Toner is one of the essential products you need for your skincare routine. In the Western countries, toners are traditionally considered to be astringent, acid-packed and drying. But in Korea, their concept for toner is all about soothing and hydrating, being filled with botanical essences.
Remember that not all toners are suitable for every single skin type. So, you must analyze what skin type you have. Example, having an oily skin means that you need a particular toner to minimize your sebum production while balancing your skin hydration levels.
Searching for the best Korean toners for oily skin? In this article, we are going to dig deeper about our recommended products and your guide in buying the best Korean toner for you. Just sit back and relax while learning about them below.
Our Top Picks for the Best Korean Toners for Oily Skin
In this section, our team happily curated the best Korean toners for oily skin that we found out available in the market. Below are some unique details about their formulations and contents.
Innisfree Green Tea Balancing Skin EX
Do you want a unique gamechanger to your skincare routine? This toner from Innisfree is packed with antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals from its main ingredient: green tea extract.
Research studies have shown that green tea is a powerful antibacterial agent for treating acne and unclogging pores.
So, what it makes great for oily skin? Notice the bitter, astringent taste from green tea. It is created by the compounds called tannins which have the ability to shrink your pores and reduce your sebum production. Green tea also contains a powerful antioxidant called EGCG that significantly fights DNA damage from UV rays to prevent skin cancer.
This toner has 86.17% green tea extract which makes it great to be used by individuals with oily skin. Without the harshness of chemical ingredients typically found in commercial products, this Korean toner will help you have a less oily complexion, and gives you hydrated skin. People with oily or combination skin are recommended to use this product.
SKINFOOD Peach Sake Toner
Skinfood is a famous skincare and beauty brand from Korea that specializes in nutritious foods as their source in developing their products for healthy, beautiful skin. Their best-selling pore care line, Peach Sake combines traditional Japanese sake and peaches to reduce the appearance of pores and control excessive oil production.
Rich in Vitamin A and C, peaches help minimize free radical damage and have anti-aging properties. They also have natural exfoliating acids such as citric, malic and tartaric acids. These acids are all various structures of AHA or alpha-hydroxy acid, necessary for treating acne, scars, roughness, hyperpigmentation, and especially for soothing inflamed skin.
Japanese sake or fermented rice wine is loaded with high glycerol, peptides, and amino acids. It also has kojic acid that improves in brightening your skin while the natural alcohol tightens pores and controls sebum production. Other than these two main lead actors in the scene, this toner has other supporting components such as soybean extracts, licorice root extracts, and chamomile extracts which are all antioxidants, anti-inflammatory, and soothing.
COSRX AHA/BHA Clarifying Treatment Toner
Looking for a two-in-one gentle toning product for your skincare? As one of COSRX’ best-selling products, this clarifying treatment toner has the double power of exfoliation and hydration in one! Having just 12 all-natural ingredients, it is a simple watery toner that effectively exfoliates your skin in a subtle manner while nourishing it with vitamins and minerals.
This product is formulated with 10% apple fruit water (AHA) and 10% willow bark water (BHA) for light exfoliation and 74.55% mineral water for hydration. AHA is a surface exfoliant that is meant to help your skin shed dead skin cells and reveal a new, brighter skin. BHA is a pore exfoliant that unclogs pores to prevent blackheads, whiteheads, and pimples. It also has allantoin and panthenol to help your skin retain moisture and reduce itching and inflammation.
Unlike the typical exfoliating toners in the market, this Korean toner has enough percentage of AHA and BHA that you can use twice daily. You don’t need to use drying and sensitizing acne treatment products or painful astringents. Being an extremely gentle exfoliating toner, it will help you reduce pimples, blackheads, and whiteheads on your face. Bye bye to your oily, dull, and acne-prone skin and say hello to a vibrant and glowing complexion!
