How To Choose The Best Toner For Your Skin

Zero in on these instead – and apply them correctly, please

Happily, toners have come a long way. The latest trove of toners have been cleverly rejigged and remodelled as skin-softening treatments in their own right, with the ability to comfort, contour and condition.

But what to try, what to buy? Makeup master Larry Yeo says you should gun for thicker-textured toners to fend off flakiness in cold climates, and to keep a mascaraed eye out for beneficial beautifying ingredients like nourishing niacinamide and AHA/BHA acids, the latter of which “will help with pore problems”.

Oh, and they’re good for fending off fine lines, too. “Applying a toner can be a preventative anti-ageing step when applied correctly,” says Larry. “By softening your skin prior to applying your serums and moisturisers, you reduce excess friction and allow the subsequent skincare products to be smoothed on easily and evenly.” Duly noted!

What else? Larry recommends skipping the cotton pads and pressing your potion directly into your face, paying extra attention to the jowl area, where your hands should be kneading upwards against the forces of gravity.

Now that I’ve come around to the idea of incorporating a toner into my regime, it’s pretty much kid-in-candy-store syndrome: Everywhere I look, there’s an exciting new product to “pore” over, so to speak. Click through for a rapid-fire run-through of some of my top toner picks, and #HappyShopping!

Laneige Water Science Mist Clear-C (Anti-Oxidant) $28

#1  Spot-reducing multitasker: Laneige Water Science Mist Clear-C (Anti-Oxidant), S$28

This cheerful citrusy baby is an excellent jumping-off point, especially if you’re Krazy for K-Beauty. Steeped in “superberry” juices – think antioxidant-rich acerola and acai – this skin smoothie is said to fend off the formation of freckles and fine lines. Beauty bonus: The spray-type dispensing mechanism means you can use this multi-tasker to mist your mien anytime, anywhere, even over makeup. What’s not to love?

Lancome Absolue White Aura Brightening Concentrated Lotion $135

#2 Luxe luminising lotion: Lancome Absolue White Aura Brightening Concentrated Lotion, S$135

In dire need of a brightening boost? This lovely Lancome lotion – bonus points for the gorgeous gel-like consistency! – is a pampering pep-me-up potion packed with a concentrated cocktail of beautifying botanicals and anti-ageing actives that should lend you that skin-saving spark you’ll need to ignite your way to a brighter and better complexion.

For Beloved One Mandelic Acid Renewal Toner $38

#3 Complexion clarifier: For Beloved One Mandelic Acid Renewal Toner, S$38

This Taiwanese toner will make for a terrific addition to your arsenal of skin-smoothening salves  – the formula’s gently exfoliating acid is awesome at clearing out the dirt and debris clogging up your pores. Pat it in at night and wake up to skin that feels supremely soft, pleasingly plump and perfectly pore-free!

SK-II Cellumination Mask-In Lotion $124

#4 Brightening booster: SK-II Cellumination Mask-In Lotion, S$124

I’m a go-big-or-go-home sort when it comes to skincare, so this potent mask-and-lotion potion is right up my beauty alley. Souped up with soothing Pitera and spot-lightening niacinamide, the exquisite elixir is highly hydrating, so much so that I find myself skipping my moisturiser on nights when I just can’t be arsed to follow through with my eight-step regime.

Fresh Black Tea Age-Delay Instant Infusion Treatment Toner $80

#5 Anti-ageing antioxidants: Fresh Black Tea Age-Delay Instant Infusion Treatment Toner, S$80

This tea-rrific toner is stuffed with soothing antioxidant actives, and boasts a wonderfully watery texture that should sit well with millennials easing their way into an anti-ageing regimen. It’s superb for squelching the splotches of ruddy “heaty” skin, too – simply chuck this in the fridge and slap it on for complexion that’s instantly calmer and cooler.

Bottomline: Time to toss aside any lingering prejudice you may have for traditional toners.  Next-gen formulas are the way to go!

Text: Eugene Quek / Her World Plus Additional reporting: Arissa Ha