DIY or Buy?: Apple Cider Vinegar

Welcome to our new series: “DIY or Buy”! We’ll be looking at popular ingredients and giving you our verdict on what’s better: the DIY version or the store-bought version. First up is apple cider vinegar, which has received a ton of hype over the last few years for its beauty benefits. Read on to find out what you should DIY and what you should buy!

Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar, the result of fermented crushed apples, is a wellness powerhouse. It’s full of probiotics and enzymes to aid in digestion, which strengthens your immune system. Its acidic properties also make it a great exfoliator for the skin, and can help remove scalp build up. Drinking apple cider vinegar daily has also shown an impressive array of overall health benefits, from managing blood sugar to controlling belly fat. With so many wellness benefits, it’s easy to see why apple cider vinegar has become a favorite DIY ingredient!


DIY: Apple Cider Vinegar Hair Scrub and Rinse

For a homemade apple cider vinegar scalp scrub, combine one part apple cider vinegar with two parts water. Then, mix in enough white sugar to make a scrub texture. Before shampooing, gently massage the scrub into your scalp and rinse thoroughly before shampooing. For a build up fighting apple cider vinegar hair rinse, mix one part apple cider vinegar with two parts water, and pour over wet hair before shampooing, being careful not to get any in your eyes. Follow with shampoo and conditioner as usual.

BUY: Renpure Apple Cider Vinegar Clarify + Shine Scalp Scrub and Scalp Serum

Renpure’s duo of Apple Cider Scalp Scrub and Scalp Serum will exfoliate and revitalize your scalp. In the scrub, sea salt provides the exfoliating power, while apple cider vinegar and coconut oils cleanse without stripping your hair of oil. I liked how strongly both products smelled of apple cider vinegar, as I felt that I was really reaping the benefits of “ACV,” as its fans say. Along with apple cider vinegar, moisturizing oils in the scalp serum help condition your hair from the roots down.


Not only was the DIY version way too messy, but the results were nowhere near as good as the Renpure duo. Even as someone who’s used to messy DIYs, the homemade scrub was a nightmare to rinse out. Also, the DIY hair rinse dried my hair out and made my strands smell like vinaigrette (even after washing out with shampoo twice!). The Renpure duo is easy to use and wash out, and doesn’t leave your hair smelling like a salad. My scalp is less itchy, feels balanced, and I love how the scalp serum leaves my roots feeling revitalized and tangle free. If you’re struggling with dandruff, oiliness, product build up, or dry scalp, give the Renpure Apple Cider Vinegar duo a try!


DIY: Apple Cider Vinegar Toner

To make a DIY apple cider vinegar toner, mix up one part apple cider vinegar with two parts water (Important note: you CANNOT use apple cider vinegar directly on your skin; it must be diluted with water). For an extra brightening boost, add the juice of half a lemon. Shake well and store in the fridge for up to one week! Be sure to do a patch test before using to make sure you’re not reactive to apple cider vinegar. Use this at night after cleansing (and avoiding the eye area) for a gently exfoliating toner that will leave your skin refreshed! I especially love using this in the summer, because the combination of the cold toner, fresh smell, and the tingly sensation is so revitalizing.

BUY: Volition Beauty Apple Cider Vinegar Resurfacing Pads

These exfoliating peel pads are a triple threat. With apple cider vinegar, glycolic acid, and witch hazel, the skin is exfoliated and toned. Expect smaller pores and a more even skin tone due to a host of brightening and resurfacing ingredients. Also, they’re individually wrapped, which makes them great to toss in a gym or travel bag!


While I actually really like the Volition exfoliating pads (they’re honestly great!), I just can’t justify the $64 price tag compared to the similar benefits of the DIY version. They both work well to refresh and gently exfoliate the skin, and you can save yourself $50 making it at home. So, unless you’ve got $64 burning a hole in your pocket, go for the DIY version!


DIY: Homemade Apple Cider Vinegar Lemon Tonic

For a homemade apple cider vinegar tonic, combine 1-3 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar (I recommend Bragg’s Organic Apple Cider Vinegar) with 8 ounces of water (hot or cold – it’s up to you!), the juice of half a lemon, and a dash of cinnamon. If it’s too tart for you, add a little bit of honey or an all natural sweetener. You can also rev up your metabolism by adding a dash of cayenne pepper to the mix. This is a great drink over ice in the summer, or served hot on a winter morning. The apple cider vinegar combined with the lemon juice, optional honey, and cinnamon/cayenne work together to detox, kick start your metabolism, and help your immune system and digestion.

BUY: Kevita Apple Cider Vinegar Tonic

There are a ton of great options for apple cider vinegar drinks in your local store, but one of my favorites is Kevita’s Apple Cider Vinegar Tonic with Meyer Lemon. The first ingredient is apple cider vinegar, and it’s also low in sugar and packed with probiotics. It’s light and refreshing, and is a great midday drink to boost your immune system.


Honestly, this is one is a matter of personal taste and preference, so it’s a tie! They’re both great options for detoxing, balancing your gut, and revitalizing your GI tract. It’s a matter of convenience and taste, so do what works best for you! If you want something quick and easy, go for the Kevita Tonic. If you want a customizable option, DIY it. Either way, your body will thank you!

Let us know your recipes for Apple Cider Vinegar DIYs in the comments below, and keep an eye out for our next “DIY or Buy”!

Want more DIYs? Check out our article with a recipe for Golden Milk Tea! Also, don’t forget to check out our new NYC Beauty Walking Tour!


Written by: Mallory Huron

Media by: Stephanie Flor

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  • Lisette Weavil
    Posted at 23:05h, 15 September

    The apple cider vinegar tonic is something I would do every morning and night for months while I went through a clean eating diet. I did the DIY version and noticed a HUGE difference in my weight loss.

  • Ari Guzman
    Posted at 13:26h, 12 September

    I use ACV DIY for masks from time to time to brighten my skin. Combine 2 Tbsp sour cream with 2 Tbsp honey and 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar or lemon juice. Apply to a clean face and leave on for 20 minutes. Rinse with warm then cool water.

  • Tonie
    Posted at 22:20h, 03 September

    I will definitely be purchasing products that contain ACV. It has many benefits but I am not chemist; I’ll just leave it to the pros and continue to support their brands

  • Cristy
    Posted at 16:31h, 30 August

    Apple cider vinegar has been such a huge impact with wellness and skin. I haven’t tried it personally yet because my skin is super sensitive but I may give it a try. As for wellness it’s always good to have the information of what to mix in. I always just thought it was straight up apple cider vinegar which is harsh. Some ingredients can help with drinking it. I’m happy this blog pointed out different things it can be used for.

  • michelle collins
    Posted at 00:02h, 30 August

    So interesting! I’ve used ACV as a scalp treatment before, once for a prolonged amount of time and it actually gave me some really natural looking highlights. It does have its downfalls as it is messy and does have a strong odor. Definitely going to give the Renpure a try.

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