Is Apple Cider Vinegar Good For Your Skin?

Is Apple Cider Vinegar Good For Your Skin?

Using an ingredient that normally goes on top of salads for your skin might sound mad. Some people might also be turned off by the smell of apple cider vinegar. However, despite its nature, this ingredient has a wide range of uses, both in the kitchen and in skincare.

Not to mention, the list of benefits of apple cider vinegar seems to be endless.

So, can apple cider vinegar treat skin conditions such as acne and scarring, and can it even out the skin tone? Is it worth adding to your skin care routine? Let's find out.

What is Apple Cider Vinegar?

Apple cider vinegar is made via a fermentation process, including yeast and other bacteria. During this process, fruit acids (such as acetic acid) are created. But do the acidic properties of this remedy make it suitable for skin care? Let's see.

Skin Benefits of Using Apple Cider Vinegar


You might have heard that apple cider vinegar can kill certain types of bacteria and viruses. Since acne is caused by the bacteria known as Propionibacterium acnes, some research suggests that apple cider vinegar has various acids (including acetic acid and malic acid) that are known to kill this particular bacteria. The chemical exfoliant malic acid (and acetic acid) also have antibacterial and antifungal properties, which can tackle skin infections.

How can you use it to fight that nasty acne-causing bacteria, then? One of the ways is by making an apple cider vinegar toner and using it on your skin a couple of times a day. Read below to find out more DIY skincare recipes.

In addition, studies also suggest that lactic acid, which is found in apple cider vinegar, can result in an overall reduction of acne after a long period of use. Its natural pH level is very similar to that of our skin, which suggests that you can use apple cider vinegar to restore the skin's pH balance.

Acne Scarring

If you've ever struggled with acne, chances are, you've also struggled with some variation of scarring. Acne scarring and dark spots are extremely difficult to deal with, and the sooner you begin the treatment, the more effective it will be.

Natural products shouldn't be dismissed even when treating tough skin conditions like acne scarring. Although more research is needed for a precise conclusion, apple cider vinegar can potentially reduce scarring.

As we've mentioned before, apple cider vinegar contains certain acids known to improve the skin's texture. It not only treats mild scarring and hyperpigmentation but can also prevent acne from occurring in the first place by gently exfoliating the skin and removing dead skin cells.

Other Benefits

You don't just have to use apple cider vinegar for skin. If you're into haircare and have seen the "no-poo" challenge, you've probably noticed that people are swapping their regular shampoos for apple cider vinegar. And yes - it really works to achieve a clean and healthy scalp! Add apple cider vinegar to your haircare routine and see what happens.

It can also help if you have scaly scalp skin.

Home Remedies Using Apple Cider Vinegar

There are many ways you can incorporate apple cider vinegar into your beauty routine.

DIY Apple Cider Vinegar Toner

When it comes to home remedies, toners are an essential part of many people's skincare routines. That's because the right toner can have an enormous effect on keeping your skin bright, youthful, and healthy-looking. If you're searching for an apple cider vinegar recipe to start with, this one is for you.

For this recipe, you'll only need apple cider vinegar and some water. Mix one part apple cider vinegar with 5-7 parts water and pour the mixture into a container. You could also store it in a spray bottle and use it as a face mist.

It's best to use this concoction at night after thoroughly washing your face. Simply dab a cotton ball or a cotton pad in the mix, apply it all over your face and neck, and let it work for 5-10 minutes. It's extremely important to wash it off after that, especially if you have sensitive skin. Apply your moisturizer afterward. This toner doesn't need to be refrigerated; you can store it wherever you want, in a dark and dry place.

The apple cider vinegar in this toner will have an anti-inflammatory effect on your skin, and it will help kill bacteria.

Pair this with an effective face wash or facial cleanser, such as the Clear Skin Salicylic Cleanser.

Apple Cider Vinegar Face Mask


If you're looking for a quick, cheap, and easy DIY face mask recipe, we've got you covered! For this acne-fighting face mask, you'll need one teaspoon of apple cider vinegar, one tablespoon of baking soda, and a teaspoon of honey. Mix the ingredients and apply them to your face. Let the mask sit for 15-20 minutes, then wash it off. Your skin will not only be brighter and softer as a result, but it will likely put acne breakouts to a minimum.

Apple Cider Vinegar Scrub

We all know that regular exfoliation is crucial for all skin types, especially those with acne-prone skin. This scrub gently exfoliates and helps to get rid of dead skin cells, clear up clogged pores and repair the skin.

Apple cider vinegar contains citric acid, which is an alpha-hydroxy acid. Alpha hydroxy acids are prominently used in skincare to exfoliate the skin.

