9 Best Korean Toners For Acne-Prone Skin, As Per An Expert + Buying Guide

Get the perfect glow on your skin with the best Korean toners for acne-prone skin.

Medically reviewed by Dr. Priya Gill, MBBCH, MRCP Dr. Priya Gill Dr. Priya GillMBBCH, MRCP facebook_icon
Written by , MA (English Literature), Certified Skin Care Coach Shiboli Chakraborti MA (English Literature), Certified Skin Care Coach Experience: 4 years
Edited by , MA (English Literature), Diploma In Health & Wellness Aditi Naskar MA (English Literature), Diploma In Health & Wellness Experience: 5 years
Fact-checked by , BA (Literature & Psychology), PG Diploma Arshiya Syeda BA (Literature & Psychology), PG Diploma Experience: 7 years
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Oily skin can be incredibly frustrating, especially when you follow the ten steps of a daily beauty regime yet still can’t seem to get that perfect glowing skin. The best Korean toner for oily skin just might be the answer! Who better than Koreans, the masters of beautiful, youthful skin, know what to do about skin problems. Dr. Priya Gill, one of Malaysia’s leading dermatologists, says,” Korean toners seem to be very rich in hydrating elements and may be less drying than other toners.”

Top Picks
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Best Gentle:STOPClear Face & Body Toner
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Best Hypoallergenic:IOPE Derma Trouble Toner
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Best Vegan:Pyunkang Yul Acne Toner
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Best Lightweight:COSRX AC Collection Calming Liquid Intensive
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Best Non-Drying:belief Problem Solution Toner
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Best Brightening:One Thing Citrus Unshiu Fruit Extract
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Best Exfoliating Formula:Papa Recipe Eggplant Clearing Peeling Pad Toner
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Best Value For Money:BE PLAIN Chamomile pH-Balanced Toner
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Best Nourishing Formula:Pyunkang Yul Essence Toner
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What Is A Toner?

A facial toner is essentially a water-based skincare product that mildly cleanses the skin and shrinks the pores. It is an in-between step in your daily skin care routine that comes after cleansing and before moisturizing.

Toners have evolved from being basic hydrating sprays to complex formulations that address different skincare concerns, such as acne, dryness, redness, inflammation, acne scars, dark spots, and sebum control.

How To Use A Toner?

Once you have cleansed your face with a cleanser, soak a cotton pad with the toner solution and wipe it across your entire face, neck, and chest area. Alternatively, you can also pour a few drops of the toner on your palm and gently dab it across your face or use a spray bottle to spritz it all over.

Let’s now look at the best Korean toners for acne-prone skin.

9 Best Korean Toners For Acne-Prone Skin Worth Your Money – 2024 + Buying Guide

1. Best Gentle: STOPClear Face & Body Toner

The A.STOPClear Face & Body Toner is designed to control excess oil on the face and body, heal existing acne, and prevent the appearance of new pimples. It is scientifically formulated with raspberry extract, rich in glycolic acid, vitamin C, and antioxidants, to remove dead skin cells from the skin surface and make it smoother. The salicylate acid-rich white willow bark extract unclogs pores, and the propolis extract soothes irritated skin. This dermatologist-tested multi-functional full-body toner is the perfect solution to heal acne around the face, chest, back, legs, shoulders, thighs, and buttocks.

Key Ingredients: Raspberry extract, White willow bark extract, and Propolis extract

Skin Type: Acne Prone Skin, Combination

Pros

  • Gentle
  • Non-irritating
  • Pleasant scent
  • Alcohol-free
  • PEG-free
  • Dermatologist-tested

Cons

  • May leave a film.

Our Tester's Experience

"This toner feels lightweight on my skin. It does not irritate my inflamed skin which is a plus. The formula removes stubborn dead skin cells from the hard-to-reach areas of my skin. I love that it has eliminated my acne problems to an extent."


2. Best Hypoallergenic: IOPE Derma Trouble Toner

The IOPE Derma Trouble Toner’s lightweight and gentle formula is custom-made to target acne and other skin concerns, making it the best Korean toner for oily and acne-prone skin. It unclogs pores and reduces dark spots to revitalize dull skin. This dermatologist-tested toner is infused with willow bark extract that has proven efficacy to target acne, controls excess oil production, and soothes irritation. It is an unscented toner that contains peppermint extract to heal the skin and keep it smooth and rejuvenated all day long.

