Toner is just one of the many important factors of a healthy skin care regime. No matter what your skin type – oily, dry, combination, or acne prone – when used regularly it helps to slough off dead skin cells, rid skin of bacteria that might be hiding in pores, and reduce pore size. Some toners are strictly used to cleanse the skin and others, like our Fruit Acid Toner, does double duty and works to cleanse and exfoliate. No matter which type of toner you choose for your skin, if not cognizant of the ingredients used it can sometimes do more harm to your skin than good.
Many toners on the market contain astringent ingredients, like Isopropyl Alcohol, to aid in the removal of makeup, soap, and bacteria residue. While the addition of alcohol might give skin a cooling or tightening sensation, it also has the potential to be severely drying and irritating to the skin, especially to those with already sensitive skin. It’s also important to note that most alcohols are made from the petroleum derivative propylene.
Since most toners are water based, it’s imperative that a preservative be used in the formulation to keep microorganisms from forming. Be careful, though. Parabens tend to be the most commonly used type of preservative based on their convenience and affordability, but their use comes at a steep price for consumers. Parabens, noted with the prefix methyl, propyl, butyl, and ethyl on ingredient labels, have been found to mimic hormones in the body, as well as be hormone disruptors, which more and more research has linked to breast cancer. There are many other chemical preservatives used as well, including some that release formaldehyde. Two of the most common to look out for and avoid are Urea Imidzaolindinyl and DMDM Hydantion.
Keep Your Skin Healthy and Looking Its Best With These Organic Skin Care Tips:
- Avoid harsh toners that include alcohols, parabens, or chemical preservatives.
- Use a toner made with alpha hydroxy acid (AHA), like our Fruit Acid Toner, which is naturally occurring carboxylic acid found in foods like citrus fruits. AHAs stimulate exfoliation and do a superb job sloughing off dead skin cells.
- Even if your toner says it includes a moisturizing element (think: aloe vera, vitamin E), you will still want to follow up with an effective, non-toxic moisturizer to keep your skin’s moisture levels balanced.
- Regular use of a good cleanser, like our Tamanu Luxury Facial Cleanser, will help keep your skin clean and bacteria free, reducing the amount or frequency of toner used. This is helpful to those with dry or sensitive skin.
- Not sure about your toner’s toxicity level? Download the EWG’s Skin Deep mobile app (complete with convenient bar code scanner!) or visit their website to see how its ingredients rank.
BONUS SKIN CARE TIP: When it comes to exfoliating your skin, stay away from using scrubs. Any sort of sugar, salt, or exfoliation beads can not only strip away the "acid mantle," but can cause capillaries under the skin to break. Stick to organic facials, masks, or toners to get the job done. Read more about healthy ways to exfoliate the skin.