Is apple cider vinegar effective for pimples, acne?

ACV not only treats skin infections, but is also useful for overall health of the skin. It makes our skin look younger. Apple cider vinegar is very effective for treating warts, pimples, acne and other skin problems.

Skin occupies the largest space in our body – it is 2 sqm and contributes to about 16% of our weight.

Skin plays three important roles:

  1. Skin protects from external, harmful elements like fire, water, pollution, free radicals, sharp objects and UV rays.
  2. Skin is also the largest organ in the body, and works as a feedback mechanism – communicating through touch.
  3. The third and most important role is to regulate temperature, discard toxins through sweating, and  absorb sunlight in order to help produce vitamin D

Skin plays these roles at two levels – through the outer layer called epidermis and inner layer called dermis.

Hilary Duff uses apple cider vinegar for pimples

Hilary Duff uses apple cider vinegar for pimples

Healthy body, healthy Skin

The inner layer is constantly producing new cells to create new skin. This skin gradually replaces old skin in the outer layer. This process is so subtle and automatic that we don’t realise that we flaunt new skin every 30 days or so.

We express our emotions through skin – an infant learns to recognize the mother through her touch. The smell of skin is a dead giveaway of moods and emotions. The release of pheromone molecules through skin sends sexual signals to the opposite sex. We feel the warmth of a person through a hand-shake, or are put off by their ‘coldness’.  The smell of the skin is also a good health indicator – stinking skin is usually a sign of bad health.

An anxious or stressed person will reveal the mental state through the sweat.

As you would gather, it is important to maintain a healthy skin for a healthy body, just as the reverse is true – healthy body makes healthy skin.

Using apple cider vinegar builds good skin – internally and externally.  (Read other  benefits of apple cider vinegar – weight loss.)

How Will ACV Cure Acne, Pimples?

I have used cider vinegar on pimples and I know that it stings initially. However, after the initial burning sensation – which lasts for a few seconds – ACV acts quietly.

Apple cider vinegar works well as a skincare product, and helps in treating acne and pimples. Cider vinegar unblocks closed pores so that the skin can perform optimally by throwing out toxins and impurities.

Before we get into the details of how cider vinegar works for treating pimples and acne, let’s see how we get those problems in the first place.

Getting rid of pimples should not be a nightmare
Cider vinegar can be applied directly on pimples Source: Caitlin Regan

Causes of Skin Problems – Acne, Pimples, Eczema

Human skin is acidic; in fact the protective layer on skin is called ‘protective acid mantle‘.

The pH factor of skin is between 4.5 and 6. (The pH factor is a good indicator of acidity level. The pH factor is not uniform throughout the body – pH levels are different in stomach, hair and on skin. Usually a pH factor of between 0 and 6 is considered acidic and anything above that is alkaline.)

This acidity is important in protecting skin  from pollutants, impurities and free radicals.

This protective acidic layer is weakened because of soap, face-wash and make-up. It can also be damaged by environmental factors.

Our skin can repair itself. However, damage to the layer is faster than skin can repair. This is where apple cider vinegar comes to rescue.

How Does ACV Work for Skincare?

For best benefits, apply apple cider vinegar on skin, and drink diluted apple cider vinegar every day.

When applied externally and consumed internally, apple cider vinegar provides multi-faceted benefits:

1. Beta-carotene found in cider vinegar is responsible for reversing the damage caused by free radicals. Drink apple cider vinegar twice a day to get this benefit.  (Read my article about apple cider vinegar diet.)

2. Similarly, apple cider vinegar contains 5% acetic acid.  It provides antibacterial as well as antiseptic properties so that harmful bacteria and viruses don’t damage skin.

3. Finally, apple cider vinegar is useful for skincare because it acts to restore the pH balance of the skin. Cider vinegar’s pH factor of between 4.5 and 5.5 is similar to the pH factor for skin.

Tips For Using Apple Cider Vinegar on Skin

As you know, cider vinegar is a natural product and is widely used as alternative medicine for skin problems like pimples, acne and warts. However, certain precautions must be taken if you are keen to use cider vinegar for treating skin-related complications.

  • The smell of vinegar could seem a bit strong – at least initially. Avoid using it if you plan to go out. Apply cider vinegar toner at night, before going to bed. Wash it off after 30 minutes if you are concerned about the smell.
  • For people with sensitive skin, cider vinegar may irritate skin. Try cider vinegar toner on a small part of skin to check sensitivity.
  • First-time users of cider vinegar may wish to begin gradually with a highly-diluted ACV toner. This will help in verifying the sensitivity of the skin. I have used cider vinegar straight out of bottle with no side-effects on my skin. However, each person’s disposition is unique.
  • It is very rare that the skin will break out. However, if purging happens following ACV application, discontinue the use of cider vinegar. The cause of purging is unknown; it is likely that when cider vinegar opens the pores, skin expels impurities. So purging could be an indication of your pimples getting worse before getting better.
  • Some reports indicate that cider vinegar toner on skin may make skin more sensitive to ultra-violet rays. Because of this avoid applying cider vinegar toner on skin before going out.

