Over the years, skincare is not just limited and exclusive for women but men are also involved in this matter as well. Before, most of the men kept things simple in their skincare routine but nowadays, there is an increasing rate of men who are now pursuing healthier, younger-looking skin as they become motivated in consciously evaluating and modifying their skincare routine according to their needs.
In skin care, you need your essentials such as your cleanser, toner, and moisturizer. Today, we will help you to learn more about how to buy a suitable facial toner for men. We also listed our top picks of the best facial toners for men here so that you’re able to choose the right toner for your man.
Important Factors to Consider
Formula and Skin Types
Facial toners are significant in your skincare game as they are designed to post-cleanse the skin, getting rid of excess oil or foaming agents that can be a leftover from your cleanser, and shrink pores, usually followed by a moisturizer. They also regulate and balance the pH of your skin after washing your face.
Whether it’s for men, women, or both, toners are fundamental in the hydrating and moisturizing process as they dampen your skin prior to the application of your other skincare products for full efficacy and absorption inside the skin. One of the differences between men and women’s skin is that men usually have thicker skin than women.
Despite the differences, an effective skincare plan is universal and remains the same for both. However, there are three different types of toners and each of them varies in both composition and function. Check out some basic points about this:
The most common type of toner that is used, they usually contain zero alcohol and serve to keep moisture in the upper layer of the epidermis. One example of this is rosewater which is seen all over the market.
Skin Tonics or Exfoliating Toners
These toners are typically used to cleanse and exfoliate your skin. If you have oily skin with large pores, these are great items to use for you to decrease the amount of sebum in your skin and shrink pores. Some Western brands usually used tonics like astringents but those kinds contain high levels of alcohol that can destroy your skin barrier.
If you have dull and lackluster skin because of hyperpigmentation, you can incorporate this type of toner into your routine and use it 2-3 times a week. Look for exfoliating ingredients such as AHA or alpha hydroxy acid (also known as glycolic acid), BHA or beta hydroxy acid (also known as salicylic acid), PHA or polyhydroxy acid (a gentler version of AHA), and LHA or lipo-hydroxy acid (a gentler version of BHA).
AHA or Glycolic Acid – Derived from fruit, milk, and sugar cane, these water-soluble acids act on the surface by removing dead surface cells and increasing the collagen synthesis which enables your skin to improve its appearance, as they reduce fine lines and wrinkles and get rid of your hyperpigmentation and dark spots in the process. Best for dry and mature skin to all skin types.
BHA or Salicylic Acid – Derived from tree barks, these fat-soluble acids fight acne-causing bacteria and they usually deep cleanse your pores inside your skin. They penetrate deep inside your skin to unclog your pores and dissolve the mix of sebum and dead skin that leads to acne. They clear up whiteheads, blackheads, and have anti-inflammatory properties. Best for oily and acne-prone skin.
PHA or Gluconolactone – With the similar function of AHA, it appears to be the gentler version. Having much larger molecules than AHA, they work exclusively in the skin without disturbing the delicate layers. That’s why this type of acid is best for sensitive skin.
LHA or Salicylic Acid Derivative – This type of acid is similar to BHA but it appears to be the gentler version. Its slow penetration results in an individual cell-by-cell exfoliation that is associated with excellent tolerability based on the National Institute of Health. Thus, this is safe and best for sensitive skin.
Skin Hydrators or Lotions
These toners are necessary to elevate the hydration levels of your skin. Great for dry and dehydrated skin to normal skin types, they boost firmness and smoothness of your skin and reduce inflammation. You should look for ingredients such as butylene glycol, hyaluronic acid or sodium hyaluronate, glycerin, sodium PCA, or sorbitol, as well as plant extracts. Today, there are many modern hybrids of hydration that act as both toner and moisturizer for no-fuss skin application.
Harmful Ingredients to Avoid and Their Healthy Alternatives
Not every single toner being advertised and marketed around your area mostly through social media websites are best for everyone to use. Note that each one of us has his own unique skin structure and health. Don’t depend on conventional and cheap drugstore toners that can ruin your skin barrier and result in dryness and irritation due to the presence of harsh chemicals and ingredients, and a high concentration of irritants.
In this section, we provide you some harmful ingredients you must watch out for and we are able to search for various better and healthy alternatives to look for instead:
As a red flag in the toner ingredients list, they can be aggravating to acne-prone users and sensitive skin types. They eliminate your skin’s natural lipid or sebum, removing your skin’s natural moisture and lubrication mechanism. It will make your skin dry and dull or alternatively, it will cause accelerated oil production as an overcompensatory measure from the loss of your natural oils.
