If you follow Beauty Banter on Instagram (and you definitely should… click here to join in on the pretty), then you’re aware that I’ve been on a major DIY kick as of late. I posted this photo of last week’s homemade remedies, and that was a day after I posted this Coachella-inspired DIY floral headdress. I’ve always been an ardent fan of arts and crafts and DIY beauty products are a natural extension of this passion. And, well, last week was definitely a creative type of week!
My latest DIY obsession: the lightening and brightening lemon toner, which works wonders on acne-prone skin as well! I decided to concoct said toner because I was noticing sun spots taking up residence on the left side of my face (due to driving — and the obtrusive west coast sun). Lemon is one of the most amazing lightening agents – store bought or otherwise – and this toner will not only lighten and brighten your complexion, it’ll also tighten pores and reduces breakouts.
Here’s the thing about packaged Vitamin C – it’s great for the complexion but it goes bad, literally, overnight. Therefore, the brands must use preservatives to keep the potent ingredient doing its thing. With fresh lemon, a natural source of Vitamin C, you get all of the benefits – tightening, lightening and brightening – without any of the preservatives. And it works so much better and costs a fraction of the price (all of the below ingredients will cost under $7).
Use this toner 1 to 2 times a day to clean off dirt and grime, gently exfoliate dead skin that clogs pores, even uneven skin tone and, of course, lighten and brighten the complexion!
What You’ll Need:
1 Fresh Lemon
With Hazel (pre-made astringent will do)
Purified Water (bottled or filtered)
Plastic Bottle like this one
Benefits of the Ingredients:
Lemon – A natural source of Vitamin C; an ingredient commonly used to lighten sun and age spots and even out skin tone; A natural astringent that tightens pores and brightens the complexion.
Witch Hazel – A natural astringent high in tannins.
This is the easiest toner that you’ll ever make (well, besides this one). Squeeze the juice out of 1 lemon (make sure to remove the seeds). Combine the lemon juice with half the amount of Witch Hazel (this one here is my absolute favorite) and double the amount of purified water. The Witch Hazel will actually clean your skin while the lemon will lighten sun spots (and freckles!) and brighten the overall complexion.
So, the ratio I am using is 1:.5:2, but feel free to add or decrease any of the ingredients, depending on how your skin reacts. You must dilute the lemon! To start, do 1 part lemon to 2 parts purified water until your skin acclimates, then feel free to add more lemon. If your skin is very oily, add more witch hazel (or try Tea Tree Oil instead!). For dryer skin types, you can use less witch hazel — or sub it out entirely and use rose water (my DIY recipe here).
Store the toner in a plastic bottle. You can use the toner twice a day. Store in a cool, dry place. Make a new batch every two weeks.
*I actually like to use the DIY Apple Cider Vinegar Toner in conjunction with this Lemon Toner. The combination targets all of my skincare concerns: uneven skin tones and acne! (I layer both toners onto a single cotton pad and swipe across my face morning and evening).