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From experience, there isn't a set definition of what a toner does or should do.

One common use for a toner is to remove any make-up and dirt your cleanser fails to cleanse away. Another common use for a toner is to remove any cleanser one fails to wash away with water.

Contrary to popular belief, toners don't shrink pores etc etc.

Depending on the ingredients in the toner, a toner can potentially do a range of things: from balancing pH as you've said, to delivering anti-oxidants to the skin (that is, if the toner contains anti-oxidants in a high concentration).

It's hard to describe tbh, however by reading the ingredients list of any toner can give some indication of it's purpose, example: if a toner is filled with anti-oxidants and all that nice stuff e.g. niacinimide, then you can assume that it was formulated to give skin the good stuff, in addition to removing traces of cleanser, make-up and dirt.

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