For this scrub, you'll need the following:

  • 1 tablespoon of brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon of honey
  • 100 ml of water
  • 4-6 teaspoons of brown or coconut sugar
  • Optional: a few drops of vitamin E oil or wild rose oil

Mix all the ingredients and gently massage the mixture onto your face and body. Let it sit for a couple of minutes, allowing all the ingredients to soak into the skin, and then wash it off.

Drinking Apple Cider Vinegar for Better Skin

Many health benefits come with drinking apple cider vinegar regularly. It lowers cholesterol, has anti-fungal and anti-microbial benefits, can help maintain healthy blood sugar levels, decreases the risk of certain cardiovascular diseases, and increases your immunity.

We wouldn't recommend drinking ACV straight from the bottle - it's not apple juice (and it certainly won't taste like it!)

For a lovely morning refreshment, mix one teaspoon of apple cider vinegar with a glass of warm water and drink it on an empty stomach. You can also drink it throughout the day. This will help brighten your skin and also aid digestion.

If you want even better results, add one freshly squeezed lemon to the recipe. Lemon is rich in vitamin C, which keeps the skin healthy and youthful. After implementing this drink in your morning routine, you should see results in a couple of weeks.

Apple Cider Vinegar Smoothie

Give this refreshing and skin-healing smoothie a go next time you need a breakfast recipe. You won't feel the acidic taste of apple cider vinegar in this recipe! You'll need the following:

  • 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup of almond milk
  • 1 banana
  • 1 cup of blueberries
  • 1 teaspoon of flax seed
  • A pinch of cinnamon

All you'll need to do is blend all the ingredients, and you'll have a healthy and easy breakfast option that's also amazing for the skin.

Can Apple Cider Vinegar Make Acne Worse?

So far, it seems like apple cider vinegar only benefits the skin, which, in theory, should make it a great acne spot treatment.

However, is there any risk in using this natural remedy when you have acne-prone skin?

The answer is yes.

Apple cider vinegar may have antibacterial properties, but it can potentially result in chemical burns, blisters, and irritation. What's more, it can also worsen acne by damaging the skin layers and its protective barriers. Because apple cider vinegar is a weak acid, if you continually apply it to the skin, it can cause severe irritation and damage.

Things to Keep in Mind When Purchasing Apple Cider Vinegar

Not all types of apple cider vinegar are created equally. Regular vinegar used for cooking shouldn't be applied on the face.

Since you'll be using this product on the skin, it's essential to keep the following tips in mind. Make sure it's unfiltered, raw, unpasteurized, and organic and that there are not many additives in the ingredients list. Moreover, it's always better to buy it with the "mother" in it, a term used to describe all the nasty stuff floating in the bottom of the bottle. Don't worry; although they're not appealing to the eye, they benefit your gut and skin. Organic apple cider vinegar is always best.

Precautions and Side Effects

Even though many people claim that using apple cider vinegar has resulted in the best skin they've ever had, these claims are not yet proven with scientific evidence.

Since apple cider vinegar has an acidic formula, it can result in skin damage and burning. If you use it directly on the skin without diluting it first, you may experience burns or irritation, especially if you've been using it for a long time. Therefore, make sure you're always diluting apple cider vinegar with water.

Before using a diluted solution topically, make sure you're not allergic to it. Always check the expiration date before putting it on your skin.

If you suffer from sensitive skin, you should be extra careful when using apple cider vinegar as a skincare product. If you try out any of the above recipes, do a patch test or try them on one small area on your face first. After 24 hours, if there isn't any visible irritation or dryness, you may continue applying it all over your face.

Always consult your doctor or a board-certified dermatologist before trying out new skincare products or if you notice any negative effects of apple cider vinegar. Remember, cosmetic and clinical research on the benefits of apple cider vinegar for the skin is still relatively vague, so be careful if you have sensitive and acne-prone skin.


There's a reason apple cider vinegar is so popular in hair and skin care recipes. Since it's so naturally acidic (containing exfoliating acids like acetic acid and malic acid), this natural remedy has anti fungal properties, antibacterial properties, and antimicrobial properties that can help with acne. It can even regulate the natural pH of your skin.

However, using too much of it may upset the skin's barrier and cause a chemical burn. Always may sure you use diluted ACV, even as a spot treatment. Always do a patch test first and if you have any concerns or an existing skin condition, speak to a board-certified dermatologist before you use apple cider vinegar.


Authenticating apple cider vinegar's home remedy claims: antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral properties and cytotoxicity aspect

Apple Cider Vinegar? Or Just Acid?

Acetic Acid

Antimicrobial activity of apple cider vinegar against Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus and Candida albicans; downregulating cytokine and microbial protein expression

Long term topical application of lactic acid/lactate lotion as a preventive treatment for acne vulgaris

Dual Effects of Alpha-Hydroxy Acids on the Skin

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