How to Use Witch Hazel Toner on Face – Everything You Need to Know

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Incorporating witch hazel toner correctly into your skincare routine has to do with using the right amount, the right frequency, as well as the right product. This article aims at enlightening you on how to use your witch hazel toner on your face correctly for skin improvement.

Witch hazel provides quite a number of benefits for the skin. It helps to remove traces of dirt, oil, and makeup that lingers on the skin even after washing your face with a cleanser. It also contains anti-inflammatory properties that help to soothe inflammation and reduce redness.

Witch hazel works to tighten the skin around the face by shrinking the pores to make your skin appear smooth and healthy. And, antioxidant properties also help to protect the skin against damage. The best of all is that—it helps to regulate oil production in the skin.

However, all these benefits can only be enjoyed when you use your witch hazel toner correctly. Read ahead to find out how to do that with a few steps. 

How to Use Witch Hazel Toner in Your Facial Routine

“Using your witch hazel toner on your face moderately is very important—to avoid not missing the benefits. Also, using too much can cause several side effects such as dryness of your skin, as well as a messed up skin defense line,” says Dr. Tsippora Shainhouse, a board-certified dermatologist.  

These reactions that come as a result of misuse cause your skin to be irritated and sensitive. “The most suitable way to use a witch hazel toner is by adding it to your routine. Simply use your toner after cleansing your face, then you can carry on with your routine,” says Dr. Debra Jaliman.

In summary, simply wash and rinse your face with a mild cleanser, then add a little witch hazel to a cotton ball or gauze pad.  Apply it gently on your face using the cotton ball and moisturize after to lock in hydration on your skin,” says Dr. Jaliman. Ahead is a detailed explanation. 

1. Wash Your Face Thoroughly

Every skincare routine begins with the cleansing of the face. This is to ensure that the face is free from any form of dirt before the application of skincare products begins. This will help your skincare products to gain access to your skin to work efficiently. 

To do this, splash some warm water on your face and gently rub on a face wash or facial cleanser. Rub it gently on your skin to remove dirt. After washing, rinse your face with cool, clean water. Pat your face dry with a soft, clean towel or cloth. 

While you do that, ensure that you do not scrub your skin too hard. Also, ensure that the cleanser you use for this step is a gentle one that does not irritate the skin. 

2. Do a Patch Test

Before incorporating the use of any product in your skincare routine, ensure that you check the list of ingredients to see if there’s anything you are allergic to in it. However, you can’t always be sure unless a patch test is conducted. 

Also, this step is important if you have sensitive skin. Apply a drop of the toner on the side of your jawline using a cotton ball. Wait for a few minutes to check for skin reactions. 

If your skin reacts harshly to the ingredients, you will see signs such as redness, irritation, or rashes on your skin. Once this happens, avoid using the toner on your face.

3. Apply Your Witch Hazel Toner Using a Cotton Ball

Take out your toner and soak the cotton ball or pad into it. Once you have done that, begin to apply the toner in the cotton ball or pad on your face. To do this, sweep the cotton ball or pad across your face. 

Ensure that you cover all the hidden areas such as your jawlines and hairlines. Focus more on the affected areas of your face when applying witch hazel toner. 

4. Apply Your Serum

If you have any serum to apply in your skincare routine, now is the right time to use it. Remember that witch hazel toner also works to make your skin permeable to absorb other products. 

Now apply your serum after toning your face, to nourish and feed your skin with nutrients that it needs to rejuvenate.

5. Always Moisturize After 

Most witch hazel toners contain alcohol—which is capable of drying out the skin and breaking down the skin’s protective barrier. Applying a moisturizer after using the toner will help to restore and seal in hydration on your skin.

This will not only help to restore your skin’s moisture to prevent dryness, but it will also help to strengthen your skin’s barrier.

6. Finish up With Sunscreen

Whether or not your skincare routine is one step or five steps, sunscreen is very important in a morning skincare routine. So to finish up the application process, ensure that you use a sunscreen of SPF 30 or higher on your skin. 

This will help to protect your skin from getting damaged by environmental oppressors such as the sun’s UV rays. You can skip this step if your moisturizer contains sunscreen and is labeled a broad-spectrum SPF.  

When to Use Witch Hazel Toner on the Face

Toners are meant to be used in every skincare routine after the first step, which is cleansing. The same applies to witch hazel toner when using it in your skincare routine. 

Use your facial toner after washing your face thoroughly with a gentle cleanser. This will help to restore the balance of your skin’s pH level. 

Is Witch Hazel Toner Good for Your Face?

Witch hazel itself is a natural ingredient that works to tackle several skin issues like irritation, acne, and so on. This makes a witch hazel toner a great addition to the skincare regimen. 

However, you need to understand that witch hazel toners are not created or formulated the same way. Using one that contains a high level of alcohol can be extremely drying and that can cause problems when used regularly. 

The best choice for you is an alcohol-free toner that works diligently on your skin to improve the appearance of your skin without making it dry.

How Often to Use Witch Hazel Toner on the Face

You can use the toner once or twice daily in your morning or evening(or both) skincare routine. If you are a newbie and have just started using it on your face, apply it once daily. 

Doing this for a while will help you to build a more frequent usage and use it without any irritation. After that, you can proceed to use it on your face twice daily. However, plants-based witch hazel toners or ones that don’t contain harsh ingredients such as alcohol. 

Can Witch Hazel Toner Help Acne?

A witch hazel toner helps with acne to reduce acne breakouts and inflammations on your skin. It does this by reducing the rate at which your sebaceous glands produce sebum (oil) to your skin. 

This results in a reduction in the size and appearance of acne breakouts. It also helps to reduce and soothe inflammations on the skin. Although witch hazel toner works for all skin types and several skin concerns, it is very powerful and effective for those with acne-prone skin.

How to Make a Witch Hazel Toner at Home

What you need: 

  • ¼ cup of witch hazel extract 
  • ⅛ cup of  apple cider vinegar 
  • 5 drops frankincense essential oil
  • 2½ drops tea tree essential oil
  • ⅛ cup of distilled water
  • 4 oz. amber glass bottle with cap


  • Open up the bottle and insert a small funnel.
  • Pour all the ingredients into the bottle.
  • Once done, close the bottle and shake it well.
  • Store the toner away from light and heat. 

How to use it:

  • Shake the bottle/container very well before using it on your skin. 
  • Use a cotton ball or pad for the application of the toner to your face and neck.
  • Follow the same instructions given earlier on how to use witch hazel toner on your face.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you use witch hazel toner on your face every day?

Yes, you can. You can apply witch hazel toner on your face every day in your skincare routine to improve the appearance of your skin.

However, to enjoy the benefits of using the toner on your skin every day without irritating your skin, you should opt for a witch hazel toner that does not contain alcohol.

Should you use witch hazel toner before or after moisturizing?

Always use your witch hazel toner on your skin before using moisturizer. Moisturizers should always come last in your routine, as this will help to seal in hydration in your skin.

If your skincare routine only involves a 3-step routine, start by washing your face with a facial cleanser and then move to use your toner on your face and finish up with a moisturizer.

Is witch hazel toner safe to use on your face?

Yes, it is. Witch hazel toner is safe to use on your face no matter your skin type. It will help to cleanse your face and reduce inflammation.

However, you need to be careful when choosing a witch hazel toner. Ensure that it doesn’t contain an ingredient that you are allergic to. Also, be sure to stay away from alcohol-based witch hazel toner—to prevent irritating your skin.


The proper usage of a witch hazel toner involves using the right amount, the right usage frequency, and also the product you choose. To enjoy the benefits of using a witch hazel toner on your face, you must learn to use it correctly. 

Never use too much of it, as it can dry up your skin. In addition, stay away from alcohol-based witch hazel toners. It can be extremely drying on sensitive and dry skin. Therefore, opt for one that doesn’t contain too much alcohol in it. Always remember to hydrate your skin.

Thanks for reading.

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