It can be argued that toner is one of the most underrated skin care products on the market. Toner plays an important role in skin health but is clouded with misconception. Using a toner is thought to be too drying and only necessary for those suffering from acne. And while in some instances that can be the case, the right toner can hydrate, exfoliate, and prime the skin.
Toners formulated with alcohols can dry out the skin (beware of toners that contain Isopropyl Alcohol), but others, like our Fruit Acid Toner use alpha hydroxy acids to enrich the skin. This water-like product is able to quickly and efficiently penetrate the skin to offer instant moisture, while gently exfoliating the top layer of skin. Sloughing off dead skin cells through this exfoliation process will keep pores from getting clogged, and allow moisturizers, serums, and other follow-up facial products to reach and benefit the skin’s surface.
Adding to the long line of skin care misconceptions, exfoliation does not only occur through the use of an abrasive ingredient. Sugar, salt, and seeds might be effective for hands, feet and other rough spots on the body, but the skin on our faces is extremely delicate. Using one of these ingredients can cause capillaries underneath our skin to break, resulting in red spots and other damage. Alpha hydroxy acids (AHA), on the other hand, work to “unglue” the bonds between our skin and dead skin cells to aid in the shedding process. AHAs are derived from natural substances, like fruit in the case of our Fruit Acid Toner.
So who should use a toner? Everyone can benefit from a toner, but especially those with aging skin as our ability to naturally slough off dead skin cells diminishes as we age. Also, those who are affected by sun or wind damage. The elements can create an abundance of dead skin cells and exfoliation is essential.
But even those products made without irritating alcohols should still be used sparingly at first. Acids can be irritating when first introduced to the skin, so we recommend diluting a cotton pad with water before applying our Fruit Acid Toner. Use it once a week at first, building up to 2-3 times a week, daily, or as much as your skin needs. And always follow up with a moisturizer or serum.
How To Pick The Right Toner
- Avoid harsh toners that include alcohols, as they can be severely drying and irritating to the skin.
- Avoid toners that use parabens or chemical preservatives, like Urea Imidzaolindinyl and DMDM Hydantion. Since toner is a water-based product, preservatives are necessary to keep microorganisms from forming. Parabens are the most common preservatives (they’re convenient and cheap!) but have been linked to severe health issues like cancer.
- 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 you have to use. 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 a convenient barcode scanner!) or visit their website to see how its ingredients rank.
So what are you waiting for? Pick up a bottle of Fruit Acid Toner and see just how regular exfoliation can make your skin glow!