How to choose a facial tonic

  • Kind
  • Purpose
  • Action means
  • Main Components
  • Peculiarities
  • Classification
  • Packing and volume


Tonic is a cosmetic product of a liquid consistency, designed to tone the skin, maintain water and normalize the pH balance. It is used at the final stage of skin cleansing — to remove makeup residues and impurities after washing. It has a refreshing effect, tightens pores and helps prepare the skin for the application of serum or cream.

Toner — differs from tonic in gel-like texture and purpose. Toner is designed to instantly moisturize the skin after washing. Many toners have a mattifying and exfoliating effect. If the tonic belongs to European cosmetics, then the toner is a product of Korean cosmetics.

Lotion — provides deep cleansing of the skin from impurities, residues of cosmetics, excess fat. Prepares the skin for the application of a moisturizing or nourishing cream. Apply after removing make-up with micellar water. Alcoholic formulations cleanse, alcohol-free — act similarly to tonics. The lotion works well in tandem with a tonic: first, skin cleansing, then toning.

Hydrolat (flower water) — a natural tonic that does not contain alcohol, fragrances, preservatives and other impurities. It is a by-product of essential oil production. The hydrolat is characterized by a tonic, nourishing and moisturizing effect, restores the pH level, enhances the effect of cosmetics that are applied immediately after its use.

Mist — unlike other face products, it has a finely dispersed consistency (spray) and is applied directly to the face without using a cotton pad. Easy to use, has a moisturizing, cooling and refreshing effect. Helps to set makeup or remove unwanted matte effect after powder or foundation. Sometimes it can play the role of a tonic.

Other types of facial skin care products have special properties:

  • tonic lotion — a lotion that has a tonic effect;
  • toner-essence — quickly absorbed, has a nourishing and moisturizing effect;
  • peeling toner — intensively moisturizes and exfoliates dead skin cells;
  • toner-booster — gives a moisturizing effect, enhances the effect of cosmetics that are applied after using the booster;
  • toner-mist — provides good hydration and is easy to apply on the face.


Most tonics and other facial skin care products are designed for women. But there are also products that can be used by men (unisex).

Skin type and condition

Many tonics are suitable for all skin types, but there are also special products.

For oily – tonics with a matting and sebum-regulating effect are recommended. It is desirable that zinc, salicylic acid, camphor, extracts of algae, green tea and calendula be present in the formula of such products.

For combined — optimal means with a balanced composition. Such products care for oily skin in the chin, nose and forehead and dry skin in the cheek area. Contains glycerin, allantoin, salicylic acid, zinc, extracts of witch hazel and cornflower.

For normal — Cosmetics that provide comprehensive care are recommended. Such cosmetics refreshes and tones the skin. The composition of such products contains thermal water, extracts of elderberry, aloe, rose, chamomile and dioscorea, as well as hyaluronic acid.

For dry — Moisturizers are suitable. The composition of such products includes extracts of rose, aloe and algae, hyaluronic acid, glycerin, silk proteins.

For sensitive — optimal tonics that have a calming effect. This cosmetics contains extracts of rose, chamomile, cornflower, cucumber, linden. You should not buy products with fragrances — such components irritate sensitive skin.

For problematic — recommended exfoliating, soothing and astringent cosmetics with zinc, salicylic and citric acid, tea tree and rose oils.

For the fading — means with a lifting effect are suitable. This product contains glycolic and hyaluronic acid, vitamins E and C, panthenol, collagen, seaweed extracts.

For dull and tired, tonics are relevant, the formula of which includes salicylic acid, rosehip, rose, lemon, cucumber extracts.


Most tonics and other facial skin care products are intended for girls over 18 years old (18+). Women 30+ choose products with an anti-aging effect, tonics with a lifting effect are suitable for skin 35+.

Action means

Mattifying – absorbs excess fat and moisture, maintains natural water balance, tightens pores. Mattifying products are effective against acne and pimples.

soothing — relieves inflammation, redness and irritation, has a softening effect.

Tonic — enhances skin tone, makes it more elastic. Toning cosmetics gives the skin a healthy and fresh look.

Moisturizer — saturates the skin with moisture and retains it, maintains water balance. Moisturizers eliminate flaking and dryness.

Anti-aging — stimulates skin renewal, smoothes wrinkles, tightens the oval of the face. In addition, tonics with anti-aging effect have moisturizing and tonic properties.

refreshing — gives the skin a feeling of freshness. Such tonics are especially useful in the summer.

