Types Of Japanese Toner You Need To Know About Before You Choose One!

by Erika Shinomoto
best Japanese toner

Including a toner in your skincare routine can do wonder for your facial skin! Check out these best Japanese toners to up your skincare game and get beautiful skin!

One thing that sets the Japanese apart from the rest is their flawless skin. Japanese women take skincare very seriously, and when we talk of a skincare routine, it is always important to include a toner. Japanese toners are also known as Japanese lotions, so if you were wondering about that Japanese lotion you saw, it probably was a toner. 

Japanese toners are lightweight and clear; the product has an almost watery consistency. If you follow a moisturizing regimen, the best Japanese toner is a must. It is basically a moisturizer in liquid form. 

Types Of Japanese Rice Crackers

Healing/pH Balancing 

Most toners have pH balancing properties. If you have sensitive skin then healing toners are the best option for you. Formulated with rose water, oats, panthenol and amino acids, healing toners are also hydrating and are great for those who live in places where the air quality is bad.


Exfoliating toners are usually formulated for oily, acne-prone skin, and sometimes even combination skin type. Exfoliating usually have active ingredients like hyaluronic acid, BHAs/AHAs, Vitamin C, Niacinanamide and such others.

These ingredients help achieve even skin tone by targeting blemishes, pigmentation, acne. I recommend you use exfoliating type toners at night because they contain chemical exfoliants.


Hydrating toners are amazing and packed with nourishing ingredients. This type of toner may sometimes contain gentle chemical exfoliant AHAs or PHAs but mostly will only have hydrating ingredients like panthenol, glycerin, hyaluronic acid, antioxidants, and such others.

Hydrating toners help your skin retain water, strengthen skin barrier, and improve skin moisture.

Benefits of Using Japanese Toners

Japanese toners are not only formulated to rejuvenate the skin but also replenish it. Most Japanese toners are easy to apply as they have a watery formula. Japanese toners are also moisturizing in nature and help balance the pH levels of your skin. Japanese toners are formulated to lock-in moisture throughout the day. You’ll find Japanese toners specially formulated for your particular skin type and skin concerns like open pores, acne, dark spots, etc.

How to choose the best Japanese toner?

Consider the following factors when you are choosing the best Japanese toner: 

  1. Texture
  2. Fragrance
  3. Ingredients
  4. Skin type

#1 — Texture

The first thing you would want to check is the texture of the best Japanese toner that suits you. Toners that are lightweight get absorbed quickly. However, toners that have a thicker consistency usually take longer to get absorbed by the skin. You need to know which toner you prefer.

#2 — Fragrance

The fragrance of the toner is extremely important to me. It plays on the mind, which makes it one of the most important things to consider when choosing a toner. There are Japanese toners that smell like chemicals. Look for one that has a lovely and refreshing fragrance. You would love using the toner if it smells good.

#3 — Ingredient

What makes these best Japanese toners so effective are the ingredients used to make them. The most popular and common ingredients that you will find in toners include butylene glycol, sodium hyaluronate, trehalose, and collagen.

#4 — Skin Type

You need to know your skin type before choosing the best Japanese toner for yourself. If you have sensitive skin, it is a good idea to steer clear of toners that have alcohol. Alcohol may irritate your skin and trigger harsh reactions. However, not many Japanese toners use alcohol. 

However, if your skin is not sensitive, alcohol is not really a bad thing. It helps to penetrate the toner deeper.

