Toners are a huge step in the right direction when it comes to making your skin truly flawless. That being said, they can also cost a fortune for a good one that works well with your skin type.
What is a toner?
Toners actually have a number of different purposes for your skincare. They include finishing the cleansing process by removing excess dust, pollution, etc., removing excess cleanser that doesn’t quite get washed off that can cause irritation and balancing your oil production in order to reduce shine and excess oil.
Toners are usually made up of water-based liquids that come from plants and essential oils that are tailored to your specific skin type. These provide moisture, cleanse and can even help to balance your skin tone.
DIY Toners to the Rescue
I’ve tried numerous different store-bought toners and none of them ever seemed to suit my skin very well. They were too drying, too irritating or just made my skin take on a dull appearance.
So, I did what any other gal would do: I researched different toners I could try at home, and was floored with how easy and cheap they were to make myself! Another bonus? Since I made them myself, I knew exactly what was in them and the limited ingredients made for far less irritation. Here are some of my all-time favorites.
1. Apple Cider Vinegar
The best part about this toner is that it is incredibly easy to use and packs the most benefits. You have to use organic apple cider vinegar that has the ‘mother’ in it (the stuff that floats around the bottle and makes it all foggy). It is packed with vitamins and minerals that your skin eats up. It also pulls out toxins and gets rid of excess oil that clogs your pores. You’ll also notice almost immediately that your skin will just glow.
How to make it: All you’ll need for this recipe is 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar and 2-4 tablespoons of distilled water. Add the vinegar to a container and then add the distilled water—start with 4 tablespoons and adjust accordingly. This toner can be a bit drying if you start with too much vinegar. Apply with a cotton ball after cleansing, and follow with a moisturizer.
Best suited for: Oily skin anytime and normal skin in warm/humid weather.
2. Vegetable Glycerin and Rosewater
Rosewater is known for being gentle, moisturizing and soothing for your skin. It also has cleansing properties that get rid of excess dirt and oil on your skin. Vegetable glycerin is my secret weapon when it comes to skincare. It is intensely moisturizing because it sucks moisture in from the air, reduces excess oil production, is antibacterial, can fight off acne and gives your skin that dew-like glow that all the celebrities seem to have.
How to make it: Mix 4 tablespoons of rosewater with 1 teaspoon of vegetable glycerin in a container. Shake until they’re combined, and that’s it! I suggest starting out with this ratio and then adding more rosewater or glycerin depending on how your skin reacts. Then, apply with a cotton ball after cleansing and follow with a moisturizer.
Less glycerin is needed in humid climates and more will be beneficial in colder/dryer areas. A word of caution: using glycerin in climates where the humidity is below 50% can cause the glycerin to pull moisture from beneath your skin’s surface—something you don’t want.
Best suited for: dry, sensitive, normal and aging skin
3. Green Tea
As I’m sure you know by now, green tea is basically a superfood that can be used for a wide variety of things—being a toner is just another one. Green tea is chock full of antioxidants that fight free radicals on your skin and also has the ability to balance your skin’s oil production.
How to make it: Simply boil 1 cup of water and steep 1 bag of green tea in it for 3-5 minutes. Remove the bag and allow it to cool before transferring it to a container to use. Apply with a cotton ball after cleansing and follow with a moisturizer.
Best suited for: All skin type—especially during the summer since it gives you a tan-like glow.
4. Lemon Water (for night use only)
Lemons have a lot of ingredients that can be beneficial for your skin when used and prepared correctly. It has vitamin C to increase collagen production, antioxidants that fight free radicals and even oil reducing properties.
How to make it: All you need to do for this DIY toner is mix 1 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice with one cup of water and store in a cold place. Apply with a cotton ball after cleansing, and follow with a moisturizer. A word of caution: this toner should only be used at night because of the effect the sun has on lemon juice. Used during the day could cause excessive sunburn and drying.
Best suited for: oily and combination skin
5. Vitamin C and Rosewater
Ah yes, rosewater again. I just can’t get enough of this amazing water and all of its benefits. This time, though, I’ll use it in combination with vitamin C powder in order to produce a toner that is anti-aging and reviving. Vitamin C powder increases collagen production to give your face a firm lift; it also increases cell turnover to give you a healthy glow, and fights off acne-causing ailments.
How to make it: There is a bit more work that goes into this toner. First, get some vitamin C powder (often called L-asorbic acid). Mix 1 teaspoon of vitamin C powder with 3 tablespoons of rosewater. You have to mix it together for quite some time before the powder actually dissolves (almost 5 minutes). Apply with a cotton ball after cleansing, and follow with a moisturizer.
Then, transfer this to a dark glass bottle and store in a dark, cold place. Vitamin C can begin to oxidize relatively quickly, so I suggest remaking this once a week to ensure its effectiveness.
A word of caution: mixing more powder per rosewater ratio may cause excessive drying of the skin. You can work your way up to more powder after a few weeks at this dosage if desired.
Best suited for: oily, acne-prone, combination and aging skin
Having amazingly healthy and radiant skin has never been easier or cheaper. These DIY toners will complement almost any skincare regiment. Have you tried any of these before? Let us know.