today i’m sharing my recipe for herbal facial toner. this toner is my take on a 14th century botanical preparation called “queen of hungary’s water.” this toner is easy to prepare and can be made with a number of herbs, depending on what you have on hand. click through for the recipe.
a facial toner is used after you wash your face. i use face wash grains, and you can find my recipe here. it helps close the pores and as the name suggests, tones the skin. “toning” means tightening of the skin/ pores – this action comes from the astringent nature of the toner. in my all natural toner, the two astringent ingredients are raw apple cider vinegar and witch hazel extract, which has an alcohol base (witch hazel bark is highly astringent). i balance the toning action with a blend of 9 herbs and flowers prized for soothing and nurturing the skin.
- quart sized mason jar
- quart of raw, organic, apple cider vinegar (i make my own, or use bragg’s)
- 1/2 cup dried lemon balm
- 1/2 cup dried chamomile
- 1/2 cup dried roses
- 1/4 cup dried calendula
- 1/4 cup dried comfrey
- 1/4 cup dried elderflowers
- peel of one organic orange
- 1 TB dried sage
- 1 TB dried rosemary
- witch hazel extract (i use the rose kind)
mix all dried ingredients and orange peel in mason jar. cover with apple cider vinegar, filling the jar. before you put the lid on, cover the jar with wax paper – or use a plastic lid with a rubber stopper. you just don’t want a metal canning lid coming in contact with the vinegar, because it will corrode. i like to start my infusions on a full moon and let them infuse through the next full moon. or you can infuse everything for 3-4 weeks.
shake you infusion every day! this is important to keep the extraction moving along.
at the end of you infusion, strain the herbs out – first through a metal sieve, then through muslin or cheesecloth. make sure to squeeze the herbs and get as much liquid out as possible. measure the remaining vinegar. for every cup of vinegar, add a 1/2 cup of witch hazel extract.
this mixture will keep indefinitely, and a little goes a long way. i made my personal stash two years ago and haven’t even used half of it. i have a little atomizing spray bottle that i fill up and keep in the bathroom.
apply the toner right after a wash while the face is still damp, and rub in avoiding the eyes. if you have dry skin, follow with a face cream. this toner is gentle enough to be used daily!
if you don’t want to make your own but are interested in using an all natural toner, i sell 4 ounce bottles over in my shop.