How to Make Apple Cider Vinegar Toner

Making apple cider vinegar toner at home is very easy.

You can make apple cider vinegar toner for skin at home.

Source: Vegan Baking

What you need

  • 250ml filtered water, tap water is also fine.
  • 250ml apple cider vinegar, only organic, unfiltered, unpasteurized
  • 500ml plastic bottle, to store apple cider vinegar toner

Make Apple Cider Vinegar Toner

  1. Pick up unpasteurized, unfiltered apple cider vinegar. Preferably, choose organic cider vinegar.
  2. Take a sterilized bottle. Mix apple cider vinegar and water in 1:1 ratio.
  3. Keep the ACV toner in cool, dry place. Avoid direct sunlight. Shake bottle well before using, so that the ‘mother’ of vinegar gets mixed well.

How to Use Apple Cider Vinegar for Skin

  • Wash face with face-wash. Take a cotton pad or ball, put toner and apply on skin gently. Avoid eyes and areas around eyes. If applying on a pimple, apply undiluted cider vinegar, taking care not to spread it around.
  • Initially begin applying cider vinegar once a day, gradually increasing the frequency to twice a day.
  • Apply it at night before going to bed. Leave it for 30 minutes before washing it off. After initial use, leave it on overnight.
  • Always begin by trying out cider vinegar on a small part of skin, so as to test tolerance.
  • Sometimes, you may wish to apply cider vinegar toner in inaccessible areas – I had a wart on my back. Put cider vinegar toner in a spray bottle and apply.
  • Keep apple cider vinegar away from eyes and the area around eyes. It may cause burning sensation.
  • Once ACV is removed from skin, apply some moisturizing lotion.
  • Many people have successfully added other ingredients to the toner, including green tea, aloe vera gel, or witch hazel.

Choosing the right apple cider vinegar

The normal vinegar is not suitable for making apple cider vinegar toner.

Apple cider vinegar needs to be organic, unpasteurized and unfiltered.

Only unpasteurized and unfiltered ACV contains the “mother” of vinegar, the muddy, grainy substance that sits at the bottom of the bottle. This substance contains the beneficial enzymes and bacteria.This is where all the value of apple cider vinegar lies.

There are many brands to choose from, so you may want to find out which brand is easily available in your country.

The bottom line is, it should be made from organic apples, and should contain the mother of vinegar.

For a more detailed review and comparison of various cider vinegar brands in the market, read my article:

 

Bragg Apple Cider Vinegar Organic Raw -- 32 fl oz

Bragg Apple Cider Vinegar Organic Raw — 32 fl oz

Amazon Price: $4.69
List Price: $7.19

My Experience With Apple Cider Vinegar

I am a big fan of apple cider vinegar for weight loss, for healthy hair and for glowing skin.

My preference is for organic apple cider vinegar, especially for applying on face because it is less harsh on skin.

I use it before going to bed, after I have washed off my face with face wash. I immediately feel fresh, though the smell puts off my partner if I don’t wash it off with water after a few minutes.

I have found apple cider vinegar effective in preventing acne, though it takes a long time to remove existing acne. It is not an overnight remedy. I use it for the cleansing benefit.

Other Health Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is effective for weight loss as well as stopping hair fall.

ACV strengthens bones, as it helps in extracting calcium from fruits and vegetables that we eat.

ACV contains potassium – an important mineral for rejuvenating tired tissues in our body. Potassium helps in repairing soft tissues. Lack of potassium causes fast hair loss. It also makes our teeth weak. Apple cider vinegar is full of potassium, and helps fight all issues related to bones, teeth and hair fall.

Read my other articles mentioned below for further details on the benefits of apple cider vinegar.

Should you be using cider vinegar for skincare?

  • As I said before, each person may have different experience with cider vinegar. Cider vinegar may not suit some people. If skin irritation occurs, stop using cider vinegar.
  • Some of my readers (or their partners) don’t like the smell of cider vinegar.
  • If the skin condition is serious and needs immediate medical attention, apple cider vinegar may not be the right solution.

Did you know?

 

  • Cider vinegar’s use dates back to Hippocrates, the father of medicine who used it for treatment.
  • It is known that sailor Columbus carried apple cider vinegar to treat fatal diseases including scurvy.
  • In fact, the Bible suggests that vinegar was used by Jesus. (“When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost.”John 19:30).
  • Many Hollywood celebrities claim to benefit from cider vinegar. Singer Hilary Duff likes to use cider vinegar to remove pimples, while other celebrities including Fergie, Beyonce and Scarlett Johansson have used it for skincare, throat-care and weight loss.

Disclaimer

This article is not a substitute of medical advice. Please consult your doctor.

 

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