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What is a toner and why do you need one in your routine?

In theory, crafting the perfect skin care routine seems simple. You choose your products, stick to a regimen, and voila: You’re left with great skin. In reality, though, creating an effective skin care routine that’s simple enough to stick to can be a long process. 

First, you need to figure out what’s what. You may find yourself asking questions like: What’s a gel cleanser? What’s an exfoliating cleanser? Do I need a toner? Whether you Google each of these questions or dive into the depths of social media to find the answers, the truth is that one size does not fit all — and no single skin care routine is perfect for every person. It’s a much more unique-to-you process than some may think. In other words, the products and routines that work for others may not work for you.

 Personally, I’ve spent most of my 20s trying to figure out my ideal skin care routine. And in my years as a Fashion & Beauty Editor, I tried every product you can think of — and then some. Like many others, I was sure the blemishes of my teen years were behind me until I developed hormonal and cystic acne in my mid-20s. I struggled to find products that worked for me for many years — until I found toner. From that moment on, I was a believer. Now, at 30, I’ve consistently used toner in my routine for more than five years, and I’ve come to realize that it’s perhaps the single most important step in my routine. (Emphasis on my.) 

Most often used after cleansing and before moisturizing, toner is a water-based lotion or tonic that cleanses the skin and can even help shrink the appearance of pores. Think of it as taking care of the last remnants of makeup, oil, or dead skin after you wash your face. But that’s not all a toner is good for. Skincare experts from Byrdie report that toner also preps your skin and balances its PH before applying serums or moisturizers, making it that much more likely to absorb and respond to the products. 

While today’s toners are much gentler than products past, toners previously got a bad rap for stripping the skin of moisture. They were often an alcohol-based astringent, which does wonders for bacteria removal but leaves your skin feeling dry and tight (and not in a good way!).  If you’ve avoided toner because you’re worried about dry, cracked, peeling, or dull skin, think again. Today’s more gentle take on toner is all about leaving your skin as healthy-looking as possible — and that means hydration is key. 

If you’re new to toner and looking for an easy, lowest-maintenance option, consider Bigger Than Beauty® Skincare’s Moisture Flash Conditioning Mist. Formulated with ingredients like hyaluronic acid, sea buckthorn fruit oil, prickly pear extract, and vitamin E, this facial spray nourishes the skin while simultaneously minimizing the appearance of pores, and will leave your skin feeling hydrated from the inside out! Not to mention, it’s in mist form, which makes it an excellent choice for those seeking a low-maintenance routine. This means no more stocking up on cotton balls or rounds (the environment thanks you!). Instead, simply spray the product directly onto your face after cleansing and pat in with your hands. Pro tip: you can also use this product to cool off, rehydrate, and reset your skin after a long day. I particularly love it after a long, sweaty afternoon working in the garden or a particularly difficult workout at the gym. It’s the perfect thing to nourish and hydrate my skin without having to pull out a million different products or follow a dozen steps.


Ultimately, simplicity is what makes me commit to skin care products long-term. The easier a product is to use and incorporate into my day-to-day routine, the more likely I am to reach for it again and again. The more consistently I use a product, the more results I see and the better I feel. For me, the BTBS Moisture Flash Conditioning Mist is a perfect example of that kind of simplicity and efficacy. It’s easy to use, made with nourishing and effective ingredients, and might just give you the hydrated, healthy, luminous skin you’ve been looking for, too — no cotton balls or dry skin required. 

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