Key Ingredients: Peppermint extract and Willow bark extract

Skin Type: Acne Prone,Oily | Product Dimensions: 5.91 x 5.91 x 7.87 inches | Weight: 6.76 Ounces.

Pros

  • Oil-free
  • Imparts glow
  • Gentle
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Non-comedogenic
  • Dermatologist-tested
  • Mineral oil-free
  • Fragrance-free

Cons

  • Expensive

Our Tester's Experience

"I love the packaging of this toner. It is gentle on my skin and feels smooth. It never stings my sensitive skin which is a plus. I also enjoy its scent which is not overwhelming."


protip_icon Quick Tip
For optimal results, pour a tiny bit of toner onto a cotton pad, then rub your face and neck with it before applying your moisturizer. Pour the toner into your palm and pat it over the skin while it is still somewhat damp.

3. Best Vegan: Pyunkang Yul Acne Toner

4.2
Pyunkang Yul Acne Toner Image: Pyunkang Yul Acne Toner

The Pyunkang Yul Acne Toner is a multi-functional astringent that addresses multiple skin concerns. It is the best scientifically formulated Korean toner for acne-prone and sensitive skin due to its incredible calming properties. The Asiatic pennywort and tiger lily are beneficial ingredients in the formula that lend it anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. This duo works together with the Centella Asiatica extract to soothe skin irritation and inflamed skin and minimize the appearance of pores. The copper tripeptide helps in regenerating damaged skin, giving visible results in the form of radiant skin.

The white willow bark extract in the toner contains natural salicylic acid and tannins to gently exfoliate the skin, unclog pores, boost cell turnover, and target acne breakouts. Other ingredients like green tea, niacinamide, and chamomile flower extract control excess sebum, heal damage and soothe the skin.

Key Ingredients: White willow bark extract, Green tea extract, Chamomile extract, Asiatic pennywort, Niacinamide, Centella Asiatica extract, Copper Tripeptide, and Tiger lily

Skin Type: Acne Prone,Oily | Product Dimensions: 5.91 x 5.91 x 7.87 inches | Weight: 6.76 Ounces.

Pros

  • Non-drying
  • Gentle
  • Non-greasy
  • Vegan
  • Cruelty-free
  • Alcohol-free
  • Fragrance-free
  • Colorant-free

Cons

  • None
Our Tester's Experience

"This toner refreshes my acne-prone skin. It pulls out gunk from the pores without causing redness. I love how soft and smooth my skin feels after using this. I do not get too oily after applying a few drops of this serum which indicates that it works."

4. Best Lightweight: COSRX AC Collection Calming Liquid Intensive

4.4

The COSRX AC Collection Calming Liquid Intensive is designed to target acne and heal your skin for an overall healthy appearance. It is infused with propolis extract, which has anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties, to treat infected and cystic acne. It also hydrates the skin. While zinc PCA calms irritation and provides protection from external aggressors, the plant-derived alcohol exfoliates dead skin cells and controls excess sebum production. This toner is powered by the exclusive CentellAC-Rx Complex that soothes irritation, strengthens the skin’s protective barrier, maintains its pH balance, and evens out the skin tone and complexion.

Key Ingredients: Propolis extract, Zinc PCA, Plant-derived alcohol, and Centella-Rx Complex

Skin Type: All

Pros

  • Gentle
  • No redness or irritation
  • Lightweight formula
  • Paraben-free
  • Cruelty-free

Cons

  • Contains alcohol
  • Expensive

Our Tester's Experience

"This formula has brought about quick improvements in my skin. It clarifies my pores and minimizes their appearance. I love how matte but nourished my skin looks after using this. It has also tackled my hyperpigmentation issues which is amazing."


5. Best Non-Drying: belif Problem Solution Toner

4.5

The Problem-Solution Toner from Belief is a gentle herbal formula suitable for acne-prone skin. It is infused with tea tree oil and willow bark extract that prevent breakouts and naturally exfoliate the skin to make it look clearer. This skin-softening solution restores the skin pH level and tones down redness, giving your skin a silky-smooth appearance.

