“What is toning?” one might ask. It’s more cleaning! The most vital ingredient in a healthy skincare regimen is cleansing. Washing your face should always be followed with toning. Toning is simply using an astringent to remove any dirt that is left on your face after washing. Some astringents can be very harsh and can strip your skin of the natural oils that it produces. There are plenty astringents that have proven not to be harmful to the skin, such as witch hazel, rose water, aloe vera gel, green tea, apple cidar vinegar, and lemon juice. ACV can be a bit drying, so I wouldn’t recommend it for dry skin. However, the astringents listed are all phenomenal at attacking blemishes. I couldn’t possibly choose a favorite! Witch hazel and rose water are both very soothing dark spot aids. Aloe vera gel is typically stored in a refrigerator in between uses, which makes for a nice pick-me-up in the morning. Lemon juice can sometimes burn a little when using it on your face, so I would suggest using straight lemon juice to lighten areas other than your face. These astringents can be switched up within your skincare routine, alternating between morning and night or every other day. Use aloe vera gel in the morning to wake yourself up and rose water at night as a nice, calming cleanser before bed. A great way to make the most out of your green tea is to use the tea bags to lighten dark circles under your eyes and reduce puffiness. Steep two green tea bags in hot water, remove them and then refrigerate them. Once they’re cold, place the bags over your eyes for about 15 minutes to cease any traces of fatigue. Enjoy your delicious herbal tea afterwards. What a refreshing way to start your morning! Another great way to use these toners is to mix them! Since lemon juice can sometimes burn even though its citrus properties are great for brightening, you can dilute it with one part witch hazel and one part aloe vera. Keep this mixture refrigerated if you wish to try it. All of these astringents can be applied by pouring the solution on to a clean cotton ball or pad. Starting from the nose, swipe the toner outward across your face.