Why you don’t need this skin care product for your face

Remember the mantra for healthy skin,“Cleanse, tone, moisturize?”
Well, it has changed. Cleanse? Yes. Moisturize? Definitely. Toner? No.

Aestheticians, dermatologists and skin care experts are now endorsing serums as the new vital product in your 3-step skincare regimen. Toners are now defunct, or redundant. Nairobi-based Aesthetician Lily Potgieter advises, “You don’t need a toner after washing your face. They used to say toners were meant to remove any leftover dirt that your cleanser did not get. The answer is to use a really good cleanser. The good ones will remove everything, even makeup, without a trace.”

When it comes to the saying that toners, “close the pores after washing,” a splash of cold water on your face will do just as good a job as a toner in general. For those with oily skin, some toners or astringents are actually known to be excessively drying, which may lead to even more oil production. “Only people with extremely oily skin,” says Ranella Hirsch, M.D., vice president of the American Society of Cosmetic Dermatology and Aesthetic Surgery, “may benefit from a toner, and this is only if they are not already using a specific cleanser and lotion to curb oil production.”

Some dermatologists recommend salicylic acid, a substance also found in aspirin and it is known to exfoliate skin and control oil production  without the  many side effects of alcohol. Alcohol-based toners, including witch hazel, should be used only by those with extremely oily skin and only when everything else has failed. You can spray your face with water that has Apple Cider Vinegar as an effective, natural alternative to these astringents. Of course, it is better to avoid applying chemical-based products to your face in the long run. Uremboasili has a product line for your face that is completely natural. Either way, current research and candid conversations with Beauty professionals often yield the same result – toner was simply an add-on cosmetics companies pushed onto consumers to increase sales.

If you are using the right cleanser, you do not need a toner to remove any “residue.” Also, for those who claimed that toner restores PH balance after cleansing, the skin actually does that by itself. Within 15 to 30 minutes, the skin automatically adjusts its natural PH back to normal.

serum for face

Incidentally, “there’s no truth to the theory that toners prep the skin or help other products penetrate better,” says David E. Bank, M.D., director of the Center for Dermatology, Cosmetic and Laser Surgery, in Mount Kisco, New York. I have used toners in the past but I would often forget and skip that step. After some time I stopped buying toners completely. There was no difference either way to my face, whether I used them or not. Some toners are great at exfoliating skin, but this can be accomplished by periodic use of scrubs from the same brands.

Excessive exfoliation leads to excessive dryness, regardless of your skin type. So what is the new skin-care step to replace toners? Serums. The beauty industry is all a-buzz about Serums. They refer to highly concentrated formulas that address specific skin-care issues and combat environmental hazards, ageing and acne. Because they are so concentrated they come in either gel form, liquid or oil and you only need a few drops.

Look for serums that are packed with antioxidants such as vitamin C, rosehip oil, vitamin E and other beneficial ingredients to combat free-radicals and plump up the skin. They do this by delivering targeted hydration that is more easily absorbed than a moisturizer alone. They are also non-greasy so they can be worn under a moisturizer for those with dry skin and under an oil-free lotion or sunscreen for those with oily skin. Serums are a great way to deliver vital nutrients to skin and multitask so you do not need a night-cream when using these.

It is still important to layer your moisturizer on top of the serum because moisturizer creates a protective film over your skin and can provide needed sun protection. In previous years, they were only targeted towards the older population to reverse damage that comes from ageing. Today, it makes more sense that they can benefit anyone from their mid-twenties and above, to actually prevent a lot of the damage in the first place.

Serums range in price from the more affordable brands to the very high-end serums from medical grade brands and luxury cosmetic lines. Since I started using a vitamin C serum a couple of months ago, I personally have seen results in my skin looking brighter, plumper and the disappearance of fine lines. If you need a replacement for your now defunct toner, look no further.





  1. Naomi

    July 4, 2017 at 12:40 pm

    I have found that for acne-prone skin, a toner made of aloe Vera, water, and ACV, helps to prevent breakouts; especially when used at night.

    1. Patricia

      July 4, 2017 at 6:44 pm

      Thanks for the awesome tip!

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