Essential Oil Facial Toner Recipe

For beautiful healthy and radiant skin try a skin care routine like the one I’m sharing with you and as featured in my newest award-winning book, The Essential Oils Complete Reference Guide.

You can customize your skin care routine to suit your
individual needs.

Please keep in mind to use the essential oils that are right
for your skin type or condition.

Use a Facial Toner

Though not an absolute necessity to your skin care routine I recommend using a facial toner after washing your face to close pores, cleanse the skin of any traces of make-up, as well as shrink the appearance of pores.

Facial toners are also excellent for controlling acne outbreaks, skin blemishes, or plugged pores. Your toner is usually applied onto a cotton or wool facial round before applying to your face in long upward strokes, starting at your décolletage.

Facial toner can also be sprayed directly on the face.

For the past year or so I’ve stopped using any beauty or regenerative type essential oil blends on my face (which I'd used nightly for more than 20 years) and now only use a quality facial toner made with essential oils that are right for my skin type.  

My facial skin is very happy with this change. A facial toner seems to be all that my skin requires at this point though of course that may change in the future.

I love the tightening and toning effect that I get with my facial toner. Reducing the appearance of pores is a plus and the essential oils are very nourishing for my skin, including the many benefits of the essential fatty acids contained in essential oils.

I also eat plenty of quality fats like olive oil which helps my skin stay hydrated from within which many skin care experts consider more important than moisturizing creams applied externally.

Facial (or Body) Toner

A skin toner may be for your face or body and designed to cleanse and freshen your skin, as well as shrink the appearance of pores.

You can use your body and facial toners in different ways, including on a cotton or damp woolen cloth, or you can spray directly onto your body or face as a freshener.

Toner may be applied after your usual skin washing routine, immediately followed by applying moisturizer or regenerative serum after the toner has dried.

3 Types of Skin Toner & Ingredients

  1. Gentle Facial Toner - The mildest and most gentle types of skin toner are suitable for all skin types, including dry and sensitive skin. The simple facial toner recipe I’lll share with you is made with pure fresh water and a small percentage of an astringent like witch hazel (0-10%). I prefer certified organic witch hazel. It contains .14% Benzoic acid (a mild preservative) and is skin nourishing. You can also use some kind of humectant like glycerin (solvent free) to help hold in skin moisture, as well as citric acid to act as a natural preservative and aloe vera gel which acts as an emulsifier.

  2. Mild Body Toner - For slightly more skin toning action that’s suitable for all skin types, as well as oily and combination skin use a bit more astringent (up to 20%) in water, along with a humectant, preservative like citric acid and an emulsifier like aloe vera gel. You can use fresh squeezed lemon juice for its citric acid content, or purchase citric acid powder from your local health food store. I’ll tell you how to use citric acid powder in my facial toner instructions. The only caveat with citric acid powder is that it is usually derived from a non organic source of corn, meaning it has GMOs, if that’s something that you try to avoid.

  3. Intensive Toner - Finally the strongest body toners are excellent for oily skin and controlling excess sebum production. These skin toners contain higher percentages of astringent (up to 60%) and the strongest antiseptic properties and action which helps prevent and control acne outbreaks.

Adding an essential oil or blend to your toner that has skin nourishing and healing properties suitable for your skin type enhances the effectiveness of your toner.

Best Essential Oils to Use By Skin Type & Condition

I recommend the following essential oils for you to use by skin type.

Each is suitable for a particular skin condition. Click on an essential oil to find out more about each.

Any safety cautions are noted.

Sensitive Skin

German Chamomile (Matricaria Chamomila) - Prone to oxidation recommend refrigeration. Drug interaction (all routes). Those taking drugs metabolized by CYP2D6 should avoid use.

Regulating and Balancing for ALL Skin Types

Rose Geranium (Pelargonium Roseum)Skin sensitization (low risk). Possible drug interaction with oral use for diabetes medication, drugs metabolized by CYP2B6. Maximum dermal use level 17.5%

Problem Skin

Palma rosa (Cymbopogon martinii) - Skin sensitization (low risk). Drugs metabolized by CYP2B6 (oral use). Maximum dermal use level 6.5%.⁷

Calms Minor Skin Irritations

Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) Skin sensitization (moderate risk). Maximum dermal use level 0.1%.

Moisture Balancing ALL Skin Types

Ylang Ylang (Cananga odorata)
Skin sensitization (moderate risk). Avoid use with disease or damaged skin, and children under 2 years of age. Maximum dermal use level 0.8%.

Oily Skin

Cypress (Cupressus Sempervirens) - 
Skin sensitization if oxidized, recommend refrigeration.

Dry, Cracked or Chapped Skin

Myrrh (Commiphora myrrha) - May be fetotoxic, due to B-elemene and furanodiene content. Please avoid Myrrh essential oil during pregnancy and lactation.⁸

Patchouli (Pogostemon Cablin) - Drug interactions, may inhibit blood clotting. Low risk allergen does not require dermal use restriction.⁹

Mature Skin

Frankincense (Boswellia frereana) - Skin sensitization if oxidized (recommend refrigeration)¹⁰

Preparation – what you will need

2oz ounce Colored Glass Misting Bottle
Purified or Pure Fresh Spring Water
Pure and Natural Certified Organic Witch Hazel (120-240 drops) 
Essential Oil - (Facial Toner - 12 drops) - (Body Toner - 24 drops) drops Pure Essential Oil
2 Cups Pure Fresh or Distilled Water
Aloe vera gel (emulsifier) - 1-2 teaspoons
Glycerin - 1 teaspoon (optional, humectant)
1/16th teaspoon fresh squeezed lemon juice (remove any pulp). Or, use Citric Acid Powder - A natural preservative for skincare products. Citric acid powder can be purchased at many natural health food stores and online.

How to Prepare Citric Acid Powder for Use in Skin Care Products:

Boil 2 cups of distilled water and then add 0.05 percent to 0.1 percent citric acid powder to the water. Stir until dissolved. Set aside to cool. Add when cooled to your homemade skincare products such as lotions, face and body oils as a preservative.


  • Half fill a two (2) ounce colored glass bottle that has an atomizer or misting top, with pure filtered or fresh spring water.
  • Add 120-240 drops of witch hazel to act as an astringent and skin tonic.
  • Shake bottle well after the addition of witch hazel to mix thoroughly into water.
  • First add essential oils or blend of oils to your aloe vera gel and mix thoroughly.
  • Then, add essential oil blended in aloe vera gel to witch hazel and water, cap with atomizer top and shake well to blend ingredients thoroughly.
  • Top off bottle with water and cap with atomizer top then shake bottle to blend all ingredients thoroughly before using.

Use your facial and body freshener and toner anytime. It is especially beneficial after your shower, bath or facial cleansing ritual.

Directions for use

Lightly spray onto the desired skin areas to freshen, heal and tone.

May also spray toner onto a cotton or woolen facial pad and apply to your skin with gentle upward, sweeping movements.

Allow to dry thoroughly before applying face or body oil or lotion, if desired.

READ my next article in this series, 11 Simple Tips (Anyone Can Do) for Radiantly Healthy Skin, Plus A Restorative Essential Oil Treatment.

READ my first article in this series: Essential Oil After Shower Body Therapy  

†These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. All statements on this website are intended for informational purposes only.

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