Some days your hair just doesn't cooperate, no matter how hard you try. From curly to wavy or straight and smooth, our hair is a living thing with a mind of its own. And guess what? It loves apple cider vinegar. Finally, something my hair and I can agree on!
Apple cider vinegar is well known to complement our health in all sorts of ways. From gut health to weight loss, mental health to hormone regulation, ACV has a finger in all the pies. It's also great for our skin, and can be used in various DIY cleansers and toners. Those same properties that make it good for our skin mean that it's great for our hair too!
Here's a quick low-down on all the ways ACV helps keep your hair in good health - and in line!
Your hair and scalp are protected by a fine film called the acid mantle. In case the name didn't give it away, the acid mantle is slightly acidic, usually resting at a pH of about 5. If this pH gets too disrupted and slips into the alkaline, your hair is likely to start feeling dull, brittle or frizzy. In fact, when the acid mantle becomes too alkaline, hair starts to absorb light rather than reflect it! It also becomes more susceptible to breakages.
Most hair care products are actually slightly alkaline, so their frequent use actively damages the acid mantle and results in lifeless hair in the long-term.
ACV, on the other hand, is quite acidic. Applying an ACV rinse to your hair is the perfect way to help rebalance that pH and keep your hair glossy and healthy!
ACV VS Dandruff
With powerful antimicrobial and antifungal properties, ACV can help control the bacteria or fungi that cause dandruff and itchiness. It's particularly effective at targetting dandruff-causing yeast that often grows on the scalp, without being as aggressive for your hair as most commercial products.
Despite being acidic, ACV can actually have soothing effects on itchy or irritated scalps. It has natural anti-inflammatory qualities that contribute to your hair follicles and scalp's overall health and balance.
ACV contains natural alpha-hydroxy acid, which is sometimes called a chemical exfoliant. It gently dislodges dead skin cells, preventing the build-up of old cells along the hair roots and follicles, or on the surface of your scalp.
DIY ACV Rinse
Adding the magic of ACV to your hair care routine couldn't be easier. Simply dilute 1-2 tbsp of ACV in filtered water or brewed herbal tea, and pour it over your scalp after you've shampooed and conditioned.
Let it sit for a few minutes to really soak into your hair, then rinse it out. We promise you won't smell of ACV! For an extra nice treat, add a few drops of your favourite essential oil to the mix.
Try and do this once a week at first, and see how your hair responds. You can increase or decrease the frequency as required. If you need to add more ACV, don't hesitate! However, we wouldn't recommend going above 4 tbsp.
In general, dry hair responds to lower ACV ratios, while oilier hair does better with more.
Don't forget that ACV is acidic, and this is all about bringing balance back to your hair's pH. If your skin or hair starts to become irritated, you might be overdoing it. Try reducing the ratio of ACV or the frequency at which you rinse. Most importantly, always dilute ACV!