KLAIRS Supple Preparation Unscented Toner
Do you have oily and sensitive skin? Worry no more! This second version of KLAIRS Supple Preparation Toner is specifically made for people who have sensitive skin. This unscented toner is free from essential oils, fragrances, alcohol, and chemicals. It resets your skin’s pH level which brings balance to your skin and provides hydration.
It also has anti-inflammatory benefits and reduces any redness and irritation. Made with several botanical components such as licorice root extract, aloe leaf extract, althaea rose extract, and centella asiatica extract, these ingredients are essential for skin brightening, anti-bacterial, and calming properties.
All skin types can use this type of toner which includes oily skin. Before, there is a misconception about hydration and moisture toward oily skin, thinking that you don’t need to hydrate or moisturize because of too much natural oil or sebum production. But, appropriate hydration is fundamental for oily skin to avoid dehydration that usually leads to sebum build-up.
BENTON Snail Bee High Content Skin
Suffering from endless skin redness, hormonal acne and oily skin is so annoying and frustrating. To help you solve this problem, here is a potent antioxidant-filled toner from Benton. Like how you can tell from the name of this product, it has two star ingredients: snail mucin and bee venom.
Snail mucin or snail secretion filtrate is a highly concentrated component that offers healing and regenerative effect to your skin. It carries a powerful blend of acids, proteins, and antioxidants that boosts cell turnover rate, assisting in the disappearance of acne scars. Also, it helps in the hydration of the skin.
On the other hand, bee venom is a wonderful component in enhancing collagen production. It contains various enzymes that help temporarily thin the skin, allowing better absorption of other ingredients inside the skin cells. Plus, this toner has green tea leaf water for antibacterial and hydration as well as niacinamide for brightening. So, if you’re struggling with oily, acne-prone, or dull skin, this toner helps you to solve these concerns.
SOME BY MI AHA BHA PHA 30 Days Miracle Toner
Some By Mi has received heavy praise in Korea and among the online beauty industry for creating gentle yet highly effective products for people with many troubled skin problems such as acne, rosacea, blackheads, whiteheads, and many more. This toner from this brand is designed with AHAs, BHAs, and PHAs to ensure an effective exfoliation and skin improvement in just 30 days!
Safe for sensitive skin, this miracle low-pH toner has 10,000ppm of real tea tree extracts for soothing and anti-septic purposes. Aside from its balancing and moisturizing abilities, this toner acts as a dual-function in brightening and anti-aging due to niacinamide and adenosine. If you’re new to acids, you can absolutely use this toner for super gentle exfoliation.
Thus, this soothing exfoliating toner is best for oily to sensitive skin types. You can use this twice daily without worrying in redness and irritation. You will eventually experience clean, bright, and soft skin without any breakouts. Afraid of using high percentage of exfoliants? Try this toner and see the difference!
ISNTREE Hyaluronic Acid Toner
Hydration and moisture are important aspects that your skin needs. Hydration is essential to preserve the barrier function of the skin’s epidermis and to prevent TEWL or transepidermal water loss while moisture is significant to lock and trap hydration inside the skin. Without these two factors, your skin will either become dry due to the lack of oil or become oily or dehydrated due to the lack of water.
So, is it possible to have a hydrated and supple skin without making it too greasy and oily?
If you have oily and dehydrated skin, this toner from ISNTREE is made up with 50% hyaluronic acid that keeps your skin moist and hydrated all day. Hyaluronic acid or sodium hyaluronate is an intensive hydrating and moisturizing ingredient that helps retain 100 to 1,000 times its own water weight in our skin cells.
Additionally, it has birch sap that has powerful antioxidant effect, beta-glucan which is 20% more effective than hyaluronic acid that helps stimulate collagen production and speeds up wound healing. When used daily, you will notice 41% increase in moisture while reducing oil by 34%! So, for this is great for oily skin who want supple and glowing skin from deep moisture.
Secret Key Aloe Soothing Moist Toner
Aloe vera is best known for its soothing and cooling properties. It has natural astringent components that absorb excess oil, sebum, and dirt from pores. It also has hydrating effect as it moisturizes the skin, repairing the skin without making it oily. This toner from Secret Key has aloe vera as its main ingredient.
