What’s the Difference Between a Toner and an Astringent?


A toner is a water-based solution (generally alcohol-free) that uses humectants to keep the moisture in the upper layers of the skin to prevent skin dehydration. It is considered to be an important part of a home skin care regimen.

An astringent is a water-based solution that, when applied to the skin, is meant to shrink or constrict the skin. It is a stronger form of a toner and is formulated with SD Alcohol or Denatured Alcohol that gives the skin a tight feeling. (The tight feeling is a sign of dehydration and not a sign of clean skin, as many think.)

As skin care technology has evolved, the term “astringent” is not used as much anymore since alcohol in skin care products is considered a no-no. I suggest staying away from astringents as they are more harmful than helpful to the skin.

Here’s five reasons why you need to use an alcohol-free toner after cleansing.

1. They give your skin a drink of moisture when left damp on the skin before applying moisturizer.

Make sure to only use an alcohol-free toner. Toners that contain alcohol are extremely drying to the skin and should never be used. See the collection of Renée Rouleau alcohol-free toners.

2. They remove drying chlorine and minerals found in tap water…

Chlorine and chemicals are put into tap water to destroy harmful bacteria, but they can also dehydrate to the skin.

3. They balance the pH in the skin.

If you use a bar of soap or a foaming face wash that might dry out the skin due to their low pH balance, a toner will help counteract the dryness that occurs.

4. They can enhance the results of your skin care program.

Depending on the ingredients used in the toner, it can help calm the skin, control oil, stimulate blood circulation, destroy acne-causing bacteria, provide anti-oxidant benefits, and more. Renée Rouleau has six different toners depending on your skin type.

5. They support your skin’s protective barrier.

By supplying the skin with essential hydration and nutrients, you repair the skin’s protective barrier, making it less sensitive and more resistant to environmental damage.
Read: All Forms of Alcohol are Not Bad For the Skin

Read: Does Your Skin Get Used to Products and Stop Working?

Which products are right for your skin? See our nine skin types and get products recommended.

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Content found on Blog.ReneeRouleau.com, including: text, images, audio, or other formats were created for informational purposes only. The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this blog.