Healthy Alternative: Witch Hazel
This is an excellent plant-based ingredient as it has a calming, clarifying, soothing, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties and effective in removing excess sebum from the skin without stripping and drying your skin.
High Percentage of BHA or Salicylic Acid
This type of acid is helpful for oily and acne-prone skin but when used in high concentrations, they can enormously destroy your skin’s pH balance. This causes irritation, stinging, redness, and itching, resulting in severe inflammation and dryness, even mild chemical burns.
Healthy Alternative: Willow Bark
Containing salicin is a plant-based extract that acts as an organic salicylic acid without the harsh side effects.
High Percentage of Benzoyl Peroxide
This ingredient is widely used as an over-the-counter anti-acne ingredient. Toners with this ingredient are designed to unclog pores. But high concentrations of this will induce peeling and accelerate signs of aging due to dryness and epidermal layer damage.
Healthy Alternatives: Tea Tree Oil and Centella Asiatica
These are plant-based ingredients that have soothing, antifungal and antibacterial properties, effective in reducing inflammation of acne and blemishes.
Those luxurious but synthetic fragrances from drugstores and cosmeceutical stores are often the culprit behind allergic reactions to most of the people, resulting in contact dermatitis and several skin diseases.
Healthy Alternatives: Essential Oils
Derived from plants, these are both therapeutic and purifying because of their herbal and floral aromas. But sensitive and hypersensitive skin people must check if they can tolerate some kinds of essential oils or just opt in using unscented toners for your safety.
Synthetic Skin Conditioners
These chemicals are created from laboratories as they are designed to lock hydration in the skin. Sadly, they contain a variety of potential carcinogens, like phthalates and parabens. Some kinds contained petroleum and mineral oils that are mostly contaminated and can cause cancer.
Healthy Alternative: Hydrosols or Flower Waters
Produced through distilling plant leaves and flowers with the use of steam-based process, these aromatic waters with very light concentrations of essential oils are soothing and refreshing.
Our Top Picks for the Best Facial Toners
With the vast amount of toners around the stores and markets, we curated the top-rated facial toners for men in this section. So, just chill and check out the products below:
#1. Brickell Men’s Balancing Toner For Men
Are you tired and stressed because of your large pores and oily skin? Don’t panic and try this refreshing alcohol & oil-free men’s facial toner that removes excess oil, unclogs & minimizes pores, and clears skin of impurities. In the morning, you can use this as a facial toner or as during the day as a “refresher” ‘to reduce shine and perk up dull skin.
Its key ingredient which is cucumber distillate minimizes pores and soothes irritated skin. It also has witch hazel, which is a natural astringent that reduces inflammation and reduces oil build up. It also contains peppermint that soothes the skin and provides antiseptic properties. It has aloe vera as well as it gently hydrates skin cells without oversupplying your skin with moisture.
Best for normal to oily and acne-prone skin. Men with any skin type can use this product as an anytime skin refresher.
#2. KLAIRS Supple Preparation Facial Toner
Being one of Amazon Best Sellers, this toner from South Korea can be used by both men and women. It fully hydrates and calms sensitive skin post-cleansing and cleans the skin texture to smoothen while keeping the optimal pH balance to help the absorption of other products as well.
Carrying various plant extracts and soothing ingredients combined together for a calming formula, the non-irritating, super hydrating toner can be used for sensitive skin as well.
This toner has faster absorption, and enhanced hydration, making your skin glowing brighter with higher moisture retention. It has an upgraded moisturizer that rapidly absorbs into the skin while prolonging hydration by more than 20% than conventional toners with hyaluronic acid and beta-glucan. For dry skin, you can use this 2-3 times consecutively to help relieve strain from dry skin. With decreased oiliness and increased absorption, it’s suitable all year round for oily skin as well.
#3. Hada Labo Rohto Goku-jun Hyaluronic Milky Lotion
Being one of the best beauty and skincare brands in Japan, this toner from Hada Labo moisturizes deeply, offering nourishing hydration and skin-smoothing conditioners. This toner resembles the consistency and texture of a milk which makes it lightweight, and it is free of fragrances, mineral oil, alcohol, and colorant.
The brand highlights the use of their star ingredient which is Super Hyaluronic Acid or Sodium Acetylated Hyaluronate. Patented by Shiseido, this special ingredient is made to hydrate the skin twice as much as the regular hyaluronic acid. It attracts moisture from the air and retains it in the skin. By replenishing the skin’s natural ability to hydrate cells and lock in moisture, SHA improves skin’s elasticity and suppleness.
