I have always used a toner in my skincare routine, but have not ever really known why, it was always just one of the things I did, cleanse, tone and moisturise. I thought it was just to refresh after cleansing and to get rid of the last traces of make-up off! Wrong!
What I have learnt of late is that toning the skin is quite an important step in your skincare routine, so much so that I have ended up using two different toners after the advice of Caroline Hirons, skincare queen! I know a lot of people are familiar with her, but if you have never taken her advice, then please go and read her blog here, you will end up with a long shopping list but your skin will definitely thank you for it!
After cleansing, I firstly use an exfoliating toner which is the much coveted Pixi Glow Tonic. After getting my hands on this beauty just over a month ago, I have been using it twice daily and can definitely see the difference in my skin. It is an alcohol-free and oil-free toner which, although contains glycolic acid feels quite gentle and soothing on the skin. The glycolic acid in this toner acts as an exfoliant by removing dead skin cells and the other ingredients including aloe vera and witchhazel do a great job at leaving the skin smooth and firm. Over the six or so weeks that I have been using it, the patch of flakey skin that I could never shift on my nose has disappeared and have also found the redness on my nose to have subsided somewhat. Make-up also looks better as you have a smoother, firmer canvas to work on. This has now become a firm part of my skincare routine and shall be definitely repurchasing it if I can get my hands on it again, as it flies off the shelves so quickly once in stock! If you want to get you hands on this, call the Pixi store in London on 0207 287 7211 or pop in if you are local. Another alternative is the Clarins Exfoliating Toner, which I have heard good things about and works in a similar way, but am yet to try myself. The Pixi one is better value though at £16 for 250ml.
After this, I then spritz my face with Liz Earle Instant Boost Skin Tonic to hydrate and refresh my skin. This also contains aloe vera to revitalise and soften as well as calendula, chamomile and cucumber to soothe and refresh the skin. I have also noticed that it contains glycerin, which helps to hydrate the skin, so perfect for anyone who suffers with dehydrated skin as I do. It has a very uplifting frangrance which I personally love and after a quick spritz of this, my skin is prepared for any treatments and/or moisturiser that follow. This can be purchased from John Lewis at £13.50 for 200ml and I have recently noticed that Boots have started stocking it too!
I am really happy that I have stepped up my skincare regime to include both of these products, my skin has definitely improved and feel confident to recommend them to everyone.