How To Make A Face Toner At Home

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One of the simplest homemade beauty recipes is making a face toner. This will tighten your skin as it closes the pores and removes any leftover traces of your cleanser. It’s both cooling and refreshing and should be the second step in your daily facial routine.

Most store-bought toners are alcohol-based and unfortunately, this can lead to irritation or drying of the skin, especially when it is used on sensitive or already partially dry skin. But worry not; as you can easily make a face toner at home using just natural ingredients that are kind and gentle to your skin.

diy face toner

The best part is that toner is extremely simple to make. Have a go at making one of the refreshing recipes shown below, or try your hand at the good old fashioned yet rejuvenating flower water (further down this page)!

So Why Should We Use A Toner?

Well apart from removing any leftover cleansing residue, it closes the pores which helps stop bacteria or any other unwanted impurities entering the skin. It’s a must use for people with oily skin and can even remove those unwanted chemicals and minerals that are found in our tap water.

Our skin has a natural PH balance of between 5 and 6. The alkaline in soaps and cleansers can disrupt this balance leaving the skin oily.

So in a nutshell, this face toner eliminates the dirt and grime, leaving balanced and clear skin which in turn will help all your other products work better.

How To Use This Toner

As I mentioned earlier this shouldn’t take more than a minute to do.

DIY Toners should always be used after cleansing but that doesn’t mean only after cleaning. All our skincare recipes are wonderfully refreshing and are great at any time, the spritz toners are particularly good on a hot summer’s day.

Be sure to shake the bottle well before using it to mix in the essential oils. It’s unlikely, but you don’t want undiluted essential oils on your face.

Apply a small amount of toner onto a cotton wool pad and wipe across the face in an upward sweeping motion. Pay special attention to those problem areas such as the crevices either side of the nose and the chin which often have traces of cleaner left.

Remember your homemade moisturizer and anti ageing serums will absorb much quicker after using a toner.

How To Make A Face Toner At Home

homemade toner for face

Notes before starting;

  • Xanthan gum gives a slight thickness to the toner so if you prefer a spray toner leave this out. If using Aloe vera gel rather than the liquid form you also don’t need to add the Xanthan.
  • Xanthan gum give’s the toner a lovely silky feeling and if you do include it I think you will be pleasantly surprised at how it glides easily across the face. But don’t use any more than 0.5g of it or you will end up with a gel rather than a toner. If you do end up with a gel, thin it out with a little water.
  • Bottles with screw, serum or flip-top disc caps are all good choices for a homemade skin toner. Spritz sprays are best kept in bottles with a fine spray cap. That way you can pop it in your handbag for a quick refreshing spritz. I used a 4 oz (100 ml) bottle with a simple disc cap, these caps retail at around 9c each which is cheap. A good tip would be to buy extra caps when buying bottles as the bottles can often be reused if wash and sterilized, just use a new cap each time.
  • All of the following recipes make 100g
  • Each recipe lasts 4-5 weeks without preservative, or 9 months with a preservative added

Sweet Orange Toner – for all skin types

Great refreshing pick me up. The Sweet orange and blossom water helps remove toxins from the skin and promotes collagen formation to help firm the skin.


ingredients for diy face toner


If you are not using the xanthan gum then you can simply mix all the ingredients together, and then pour into your chosen bottle. Once the toner is in the bottle (with the lid on) give it a good shake and enjoy.

Step 1. Pour the spring water into a heatproof container or jug, then sprinkle in the xanthan gum. If it begins to lump, squash the lumps against the side of your container in an attempt to disperse them.

To begin making a diy toner pour the spring water into a heatproof container or jug, then sprinkle in the xanthan gum.

Step 2. As the xanthan gum softens in the water, the lumps will dissolve eventually and disappear. If you find it’s taking too long for the lumps to dissolve standing it in bath temperature water can speed up the process. But don’t get too hung up on the fully dissolving the lumps, as it will continue softening and dissolving after being placed in the bottle.

