By Sherazade Khan
Cleanse, tone, and moisturize! Beauty buffs have been trying to drill the CTM routine into our minds since time immemorial, but has it worked? Partially. Most of us cleanse our face – usually with a face wash and seldom with a balm or cleanser – and dab on a cream. What we skip, is the toner. And you know what? That’s a major sin.
Yes, after using toner religiously for a week, I can vouch for its effectiveness. All that talk about “minimizing pores and improving skin tone” is as real as it gets.
I bought Janssen Cosmetics Soothing Gel Toner for sensitive skin because let’s face it, my skin is as welcoming to new products as Donald Trump is to desis.
Before I started, here’s what I was promised it would do:
- Shrink pores, leaving you with smoother skin.
- Provide an added barrier against the harsh elements we come face to face (pun intended) with during the course of the day, especially outside.
- Combat the effects of various products we thopofy on our skin throughout the day, like makeup, moisturisers and sunblock.
Here’s my day to day observation.
After my morning cup of tea, I washed my face, brushed my teeth and lightly patted my face dry. I then applied a blob of the gel on two cotton pads and simultaneously applied them to each side of my face and neck. Fifteen minutes later, my skin felt tighter. I then applied my SPF moisturiser and a dash of lip gloss and kajal.
At night, again, after brushing my teeth and washing my face, I applied the toner and then my regular night cream. I noticed a lot of dirt on the cotton pads, even though I had washed my face beforehand and felt a similar tightness on the skin. Other than that, there was no visible difference from the previous day.
I followed this routine daily for a week.
I’m pretty sure I wasn’t imagining smoother skin when I woke up. It felt softer to touch and had more bounce. Not a whole lot, but still, it was noticeably different.
I noticed the fine lines in my neck were less prominent. The skin also felt tighter, but moving my face (the area around the mouth and eyes) wasn’t painful which is usually is in this dry weather! My skin usually feels like a particularly arid desert when I wake up.
The moisturiser and night creams I had been using previously also felt like they were now doing a better job at keeping my skin hydrated throughout the day. Usually, I would reapply my moisturiser at some point in the afternoon, as my face would feel dry and uncomfortable, but this was no longer needed.
I looked closely at my skin in one of those magnifying mirrors. The ones that make you hate yourself after a minute or so. Not only did I notice I needed to get my eyebrows and upper lip done, but my pores – which I’ve always had an issue with – looked like they had somehow diminished.
I went for my monthly threading ritual, and found that it hurt less! The lady at the salon also mentioned that my skin looked healthier and was more supple. She mentioned that well moisturised skin causes less pain in hair removal. If you’ve ever gone for waxing or threading in the winter months you’ll know just how excruciating it can be!
I attended a party and was told over and over again that I was glowing – and also asked by many people if I had any ‘good news’! With my one-year-old in tow, I told them that thankfully it was just the toner I had been using.
Paranoia set in and I took a pregnancy test to make sure it was in fact the toner that was adding this lovely radiant glow.
Good news…it was!
My skin was almost as soft as my baby’s bottom. It looked rosier and healthier overall and the pores had shrunk noticeably.
It does take an additional 5-10 minutes daily but the results are pretty visible. I’m going to, at the very least, continue till the bottle I bought is empty, because I’m loving all the compliments, but more than that, this weather calls for additional TLC for the skin!
*Title image source: walldevil.com