2. Use A Toner
Toner is the step between cleansing and moisturising, and is often the most misunderstood beauty product. In the past, it’s been advised to avoid toner as it was believed to dry out skin. However, with modern formulas, toner has come a long way and can now provide many wonderful benefits to your skin.
The purpose of toner is to balance the pH levels of your skin. Because our skin is naturally acidic, the alkaline nature of soaps and cleansers disturbs that pH balance. So rather than having our skin work overtime trying to correct it, which can result in an overproduction of oil, we can use toner to quickly restore balance. Toner helps close our pores, providing added protection against impurities and contaminants, and it removes the dirt and oil that gathers on our skin throughout the day. It’s an important pre-step before adding serum or moisturiser, and can diminish redness and blemishes.
The toners of today contain many good qualities, like antioxidants, fatty acids and ceramides. As with all makeup though, the key is to find one that is well-suited to your skin type. Generally, there are three types of toners. Alcohol-based astringents, such as witch hazel, tend to dry out the skin and can cause irritation, making it harder for the skin to repair itself. Then there are water or glycerine-based toner that contains floral fragrance or citrus extracts. These are little more than perfume, and while they make you smell good, they can cause bad reactions and provide little benefits. Finally, there are water-based toners that are loaded with beneficial vitamins and minerals, and these are purported to be the best for your skin.
Toners can now cater to your skin-type to ensure you get the best treatment available. Those with dry or flaky skin should use a toner that contain ingredients like aloe vera, vitamin E, or chamomile extract as these ingredients work towards soothing and moisturizing the skin. Similarly, the addition of essential oils to toners can make them even more powerful. Lavender essential oil calms the skin and provides an antimicrobial defence, while marigold extract can both soothe and lighten blemishes. When using toner, simply pour or spray some onto a fresh cotton pad, and wipe gently over your face, jawline, neck and décolletage, and follow with moisturizer.