Step 3. Place all the remaining ingredients into a separate container (including the preservative if using) and mix well.

Place all the remaining ingredients into a separate container and mix well.

Step 4. If you’ve warmed the xanthan gum water mix, allow it to cool before adding the ingredients from the other container to it, and then give the whole thing a good mix.

give the whole thing a good mix.

Step 5. The thickness of your homemade skin toner is a personal preference, as many people including myself quite like it a little on the gel side. But if it is too thick, add more spring or floral water (see recipe below) until you reach a consistency that you are happy with. Then pour the finished toner into the bottle.

pour the finished toner into the bottle.
diy toner for face


For a Great gift idea why not team it up with one of our homemade cleansers or moisturizers. I printed off a label from Everything Etsy and popped them into Wilton Party Bags (4 by 9.5-Inch, Clear, 50-Pack on amazon) then stuck a wooden handmade button on as a finishing touch.

You might want to add ‘Be sure to shake the bottle well before using’.

making diy toner for face step 5
homemade toner for face

Peppermint Splash – for acne-prone skin

Tea tree and lavender are both excellent at targeting spots, pimples, and infections. Their antiseptic qualities also have a wonderful uplifting effect. This recipe also makes an amazing foot cooling spray if you omit the xanthan gum.


  • 20g Spring water
  • 0.5g Xanthan gum (a little less is fine)
  • 5g Glycerine
  • 20g Aloe vera
  • 35g Tea tree water
  • 20g Peppermint water
  • 0.5g Preservative (optional)
  • 3 Drops tea tree essential oil
  • 3 Drops lavender essential oil
  • 4oz Bottle with disc cap or fine spray for spritz


To make this diy face toner use the same method shown above for the Sweet Orange Toner above.

Zesty Lemon – for oily skin

Apart from cleaning congested pores, the lemon water and oil are well known for their refreshing and antidepressant qualities whilst the Bergamot water will help soothe rashes. This is a very uplifting homemade toner so it’s particularly good made up as a spray.


  • 50g Lemon water
  • 30g Orange Blossom water
  • 0.5 Xanthan gum (a little less is fine)
  • 15g Aloe vera
  • 0.5g Preservative (optional)
  • 4 Drops lemon essential oil
  • 4oz Bottle with disc cap or fine spray for spritz


To make this toner use the same method shown above for the Sweet Orange Toner above.

Rejuvenating Toner – for mature skin

Carrot seed essential oil is one of the best oils for skin rejuvenation, but it does have a bit of an earthy smell which isn’t to everyone’s liking. The frankincense water will help mask some of the smell of the carrot seed oil, and as frankincense is a relaxing meditation oil it’s a great one to use before bed. Perhaps not the best toner to give as a homemade gift, but your skin will defiantly hydrate overnight.


  • 30g Spring water
  • 0.5 Xanthan gum (a little less is fine)
  • 5g Glycerine
  • 60g Frankincense water
  • 0.5g Preservative (optional)
  • 4 drops Frankincense essential oil
  • 1 drop Carrot seed essential oil
  • 4oz Bottle with disc cap or fine spray for spritz


To make this diy face toner use the same method shown above for the Sweet Orange Toner above.

More DIY Toner Recipes

A Homemade Toner For Face Made From Everyday Ingredients

astringent to reduce enlarged pores

This very quick astringent to reduce enlarged pores, in fact, it’s as easy as making a cup of tea and you’ll start to see a reduction in the openness of your pores almost immediately.

This astringent recipe is best stored in the refrigerator which helps give it a sharp contracting effect. The vinegar removes any bacteria and dirt from within the pores whilst the chamomile gently soothes the skin.

For best results, use each day after cleansing

What you will need:

  • 1 chamomile herbal tea bag
  • 8 fl oz (250ml) boiling water
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar


Making a homemade toner
  1. Pop the teabag into a heat proof jug or bowl then pour over the boiling water, cover and leave to cool.
  2. Once cool remove the tea bag and add the cider vinegar, then transfer the liquid into a clean jar or bottle.
  3. For best results, use each day after cleansing. Either moisten a cotton ball with the toner and wipe over the face or pour a small amount onto the palm of your hands and splash it over your face and pat dry with a towel.

