all about hydrating toners

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  • Post category:Beauty
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The days when toners were these alcohol laden products that were used to remove extra dirt after cleansing and left the skin feeling dry are long gone. In 2020, toners are gentle products that are multipurpose: they can hydrate, contain actives that treat your skin, balance the skin etc. Toners help to prepare the skin for the products that you apply afterwards. I particularly love hydrating products in my skincare routine and hydrating toners are a firm favourite.

Why do you need a hydrating toner? What are the benefits?
All skin types need hydration, you can get this hydration in many forms: toners, essences, serums, masks etc. I however love getting my hydration from toners because I apply toner right after cleansing, this ensures that my skin is nice and hydrated when I apply other products.

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What to look for in a hydrating toner
Apart from water as the first ingredient, the other ingredients that you want a hydrating toner to have high up in the ingredients list are: glycerine, aloe vera, propylene glycol, urea and hyaluronic acid

Banila Co Dear Hydration Toner

How to use a hydrating toner
I apply the product after cleansing my skin, I usually apply it in 2 layers using my hands in a patting motions. I don’t use a cotton pad because I feel like it wastes product and doesn’t help with getting the product into the skin. I know that my skin is well hydrated when it bounces back when I touch it and it feels slightly tacky to the touch. In my evening skincare routine, I sometimes apply the toner after each step so it can help to balance out my skin in between steps, this is a trick I learnt from LABEAUTYOLOGIST. .

Extra note In Korean skincare, there is a method where a toner is applied in many layers (they also call it skins). They typically recommend that you apply 7 skins. For this method, hydrating toners work very well, you don’t want to use a toner with actives because you risk damaging your skin.

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Hydrating toners that are worth your money
One toner that I’ve used and repurchased is The Body Shop Vitamin E Hydrating Toner, I’ve also used toners from Miniso (unfortunately, most Miniso stores in South Africa have shut down). I’ve also used the Banila Co Hydration Toner which I bought as part of a Korean Beauty skincare box from Glamology_ZA.

Hydrating toners options

These are some of the hydrating toners that are readily available in South Africa, across all price ranges. Korean skincare focuses a lot on hydration, so I’d recommend having a look at products from Korean brands for hydration.

Bobbi Brown Hydrating Face Tonic, R545 for 200ml
Isntree Hyaluronic Acid Toner, R245 for 200ml
Sukin Original Hydrating Mist Toner, R137 for 125ml
The Body Shop Vitamin E Hydrating Toner, R150 for 250ml

Do you use hydrating toners? Which one is your favourite?

This Post Has 9 Comments

  1. Sean

    HI Lungi, hope you’re doing well during this lockdown time! I really enjoyed this post. I use the rosewater+glycerin mix from Dischem to tone at night. Is this healthy for my skin? It has some alcohols in but I can’t find if they’re the good or bad kind.

    1. Lungi

      Hi Sean, I’m doing well – hope you are too. In my knowledge, alcohol denat. is the “bad” one. If your current toner doesn’t leave your skin feeling tight after using it I think it’s fine

  2. Afromoriri

    Thanks Lungz. I didn’t know about hydrating toners, quit using normal alcohol toners about 8 years ago due to drying effect as I have chronic eczema. I’ll try the body shop hydrating toner.

    1. Lungi

      You’re welcome ❤️. The one from the body shop is a good place to start to see how your skin responds

  3. Kgomotso

    Hi lungi. I used to use the clinique one which was heavy on alcohol but great on removing extra dirt. I stopped because it was so dring and my skin would constantly break out…only learnt later that the reason was becauae its dry. Will give one of these a try

    1. Lungi

      Hi Kgomotso, for removing extra dirt after cleansing, I’d recommend using micellar water on a cotton pad, it’s much more gentle

  4. Oreleona

    Yesss to hydrating toners!! I tried the 7 skin method once but I couldn’t do it, I don’t have that patience lol but now I do the LABEAUTYLOGIST alternate toner step too and it’s working for me, also I get to buy different hydrating toners and try them out lol its a win-win for a skincare hoarder like me lol. The isntree hyaluronic toner has been on my wishlist for so long! I need to get it!!

  5. Mendy

    Hey Lungi,Thanks for the post. So just to clarify: you wash your face with whichever face wash/soap and then use the hydrating toner, then moisturize, then use the toner again, and then maybe use the toner again? I want to get one and use it properly during lockdown.Thanks again 🙂

    1. Lungi

      Hi Mendy, my evening skincare routine goes like this: cleanser, toner, serum/active, toner, moisturiser, facial oil.

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