All summer long, I have waited for the weather to cool down. I love autumn foliage and enjoy wearing jackets and boots. I thoroughly appreciate everything with seasonal changes that this small window of wonderful time has to offer.
But this also means…winter is coming!
Before your skin fully recovers from sun damage in summer, the cold breeze brings dry air. For ladies with dry skin like me, this is the time to care for your skin and prepare for the “winter storm.”
I will share my favorite Korean toners for dry skin in this article. How can a skin toner make a difference in your skin? Doubt all you can, but never underestimate this essential primary step in your skincare routine. It removes dirt and impurities in pores after washing your face; it also creates an environment better to absorb active ingredients from the rest of skincare products.
So let’s start our conversation with the toners. More to come on other Best Korean Skincare Series for your glowing skin later.
Pssst…I want to let you know that I am writing this article based on my personal experience. I carefully selected only a handful of efficient and effective products that worked well for me after trying out ALL of them (and many more) in the past few years. These opinions are my own, 100% honest and non-sponsored. I may earn small commissions if you click to buy through affiliate links, though. (Thank YOU!!!)
Hey, I know you want naturally radiant glowing skin! Check out my other K-beauty articles, too.
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General Tips for Dry Skin
Some toners may contain alcohol as it helps your skin absorb more other ingredients. But note that alcohol can dry up or irritate the skin.
Avoid Long Hot Showers
Hot showers feel good, especially in winter. But avoid standing under hot water for too long as it washes away natural oils from your skin.
Avoid Too Much A/C and Heaters
Take the wisdom (and patience) from Korean celebrities who avoid running car heaters in a freezing cold winter. Why? Because both A/C and heaters can dry up the air. Dry skin means wrinkles!
Look for the Right Ingredients
Like all other skin types, the key is to find the right ingredients to address your skin conditions. For dry skin, look for ingredients such as hyaluronic acid, ceramides, panthenol, Allantoin, shea butter, propolis, honey and royal jelly.
Keep a Good Balance of Moisture and Oil
Your skin needs both oil and moisture. When a healthy balance of oil and water breaks, your skin can break out or cause dehydration or greasiness. It may mislead a person with dry skin to think their skin is oily, resulting in using the wrong products and making it worse. Or vice versa.
Best Korean Toner for Dry Skin
#1. Beplain Camomile pH Balance Toner
Beplain Chamomile pH Balance Toner is an excellent daily calming toner for dry skin. As its name suggests, it restores the ideal pH level (5.5) and provides long-lasting hydration. The calming toner, enriched with 80.6% camomile flower extract, helps regenerate and soothe the skin.
Another key ingredient is Centella Asiatica extract, a plant-derived agent often found in moisturizers. You may also see it in medicine treating psoriasis or burn wounds due to its calming and scar-healing properties.
After cleansing, gently tap your face with toners or sweep on a cotton pad. But for extra hydration, one trick many beauty experts suggest is to soak large cotton pads with this toner and place them on the cheek for 3-5 minutes. It works well in the morning when you need to boost hydration quickly on your dry, flaky face before putting on makeup.
Key Ingredients: Camomile Flower Extract (80.6%), Centella Asiatica Extract
Recommended for: Day & Night, All Seasons, Dry, Sensitive & Acne-prone Skin
#2. COSRX Propolis Synergy Toner
COSRX Propolis Synergy Toner might be a holy grail for the glowing and plump skin you have been dreaming of.
This golden toner is a deeply moisturizing toner formulated to give the skin a healthy glow. Each bottle is packed with a whopping 72.6% Propolis and 10% honey, ingredients known for their hydrating, anti-aging and anti-inflammatory benefits.
Its consistency is watery like most skin toners are, yet, it works like a lightweight serum. It absorbs quickly and keeps the skin thoroughly moisturized all day/night. This toner is suitable for all skin types and hypoallergenic, although I would avoid it if you are allergic to bee products. For optimal results, use COSRX Propolis Serum and Moisturizer afterward.
Key Ingredients: 72.6% Propolis Extract, 10% Honey Extract
Recommended for: Day & Night, All Seasons, All Skin Types
#3. Intermission Rest-up Serum Toner
If you have ever wished for a serum-like toner, your dream has come true with the Intermission Rest-Up Serum Toner. Its unique formula of serum and toner in one bottle works well for dry skin.
The 8-layered hyaluronic acid and low-molecular ceramide already scream deep hydration. But it goes even further. The Serum Toner contains 800,000 ppm of Chemocica. Instead of purified water, it uses five different cica complexes, including centella asiatica leaf extract, madecassoside, asiaticoside, asiatic acid and madecassic acid.
All that to say, this toner is made with the intention of delivering deep moisture to dry skin. And that is why I recommend it despite the high price tag. Besides the point, may I add I like its apothecary-like glass bottle, too? (I up-cycled it as a dry flower vase.)
Key Ingredients: Chemocica (800,000 ppm), Cica complexes, 8-layered Hyaluronic Acid, ceramide
Recommended for: Day & Night, All Seasons, Age 20+, Dry skin
#4. LANEIGE Cream Skin Toner & Moisturizer
LANEIGE is one of the most well-known K-beauty brands, so there is no further explanation. For dry skin, I recommend LANEIGE Cream Skin Toner & Moisturizer. It is a creamy, hydrating toner that works excellent for dehydrated, flaky skin.
This hybrid 2-in-1 formula deeply hydrates and helps retain the moisture inside the skin. According to the brand, white tea leaves are harvested in spring when amino acid content is the highest, which moisturizes and soothes skin.
Nonetheless, it does not replace any serum or moisturizer. I would take it as a highly moisturizing toner.
Key Ingredients: White Tea Leaf Water (Amino Acid),
Recommended for: Day & Night, All Seasons, All Skin Types
#5. Round Lab Soybean Nourishing Skin Toner
ROUND LAB Soybean Toner is a cream-type moisturizing and nourishing toner suitable for mature skin. If you take a closer look at the key ingredients, you will understand that it is more than delivering moisture to the skin:
- Black Bean Extract brightens up the skin complexion
- Ceramide keeps the skin hydrated
- Sodium Hyaluronate helps restore moisture while reducing wrinkles.
If you compare it with the brand’s other prominent lines, note that the Birch Juice Toner is a hydrating toner concentrated with hyaluronic acid, and the Dokdo Toner is a cleansing and exfoliating toner suitable for combination/oily skin. That’s my two cents.
Key Ingredients: Black Bean Extract (11,700 ppm), Ceramide, Sodium Hyaluronate
Recommended for: Day & Night, Age 30+, Dry & Mature skin
Traveling to the Winter Wonderland? See what I packed for Snow Country Japan >>
Speaking from my experience, switching out a toner will not significantly improve the dryness. Consider changing the entire skincare scheme for maximum benefits. And stay tuned for my following articles for the next steps.
To Your Glowing Skin!
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