One important step of your skincare routine that often gets left out is actually a very important one. That step is using a toner and somehow it has slowly been eliminated from our skincare regimen. Let’s be honest, our skincare regimens are time-consuming. Heaven help us if we’re are in a rush. I mean we have the cleansers, the moisturizers, the serums, the eye creams, the setting and hydrating sprays. Then the whole makeup process if you are planning for your day. Who has time to squeeze in a toner? Then there is also the fear of stripping the skin of moisture when using a toner because toners all have alcohol in them right? Well, not exactly.
When skin toners first came out on the market they were mainly astringents used for acne and most of them did have alcohol in them. However skin toners have evolved and they are very essential to the health of our skin.
What are the benefits of balance?
So let’s talk about what a toner is and how it benefits your skin. The primary purpose of a toner is to balance the pH of the skin. To understand this we first need to talk about the acid mantel. The What? This just doesn’t sound right to talk about a substance called acid and your delicate skin in the same sentence, especially on the face. However, the acid mantel is a very important part of skincare because keeping it at the correct pH level can produce some pretty amazing skin results that you will notice right away. If you’ve ever had any doubts about your other skincare products not working as well as they should, then the missing link is the acid mantle and pH balance.
What is the acid mantle?
The acid mantle is a barrier that sits right on top of your skin cells. The acid mantle has a major role in shielding the surface of the skin to protect it from toxins, including environmental ones that we come in contact with every day, and also bacteria and viruses. It is made up of amino acids and surfactants that are naturally produced by the body.
The acid mantel works it has best at protecting the skin when the pH is between 4.5 and 5.5. If the acid mantel is disrupted in any way such as using an alkaline face wash, then your skin becomes susceptible to damage. If you’ve ever washed your face and came out of the shower with a squeaky clean feel, like you could bounce a penny off your skin, this means your skin was too alkaline. When your face is in the alkaline state you are more susceptible to exposure to free radicals, increasing pore size, wrinkles, and sagging skin.
How can toners help?
Toners provide the skin with essential ingredients and ant-oxidants in addition to keeping the pH balanced. They also contain natural moisturizing ingredients such as witch hazel, aloe vera, rose water, avocado oil, chamomile, vitamin C and vitamin E just to name a few. Toners bind moisture to the skin, so instead of stripping the skin of moisture they actually bring it in and hold it there.
When you begin to use toners you will notice a reversal of that dull and lack of luster look. Instead, you will notice that your skin will give out a vibrant, glowing look. Toners also work to shrink pore size by drawing out impurities and getting any remaining cleanser or dirt off of your skin. Some toners contain glycolic acid and antioxidants which will minimize the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
It’s important to follow the correct steps when using a toner. Cleans your face with an anti-aging soap and pat dry with a towel. Next take a cotton ball and saturate it with the toner. You can then freely apply your toner to your face, neck and d’colletage area.
What are parabens, phthalates and sulfates?
These ingredients have been used in cosmetics for years, but there are studies showing that they are not safe when used topically because of the potential side effects from absorption.
The FDA does not regulate these ingredients and classifies them as safe for cosmetc use. However, there are several cosmetic companies that have stepped up the game and decided to eliminate these ingredients form their products due to consumer concerns and demands.
Some harmful effects of these products can be endocrine disruption which can lead to hormone imbalance. And also carcinogenic effects leading to some cancers.
Which toners are the best?
1. Umbrian Clay Purifying Facial Toner
This toner is paraben free, phthalate free and sulfate free. It contains sandalwood oil, cinnamon bark and burnet root extract, and lavender floral water. It works great for dry and sensitive skin. It’s gentle and leaves your skin glowing after application. Simply wash your face and pat dry, then apply product to cotton ball and use all over face and neck, remember to wait a few minutes before applying your moisturizer.
This toner contains glycolic and lactic acid to reduce fine lines and dark spots. It’s paraben free, phthalate free sulfate free, and also cruelty-free. This wonderful natural scented toner is infused with chamomile flower extract, lemon citric acid and sandalwood extract. It also contains witch hazel water and upon opening the bottle you will smell a delightful creamsicle-like fragrance. Glow2OH will leave your skin glowing after applying it with a cotton ball and smoothing it all over your face and neck.
This toner is paraben free, phthalate free and sulfate free. This delightful toner contains aloe barbadensis leaf juice, and willow bark extract. It’s calming and soothing and releives redness and irritation. It is also an antioxidant that protects the skin from free radicals. You will see a noticeable brightness and hydration to your skin immediately after applying it with a cotton ball and wiping it across skin and neck area.
I’m Colleen, a Licensed Pharmacist and Holistic Health Advocate. I’ve been struggling with SIBO disease for many years and an important part of the treatment is removing toxins from anything that is applied to or consumed by my body.
I currently follow a Paleo diet to reduce symptoms of abdominal bloating and distention. I follow as closely as I can. Sometimes my willpower is not strong enough and I cheat.
Our skin is our body’s largest organ and our facial area has the most pores of any area on the skin. Everything applied to our skin and especially the facial area is absorbed.
Green Organic Makeup takes the healthy, holistic lifestyle, and contributes updated information and product reviews on makeup and skincare products that are natural, safe and organic to provide awareness about alternatives to toxic makeup to add to the overall health of our bodies.
Read articles by Colleen Savoie