If you want to have a hydrated skin minus the stickiness and oiliness even after 8 hours of use, this toner definitely moisturizes the skin without the greasy feel. Best for hot summer days, this product also helps with sunburn through its powerful healing activity at the skin, and acts as a protective layer on the skin with moisture replenishment.
When using this toner, you will notice that it is quick absorbing and leaves your skin smooth and supple. There is no stickiness unlike other typical hydrating toners in the market. After 5 minutes, you will see that it can soothe and reduce redness and inflammation. If you have pimples and acne, it has the ability to shrink them after 8 hours.
ETUDE HOUSE SoonJung pH 5.5 Relief Toner
Established in 1988, Etude House is a famous Korean beauty and skincare brand that offers a unique line of products called Soon Jung Damage Care Solution. They proposed a new solution that will restore the skin that is more sensitive, such as fine dust, dryness, and weakness of the skin barrier, by restraining ingredients that can be relieved and various tests to revive calm skin.
With this concept as their aim in this project, this toner from their Soon Jung line helps soothe stressed and blemished skin. Its mild acidic pH of 5.5 helps repair weak skin barriers, safe for sensitive skin. It contains 97% natural ingredients such as glycerin, betaine, panthenol, madecassoside, green tea extract, and scutellaria baicalensis. Glycerin has wound-healing and moisturizing properties while betaine is an amino acid that is humectant and anti-irritant.
The unique ingredient from this toner comes from madecassoside which appears to be a derivative of centella asiatica or tiger grass. Centella has been used for many years in traditional medicine to treat, calm, and heal wounds, scars, burns, and scratches. Madecassoside is an active compound of centella that boosts collagen production and it has better anti-inflammatory effect than its other counterparts. So, this toner is great for all skin types like oily skin.
L’ATURAJEU Glacier Water Daily Facial Toner
If you love clean beauty, this organic toner from L’ATURAJEU is derived with pure ingredients from clean nature. This is well-recommended for all skin types especially for hypersensitive skin. The top ingredient of this product is Iceland glacier water which possesses the extreme level of purity among other types of water.
Melting and making its way through miles of lava rock, the former glacier ice also absorbs minerals from the bedrock during the process. Those minerals are significant because they reduce acidity and help balance the pH level in your skin. Glacier water effectively cleanses the skin by removing invisible and small dusts. That is because it has smaller particles than the ordinary water. So, the glacier water is a nourishing component for your skin.
This toner provides benefits in anti-aging, anti-wrinkle, hydrating, moisturizing, healing, anti-acne, detoxifying, skin toning, antiseptic, antifungal, and antioxidant because of its other ingredients which are sodium hyaluronate, lavender extract, and oregano leaf extract. You can use this product during the summer months because it’s very refreshing and cooling.
How to Choose the Best Korean Toner for Oily Skin
After knowing the best Korean toners for oily skin, the next thing to do is the best ways in choosing the suitable toner for your skin type. To help you evaluate and make the right decision, below are some important reminders that you need to consider before you buy.
Search for potential aggressors that might potentially trigger some allergic reactions, irritation, redness, and inflammation to your skin. Avoid harsh ingredients and chemical ones that are made for moisturizing but has possible side effects. Stay away from toners that have high percentage of exfoliating acids and search for a small percentage for daily and gentle exfoliation. Look for pure, organic, and safe botanical ingredients as much as possible, such as flower or plant extracts, hyaluronic acid, etc.
While most toners are water-based, there are also some in the form of gel. In some Korean brands, there are “boosters” which are made to be applied to prep for toner and the following products. Today, there are some “toner pads” which are toners soaked in round pads and packaged in handy containers for convenience and travel-friendly purposes. There is also a rising trend in hybrid toners which are called “cream skin” that serves as toner and moisturizer in one product, great for normal, oily, dry and dehydrated skin.
Tired and stressed on thinking what’s best to buy? Search and read authentic reviews and learn from the experiences of several reliable YouTube skincare and beauty experts and enthusiasts about the products.
In this section, we provide you the most common questions that people have about toners and we will give you some simple answers.
What Does a Korean Toner Do For Skin?
Sometimes referred to as “skin” or “booster”, a Korean toner is designed to add moisture to the skin that might be stripped away during the cleaning process, and to increase the penetration of the skincare products that follow.
How Does Toner Differ from Essence and Cleansing Water?
An essence has a slightly thicker consistency and more concentrated with nutrients than toner. This product is applied after the toning stage and meant for full nourishment of the skin.
On the contrary, cleansing water has a similar consistency of a toner but it has ingredients that cleanse among other surface-level tasks. So, it should be used after your oil cleanse, and before your water-based cleanser or toner. It’s like a mid-step in your cleansing routine.
Some brands offer multipurpose products as they can act as cleansing water, toner, and moisturizer in one. Please check the usage and ingredients of the product to be sure.
What is the 7-layer Method and What Toners Work With It?
As a popular Korean skincare technique, this method involves applying your toner up to seven consecutive times for an intensive deeply hydrating, facial-like treatment. After doing this, you will be greeted with a plump, bouncy, and glowing skin.
The goal here is having a full hydration which means to achieve this you need to do layering. So, it is an important factor to consider nourishing and hydrating ingredients and avoid chemical acids such as AHA, and BHA. Look for lightweight toners filled with botanical extracts, vitamins, and minerals so you can further build up the layers easily.
If you have oily skin, you just need to apply enough layers like maybe around 2-5 layers according on what your skin needs and not opting for more than 5 layers because it can overload your skin in hydration and oil levels. Over hydrating your skin might lead your skin to become oilier and clogged.
What Type of Toner is Best for Oily Skin?
Oily skin is the result of overproduction of sebum from sebaceous glands. The right amount of sebum is important to help protect and moisturize your skin. But too much sebum may lead to oily skin, and in turn, to clogged pores and acne.
Therefore, to stop these skin problems, you need a product that serves as a balancing, clarifying, exfoliating, and hydrating toner. But also you must check consciously on what your skin really craves for the day in order for you to supply what is necessary for your skin.
Is It Alright To Use Two Different Toners in a Skincare Routine?
Yes you can. But it depends on the type of toners that you will use. Don’t use two exfoliating toners but use two different toners with different functions. Remember to focus on what your skin truly needs and how your skin reacts while combining two different toners in a skincare routine.
If you have oily, dehydrated, and acne-prone skin, use an exfoliating product first and wait for 2-3 minutes before applying your hydrating toner. If you have dry and dehydrated skin, use two kinds of lightweight, hydrating toners. Layer from the lightest or most watery to the heaviest or gel-like consistency.
Do you still need to use a moisturizer after using a toner?
It depends on your skin type but using a moisturizer is important in your skincare to prevent the loss of hydration from your skin. If you have oily and dehydrated skin, you can just use the layering method when using a hydrating toner and your ready to go. Or replace your gel or cream moisturizer with a facial oil like hemp seed oil or rosehip oil after using a toner. Or you can just use hybrid toners or “cream skin” and not use moisturizer for a cheap alternative.
It was around mid-2000s when Korean beauty was just starting to blossom and makes its way to Asia and then later on to the rest of the world. Today, with the growing international popularity of “K-Wave” or “Hallyu Wave” movement along with the modern-day Korean beauty culture, we see K-beauty and skincare as one of the biggest influencers in the beauty industry worldwide.
Most of their toners are awarded for being the best toners for oily skin and many other skin types. Due to the organic sources, innovative formulations, and exceptional properties of their toners, many people became happy and satisfied about their skin conditions with the use of the products. Have you tried a Korean toner before? How was your experience? You can share your thoughts about this by commenting down below.