Proponents of apple cider vinegar believe that it can treat anything from weight loss to diabetes. They also think that it may have some benefits for the face, such as helping with skin blemishes and sunburn. However, there is little evidence to confirm this.

Using apple cider vinegar (ACV) as a treatment for various ailments has a long history. It appears in the Old Testament, and the ancient Greek physician Hippocrates mentions using a combination of ACV and honey as a treatment for open wounds.

Although many claims about the healing properties of ACV abound, there is little evidence to support them.

This article will discuss whether ACV has benefits for the face.

apple cider vinegar on a spoon which could be used on the faceShare on Pinterest
There is little evidence that apple cider vinegar provides any benefits for the face.

ACV is mostly fermented sugar from apples. Making ACV involves crushing apples and adding yeast to start the fermentation.

The fermentation process produces acetic acid, which gives the vinegar its tangy taste and strong smell.

Acetic acid has antibacterial and antifungal properties. These properties could help clean the skin and prevent infections from bacteria or fungi.

Many studies have examined how ACV affects the skin. But there is still little evidence that it has any benefit.

The skin has a slightly acidic natural barrier, which helps keep it healthy. According to the National Eczema Association, using regular soaps, shampoos, and cosmetic products might reduce the acidity of the skin’s barrier and stop it from working correctly.

When the barrier is damaged, the skin is more prone to dryness and irritation. Some supporters think that applying diluted ACV to the skin might restore the skin’s acidity and support the barrier and protect the skin.

A 2019 study that involved people with eczema soaking one forearm in diluted ACV and the other in water daily for 14 days found no improvement in the skin barrier.

In the same study, most participants also reported skin irritation from the ACV. Participants using water had no skin irritation.

However, another study in 2018 found that ACV might have some antimicrobial properties. The study showed it could reduce the impact of harmful bacteria on the skin.

However, this study was in cultured cells rather than living humans.

It will be necessary for researchers to carry out more research to work out if there are any benefits to using ACV on the skin.

There is still no conclusive evidence that ACV can treat skin conditions. But some people might still experience benefits from using it for conditions that include eczema and sunburn.

Anyone with eczema or sunburn should speak to a doctor before using ACV. The acetic acid could cause further skin irritation.

Some people also use ACV as a skin cleanser or toner. Apple cider vinegar can cause skin cells to shrink, tightening the skin.

Some bacteria are necessary to keep the skin healthy. Using strong concentrations of ACV could strip away this good bacteria on the skin and cause irritation.

The antimicrobial properties of ACV could treat acne. When diluted correctly, ACV could reduce bacteria on the skin that worsen acne, but there is no scientific evidence to confirm this.

Like salicylic or glycolic acid, diluted ACV could be useful as a chemical peel to treat acne scars. To avoid complications, discuss with a skin professional before using ACV in this way.

Careful use of diluted ACV might have some benefits for skin conditions.

According to the International Journal of Women’s Dermatology, one method of using apple cider vinegar is to add it to a bath. Pour 3 or 4 cups of apple cider vinegar into bath half full of water. This amount is enough to dilute the acid.

Due to its high acidity, ACV should be diluted before a person applies it to the skin.For treating acne, apply the solution directly to acne spots, before rinsing it off.

If the skin feels dry or irritated after using an ACV solution, stop using and it and try a different treatment.

Some people believe ACV can soothe sunburn. Soak some cotton wool in a diluted solution of ACV and water. Gently apply this solution to the sunburn.

However, there is no scientific evidence to confirm that ACV is beneficial for acne or sunburn. Talk to a doctor or a dermatologist before using ACV on the skin.

Using undiluted ACV can cause a chemical burn. According to a report in the Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology, a teenager presented with chemical scarring on their nose after using ACV to remove moles.

In another case, reported in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, a boy received chemical burns from the application of ACV to his skin. The boy also experienced fever, alongside the burns.

Even diluted solutions of ACV can cause skin irritation and dryness.

There is no scientific evidence that applying ACV directly to the skin has any benefit. But may people advocate its usefulness, and research on the topic is still ongoing.

ACV can cause skin irritation, dryness, and damage. Never apply it without diluting it in water first. However, diluting the vinegar does not guarantee its safety, and it can still cause harm.

It is best to consult with a dermatologist before using ACV on the skin.