Kiehl’s Calendula Toner

Kiehl’s Calendula Toner

kiehl's herbal extract calendula toner alcohol free skincare review swatch

Since I love most Kiehl’s products I try, I thought I would give one of their cult products a whirl and decided to try the infamous Calendula toner. I love a good toner, but they can be too astringent and harmful for the skin. That is why, this seemed promising as it boasts to be alcohol free and that is usually an important irritant in skincare products. I have now pretty much used up this entire bottle, so I have a good sense of what this product does.

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Best Toners for Sensitive Skin

Best Toners for Sensitive Skin

best toners for sensitive skin skincare kiehls garnier kruidvat the body shop lush

A skincare item that I don’t hear many people talking about are toners. I have been using toners for years: they round off your cleansing routine and prepare the skin for the skincare to go on top. Toners have a bad rep as they can be stripping on the skin, but I have found a few that my sensitive skin loves. These do not strip, yet still make sure your skin is as clean as it can be before moving on to the next step.

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Lush Breath of Fresh Air

Lush Breath of Fresh Air

A toner is a regular part of my skincare routine. In terms of skincare products that I have used consistently for years, then toner was one of the first items that made a very regular appearance. I have tried a few over the years, with some being more successful than others. How will Lush’ Breath of Fresh Air toner water fair?lush breath of fresh air skincare toner review swatch

Lush Breath of Fresh Air Toner Water

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Pixi Glow Tonic

Pixi Glow Tonic

A cult skincare favorite that I had yet to try? The Pixi Exfoliating Glow Tonic. Many fellow bloggers rave about this stuff, but with my sensitive, dehydrated skin I wasn’t sure this would be my cup of tea. But after successfully using The Balm’s Time Balm Skin Clarifier in 2016, I decided to give this a try come 2017. I’ve been using this toner for weeks now so a good moment to share my thoughts with you.

pixi exfoliating glow tonic

Pixi Glow Tonic with Aloe Vera & Ginseng

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The Body Shop Aloe Vera skin care

The Body Shop Aloe Vera skin care

Helloow! I’m back after a busy weekend filled with social gatherings and lots and lots of me time. Especially the latter was something I desperately needed so I didn’t have the energy to post anything over the weekend. But today is Monday: a new day, a new week, so let’s get started!

I have sensitive skin and I went into TBS after having tried many different cleansers and toners from the drug store. All to no avail: anti zit stuff gave me dry patches, stuff for dry skin made me break out or it did both at the same time. I went through it all: itches, rashes, redness, burning sensations, you name it. I went into TBS quite desperate and ready to give up hope. The lady in the shop was very nice, heard me out and told me I’d most likely have sensitive skin (no one had been that savvy yet up until that point) and recommended the Aloe Vera line. The range is fragrance, color, alcohol and preservative free, meaning it has as little in it as possible. That, to me, sounded great. I tried it, loved it and have been using it ever since. I’m confident I’ve been using this range of products for more than 5 years now. My two favorite products in the line: the calming toner and calming facial cleanser.

The Body Shop: Aloe Calming toner & facial cleanser

What I love about these two products is that they are great at doing what they are supposed to be doing: cleaning your face. Yet, at the same time they do not irritate your skinĀ  or leave it feeling dry or tight. These products are very gentle and have even been recommended by Dutch dermatologist Jetstke Ultee. Moreover, some of the ingredients (the Aloe Vera for one) are Fair Trade. If you have sensitive skin, this is definitely worth a try.

Let’s have a look at the two products. First up: the cleanser.

TBS Aloe Vera calming facial cleanser

A thick white substance that is fairly gloopy comes out of the bottle. Don’t be fooled by however much you think is left in the bottle: this stuff lasts you a long long time. Whenever I think my bottle is nearly done I still manage to squeeze out enough for it to last a good few months. Just make sure you shake it up well enough and it will keep coming out. And that is the only dislike I have about this product: the packaging. You cannot see how much is left because the bottle is opaque, but take it from me: it goes along way.

What I like about it is how you dispense the product: through a little nozzle which is hygienic and doesn’t give you too much product. The texture of the product is rather thick, but feels very nice on the skin. TBS claims it feels refreshing and I think it does. It also has a nice neutral smell. Plus as you can see from the list of ingredients: Aloe Vera is very clearly part of this product as it’s second on the list.

Cleanser ingredients:

Aqua (Water) (Solvent/Diluent), Aloe barbadensis (Aloe Vera Gel) (Skin Soothing Agent), Pentylene Glycol (Solvent), Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride (Emollient), Elaeis guineensis (Skin-Conditioning Agent), Butylene Glycol (Humectant), Cyclomethicone (Emollient), Glycerin (Humectant), Glyceryl Stearate Citrate (Skin-Conditioning Agent), Cetearyl Alcohol (Emulsifier), Sorbitol (Humectant), Glyceryl Stearate (Emulsifier), Orbignya oleifera (Babassu Oil) (Emollient), Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer (Stabiliser/Viscosity Modifier), Xanthan Gum (Viscosity Modifier), Disodium Phosphate (pH Buffer).

I personally use this cleanser to take off my make up by putting some on a cotton wipe and wipe my make up off my face like that. I don’t use it as a face wash, as water can be too drying for my skin. Too ensure all of my make up is gone after a long day, I finish off my nightly skin care routine with a bit of the Aloe Vera toner.

TBS Aloe Vera calming toner

Not everyone is a fan of toner, but I honestly cannot live without it. It makes my skin feel clean without it being irritated and I really like having this step before I put on my night cream. Even if I haven’t worn make up throughout the day and I spent my day indoors, I will still clean my face with at least the toner before putting on my cream. Not only because it’s a habit, but because I feel it helps my skin to absorb the cream and actually make it work.

This product has no disadvantages. It does what it is supposed to do and the packaging is easy to handle. The toner comes in a clear bottle which is great and the list of ingredients is very very short.

Toner Ingredients:

Aqua (Water) (Solvent/Diluent), Aloe barbadensis (Aloe Vera Gel) (Skin Soothing Agent), Pentylene Glycol (Solvent), Butylene Glycol (Humectant), Sorbitol (Humectant), Glycerin (Humectant).

Like the cleanser, I put a bit of this on a cotton swipe and use it to wipe any excess dirt of my face and neck. It feels very refreshing, does not have that typical ‘after-toner’ feel to it at all yet cleans my face sufficiently. It does leave my skin slightly red, but not to an extent where it is problematic. I went through a patch a few months ago where it did give me a bit of a ‘burning’ sensation, but I only had it once or twice and it went away again. My skin must have been irritated by something else for the product to react with that other product to have caused that reaction.

Price wise, I also think these products are quite reasonable. Yes, you will shell out more money than when you go to a drug store: these products cost around 10 euros each. To me however, they are well worth the money.

What skincare do you use?