contains aloe vera, chamomile and lavender extract to sooth the skin while restoring its balance.
For normal skin: Hailing from Japan, Balance Natural Hot Spring Water (S$58) is the most well-received toners in Radium Skin. It contains thermal spring water from Japan which is power-packed with beneficial minerals for soothing inflamed skin and restore skin moisture levels. It also contains a powerful cocktail of antioxidants to protect your skin from external pollutants.