Milky Facial Toner Recipe

Milky homemade facial toner

Anyone with dry, sensitive or sunburnt skin will love this milky homemade facial toner. Milk is very nourishing to the skin, and you can adapt this toner to suit your own individual skin type.

Use whole milk for dry to normal skin and semi-skimmed for oily skin.

What you will need:

  • 5 fl oz milk
  • 2 teaspoons dried herb or 2 tablespoons fresh herb or 1 herbal tea bag

Choose the right herb for your skin:

Normal skin;
Chamomile, calendula, dandelion, elderflower, fennel, lemon balm, parsley, rosemary
Oily skin; Horsetail, lady’s mantle, peppermint, sage, yarrow

Dry skin;
Calendula, elderflower, linden flowers, marshmallow

More info on the herbs below can all be found here on my organic herbs page.


Making a homemade facial toner
  1. Boil the milk, remove it from the heat then add the herbs, cover and leave until cool.
  2. Depending on which type of herb you have used, either remove the tea bag (giving it a quick squeeze first) or strain the milk. If you’ve used a very fine dried herb you may need to strain this through a piece of muslin.
  3. Transfer the homemade facial toner to a clean container; store it in the refrigerator and use within 5 days.

Flower Water Face Toner

Homemade Skin Toner

Toners were originally the by-products of essential oils distillation, rose and lavender being the most popular.

By making an infusion with herbs, and adding a few drops of essential oil you can easily create a refreshing DIY toner for your face, to suit your own skin.

What you will need:

  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) fresh herbs or 1teaspoon (5ml) dried herbs (see below)
  • 3 fl oz (75ml) boiling water
  • 1 drop of essential oil


  1. Make an herbal infusion by placing the herbs into a bowl and pouring the boiling water over them.
  2. Allow the infusion to cool, before straining.
  3. Add the essential oil and transfer into a sterile bottle.
  4. Store in the refrigerator and use within a month.
  5. Dampen a cotton ball with the flower water, and gently smooth over the face, giving extra attention to the nose and cheeks area.

Herbs And Oils For Flower Water Toner

More info on the herbs below can all be found here on my organic herbs page And the oils from here in the essential oil use chart

Dry skin:

Essential oils: – Camomile – neroli – rose – sandalwood
Herbal infusions: – Comfrey – camomile – calendula – marshmallow – rose

Normal skin:

Essential oils: – Geranium – lavender – rose
Herbal infusions: – Elderflower – calendula – marshmallow – rose

Oily skin:

Essential oils: – Cedarwood – lemon – orange – patchouli – vetiver
Herbal infusions: – Elderflower – lemon grass – witch hazel

Combination skin:

Essential oils: – Bergamot – geranium – lavender – ylang ylang
Herbal infusions: – Elderflower – lavender – rose

Problem skin:

Essential oils: – bergamot – grapefruit – lavender – tea tree
Herbal infusions: – Comfrey – elderflower – eucalyptus – calendula

Sensitive skin:

Essential oils: – Camomile – lavender – rose
Herbal infusions: – Camomile – comfrey – marshmallow

Mature skin:

Essential oils: – Lavender – neroli – rose
Herbal infusions: – Comfrey – calendula – marshmallow – rose

The Most Simple Facial Toner Ancient Beauty

To finish off, I thought I’d post this great yet simple little tip sent in by Althea from Anchorage. If you don’t want to make your own toner then here’s what you do, its the simplest thing.

Just purchase some Rose Water from the market. It’s used in middle eastern cooking as a flavoring, be sure it is the edible kind.

Put it in a fine mist spray bottle and mist your face after cleansing and before moisturizing.

Cleopatra did it and so did many other beauties through the ages. Try it and see for yourself. It’s a marvelous DIY toner for your face, refreshing and smells wonderful.


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