The skin should be toned after cleansing, either with a skin tonic or an Astringent Toner. An astringent tones the skin, refines the pores and reduces the oiliness of the skin. It is useful for oily skins, especially during the hot and humid season. For oily skin, apply an astringent after cleansing. It helps to complete the cleansing process, removing the last traces of dirt and impurities and also improves blood circulation to the skin surface. If an astringent is harsh on the skin, mix it with rose water in equal quantities. Keep in a bottle in the fridge. It can be most refreshing during summer.
Some natural ingredients have an astringent effect. This means that they reduce oiliness and close the pores. They are ideal for summer. Cucumber is a natural astringent. You can apply cucumber juice by itself on the face and wash it off with plain water after 15 minutes. You can also mix cucumber juice with a little rose water. This would make a good astringent toner. Apply it to the face and rinse off with plain water after 15 minutes.
Lemon juice also has an astringent effect, but it should not be applied by itself on the face. It is useful for oily skin. Mix rose water and lemon juice in equal quantities and apply to the face after cleansing. Wash off with plain water after 10 minutes.
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Grate apples and apply them to the face. This is said to have a toning effect. Wash it off after 20 minutes.
Green tea is a wonderful astringent toner. You can soak green tea leaves in hot water for half an hour. Cool and strain and use the liquid to tone the skin.
Banana And Apricot Pulp
Mashed banana and apricot pulp are natural astringents. They close the pores and tighten the skin. The best part is that they suit all skin types.
Tomato juice can also be applied to oily skin for an astringent effect. It also helps to lighten skin colour.
How To Tone The Skin
Make cotton wool pads of about 4” square in size. You can make many and keep them in a box for daily use, away from dust. You have to ensure complete hygiene and cleanliness. After cleansing the skin, soak the cotton wool pad with skin tonic and then wipe and pat the skin with it. This reduces oil, closes the pores and stimulates blood circulation. Then, stroke the skin gently with it, using outward and upward movement on the cheeks. Each movement should end at the temples. Apply gentle pressure at the temples. On the forehead, start from the centre and go outwards on each side, again ending at the temples. For the chin, use circular movements. Tone the neck too, going downwards from the chin. Then, tone around the eyes, using a very light touch.
Toning the skin after a hard day’s work will help to remove fatigue. You will feel refreshed and renewed.
Shahnaz Husain is a renowned beauty and wellness expert. She is the Founder, Chairperson, and Managing Director of The Shahnaz Husain Group.
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