Toners. Remember those? Cleanse, tone and moisturise used to be the mantra of a good skincare regime, but not so much these days. How many of us still use a toner? Do you?
Well, actually, I do, though only if decanted in to a squirty bottle. I rarely dispense toner on to a cotton wool pad and sweep it across my face. Instead, I tend to spritz it to give my skin a freshen-up, though I never much consider what I’m doing an essential step in my skincare routine. It’s more a treat for my skin. I like the feel of a toner splashed on to my face.
Though, perhaps, it is time that I started taking my toning more seriously. One skincare expert who believes we all absolutely should be using toner is leading celebrity facialist Su-Man Hsu.
Su-Man, who in addition to tending to the beauty needs of her A-list clients (see my review of her unique facial massage technique here) has also formulated her own range of award-winning skincare, reminds us that the toners of today (often called essences) bear very little resemblance to those of old.
“The toners that we used to know were ones that would act as a second cleanser. They are harsh, aggressive and dry your skin out,” says Su-Man. “For me, the toner is an essential bridge between cleansing and moisturising that is designed to tone, soothe, hydrate and calm the skin after cleansing. Not to mention a great preparation for the next step of your skincare routine.”
Su-Man Rehydrating Toning Essence
The Su-Man Rehydrating Toning Essence not only bears little resemblance to the toners of old, but it is also a departure from all the new toners/essences that I have used. For a start it has a gel-like consistency. You don’t spritz it, or apply it with a cotton wool pad. Instead, you dispense a couple of drops into your hands from the pump bottle, massage a little and then tap it very gently and lightly over your face and neck.
The gel transforms into a watery hydrator as it is applied. It feels so incredibly refreshing on the skin. I often breathe a huge sigh of relief as I tap it in – that’s how calming and soothing I find it! Afterwards, my skin feels quite plumped up. That is not something I usually experience with a toner. I imagine it has something to do with the invigorating tapping action I’ve been deploying. We should all massage our faces often - our skin will love us for it!
As Su-Man is the expert, I'll refer you to her masterful application technique, which you can find on her YouTube channel here.
The key ingredients in this toning essence are off the pages of my dream list:
Hyaluronic Acid – as we know, it is brilliant at pluming up the skin
Rose Petal – has remarkable healing and moisturising properties (I’ve mentioned this many times on my blog)
Green Tea – has fabulous antioxidant and antibacterial properties. Plus it neutralises skin pH and encourages cell renewal. It’s a great anti-ager (|I’ve mentioned this many times too!).
I’ve been using the Su-Man essence daily for a couple of weeks now. Needless to say, I’m taking a renewed interest in toners. It’s no longer a case of using them because spritzing (or tapping as with the Su-Man method), feels good. I know that if I choose my toning essence wisely it will play a key role in my skincare routine.
The Su-Man Rehydrating Toning Essence costs £37 for 100ml. You can buy it here.