Though many people keep apple cider vinegar at home for use in salad dressings and marinades, but it actually has several other uses as well. From household cleaners to beauty products, a.c. vinegar can be used in more ways than you may have imagined.
Check out some of these ideas about how to use this wonderfully versatile vinegar.
1. Facial Toner
Make your own skin toner with a ratio of 1 part apple cider vinegar to 2 parts water, and use a cotton ball to daub your face with it after cleansing. It’ll tighten up pores, clear blackheads, and help fight acne breakouts as well as helping to heal any acne that has already popped up. Rinse your face with plain water 10 minutes or so after swabbing.
2. Conditioning Rinse for Hair
Instead of store-bought conditioners that are laden with chemicals, just stir 1 tablespoon of cider vinegar into 1 cup of water, and rinse your hair with it after shampooing. It adds body and shine, and will help de-tangle your hair as well.
3. Bug Bite Soother
Full-strength vinegar swabbed onto bites can alleviate itchiness, and speed healing. Just soak a cotton ball in apple cider vinegar and then press against the bite for about 30 seconds. Repeat every hour or so for itch relief.
4. Tooth Whitener
Dip a cotton swab in full-strength vinegar and use it to wipe your teeth every morning and every night to lighten stains on the enamel. Rinse your mouth with water after swabbing to eliminate the acidic residue.
5. Weight Loss Helper
Apparently, taking 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar in a glass of water every day can assist with weight loss: the acetic acid contained in the vinegar helps your body break down fat, and reduces the triglycerides in your blood.
6. Insomnia Relief
Many people swear that a drink made with hot water, a tablespoon of a.c. vinegar, and honey (to taste) helps them get a more restful night’s sleep. This is another one that isn’t scientifically proven, but experimenting with it could be rather delicious.
Apple cider vinegar has high levels of potassium, which can have a clarifying, detoxifying effect on the body. Taking apple cider vinegar in water 3 times a day can apparently alleviate the symptoms of sinus infections, allergies, sore throats, and even candida.
8. Household Cleanser
Pour a full cup of apple cider vinegar into your toilet bowl, let it sit for half an hour, then scrub with a brush and flush away. Not only will it clean and disinfect the bowl, your bathroom will smell like apples for days.
Use undiluted a.c. vinegar on counter-tops and other surfaces to disinfect them and leave them smelling fresh and apple-y.
Dissolve a tablespoons of apple cider vinegar in a spray bottle of water for homemade “Febreeze”: spray it into the air to combat unpleasant odours, or spritz it lightly on furniture to eliminate pet smells.
9. Insect Repellent
Some people swear that the changes in body pH due to daily doses of this vinegar will fend off mosquitoes, but this has yet to be proven scientifically.
A 50/50 mixture of cider vinegar and water can be sprayed onto your pets (and their beds) to help repel fleas, and it can also be sprayed around windows and doors to keep ticks out.
10. Garden Help
Full-strengh a.c. vinegar poured onto stubborn weeds will kill them without poisoning the soil around them. You can use a diluted vinegar solution (1:8 ratio of vinegar to water) to raise the acidity in your soil for azaleas and rhododendrons to thrive in, and if you dilute that even further and add some sugar to the mixture, you have home-made plant food.
Add a few tablespoons of a.c. vinegar to a gallon of water and then transfer it to a spray bottle; you can use this spray to treat black rot and fungus issues on roses, and to fend off aphids.
If you’re taking apple cider vinegar internally, it’s important that you use the highest quality vinegar available. Organic would be the best option, but if you can’t get your hands on that, then don’t hesitate to shell out a few extra dollars for a good product. For topical uses (like for facial toner), you can use a lower-quality vinegar, and the cheapest products on the market are fine for house-cleaning and gardening purposes.
SEE ALSO: The Many Uses and Benefits of Olive OilFeatured photo credit: Apple cider vinegar in glass bottle, selective focus via Shutterstock