I started writing this post with the intention of telling you all about my hair. ACV and hair – seems odd, right? But, today I did a thing……I conditioned my hair with Apple Cider Vinegar.
I always heard that ACV was good for things like aiding weight loss or killing off bacteria, or just for adding to dishes, but shiny smooth hair? Who knew. So, as always, I had to do some digging…..
Vinegar is a French word which means “sour wine” so it’s no surprise that ACV is made in a process much like making booze. Crushing the apples and adding yeast helps ferment the sugars and create the alcohol. The next step is to add some bacteria which further ferments and creates acetic acid – which is the main component in vinegar.
I always choose Raw, Unfiltered Apple Cider Vinegar with “the Mother” (Bragg is my favorite). The Mother is that murky looking stuff at the bottom of the jar that you shake up before use (because it looks pretty icky). That Mother is the leftover bacteria that basically creates the acetic acid that is vinegar. It’s very similar to the SCOBY when making Kombucha. This colony of bacteria may have it’s own health benefits beyond the basic filtered and pasteurized vinegars that we often use in cleaning products.
Many people use ACV for reducing blood sugars, blood pressure and cholesterol. But, it can also address weight loss and digestive issues like acid reflux (which can actually be low stomach acid!). It also boosts immunity and has even been used for sunburns or bug bites.
Oh, and did I mention it is also good for your hair? It is often used as a home remedy wash to help with itchy scalp, hair breakage and adding shine!! wow!
Everyone’s hair has a pH value. Human hair and scalp oil has a pH level of between 4.5 and 5.0. Any level below 7 is acidic while anything above 7 is alkaline. This natural hair acidity prevents fungi and bacteria in the hair and scalp, leaving the cuticle closed and healthy. Unfortunately, many hair products raise this pH level which causes hair to get brittle, dull and break.
In comes the Apple Cider Vinegar… ACV is an acid that helps bring that alkaline brittle hair back to the correct pH balance. It helps to seal the cuticle and make the hair smoother. It can also help with dandruff, clear away greasy build-up, and soothe itchiness and irritation of the scalp because of its anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties.
So, how do you use it?
I mixed a tablespoon of ACV with a cup of distilled water and poured it into a spray bottle. When I finished washing my hair, I sprayed it down with the mixture and let it sit while I used my amazing Coconut Lime Scrub on my elbows and knees. Ahhh winter skin! Once I was done with my washing and the mixture had been on my hair for a few minutes, I rinsed it out. NO vinegar smell at all and only soft shiny hair – super soft. Remember though – everyone is different and so is their pH level, so it may or may not work for you. Give it a try and see! Working this into your hair care routine a few times a week is perfect.
Keeping my hair at it’s natural pH level is as important to me as is keeping my skin and gut microbiome balanced. Our bodies are so well balanced when left au natural. I have done so much damage to my hair over the years and it’s time to get back to my natural ‘roots’ (pardon the pun!) and balance my hair as well as my skin and gut.
There are so many wonderful uses for Apple Cider Vinegar beyond hair care. I haven’t tried these ideas, but would love to hear from anyone who has! Check it out: