Think of a toner in your skincare routine like you would a primer in your makeup routine: You don't necessarily need one, but if you choose the right one, you're setting your skin up for success. Because toners tend to have a very thin consistency, they can penetrate deeper into the layers of your skin than other products might be able to, delivering a host of some good-good ingredients way down under. However, it's important to be discerning in your choice of toners, as the intensity or ingredients of the product might irritate your skin, instead of helping it. That's where these affordable, hydrating toners for dry skin come in.
Even after you wash your face, your skin might still cling on to dirt and other residue you don't want. This is another instance in which toner comes in. And beyond getting rid of all the remnants of the day, toners can serve your skin by balancing oil product or prepping it for your thicker products. My gut says that once you get started with a toner you love, you'll find it's truly a can't-skip step.
Because poring over ingredient lists can feel, well, overwhelming and above your pay grade, you can start by trying out one of these amazing hydrating toners for dry skin below. They'll pack all the cleansing power that you'd expect from a toner, while still leaving your skin feeling moisturized and plump.
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Made without alcohol and designed to balance your skin's natural pH, Murad's Hydrating Toner ($36, Murad) is a godsend for those with dry skin. Even better, the product comes in a spray bottle, meaning you don't even have to mess with cotton rounds.
Typology's Hydrating Toner ($24, Typology) is made with hyaluronic acid and aloe vera to rehydrate your skin after washing and remove any mineral residue left from your tap water. This toner works for all skin types, but was formulated with dry skin in mind.
With 4.9 stars out five in reviews on its website, Avene's Gentle Toning Lotion ($20, Avene) comes highly recommended. "My pores look much smaller within minutes of application and skin looks flawless," one reviewer wrote. "This toner brings the perfect balance to my skin. I don't put any moisturizer on after using this toner or makeup; I don't need it."
Cult-favorite skin care brand Mario Badescu has its own solution to dry skin. The brand's Aloe Vera Toner ($15, Mario Badescu) is alcohol-free, so it won't burn, and promises a soothing, non-drying finish.
Filled with oat milk, colloidal oatmeal, honey, and hyaluronic acid, First Aid Beauty's Hydrating Toner ($22, First Aid Beauty) is formulated with everything you need for soothing dry, irritated, inflamed skin. It reduces redness and is a great priming step for your subsequent serums and moisturizers.
If you're still worried about some of these toners being too much for your skin, Kiehl's Cucumber Toner ($20, Kiehl's) is a super mild option. It's got a paraben-free, fragrance-free, non-drying formula that has the gentle astringent effect you want from your toner, but it's still suitable for sensitive skin.
Rather than the water-y, thin texture you're used to from most toners, Paula's Choice Calming Toner ($21, Paula's Choice) has a creamy, rich consistency that feels like a cool drink of water for thirsty skin. The toner is so gentle, you can even use it on eczema-prone skin.
Vitamin E is a skin care super ingredient. It's an antioxidant that bolsters your skin's defense against a range of aggressors, which helps you avoid blemishes down the line, as well as helps your skin with moisture retention. If you want to try out its heralded effects, shop The Body Shop's Vitamin E Hydrating Toner ($15, The Body Shop).
Nothing will wake both you and your skin up the way Glow Recipe's citrus-y Watermelon Glow Toner ($34, Sephora) will. The yummy-smelling product contains all natural ingredients and will leave your skin absolutely luminous, thanks to a very, very gentle exfoliation.