Why Use a Toner? | Highlights Makeup Articles

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So, what's a toner? Like, what does it do and do I need it? While toner is not required it is a great addition to your skincare routine. Toners can be homemade or store bought but work wonderfully either way. We will talk about some of the benefits of facial toners and which toners might work well based on your skin type. 

So why do I care about a pH balance?

pH balance is defined by Wikipedia as "numeric scale used to specify the acidity or basicity(alkalinity) of an aqueous solution". In short, specifies more or less acidity in a liquid that is solvent in water. Wikipedia notes, "Solutions with a pH less than 7 are said to be acidic and solutions with a pH greater than 7 are basic. Pure water has a pH very close to 7. 

Why is pH balance important to skincare? How does a toner impact my pH?

When it comes to your skin, a balanced pH means you skin is less prone to being oily and creates smoother and brighter skin. On average, your face has a pH of 5.5, which is slightly acidic but helps to retain moisture but also keep germs out. Most soaps and skin cleansers have a higher pH than that, but that is to allow for the ick to be removed. But, what do you know, facial toners help to maintain that balance and lack the acidity.

Facial toners also help to shrink your pores, which is key to preventing excessive dirt, oil and all the ickiness life has to offer like smoke and everything else floating around in the air...off your face. This grossness can cause irritation, infections and increase acne and acne related scarring.

Toners act as a additional step after your cleanser to remove anything that your makeup remover and cleanser did not. All you need is a cotton ball/pad and some toner and a few quick swipes. Proper skin hydration and proper cleansing helps to reduce the signs of aging skin and provide a more ideal canvas for your makeup applications. 

Well what's the difference between a toner and an astringent then?

An astringents active ingredient is alcohol, which helps to reduce oil production and is best suited for oily skin. A toner, preferably, is alcohol-free, water-based and used on dry/sensitive skin with the best results. 

Ingredients to Avoid:

  • retinols
  • glycolics
  • benzoyl peroxide
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These can be too drying and case your face to breakout. 

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Resources:

Theresa. "Dermatologists Tips: Why Washing Your Face Is Important And The Best Facial Cleansers By Skin Type - BeautyStat.com."BeautyStatcom. N.p., 20 Mar. 2012. Web. 30 Jan. 2016. <http://beautystat.com/site/skincare/dermatologists-tips-why-washing-your-face-is-important-and-the-best-facial-cleansers-by-skin-type/>.

Stertz-Follett, Erin. "What Are the Benefits of a Facial Toner?"LIVESTRONG.COM. LIVESTRONG.COM, 19 Jan. 2014. Web. 30 Jan. 2016. <http://www.livestrong.com/article/160290-what-are-the-benefits-of-a-facial-toner/>.