If you haven't heard of these apple cider vinegar uses you are missing out! Here is how APC can benefit you inside and out.
Apple cider vinegar is all the rage these days, but it’s largely marketed for its internal uses.
Don’t get us wrong, we love those applications, but this powerful, all-natural tonic has some serious benefits for skin and hair, too.
What Is Apple Cider Vinegar?
Apple cider vinegar has been used for at least 7,000 years as a powerful health aid. The first use of apple cider vinegar, or ACV as it’s commonly called, seems to have occurred around 5000 BC when the Babylonians used it for preserving their food.
ACV was even used in ancient Egypt and has a recorded history within biblical-era writings. During this time, it grew in popularity as a medicine but also as a savory food dip.
Not surprisingly, apple cider vinegar is sourced from apples. The juice (or liquid) is extracted and fermented via bacteria and yeast. This method transforms juice sugars into alcohol, which are then turned into vinegar through a second fermentation process.
Apple Cider Vinegar Benefits
If you just look at the nutrient list for apple cider vinegar, you’ll probably wonder why it’s so popular and how it could possibly be used as a tonic for the body, skin and hair.
It’s very low in calories when taken internally and has its main base in carbohydrates. High-quality ACV does include small amounts of vitamins A, B1, B2, B6, C, and E.
Vitamin C and vitamin E make it especially effective in protecting skin from environmental stressors. Other than that though, its nutrients aren’t all that impressive.
Apple cider vinegar’s “wow factor” lies not in its calorie count or vitamin and mineral base, but in its acidity. Its acidic content (which turns alkaline upon consumption) is thanks to the fermented sugars that give ACV a similar pH value to our skin.
For this reason, an apple cider vinegar toner can balance even the most sensitive skin, drying excessive oil while leaving the skin hydrated. According to a study published in the Journal of Prosthodontics in 2015, the malic acid content in ACV provides amazing antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral benefits for the skin and nails.
On the inside, it’s also effective against Candida infections. Outside, its inherent alpha hydroxy acids remove dead skin cells, keeping skin bright and taming dandruff.
Our Favorite Apple Cider Vinegar Uses
Apple cider vinegar has a huge laundry-list of possible uses, including dozens of benefits when taken internally. However, external apple cider vinegar applications are less talked about but powerful nonetheless.
For skin, ACV is a wonderful astringent - a great toner for people with oily to combination skin. Countless individuals have also found success with apple cider vinegar for acne. It works by drawing toxins from pores and keeping skin from getting too oily throughout the day.
You can even use apple cider vinegar to fight signs of aging. The beta carotene and anti-aging vitamins found naturally in ACV reduce fine lines and the appearance of age spots.
Let’s not forget the locks! Apple cider vinegar for hair can balance your scalp, leading to softer, brighter, stronger hair. It can also decrease scalp itchiness and solve dandruff problems by killing bad microbes and increasing cellular turnover.
Some other great ACV uses for the skin include:
- Decreased irritation from bug bites
- Soothes razor burn
- Faster healing of sunburned skin
Best Forms of Apple Cider Vinegar and Where to Get It
Like many other products, not all apple cider vinegar is created equal, and you’ll want to look for a high-quality variety to reap the most benefits.
Because pasteurized apple cider vinegar is missing some of the vitamins that raw ACV has, always stick with raw, organic ACV. It’s also best to choose apple cider vinegar packaged in glass rather than plastic.
Finally, unfiltered apple cider vinegar will include the “mother,” which provides additional proteins and bacteria that aid in skin and hair health.
You can usually find apple cider vinegar at your local grocery store, or you can shop online for health and skincare products that use ACV as one of their main ingredients.
How to Use Apple Cider Vinegar + An Easy DIY Recipe
Apple cider vinegar is extremely safe to use externally. Not too keen on the smell? You’re not alone, but fortunately you can add essential oils to improve its scent and add even more benefits. In most cases, you just need to wet a cotton ball with ACV and rub it over the area to be treated.
For hair, you can make a DIY rinse treatment that’s great for dandruff and itchiness. Simply mix one part ACV with three parts water in a small squeezable bottle. Add essential oils to mask any unpleasant odor.
Apple cider vinegar is a powerful healing agent both internally and externally. Plenty of people drink a little ACV every day for internal health, but far too few are reaping its external benefits as well. A little swipe or a diluted mixture of ACV can work wonders for many issues and is a simple, natural way to help your skin glow and hair shine.