December 4, 2023

hether or not you choose to start your morning with a shot of apple cider vinegar, you will have likely heard its benefits.

The wellness community has been touting its gut health properties for many years now but it holds a longer history in natural medicine, linking the apple-derived enzymes to such benefits as improving digestion, supporting the immune system, balancing blood sugar levels, decreasing the risk of heart disease and weight loss. It has even been applauded for enhancing skin condition and hair too.

But before you go pouring your potable cocktails over your strands or whipping up your own creations and leaving your locks smelling like sour salad dressing, the haircare community has done the hard work for us – minus the pungent aroma.

Apple cider vinegar is the latest buzz ingredients in the haircare space for its invigorating feeling and exfoliating properties.

What are the benefits of apple cider vinegar for your hair?

“Apple cider vinegar holds many benefits”, explains world-renowned hairstylist Frédéric Fekkai. “It contains amino acids and anti-inflammatory properties that contribute to strengthening and conditioning your hair”.

The likes of colouring, harsh products and pollutants can wreak havoc with the acidity levels of the scalp. By introducing this acidic ingredient to your routine, it can work to bring the levels back to the healthy levels of around 4.4-5.5 pH.

It is also packed with healthy nutrients and prebiotics, has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties and clarifies to remove product build-up, impurities, dead skin and excess oil that may be clogging the hair follicles. The astringent ingredient can encourage longer-lasting vibrancy for colour, restore shine and stimulate the scalp.

Does apple cider vinegar help hair growth?

Fekkai says, “It does! Healthy hair grows from a healthy scalp, and apple cider vinegar is very clarifying —dissolving build-up and balancing the pH without over-stripping natural oils.”

“When I was a kid”, he adds, “My mother used apple cider vinegar diluted with water to clean our hair, making it very shiny”.

How often should you incorporate apple cider vinegar in your hair routine?

Fekkai advises that “It’s best to use it once a week, especially when your roots appear oily, your scalp is itchy, or your hair feels weighed down. You want to use it sparingly. At most, you can do it twice a week if needed. Overdoing it can damage the hair follicles and cause irritation”.

It is a drying component and while it can be used by greasy, oily, curly, textured or fine hair, those with very dry strands or sensitive skin may want to steer clear – or follow by a deeply nourishing conditioning mask to restore hydration.

Shop the best apple cider vinegar-based haircare products below

FEKKAI Apple Cider triple cleanse scalp scrub


Hairstylist Frédéric Fekkai took his Apple Cider Collection back to the drawing board and reinvented the formulas to become more advanced than its predecessors. It’s a three-part regime that harnesses the hyped about ingredient and maximises its detoxifying, balancing and stimulating properties on the scalp. Whether you use the Triple Cleanse Scrub to exfoliate and remove the build-up of product and pollution, the Triple Cleanse Shampoo for a thorough but gentle clean or the Triple Cleanse Rinse, you are bringing the bacteria-busting, anti-inflammatory ingredient to your routine to soothe and amp up colour.

The collection is made from clean ingredients and can even be used by kertain-treated locks. The Scrub lathers up to a rich and creamy texture that preps the scalp for the shampoo that follows. The latter is enriched with not only apple cider vinegar but salicylic acid and pomegranate seed oil too that combine to create a gel that will leave hair silky and cleansed. The Rinse acts as the final step on hair wash day to lock in the benefits of the ACV, and alma fruit extract that is conditioning and softening.

R+Co Acid Wash Acv Cleansing Rinse


Founded by three session stylists, R+Co uses only natural ingredients to create its product line-up and so it will come as no surprise that the label has called on the power of apple cider vinegar not once but twice in its offering. The Acid Wash Acv Cleansing Rinse is formulated with the fruit extract for its seemingly contradicting ability to soothe and exfoliate at the same time. It has a gentle buffing effect yet doesn’t strip colour or natural oils – having the opposite function instead to bring longevity to dye and hydrate too.

On wet hair, apply the rinse directly to the scalp for a few minutes before rinsing – either following by shampoo or replacing this step or the conditioning step for co-washing. It removes build up from product residue and calls on aloe vera leaf juice for soothing and hydrating, tamanu seed oil for nourishing and has an addictive aroma from the brand’s signature Relative Paradise scent that combines Sicilian lemon, tangerie, eucalyprus, green tea, tree moss and crisp amber.

R+Co followed the launch of this rinse with the new Lost Treasure ACV Conditioner, a hydrating formula that forms a protective shield on your strands and boosts shine.

dpHUE ACV Hair Rinse


The dpHUE MO is all about protecting hair colour and keeping it vibrant between salon appointments. This rinse is the brand’s hero product, using the buzz ingredient to boost shine, balance pH and offer conditioning. There are two levels, the classic that is best for thick, medium hair, and the LITE for fine locks.

Use instead of shampoo around once a week or after a workout to cleanse without stripping either your fresh hair hue or natural oils. The component has the ability to seal the hair cuticle and thus offer greater shine and frizz control, while also protecting against damage. In this product, it is set alongside nourishing powerhouses like argan oil, lavender extract and aloe vera that enhance the soothing and moisturising capabilities.

There is also the Apple Cider Vinegar Soothing Shampoo as part of the range with more cleansing agents for those times you want a deeper clean yet still are looking to maximise the aforementioned benefits.

Aveeno Itchy Scalp Soothing & Clarifying Shampoo with Apple Cider Vinegar for Greasy Hair


Aveeno sets its signature ingredient – colloidal oat – alongside apple cider vinegar in this shampoo to have a clarifying effect on the scalp but in a very gentle way. As with the entire brand’s portfolio, it has been created to be as sensitive as possible to potential irritation with the added bonus of being able to soothe itchiness, boost shine, and all while still removing greasiness and oil in a thorough way. Healthy, glossy locks may only be a wash away.

OGX Apple Cider Vinegar Clarifying Shampoo for Oily and Greasy Hair


Dip your toe into the world of apple cider vinegar in an inexpensive way by adding the OGX shampoo to basket. It puts the ingredient at the centre to give a gentle clean and encourage an enviable shine. It can be used by normal, fine and dry hair types to remove residue and, as is signature to the brand, forgos the need for sulfates.

Beauty Pie Super Healthy Hair Detox Wash Shampoo

Beauty Pie

Incorporate this shampoo into your hair wash rituals around once a week and it offers a thorough detox for those who love their haircare products. It is a salon-strength formula that will remove residue that has built up from the likes of dry shampoo, hair spray, oils and the likes. Not only is there the clarifying bonus of apple cider vinegar but it sets this ingredient alongside activated charcoal to act as a proper reboot for the scalp, removing toxins and impurities.

There’s also moringa seed peptides and quinoa-derived dye retaining ColourPlus Amino Acids that fortify the strength of the strands, encourage shine, and shield from environment aggressors.


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