Friday, 14 August 2009

Skin Toner – Do You Really Need One?

While reading 21st Century Beauty Bible by Sarah Stacey & Josephine Fairley, I came across a page titled “To Tone or Not To Tone?”. It starts:
“Fact: you probably don’t need a toner. Skincare companies invariably insist that cleanse/tone/moisturise should be the basic, three-step skincare regime, but we disagree. (And so do the world’s leading facialist ‘gurus’…)”.
It goes on to say that:
"This is especially the case if you’ve got oily, greasy or problem skin."
Many toners over-strip the skin of its natural moisturising oils which can leave it feeling dry and dehydrated. For those with oily skin this upsets the skins natural balance causing more sebum to be produced to compensate for the over-stripping.

If you do want to use a toner, it is advisable to go for one which doesn’t have alcohol in as this is very drying to the skin. The best alternative to fancy toners, would be aromatherapy hydrolats such as rose water or orange blossom water. These are gentle and refreshing for the skin and won’t leave your skin vulnerable after use. Witch hazel is another good alternative especially if you have oily skin.

An excellent toner for acne is 10ml of tea tree essential oil mixed with 45ml each of distilled witch hazel and rose water.

Skincare companies and beauticians tell us that we should use toner to close the pores but this doesn’t seem to be the case either. The pores don’t open or close! This is an old wives tale. The size of the pores in your skin is determined when you are born and there is very little you can do to help close them but steps can be taken to help minimise them making their appearance less obvious. The best way to minimise open pores is to wash your face regularly but not with harsh soaps which can upset the acid balance of the skin. Eve Lom, who is regarded as the queen of cleansing, advises people with large pores to “stop using moisturiser on that area and pores will start to appear less obvious. They’ll never disappear completely, but they do get better with patience and care.”


  1. Hi Sarah - I'd like to thank you for your helpful comments on http://www.healingourworld.net - they are greatly appreciated! And, I'd like to invite you to join our community and forums - your knowledge would be extremely helpful in our endeavor to make a positive impact on our world and to raise money for charity!

    Again, thank you so much!

  2. Thank you very much Dee for the invite to join the Healing Our World community - I've just registered.

  3. Sarah - awesome! I look forward to getting to know you and welcome any comments, help, insight, ideas - well, anything lol :)

    It's very nice to 'meet' you :)


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