What’s the Right Toner for Your Skin Type?

By Tara Thompson Rasmus

Toners: they kind of seem like the weird outliers of the skin care industry, don’t they? For many of us, just the word “toner” conveys a bracing liquid that we used to apply in an attempt to fight teen acne—and, now that we’re out of high school, the entire category of product seems pretty unnecessary.

But now that we’re heading into the warmer months, I’d urge you to give these lightweight skin solutions a second look. These days, toners go way beyond Sea Breeze—there’s a potion for every skin type, from sensitive to dry to combination. And, even the picks for acne-prone skin are much more gentle (think oil-absorbing Umbrian Clay rather than copious amounts of drying alcohol), so that you get all of the benefits of potent active ingredients without the irritation.

Read on to discover my decidedly modern toner picks—trust me, these barely-there solutions will become key players in your summer skin routine.

featured image via the thread




If you’re acne prone, this new pick from Fresh will be your saving grace. Umbrian clay gently mattifies, while cinnamon bark and lavender balance and clarify.

Umbrian Clay Purifying Facial Toner by Fresh


Anti-aging…toner?! I was skeptical too, but this lightweight solution is packed full of peptides, antioxidants, and hyaluronic acid, making it a robust addition to your wrinkle-fighting routine.

Peter Thomas Roth Un-Wrinkle Turbo Line Smoothing Toning Lotion


If you have normal or combination skin, this gel-liquid toner will smooth things over. Bergamot and sage simultaneously clarify and hydrate, leaving your complexion happy and healthy.

Bergamot Herbal Extract Toner


Infused with Daisy Extract, this brilliant tonic refines and brightens your skin’s tone in about eight weeks.

Burt’s Bees Brightening Refining Tonic


When it comes to toner, Dickinson’s Witch Hazel is a total classic for its soothing and clarifying abilities; this new version includes aloe and vitamin E for extra nourishment.

Dickinson’s Enhanced Witch Hazel Hydrating Toner


If you’re battling redness from a sunburn, rosacea, or allergic reaction, this all-natural rosewater-based mist will calm you right now. Store in the fridge for even more soothing action.

Rosewater Mist by Aster and Bay


Antioxidants are key for repairing environmental damage from pesky free radicals; this fragrant potion will delight your senses while it fights away the stress of the day.

Parsley Seed Anti-Oxidant Facial Toner