Best Japanese Toner : Quick Summary

Best Japanese Toner Key Ingredients
Obagi Nu Derm TonerHyaluronic acid, aloe vera, panthenol 
Onsen Face TonerWitch hazel, vitamin A, C and E
DHC Mild Lotion TonerCucumber juice extracts, emollients 
Minon Amino Moist Charge Lotion TonerAmino acids, HCI and carnosine 
Shiseido Aqualabel Hyaluronic Acid Lotion TonerDouble hyaluronic acid, double collagen GL, double royal jelly, D-amino acids
Muji Sensitive Skin Lotion TonerNatural water from Kamaish, purslane extract
HADA LABO Gokujun Hyaluronic Lotion Mist TonerTypes of hyaluronic acid
Labo Labo Super Pores Lotion Toner Lactic acid, malic acid, artichoke leaf extract, and pepperwort leaf extract
Nameraka Sana Isoflavone Lotion TonerCarrot extracts, collagen
IPSA The Time R Aqua TonerAntioxidant EPC-K, pyrola calliantha

Which is the best Japanese toner?

I tried and tested several Japanese toners and rated them based on formula, hydration and moisturization. I found that Obagi Nu-Derm Toner is the best Japanese toner.

Obagi Nu-Derm Toner is an all-round toner. Obagi Nu-Derm Toner moisturizes and repairs the skin if used everyday. Obagi Nu-Derm Toner works to brightens the skin tone and clean out the pores. Obagi Nu-Derm Toner works well for dull skin as it works well to hydrate and and promote a clear complexion. Obagi Nu-Derm Toner is alcohol-free and works to heal scars and wounds, promoting clear and spot-free skin. It is available on Amazon for $43.00

Our Top Picks For Best Japanese Toner

  • DHC Mild Lotion TonerBest for sensitive skin
  • Shiseido Aqualabel Hyaluronic Acid Lotion Toner Reduces signs of aging
  • HADA LABO Gokujun Hyaluronic Lotion Mist TonerBest for dry skin
Best Japanese Toners For Skin Care
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Obagi Nu-Derm Toner – Best Japanese Toner For Dry Skin

Obagi is a very popular cosmetic brand in Japan and offers one of the best Japanese toners in the market! It is an alcohol-free and non-drying toner that balances the pH level of your skin. If you are somebody with rough and dry skin, this toner is the answer to your woes. 

Three of the key ingredients in this toner are the magical hyaluronic acid, aloe vera, and panthenol

These ingredients love your skin and will ensure that it always remains in the best condition. They also help lock in moisture and prevent dehydration of the skin. Also, these products are so gentle that they suit every skin type.

If you use this Japanese toner, you will soon start noticing that it is clarifying and brightening your skin.

So, if you wish to correct your skin’s complexion, this is the product to go for. The toner is also excellent for large pores; it also helps prevent signs of aging, such as wrinkles and fine lines. The toner is an effective base for the absorption of all other products.

Definitely one of the best Japanese toners! 

Related: A serum can boost the effects of your skincare. Use a Japanese serum to up your skincare game!

Onsen Face Toner – Best Alcohol Free Toner From Japan

This is another best Japanese toner that is naturally enriched with botanical components that make sure you get skin that is youthful and radiant. 

One of the ingredients of this toner is witch hazel, which is known to have excellent properties that are good for the skin. In fact, it makes its appearance in several DIY skin care regimen followed by women across the globe.

Witch Hazel in the toner helps fight acne and prevent breakouts. Other ingredients include aloe vera, hyaluronic acid, as well as green tea. 

All of these ingredients love taking care of our skin. You will also find Vitamins A, C, and E as a part of the ingredients list.

It is free of mineral oils, parabens, as well as other ingredients that can be harsh on the skin. Also, the toner has not been subjected to animal testing which is why it deserves to be in this list of best Japanese toners. 

Related: Here are some beauty products from top J-beauty brands you cannot miss out on!

DHC Mild Lotion Toner – Best Japanese Toner Brand 2020

DHC is one of the most well-known Japanese brands. The toner is another of its great products. 

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It is free of alcohol and is effective for refreshing, toning, and soothing the skin. You can choose this toner even if you have very sensitive skin; the toner is extremely gentle on the skin.

One of the ingredients of this toner is cucumber juice extract. Cucumber, as we all know, has cooling properties. You must have noticed how cucumber slices are an important part of a skincare regime. It is highly effective in removing puffiness and dark circles. 