Whitening – resists hyperpigmentation, brightens the skin of the face and evens out its tone.

Cleansing – Effectively removes impurities and blackheads.

Exfoliating — removes dead skin cells and thereby makes it smoother. Exfoliating toners prevent clogging of pores, which is important for people with oily skin.

Lifting — makes the skin more dense and elastic. Cosmetics with a lifting effect evens out the skin texture, smoothes fine wrinkles.

Narrowing of pores – reduces their size and thus prevents contamination. These products contain alcohol and are suitable for people with oily skin.

Protective — protects the skin from the negative effects of the environment and dehydration.

restorative — accelerates the regeneration of skin cells, normalizes fat and water balance.

Main Components

Properties of the main components that are part of tonics and other face care products:

  • glycerin — intensively moisturizes the skin and prevents the rapid evaporation of moisture;
  • allantoin — accelerates the regeneration and healing of the skin, eliminates irritation and inflammation;
  • panthenol — promotes tissue repair, soothes and moisturizes;
  • zinc — has a matting effect, fights fat content, reduces black spots, eliminates inflammation;
  • calendula extract — characterized by anti-inflammatory, soothing, bactericidal effect;
  • witch hazel extract — has an anti-inflammatory effect, normalizes the function of the sebaceous glands, tightens pores;
  • chamomile extract — soothes, fights inflammation;
  • rosehip extract — tones the skin;
  • thermal water — nourishes and soothes, normalizes water balance, strengthens the barrier function of the skin;
  • aloe — has a moisturizing, soothing, softening and regenerating effect;
  • hyaluronic acid — intensively moisturizes the skin;
  • salicylic acid — normalizes the function of the sebaceous glands, removes dead skin cells;
  • alcohol — has an antibacterial effect and stabilizes the formula of the product, useful for very oily skin;
  • rose extract — has an antibacterial, softening, rejuvenating and moisturizing effect, reduces pores;
  • cucumber extract — nourishes and moisturizes;
  • lemon extract — whitens and cleanses the skin;
  • green tea extract — tones and moisturizes the skin, slows down the aging process, tightens pores, protects against the harmful effects of UV rays;
  • snail mucin — improves the condition of damaged and dry skin, prevents aging, reduces the depth and number of wrinkles.


Hypoallergenic — these tonics do not contain components that can cause allergies.

natural — such products are made on the basis of natural raw materials. Does not contain parabens, fragrances, dyes and other synthetic additives.

organic — These tonics are made from raw materials grown in environmentally friendly conditions (including without the use of pesticides and chemicals). Like natural products, organic cosmetics do not contain synthetic substances. These tonics are expensive.

Without parabens — such substances can cause allergic reactions and malignant tumors.

Alcohol free — such a component dries and irritates the skin, disrupts its barrier function. Alcohol-free tonics are recommended for women with sensitive and dry skin.

Without dyes, fragrances — These components can cause allergies.

Without mineral oil — such a substance can disrupt the metabolic processes in the skin and make it difficult to «breathe».

We are sulfated — these components accelerate skin aging, provoke irritation and dryness. According to some reports, sulfates are the cause of cancer.

Silicone free — such substances form a thick film that prevents the skin from “breathing” and makes it difficult for the penetration of beneficial substances.

Not tested on animals – This facial skin care product has not been tested on animals. When testing cosmetics and household chemicals, animals experience severe pain and even die. In the EU countries there is a ban on such testing.


Mass market — budget tonics addressed to a wide range of consumers. In such products, the concentration of natural ingredients is minimized.

middle market — tonics of the middle class. They differ from mass products in a higher percentage of natural ingredients. Accordingly, their price increases.

Pharmacy (medical) — the formula of these tonics includes medicinal ingredients that have a therapeutic effect. Pharmacy tonics fight acne, blackheads, rosacea, black spots, age spots. These products are hypoallergenic.

Professional (salon) — These tonics contain components that are more active on the skin than mass-market or middle-market products. Accordingly, the effectiveness of such funds is higher, which is reflected in their price.

Packing and volume

Tonics and other facial skin care products are sold in bottles, often equipped with a sprayer or dispenser. These devices make the consumption of cosmetics more economical, and also facilitate its application. The average volume of a vial is 200-250 ml.

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