June 14, 2022
Looking for a conditioner that makes your hair soft, shiny, and manageable? You can splurge on a $20 bottle at your salon that’s made with chemical ingredients you don’t recognize, or you can stroll into your kitchen and pick up a bottle of apple cider vinegar, or ACV.
Apple cider vinegar, often referred to as ACV, is a type of vinegar made from fermenting apples. The fermentation process results in the production of acetic acid, a compound in vinegar that is thought to be responsible for its potential health benefits.
Apple cider vinegar is such a pantry staple because it’s a master multitasker. Further research is needed, but many people swear by apple cider vinegar as a weight loss tool, a skin treatment, and a remedy for all sorts of ailments. Raw, organic, unfiltered apple cider vinegar in particular contains a cloudy substance called the mother that contains beneficial bacteria and enzymes. Because of this, raw apple cider vinegar is often considered good for gut health.
Sure, this tart, fruity vinegar is great in salad dressings, but apple cider vinegar uses go way beyond of the kitchen. It can be taken as a supplement or even used as a skin and haircare product.
Why on earth should you consider putting apple cider vinegar in your hair? Well, think about the anatomy of a strand of hair. Each one is protected by a cuticle comprised of tightly woven scales that lay flat against the shaft and reflect light. When the hair’s normally acidic pH balance goes out of whack from a buildup of alkaline hair products, the cuticle comes undone, leaving hair prone to breakage and giving it a frizzy, dull appearance.
Enter: apple cider vinegar! This acidic solution can restore pH balance to help repair hair cuticles and leave a blinding (in a good way) sheen all over. Raw, unfiltered ACV also has natural alpha-hydroxy acid that can gently exfoliate the scalp and hair to remove dead skin cells and product buildup. To review, the benefits of ACV on hair may include:
While this elixir does have the potential to unveil shiny tresses, the main downside is that pungent scent. Until now. We’ve got a one-ingredient fix to this problem. Lavender to the rescue! Not only is the fragrance sublime, but lavender essential oil is also believed to stimulate roots and improve circulation in the scalp, which is all great for hair growth.
Here’s a super-simple recipe for an alluring apple cider vinegar hair rinse.
1/2 cup distilled water
1/8 cup apple cider vinegar
3 to 5 drops lavender essential oil
Mix ingredients in a glass spray bottle. Use less ACV for dry hair, and more for oily hair. Add lavender until the desired scent is achieved. In between or following shampooing, shake the bottle, spray this ACV rinse all over wet hair, and work through from roots to ends. Rinse out and let hair air dry. The ACV scent shouldn’t be noticeable at all, but the calming lavender will linger. With continued use, hair will be revitalized into smooth, shiny locks.
Photo credit: Alicia Cho
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