The cucumber juice extract in the toner helps in cooling and refreshing your skin instantly. The toner also has other emollients that work towards making your skin softer and smoother. Hands down, one of the best Japanese toners in the market! You have to check it out!

Related: Follow it up with a moisturizer for soft, supply skin. Check out these Japanese moisturizers for your skin type!

Minon Amino Moist Charge Lotion Toner – Top Japanese Toner For Skincare Routine

Minon Amino toner is special as it contains nine types of amino acids. These amino acids pack the toner with power that penetrates deep into your skin to replenish its moisture. 

It also strengthens your skin. The toner also acts as a barrier, preventing any damage to the skin from external elements. 

Two of the nine amino acids included in this toner are HCI and carnosine. These two ingredients are known to have clarifying benefits for your skin. The toner sinks right into your skin without drying it out. It also helps improve skin elasticity. 

The acids in the toner help make your skin smoother and softer. It’s one of my personal favorites and one of the best Japanese toners out there!

Related: Before you apply toner, cleanse your face with a good face wash to get rid of impurities. Check out hydrating Japanese face wash here!

Shiseido Aqualabel Hyaluronic Acid Lotion Toner – Top Japanese Toner Brands 2020

The name Shiseido is quite a compelling reason to get this toner. The brand has made its name all around the world and offers one of the best Japanese toners. 

The toner comes with a light rose fragrance that does not overpower you, but lingers on to give you that floral shield. It does not have a strong chemical odor like others.

The toner has a watery consistency, which absorbs easily into the skin. The major ingredients of this toner are double hyaluronic acid, double collagen GL, double royal jelly, and D-amino acids. 

These ingredients replenish moisture in the skin and prevent dryness. And not just that, the toner also improves skin elasticity and is a great option to choose as you age. 

The toner has Aqua Synergy and Lift Synergy formula. Both of these exclusive ingredients keep the skin feeling moist and supple, giving you that fresh and dewy look. It is also an effective base for all other products that you use on your face. It increases absorption.

Related: Here are skin-nourishing face masks from top Japanese skincare brands. Check it out!

Muji Sensitive Skin Lotion Toner 

Here’s another one of the best Japanese toner for you. MUJI is a cult-favorite in Japan and one of the most reliable brands. This best Japanese toner uses natural water from Kamaishi and contains grapefruit seed extract, Lipidure, and purslane extract.

The formula of this Japanese toner is safe to use on sensitive skin as it is fragrant free, is a low-irritation formula, and allergy-tested. It is also free of alcohol, parabens, and mineral oils.

best japanese toner for sensitive skin

Related: Get rid of dark circles and puffy eyes using these eye creams from Japan. Check it out!

HADA LABO Gokujun Hyaluronic Lotion Mist Toner

Even though the name of the products says it’s a lotion, this product is more like a lightweight thin liquid that is quickly absorbed into the skin when applied. It makes your skin dewy and soft.

This Japanese toner is perfect for dry skin! If you suffer from dehydrated skin, you’re sure going to love this best Japanese toner! This toner is formulated with three types of hyaluronic acid that’s known to nourish your skin.

The Japanese toner comes in the form of a mist – all you have to do is spray it on your face directly and massage! 

best japanese toner for dry skin

Related: A cleansing oil can deep cleanse your skin. Check out these cleansing oils from top Japanese brands!

Labo Labo Super Pores Lotion Toner 

This Japanese toner is manufactured by one of the famous Japanese skin care brands called Dr. Ci:Labo. This Japanese skincare brand is a popular Japanese cosmetic brand that offers medicated beauty products. This Japanese brand specialises in formulating products that are safe on the skin. So even if you have sensitive skin, you can use this Japanese toner with no doubt! 

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It’s a wipe-off lotion type toner that removes the top keratinized layer of the skin to reveal a softer and firmer layer. Using the toner also improves the permeability of the skin so the following skincare products you use penetrate deep into the skin!

