Everyone knows the incredible health benefits of apple cider vinegar: it lowers blood sugar, cholesterol and blood pressure, helps weight loss, fights infection, etc. But what happens when you use apple cider vinegar as a beauty product? This week, I tapped into my inner hippie and road tested ACV as a replacement for my conditioner and toner.
Full disclosure: I hate the smell of ACV. It reminds me of sweaty socks, body odour and gym class. Yummy! How I rate ACV below is therefore impacted by this how effectively this smell can be masked. Also, as pictured, I am using Bragg Organic Raw Unfiltered Apple Cider Vinegar.
ACV as conditioner
Apparently, Miranda Kerr uses ACV as a rinse for shininess. If it’s good enough for Miranda Kerr, it’s good enough for me! Due to the acid content in ACV, it is also supposed to be clarifying, which is great if you have dandruff and greasy hair.
Application adventures: I mixed equal parts ACV and water in a travel-sized bottle. After rinsing off shampoo, I massaged it into my roots, left it there for a minute or so, then rinsed it off with cold water. Ugh, the smell. The next day, I experimented with two parts ACV and one part water, and followed it up with conditioner. That greatly reduced the smell. Depending on the state of your hair (greasy hair, more ACV; dry hair, less ACV), I recommend tweaking the proportions until you get it right. Because…
Results: Incredible shininess. Sublime softness. Joy. Angels. I have never achieved this result with any conditioner. When my hair dried and the smell faded, I was flicking my hair around like a Pantene commercial.
Final score: 8/10. Two points taken off because, well, the smell. When I was moving around and perspiring a little, there was a slight… whiffiness. Your mileage may vary.
ACV as toner
ACV is anti-bacterial and has naturally occurring alpha-hydroxy acids, which makes it very attractive for people suffering from acne. I have talked about using ACV as a solvent for the Aztec Healing Clay mask, but have stopped short of using it as a toner because of the smell.
Application adventures: In a fit of madness, I used ACV on my face undiluted. Not one of my most brilliant moments – my skin turned red and stayed that way for 30 minutes. It’s acid, d’oh! I then did some research and mixed one part ACV with three parts distilled water. I wet a small cotton pad with it and swiped it over my face like a regular toner.
Results: I am happy to report that the smell is negligible at such a low concentration. And my goodness, the effects of ACV are definitely worth it. I have only been using this once a day for a week, and there has already been a definite reduction in my hormonal acne and acne scars, which is nothing short of a miracle. And I might just be optimistic/delusional, but it may even be helping to make my perennially oily skin less of an oil slick. NOTE: if you’re planning to use it as a toner, it is imperative that you also wear a good sunscreen. Any sort of acid will make your skin more susceptible to sun damage.
Final score: 10/10.
It seems that ACV is, in fact, a bit of a miracle liquid. It is the opposite of fancy, and the smell is (to me) questionable, but the results are staggering if you are prepared to experiment.
Do you have any home-made beauty remedies? I am always on the lookout for some and would love to test them out!