When curating a men’s skincare routine, it can be easy to overlook toner. Facial cleansers remove dirt and oil, and moisturizers add hydration—so it’s reasonable to assume that toner, which can supplement both steps, is more of an extra than a necessity. But we’d argue the opposite is true: No routine is complete without an effective face toner for men, one that’s suited for your skin type and unique concerns.
Ahead, you’ll discover the basics of what face toner is for and how to use it. We’ll also introduce you to seven Kiehl’s toners formulated for men’s skin. Whether you have dry skin, oily skin, or fall somewhere in the middle, we have a toner for men that’ll round out your routine and get you one step closer to even, healthy-looking skin. Read on to find your match.
What Is Toner and What Does It Do?
Broadly speaking, toners are liquid skincare treatments designed to be applied immediately after cleansing the skin. They help remove excess dirt and oil left behind after cleansing and assist in preparing your skin for the rest of your routine. Depending on the formula, toners can also help address specific skin concerns, such as enlarged pores.
7 Kiehl’s Toners For Men’s Skin
To reap the benefits of toner, it’s critical to choose one that’s formulated specifically for your skin type. Keep reading to discover seven of our best toners for men’s skin.
For All Men’s Skin Types: Ultra Facial Toner
If you’ve never used toner before, dip your toes in with a mild formula, like Ultra Facial Toner. This alcohol-free toner with olive-derived squalane and avocado oil gently removes impurities left behind after cleansing—without stripping the skin’s natural moisture barrier. It also helps hydrate and soothe the skin.
We recommend applying this classic toner with a clean cotton round. Swipe the pH-balanced formula over your face, avoiding the eye area, and allow the liquid to soak in for a minute or two before continuing your skincare routine.
For After Shaving: Facial Fuel Energizing Tonic
After shaving, many men use an aftershave liquid or lotion to help soothe the skin. But what you may not know is that a gentle toner for men’s skin can also care for your face post-shave. To streamline your routine, swap out your go-to aftershave for Facial Fuel Energizing Tonic For Men. This refreshing face toner for men, made with caffeine and vitamin C, helps comfort the skin after shaving. The invigorating formula also visibly reduces the signs of fatigue. It’s suitable for all skin types and can be used daily after cleansing or shaving your face to help balance and refresh the skin.
Kiehl’s Expert Tip: If you always use aftershave to deal with razor burn or ingrown hairs, you may also benefit from making some tweaks to your grooming routine. Learn how to shave sans irritation in our article How To Avoid Razor Bumps And Still Get a Close Shave: 6 Top Tips.
For Men With Oily Skin: Ultra Facial Oil-Free Toner
While oily skin isn’t exclusively a men’s skin concern, men do tend to be prone to oiliness and associated concerns, like shiny-looking skin. Toner can help remove excess sebum left behind after cleansing, giving oily skin a more balanced appearance.
Try Ultra Facial Oil-Free Toner, a mild, oil-free toning liquid for normal and oily skin types. The pH-balanced formula removes impurities without over-drying or your stripping skin’s natural moisture barrier. It’s dermatologist-tested for gentleness and can be used morning and night to promote fresh, healthy-looking skin.
For Men With Combination Skin: Calendula Herbal-Extract Toner
For skin with both dry and oily areas—otherwise known as ‘combination skin’—look for a gentle, non-drying facial toner, like our cult-classic Calendula Herbal-Extract Toner. This Kiehl’s favorite, first launched in the 1960s, contains calendula extract and whole calendula petals. It helps cleanse the skin without stripping its natural moisture barrier, allowing for a soothed, fresh feel. Use a cotton pad to swipe this gentle formula over your face and neck, avoiding the skin directly around your eyes.
For Men With Acne-Prone Skin: Blue Astringent Herbal Lotion
Nearly everyone experiences some degree of acne at one point or another in their lives, but for those with acne-prone skin, breakouts can be frequent and may persist well into adulthood. To help keep breakouts under control, reach for a toner formulated for oily or acne-prone skin, like Blue Astringent Herbal Lotion. This unique toner with menthol and camphor helps balance and soothe problem areas. It can be used both as an all-over daily facial toner and as a spot treatment for blemish-prone areas. For men, it’s also an effective (and refreshing) aftershave.
For Men With Dry Skin: Cucumber Herbal Alcohol-Free Toner
It’d be easy to assume men with oily skin are less likely to experience dryness. However, studies show the opposite is true: Women, on average, tend to have more hydrated skin than their male counterparts. Experts postulate that guys with oily skin types may neglect proper skincare in a (misguided) attempt to avoid adding to their oiliness. Ultimately, this leaves the skin vulnerable to dehydration. Additionally, certain external factors, like steamy showers or cold winter air, can cause dryness—even if you have naturally oily skin.
If your skin feels dry, help soothe and hydrate it with a mild, non-stripping toner, like Cucumber Herbal Alcohol-Free Toner. This ultra-gentle toner for men and women is made with cucumber extract and allantoin, an herbal compound known for its calming properties. The refreshing formula helps balance parched areas to promote softer-feeling skin. It’s suitable for dry and sensitive skin types and can be used daily after cleansing.
For Men With Dull Skin: Daily Refining Milk Peel Toner
Dull-looking skin is a common skin concern that tends to become more obvious with age. To help refine the skin and diminish the appearance of dullness, use Milk-Peel Gentle Exfoliating Toner. This unique toner contains lipo-hydroxy acid, almond milk, and a blend of skin-friendly emollients. It helps dissolve dead cells stuck on the skin’s surface and restore its natural moisture barrier to promote a smoother, brighter appearance. Keep in mind that lipo-hydroxy acid can increase photosensitivity. To keep your skin protected from the sun’s damaging rays, finish your routine with a broad-spectrum sunscreen.