Apple Cider Vinegar and Acne: What You need to Know

If you go through any health related message board or blog, one of the supplement recommendations you’re guaranteed to come across is Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV). People say it will cure anything from a sore throat to warts. A lot of these claims made are quite lofty. People claim that apple cider vinegar can even cure cancer and diabetes.

I always find it hard to believe that one single supplement can have such a dramatic impact on health, and don’t believe that taking Apple Cider Vinegar alone will get rid of acne, rather it plays into a larger picture of overall healthy and lifestyle.

My Story

When I began to take my health seriously a few years ago, ACV was one of the first products I bought. I use it all the time, and have even acquired a taste for it (yes, it is possible).

From personal observations I’ve noticed that ACV has improved my skin slightly, enhanced my libido and blood flow (if you catch my drift), and helped me fight off colds.

Yes, this stuff is good. Really Good.

What Makes Apple Cider Vinegar so Great?

One thing I hate about most health blogs is that don’t tell you why something works, rather they just shove it in your face and tell you to buy it. I guess I fell into that trap when I fist bought it, although it worked out well. To understand the health benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar, especially when it comes to acne, we must understand the nutritional and chemical properties of this substance.

Many say that Apple Cider Vinegar is so great because it is chock full of vitamins and minerals. This is false. In fact, ACV is pretty devoid of nutrients. And even if it was nutrient rich, it would be unlikely that you would get more nutrients from a tablespoon of ACV than a whole glass of freshly made fruit and vegetable juice.

Maybe I’m wrong; If I am please provide a professional research study supporting the opposing viewpoint. The studies I have are posted below.

So we still haven’t found the reason why ACV is so great. I’ll let Dr. Mercola answer that:

“It could be partially related to the fact that vinegar is a diluted acid, specifically acetic acid, which is responsible for its sour taste and pungent smell. The pH changes it induces may contribute to some of its actions.

Some of the dramatic benefits may also be derived from yet-to-be-identified phytochemicals (beneficial compounds in plants) that scientists are now discovering in a number of different foods. In fact, many of your strongest weapons against cancer are the phytochemicals found in fruits and vegetables.

One thing that apple cider vinegar is high in is acetic acid. Like other acids, acetic acid can increase your body’s absorption of important minerals from the foods you eat. Therefore, it is possible that drinking a mild tonic of vinegar and water just before meals might improve your body’s ability to absorb the essential minerals locked in foods. Apple cider vinegar might help you get more out of your leafy greens!” (Mercola)

So essentially, ACV’s health benefits are derived from helping the body to more effectively absorb nutrients that we get from other foods, as well as possibly being full of phytochemicals, similar to ones found in plants.

How does Apple Cider Vinegar directly fight acne?

Based on the evidence we’ve seen so far, ACV fights acne in a few different ways:

  • Phytochemicals
  • Digestion
  • Insulin

Is Anecdotal Evidence Enough?

There aren’t too many studies out there abut Apple Cider Vinegar; that’s just how the health industry works. The problem that arises from this s that when major health organizations fail to study alternative health treatments, people can spout off whatever they want about a substance, because there are no studies to refute their claims.

Is it possible that ACV could cure cancer? Of course, but there isn’t enough evidence out there to prove it entirely.

How to Take ACV


I do believe in the power of Apple Cider Vinegar and think it should be a staple in people’s health regimen’s, especially for people who suffer from acne. I take it everyday and recommend you do as well.

Here’s what I do:

First you’re going to need some Apple Cider Vinegar, but not any kind will do. It needs to be raw. I use, and always have used, Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar  (Affiliate Link). It’s what everyone uses, and they do a great job of manufacturing it.

Once you’ve got a bottle on deck, pour a tablespoon into a large glass. The smaller the glass, the less diluted it will be, which means that it will be easier to palate. If you’re not used to this stuff, it is pungent. As I said earlier, I have an acquired taste for it so I can drink it in a medium sized glass.

If you want, you could put in a teaspoon or two, and use the same glass, but just have two glasses. Or you could find a giant jug and fill it with water. Whatever works, as long as you’re getting around a tablespoon.

Next, fill the glass with lukewarm water. I do this because it aids with digestion, and is easier on the stomach.

Finally, slowly sip it.


I prefer to do it after meals, others say do it before. As long as it’s around meal time you should be fine.

Remember folks, this isn’t a miracle suplement. It’s good, but not life saving.

I think that covers it . Try this out, and I think you will be happy with the results.

photos: mindbodygreen; toofullforschool

Further Reading

NCBI: Apple Cider Vinegar