Key Ingredients: Tea tree oil and Willow bark extract

Skin Type: Acne Prone Skin | Product Dimensions: 2.76 x 2.76 x 2.2 inches | Weight: 6.89 Ounces.

Pros

  • Alcohol-free
  • Lightweight
  • Non-drying
  • Gentle
  • A little goes a long way

Cons

  • None

6. Best Brightening: One Thing Citrus Unshiu Fruit Extract

The One Thing Citrus Unshiu Fruit Extract is a 100% organic toner with citrus unshiu fruit extract from Jeju island. It is filled with vitamin C, polyphenol, and flavonoids that improve skin tone and reduce blemishes. The citrus unshiu fruit extract contains hyaluronic acid to lock moisture in the skin.

Key Ingredients: Citrus unshiu fruit extract

Product Dimensions: 1.26 x 2.36 x 5.31 inches | Weight: 0.71 Ounces.

Pros

  • Mild fragrance
  • Brightens the skin
  • Vegan
  • Cruelty-free
  • Anti-blemish

Cons

  • May cause a tingling sensation.

Our Tester's Experience

"This formula refreshes my dull skin. I love that it is effective in fading my acne scars and other blemishes. It slightly moisturizes my skin which is amazing. It leaves my skin glowing and plump."


protip_icon Caution
When looking for a toner, one should avoid chemicals that may irritate the skin, such as denatured alcohol, menthol, witch hazel, and sensitizing essential oils.

7. Best Exfoliating Formula: Papa Recipe Eggplant Clearing Peeling Pad Toner

The Papa Recipe Eggplant Clearing Peeling Pad Toner is a soft and moisturizing exfoliator designed for acne-prone, sensitive skin. The 100% naturally derived, vegan viscose pads help in the gentle exfoliation of dead skin cells. They are infused with eggplant, tea tree leaf, and birch sap extract that moisturizes your skin and soothes irritation. These toner pads also contain a blend of powerful ingredients like fruit-derived AHA, BHA, and PHA that targets dead skin cells and improves nutrient absorption.

Key Ingredients: Eggplant extract, Tea tree leaf extract, Birch sap extract, and AHA Fruits Complex

Skin Type: Dry

Pros

  • 100% vegan
  • Soft
  • Large size for full coverage
  • AHA/BHA and PHA formula

Cons

  • Strong scent
  • Contains alcohol

8. Best Value For Money: BE PLAIN Chamomile pH-Balanced Toner

4.5
BE PLAIN Chamomile pH-Balanced Toner Image: Beplain

This Korean skin toner from BE PLAIN is gentle, lightweight, and designed to restore the natural pH balance of the skin while deeply hydrating it. It is enriched with French chamomile flower extract that calms irritation, prevents breakouts, reduces acne, targets discoloration, and soothes and nourishes the skin for a natural and dewy glow. The Centella Asiatica extract has proven efficacy in strengthening and calming sensitive skin, along with promoting healthy skin and healing, and preventing future scarring and new blemishes without stripping the skin and making it dry. If you have sensitive skin, it is recommended to perform a patch test before using the product.

Key Ingredients: Centella Asiatica extract and French chamomile flower extract

Skin Type: Acne Prone Skin | Product Dimensions: 1.77 x 1.77 x 6.69 inches | Weight: 6.4 Ounces.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Gentle
  • pH-balanced
  • SLES-free
  • Paraben-free
  • Phthalate-free
  • Value for money

Cons

  • None

9. Best Nourishing Formula: Pyunkang Yul Essence Toner

4.4
 Pyunkang Yul Essence Toner Image: Pyunkang Yul

The Pyunkang Yul Essence Toner has a deeply nourishing and clean formula that hydrates and revitalizes dry skin. The hydrating toner contains milk vetch root extract, a natural ingredient, which is deeply absorbed into the skin to improve skin vitality and elasticity. It also has anti-inflammatory and soothing properties that calm troubled skin. The toner for combination skin is great for improving damaged skin barrier and has zero artificial fragrance.

Key Ingredients: Milkvetch root extract

Skin Type: Oily, Combination, Acne, Sensitive, Dry

Pros

  • Non-irritating
  • A little goes a long way
  • Absorbed quickly
  • Vegan
  • Artificial fragrance-free
  • Color-free
  • Suitable for oily and combination skin

Cons

  • None
*The prices provided in this article are based on the latest available information. However, they may vary due to changes in pricing by the seller and/or promotional offers.

