Can apple cider vinegar cure acne? While apple cider vinegar doesn't have many direct studies, the compounds found in ACV may help treat and prevent acne when used right!
Raw, Organic apple cider vinegar is one of the most useful natural remedies on earth. There are thousands of uses, from creating your own DIY laundry detergent and helping with digestion to aromatherapy or detangling your hair and even curing acne.
Although there are a lot of myths regarding apple cider vinegar for acne, I've gone through various lists, reviewed whatever limited research is available, and curated from personal experience, to gather what I believe most beneficial uses for apple cider vinegar for acne with real science backing them up!
Below are reasons why Apple cider vinegar could treat acne and ways to use it!
Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar For Acne
- Antibiotic properties
- Helps balance the skin's PH level if skin is too alkaline
- Antifungal properties
- Acts as a chemical exfoliant
- Supports digestive health
Antibiotic and Antifungal Properties
Apple cider vinegar has a variety of acids like citric, lactic and acetic acids. The acetic acid in apple cider vinegar has antibacterial properties. There is also a study that shows some acids like lactic acid and citric acid found in ACV can kill off acne causing bacteria.
Apple cider vinegar is also shown to have anti-fungal properties by killing candida. If you suspect your acne is not actually acne, but a fungal overgrowth - then apple cider vinegar may also be beneficial for fungal acne.
Exfoliates Skin To Prevent AcneThe acids found in apple cider vinegar are all forms of alpha hydroxy acids. These acids are able to exfoliate the uppermost layer of skin to remove pore clogging debris. Regular exfoliation of skin promotes smoother skin appearance, can help skin keep hydrated better, and can also improve the look of dark marks from acne.
Balances PHApple cider vinegar has potential to balance the skin pH. Skin's optimal pH is usually between 4.5 to 5.75 which is slightly acidic. Why does the skin pH matter?
Ways To Use Apple Cider Vinegar For Acne
As A Facial Toner
Apple cider vinegar not only balances your skins pH levels for glowing skin, but it also gently exfoliates by removing dead skin and stimulating skin turnover. It is ideal for those who deal with skin conditions such as acne or scarring because the lactic and malic acids in the apple cider vinegar work to kill bacteria and exfoliate skin to prevent pores from becoming clogged and inflamed.
can create your own DIY facial toner by mixing ¼ witch hazel, ¼ apple cider vinegar, ½ water/. Witch hazel will reduce inflammation and soothe irritation.
After using this as a toner, follow up with your favorite moisturizer after!
As a digestion cocktailApple cider vinegar is a powerhouse when it comes to digestion. Gut health can be linked to skin health and acne. If your digestion issues are due to lack of stomach acid production or certain bacterial overgrowth, then it could help with bloat, intestinal inflammation, and delays the emptying of the stomach; all allowing for increased nutrient absorption. It is also considered a prebiotic, which is a source of food for beneficial bacteria. Maintaining the delicate balance of good and bad bacteria in your gut is optimal for keeping your digestive system healthy.
Always dilute it first with
In a face mask
Though apple cider vinegar may not have many direct studies on it, that doesn't mean that it doesn't work and for some people it could help work wonders on acne! While it does need to be diluted before use to prevent adverse reactions, it is in general a safe option to try for acne. If you plan on using this home remedy for treating acne, it’s best to dilute it first with water or do a patch test before applying it on the skin.
Long term topical application of lactic acid/lactate lotion as a preventive treatment for acne vulgaris: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17656910/
Antimicrobial activity of apple cider vinegar against Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus and Candida albicans; downregulating cytokine and microbial protein expression: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5788933/