How To Apply Toner On Face

How To Apply Toner On Face

This is an article on how to apply toner on your face.

When I first got into skincare, one of the first things I looked into was toner. It was one of those basic skincare products I decided to add or change up along with my daily cleanser. I went through about three different toners before I got to and settled on my current favorite toner.

And though I already have a staple toner in my skincare routine specific for my skin type, I still find myself researching and reading about other toner products. Because that’s the thing – skincare is an endless cycle of learning and changing up your routine, for me at least. Products can work one day and then stop working the next.

It’s also a process of continuous learning – how and when to apply certain products and in what order skincare products should be used and applied.

If you’re wondering how to apply toner to your face the right and proper way, well you’re in luck because I’ve got you covered right below!

What is Toner?

Before moving on to the whys and hows of toner, let’s first discuss what toner is.

*Spoiler alert – it’s not just fancy water*

Toners are water-based skincare products that go on skin right after your cleansing stage. It looks and acts like water but it’s not water and is way more than that.

Toners are often hydrating and soothing while also acting as a pH-balancing skincare step post-cleansing.

Traditionally, toners were frowned upon as they are drying due to the high alcohol content, which was also the very reason why it was famous among those with acne-prone and oily skin types. But recent innovations are the total opposite, formula-wise.

To this day, many doubt its use and if it’s a necessity in any skincare routine.

To help you decide for yourself, we have below the benefits toner has to offer!

Why You Should Use Toner

Many believe that toners are unnecessary. The truth is, adding a toner to your skincare routine leads to so many benefits your skin will only thank you for.

Toners clean what cleansers leave on skin. It’s able to get rid of stubborn dirt, excess oil, makeup, and even dead skin cells your cleanser isn’t able to remove during the cleansing stage.

There are also toners formulated to exfoliate skin and promote skin cell turnover. This renews and rejuvenates skin so it’s brighter, cleaner, and feels better than ever.

Unlike traditional toners that were filled with alcohol therefore drying, today’s toners are actually hydrating. With the right moisturizing ingredients, toner can leave skin feeling hydrated and moisturized.

And lastly, toners are available in a variety of formulas that address specific skin concerns. Whether you’re concerned about dryness, oiliness, acne, or sensitive skin, there is a toner out there for you that can provide relief.

Who should use toner?

Anyone can use toner, regardless of people’s skin types. Whether you have dry skin, oily skin, combination skin, or sensitive skin, a facial toner has an array of skin benefits for anyone. If you have a particular skin concern, a skin toner for that specific issue would be of big help in your skincare journey.

Toner Ingredients to Look For: For Dry Skin, Oily Skin, Sensitive Skin, and Acne-Prone Skin

With growing popularity, toners have flooded the skincare market. If you’re just starting your skincare journey or have very little knowledge about toners or skincare in general, it can often be confusing to determine which ones will do your skin justice.

To make sure you choose the best toner for your skin type and your skin concerns, we have below some of the best ingredients you might want to keep an eye out for.

  • Tea tree oil has antibacterial properties often linked with fighting acne and excess sebum production.
  • Glycerin is a moisturizing ingredient that draws water and moisture to the surface of skin.
  • Rosewater naturally hydrates, reduces redness, and soothes irritated acne-prone skin.
  • Aloe vera helps moisturize skin and has skin-healing properties.
  • Niacinamide has anti-inflammatory properties that help reduce mild to moderate acne.
  • Chamomile aids in healing and soothes sensitive skin.

How to Apply Toner on Face

Using a toner is pretty much straightforward but there’s always been discussions on how to properly apply it, as with all other skincare components.

We’re here to settle it for once and for all.

1. Cleanser then toner

The very first step of any skincare routine is cleansing. Go ahead and wash and cleanse your face with your favorite cleanser. Make sure to wash off the dirt and makeup off of your face.

After washing off the cleanser, it’s time for toner.

2. Before serums and moisturizers

Because toners give skin that extra round of cleaning to remove any left behind oil and dirt, you apply toner before serum and moisturizers, and that includes eye creams too.

After going in with your toner, the skin will be more than ready to absorb the rest of your skincare products for the best results.

3. Spritz and spray

One way to use and apply toner is by spraying and spritzing it directly on your face. This method applies when your toner is packaged in a spray bottle.

After cleansing and washing your face, get your toner in a spray bottle out and directly spritz it on your face. Just give it a light spritz to avoid excess liquid running down your face. You can also spritz the toner again after letting the first round dry on your face first. This will give your skin an extra boost of moisture and hydration.

After it has dried on your face, go ahead and apply the rest of your skincare routine.

4. Use cotton pads

Another toner application method you can do is to use cotton pads or cotton balls. You can do this whether you have a spray bottle toner or with a regular bottle toner.

What you would need to do is wet the cotton pad or cotton ball with toner. Make sure it’s not soaking wet and just damp enough. Gently wipe the now moist cotton pad or ball across your face and contours. Do it in an upward and outward direction starting from the center of your face. Do this gently and never rub or drag harshly. Avoid the lips and the delicate eye area as much as you can.

Sweep the moist cotton pad or ball across your neck and chest as well. These areas also accumulate dirt, oils, and impurities so make sure to include them in both the cleansing and toning stage.

After this application, go ahead with the rest of your skincare routine.

5. Palms if you’re being eco-friendly

If you want to eliminate the use of cotton altogether but also don’t want to spritz toner directly on your face, you can put some on your hands and pat it on your face.

This method makes sure that the toner gets in all parts of your face. One thing to keep in mind when applying toner like this is to do it with sure clean hands. You don’t want any dirt going into your face and under the rest of your skincare products.

After this, go on ahead with the rest of your skincare routine.

Dos and Don’ts of Toner: Other Tips and Tricks on How to Use Toner

Though toner has the ability to clean away any leftover dirt, oils, and impurities on your face, you should never use it as a cleanser replacement! Toners are not meant to clean the way and as effectively as a cleanser. Always go in with your cleanser first before your toner.

Apply toner gently across the face. Don’t be too abrasive when applying toner, especially with a cotton pad or cotton ball. This can only lead to premature fine lines and wrinkles.

When applying toner, include your neck, decolletage, and neck area. These areas also accumulate dirt, oils, and impurities so always include them in your cleansing and toning stage.

When to apply toner

Toner is best used and applied everyday, twice a day. Use toner in the morning as part of your AM skincare routine before you apply your makeup and at night as part of your PM skincare routine before you go to bed.

It’s best to apply toner immediately after washing and cleansing your face to balance, soothe, and remove any remaining impurities and leftover residue.


Toners are a great addition to anyone’s skincare routine. Whether you have dry, oily, combination, or acne-prone skin, there is for sure a toner right for you and your skin concerns.

Toners offer a wide array of skin benefits. It balances, hydrates, rejuvenates, soothes, and leaves skin feeling better all over. No matter your skin type or skin concern, a toner would be a big help in your skincare journey.

There are three ways you can apply toner. If you have a spray bottle toner, you can spritz it directly on your face. Spray just a little to prevent excess liquid running down your face.

Whether you have a spray bottle or regular bottle for your toner, you can also use cotton pads or cotton balls. Just wet it with your toner and swipe across your face. Remember to be gentle and not too aggressive.

And lastly, you can pour some toner on your palms and pat it on your face. This is a great way to make sure the product gets all over your face.

Remember, it should be cleanser, then toner before your serums and creams. Also include in your toning stage the neck, decolletage, and chest area. These areas also accumulate dirt, oils, and impurities throughout the day so always include them in both the cleansing and toning stages of your routine.

And that was our guide on how to apply toner on your face! Cheers to your happy and healthy skin!