Korean skincares are taking over the world especially because of their elaborate and extremely nourishing products that benefit the skin. One of the most important steps in a Korean skincare routine or any other skincare routine, is the toner. Toners are used to clean dirt and oils from the pores, balance your skin’s PH level and help with acne. So, here is how you can choose a toner from your favorite Korean skincare brand to help with acne.

Points To Remember While Buying The Best Korean Toner For Acne-Prone Skin

Ingredients

Choose toners with essential ingredients like AHAs such as salicylic acid. AHAs act as gentle exfoliators that have proven efficacy in unclogging pores and removing dirt and oil from the face. They help you in achieving a clear and acne-free skin. A toner with effective ingredients like AHAs will ensure a clean face without being harsh on the skin. Opt for toners with natural ingredients like vitamin C, tea tree oil, and aloe vera and fermented rice water that keep the skin hydrated.

Alcohols in toners can be extremely drying and rip the skin’s natural oil making it irritated and flaky. If you have acne-prone skin, it is best to choose a gentle formula that won’t cause any pain or discomfort.

Skin Type

If you have dry and acne-prone skin, choose toners that can keep your skin close to hydration and away from becoming too cracked and flaky with a buildup of dead skin cells. The toner should keep peeling, redness, inflamed skin, and itchiness at bay. People with oily and acne-prone skin should opt for non-comedogenic formulas that can keep pores clean and control excess sebum.

Formula

If you have acne-prone skin, toners which are heavy and oil based can do more harm than good. Go for clinically-proven toners that are light and gentle and will not feel sticky on your skin and irritate your acne. It is always advised to perform a patch test before using the product and check the reviews beforehand to know the tester’s experience.

Infographic: Key Ingredients In Korean Toners For Acne-Prone Skin

If you have acne, it is important to look for products that can help soothe and calm your skin. A toner is one such product that is packed with active ingredients that can combat acne-causing bacteria and regulate sebum production. The infographic below highlights the potent ingredients that you must look for in toners for acne-prone skin. Check it out!

Key Ingredients In Korean Toners For Acne-Prone Skin (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

Oily skin can often be prone to acne. The excessive sebum secretion on such skin clogs the open pores, entraps bacteria and causes acne. Although you can avoid this skin condition with the best Korean toners for acne-prone skin. These tones absorb excess oil from the facial skin, ensure thorough cleansing, and keep it soft and hydrated. These Korean toners are gentle, vegan, and cruelty-free. Some of them are dermatologist-tested, clinically-proven, and come with non-greasy formulas. However, some toners may cause a slight tingling sensation.

Why Trust Stylecraze?

The author of this post, Shiboli Chakraborti, is a certified skin care coach. After thorough research and an extensive read of many different products, she recommends these listed best Korean toners for oily skin. She also adds that these products help you reach your skincare goals faster. These toners are a must-have for oily skin. They are non-comedogenic, non-greasy, and are perfect for daily use.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are toners good for acne-prone skin?

Absolutely! Using a toner for acne-prone skin is an ideal way to remove impurities, nourish the skin, and tighten the pores.

What happens if you use toner every day?

Toners are gentle on the skin. You can use it once or twice every day to remove dirt and pollution from the skin. It also helps in shrinking the pores and improving skin texture.

How long do I leave the toner on my face?

Toner gets absorbed into the skin within minutes as they are water-based and skin-friendly. Leave it on and apply other skin care products like serum and moisturizer.

How do I know if my toner is working?

The results of using toner are not seen immediately. The results are only visible after 1 to 2 weeks of regular use. The skin starts appearing softer, brighter, and smoother.

Can toners make acne worse?

Alcohol-based toners can trigger acne and also increase the risk of breakouts, especially on acne-prone or sensitive skin types. However, if you use acne-friendly toner, they will instead be beneficial to the skin.

Why am I getting pimples after using a toner?

Adding new skin care products to your skin care routine can lead to breakouts or skin flaking. This process is called purging. This is quite normal, and will only exist for a short term. However, if you have acne-prone skin, always use an alcohol-free toner.

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