Just like makeup, old favorites get discontinued and we look through new candidates. I used to love Shu Uemura’s Refreshing Lotion, but it was discontinued a couple of years ago. After I used up my last bottle, the audition process started again.
Although there are a couple of toners I really like from Japanese brands not available in the UK, when it comes to skincare products, I tend to use what is available locally. It makes shopping (and restocking) a little easier.
I think Lancôme‘s Tonique Douceur has been around ever since I started to be interested in cosmetics. I am not sure if the formula has ever changed, but when I tried samples of it in the past, I did like them. After comparing it with a couple of others just to be sure, I decided to settle on Tonique Douceur.
It is alcohol-free and has a light, soothing, and refreshing feel. (I don’t really like toners with a serum-y texture or those that leave a slippery film on the skin.) I find that it eases up the mild redness of my skin and helps the skin look clearer and more transparent.
Also, the ingredient list is shorter than those of a lot of other toners I have come across. For people with sensitive skin, the fewer ingredients applied on the skin, the better.
After water and glycerin, rosa centifolia flower (rose hip) water is third on the ingredient list. According to Paula Begoun’s Cosmetics Ingredient Dictionary, rose hip has antioxidant properties. It is a pity that the toner is packaged in a transparent toner. Otherwise the antioxidant properties would last longer.
I usually don’t use cotton balls or cotton pads when applying a toner. I dispense 4 or 5 drops of a toner, spread them across my palms, and gently pat the toner onto the skin. (I put Tonique Douceur in another bottle with a pump dispenser so I don’t accidentally pour too much out.) During the application, I also like to cover my cheeks and eyes with my palms and do some deep breathing. I find it very calming.
Overall this is a toner that really suits my slightly sensitive skin, and the fact that I don’t use cotton balls/pads also makes a 200ml bottle go a long way.
(Please note that Tonique Douceur contains fragrance and preservatives. Do make sure you read through the ingredient list if you have relevant concerns.)
Other steps of my skincare routine: