Skincare doesn't just stop after you wash your face. Whether it's scrubs, balms or exfoliators, you may question if there is really a difference between all these products and what they do. Another example of this would be toners and tonics. Although they are used in the same step during a skin routine, there are benefits to each, as well as a way to determine which one to use.
What is the difference? First off, both of these products are lightweight liquids that are recommended for use right after cleansing and before using serums and creams. In the past, most toners were designed with alcohol content to balance the pH levels in the skin as well as help with excess oil on the skin. Unfortunately, this caused some lines to be blurred to just how beneficial these products actually were.
So what exactly is a toner compared to a tonic?
Well, the traditional sense, toners were created as an extra “cleansing” step to remove any residue, act as an astringent for oily or inflamed skin and add extra nutrients to the skin to help prepare the skin for hydration. Ingredients like Witch Hazel and AHAs (Alpha Hydroxy Acids) are common in toners, as they help strip away any oily residues and clear out pores. Taking a look at tonics, these are meant to provide an extra "hydrating" step which helps by adding moisture into the skin. Some tonics can contain humectants and moisturizing ingredients like hyaluronic acid and rose water. To put it best, Toners are for clearing and toning, Tonics are for moisture boosting and conditioning.
Which one should I use? Traditionally, toners would be ideal for people with oily skin, but these days, it doesn't really matter much. Both could be used in a single skin care routine, but. most would pick one over the other depending on their skin type and needs.
Oily or blemish prone skin would most likely stick to refining Toners, while dry or mature skin types find themselves reaching for hydrating Tonics to get that extra moisture and nutrient absorption. Also, those living in dry climates might also find benefits from Tonics over a Toner and vice versa for those living in high humidity locations.
Overall, your skin needs are different than mine and just about everyone else's so your choice for what products to use should depend on what your skin might need. Also understand that your skin needs change over time and one product that works great now might not down the road. Paying attention to your skin needs will help you keep that youthful glow we all love to have!!
My Recommendations.. So, being that there are TONS of Toners and Tonics on the market, there are only so few that I have personally tried. Below are a few products that I have tried as well as ones that I would personally recommend to those who I know would benefit.
**These are just recommendations! Please read all labels before using any new product and be sure to consult a physician should you have any medical questions!**