#4. Cosrx AHA/BHA Clarifying Treatment Toner
Popular around the world because of its superb efficacy, this gentle clarifying and exfoliating toner from COSRX is your answer in solving your skin issues such as oily, large pores, whiteheads, blackheads, pimples, blemishes, and hyperpigmentation. The organic ingredients will further step up and enhance your skin regeneration, filling up your skin with loads of vitamins and minerals.
With a limited but excellent list of natural ingredients, it can help your skin in multiple ways. The AHA from apple fruit water and BHA from willow bark water clear away the dead skin cells, unclog, and shrink pores. It has mineral water that boosts the skin’s overall structure and health. The allantoin from the product increases its hydration levels and keeping it moist. Daily use of this toner will make you say goodbye to all your whiteheads, blackheads, pimples, and blemishes. Later on, you will be surprised with a glowing and younger-looking skin!
#5. TreeActiv Balancing Herbal Toner
Do you have some troubled areas such as inflammation and redness on your face? This toner protects the skin against environmental toxins, dirt, and debris from going inside the pores, hydrates and restores moisture that is lost from cleansing and allows products applied onto skin after use with a higher rate of efficiency.
Containing tea tree leaf water, rosewater, clary sage water, and witch hazel extracts, this toner makes a potent concoction that is loaded with antioxidants, anti-inflammatory, antifungal, and natural antiseptic properties to soothe razor burn, irritation, and razor bumps.
#6. InstaNatural Vitamin C Facial Toner
Looking for brightening, pore minimizing, and calming solutions? This soothing mist toner is your way to achieve that radiant and healthy skin you want. It has MSM which is a vital ingredient to penetrate pores and increase their elasticity. Using this toner also helps in the maximum absorption of your other skincare essentials.
For more added nourishment, it has Vitamin C and E that are important in the regeneration process of your skin, encouraging collagen production. These nutrients brighten, tone, and refine your skin. If you also have some redness and irritation from shaving, this toner has lavender and geranium essential oils to cool down your skin.
#7. Innisfree Forest For Men Moisture Skin
If you have dry and dehydrated skin, this balancing, moisturizing toner from Innisfree is made with the Jeju phytoncide complex™ to restore energy to the skin. Do you know that phytoncide from Jeju’s native pine, cedar, and Tinospora trees relieves skin stress? Jeju Gotjawal Phytoncide works on men’s skin to fight the signs of fatigue.
It has other notable ingredients such as beta-glucans from natural oligosaccharide and green tea which are significant in amping up the skin with moisture. They are also antioxidants and have anti-inflammatory properties, keeping your skin healthy and supple from the environmental aggressors.
#8. Neutrogena Oil- and Alcohol-Free Facial Toner
This conventional and effective toner can be used by both men and women as it refreshes skin without stripping its own natural moisturizers, so you can get a clean, refreshing toning experience without the harsh drying effects of alcohol.
Additionally, special mild purifiers gently remove impurities and recondition the skin. Your skin will feel fresh and clean, without tightness, dryness or stinging. It is formulated with emollients and vitamin B5 to help condition the skin. It is really gentle, doesn’t leave your skin with that tight feeling, and assist in brightening your complexion.
#9. Proactiv Revitalizing Toner
Developed by dermatologists, this toner from Proactiv is recommended for people who have dryness, large pores, and dullness and uneven texture. Its main ingredient is glycolic acid which is an exfoliating agent and an AHA that is designed to clear away dead skin cells, revealing a fair and radiant complexion.
It also removes excess surface oil to help keep pores from clogging. The refreshing, energizing formula helps your skin achieve the perfect pH while balancing the skin’s natural oils and moisture. It leaves skin even-toned, hydrated, supple, and soft.
#10. Clinique for Men Exfoliating Tonic
If you’re looking for a daily exfoliator and toner in one, this product from Clinique is best for normal to dry skin. It helps the skin to shed dead cells and in effect, a new and bright skin will resurface. It also preps you in shaving to avoid irritation.
It does not have an overwhelming smell so men who are sensitive to a strong scent can use this. You can see a dramatic difference with the continuous use in oil control and pores. Thus, to thoroughly clear out and smoothen your skin, try using this toner to achieve a flawless complexion.
Before heading to your nearest store or mall, it is important to know your skin type prior to buying the products that are aforementioned. After considering the factors you need for your skin health, now is the right time to have the best facial toner that your skin wants. Whether you need to exfoliate or hydrate or both, using a facial toner helps in reviving the softness and elasticity of your skin.