You may have heard the old saying, “You’ll catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.” I know I’ve heard it, and many clever variations on it, many times since I started using both honey and vinegar in my beauty routines! First I started washing my hair with white vinegar, then I started washing my face with honey, and then I started using apple cider vinegar as a “toner” to control oily skin on my face.
Apple cider vinegar works at least as well as toners from the drugstore, and it costs a lot less. Just buy a bottle at any grocery store (buy organic, if you can); pour half of it into an empty, clean bottle; and add water to dilute it to half strength. You could use distilled or boiled water to be really careful, but because vinegar is great at killing germs you’re unlikely to have any problems from bacteria that might be in tap water–I haven’t. Store it at room temperature.
To use the toner, soak a cotton ball or cloth wipe and rub it gently over your skin. (I save the cotton from the tops of pill bottles to use with toner. When I don’t have any of that, I use my cloth wipes.) Let the vinegar dry on your skin. The smell is intense at first but will go away in a few minutes. I don’t think it smells any worse than commercial toners!
Apple cider vinegar reduces my oily, shiny look without making my skin too dry. It’s very refreshing in summer when I feel sweaty. It seems to help a little when my nose is redder than the rest of my face. By killing bacteria on the skin, it helps to prevent blemishes. Some days, I can see gray stuff on my cotton or cloth after applying toner, which did not come off when I washed my face with soap; I think those particles come from air pollution, and they can’t be good for my skin!
This toner also helps to calm the itching and stinging of bug bites and sunburn. However, be careful applying it to really irritated or broken skin–it stings!