Do Toners Really Work? We Consulted the Experts
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With so many skin-care products on the market, it's kind of impossible to keep track of all of them. Since I started really taking care of my skin, my skin-care routine has expanded from just a drugstore cleanser and moisturizer duo to a massive regimen that includes everything from eye cream to essences. Toners have always been a tricky product for me because, until recently, I wasn't entirely sure what they did; it seemed like the word "toner" was just used to describe any liquid skincare product that wasn't a cleanser, moisturizer, or serum.
My confusion isn't unfounded. Dr. Sejal Shah, a clinical dermatologist and consultant Beautyblender, told POPSUGAR, "Over the last few years, toners have undergone a metamorphosis. The older generation of toners were characterized by their extreme drying effect. But the newer generation of toners, influenced by Asian skin-care routines, are formulated to rebalance the skin after cleansing, prepare it for products that are applied afterwards, and even address a variety of issues."
I frequently use K-beauty-influenced toners that help balance and hydrate my skin as part of my regular routine, and after speaking with a number of dermatologists and other skin-care experts, I discovered that what I know as a toner is different than what they consider to be a "traditional" toner. They helped me understand the difference between the older and newer iterations of toners and also recommended some products that can help my skin. I know that I'll be a smarter skin-care shopper moving forward because of their advice, and I'm excited to continue experimenting with different products as my regimen evolves.