This Japanese toner is formulated with water-soluble collagen, sodium hyaluronate, royal jelly acid, hamamelis leaf extract, lactic acid, malic acid, artichoke leaf extract, and pepperwort leaf extract. Check out this best Japanese toner here! 

best japanese toner for oily skin

Related: Here are some Japanese skincare products from top J-beauty brands!

Nameraka Sana Isoflavone Lotion Toner 

The next best Japanese toner on the list is the Nameraka Sana Isoflavone Toner. This toner penetrates deep into the skin allowing your skin to absorb all the ingredients in the toner. It doesn’t have a greasy after effect even if you sweat. 

However, this toner does contain alcohol so folks with extremely dry skin steer away from this one. The ethanol in this toner actually helps with the penetration. So I guess it’s a boon and a curse this toner has to carry. 

Anyway, if this toner does suit your skin, after application your skin will soften. It’s also super effective to remove makeup! Check out this best Japanese toner below! 

top japanese toner

IPSA The Time R Aqua Toner

This best Japanese toner has three times the moisturizing effects than your regular toner. This toner is formulated with 1,000 trillion fine moisturizing molecules that penetrate deep into the skin to stimulate skin’s hydration production.

It also locks in moisturizer by creating a skin barrier. This is one of the best Japanese toners for acne prone skin as it helps control excess oil production and also prevents acne. 

This Japanese toner is formulated with Aqua Presenter III that locks in moisture. It also contains peony and marjoram extracts that helps soothe any inflammation. It also contains antioxidant EPC-K that protects your skin from free radicals.

The tone also makes your skin smooth as it contains pyrola calliantha and other herbal extracts. Check out this best Japanese toner below! 

best japanese toner

Best Toners To Buy From Japan: FAQs 

What is the Difference Between Japanese and American Toners?

The main difference between Japanese and American toners is that Japanese toners are formulated to moisturize the skin and it can be compared to a liquid moisturizer. Japanese toners also work to make your skin softer. American toners, on the other hand, are astringent-based and are formulated to cleanse your skin which results in dryness. 

How do you use Japanese toners?

To use a Japanese toner, wash your face with water first. Then wash your face with your favorite cleanser. Take a round cotton ball, put your favorite Japanese toner on the cotton ball, completely soaking it. Then apply it to your face. You can also splash some of the Japanese toner directly onto your face and spread it using your fingers. 

What are the Ingredients in a Japanese Toner?

Common ingredients found in Japanese toners are cucumber juice extracts, will bark extract, oat kernel extract, and aloe leaf extract. Another common ingredient in Japanese toners is purified water. However, you won’t find harsh ingredients like alcohol in most Japanese toners. 

What is the best toner from Japan?

Shiseido Aqualabel Hyaluronic Acid Lotion Toner is one of the best toners in the market from Japan. It has a watery consistency and has ingredients like double hyaluronic acid, double collagen GL, double royal jelly, and D-amino acids. The toner prevent your skin from drying and improves skin elasticity as well!

Are Japanese toners good?

Japanese toners are some of the best in the world. In fact, Japanese beauty products are some of the best! Japanese toners use the best ingredients for your skin for effective results! 
Here’s why using Japanese toners is extremely beneficial for your skin:

A Japanese toner is essential to restore the pH balance of your skin. 
It is a coating that prepares your face for all the other products that you are going to apply.
By getting your face ready for other products such as moisturizer and serum, the Japanese toners make sure of optimal absorption. 
It helps lock in moisture so your skin does not feel dehydrated.
Japanese toners are loaded with skin-loving ingredients.
Japanese toners use a lot of soothing and emollient ingredients right from natural sources.
Depending on the toner you use, it may help in fighting off acne, preventing the visible signs of aging, brightening your complexion, and firming the skin.

With the best Japanese toners, take your skincare regime to the next level. The Japanese toners mentioned above will help you take care of your skin in the most loving way possible. These toners will make your skin smooth and glowing. 

So, with all these wonderful Japanese toners, walk on the path to excellent skin. 

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