Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) is not a common ingredient in Indian kitchens, but it is readily available across grocery stores, and it is as important to stock a bottle of it at home as it is to keep some virgin, cold pressed, Coconut Oil. We like it a lot, because it is a fabulous eco-friendly, natural, chemical free replacement for many items you regularly use in your home. Why ACV works so well is that it has a high acidic content, and has anti-bacterial properties.
So here’s a list of chemical laden items that you can replace with Apple Cider Vinegar.
- All purpose cleaning sprays: Replace harmful chemical spray cleaners with natural ACV home cleaning solution. Use this natural anti-bacterial, anti-fungal disinfectant to clean your kitchen counter top, microwave, bathroom tiles, windows etc. to get streak free cleaning. Simply mix a part of ACV with a part of water i.e. half cup of ACV to half cup water and store this solution in a reusable spray bottle, for use as and when.
- Air Fresheners: ACV has odor absorption and neutralizing properties. Use it in areas where the offensive odor is the strongest and watch it vanish soon after. All you need to do is pour some ACV into a shallow bowl and leave it in the area with strong smell. It works well for homes with pets too.
- Drain cleaner: When used with baking soda, ACV can help unclog kitchen drains. All you need to do is put about ½ cup baking powder to the drain, followed by a cup of ACV and a cup of hot water. Let the same sit for about 10 minutes before flushing it down with some boiling hot water.
- Pet flea collar: Replace your pets’ anti-flea collar or drug with a natural homemade remedy. All you need to do is mix one part ACV with one part water and store it in a spray can. Spray the same on your pet as and when required but make sure to avoid the eyes (it will sting).
- Personal deodorants: We don’t realize it, but deodorants are pretty harmful for us and the environment. Read this post to know why. It turns out, that ACV works brilliantly as a natural deodorant, owing to its odor absorption and bacteria fighting properties. ACV can be directly applied to the underarm area, and the smell of vinegar lifts off pretty soon. You could also make your own deodorant at home using this recipe.
- Face cleanser and toner: Using ACV as a toner on your face helps balance the skin’s PH level and thanks to ACV being an anti bacterial, it keeps acne at bay. Dilute some ACV in water, dip a cotton ball into it, and apply it your face to use as toner or face cleanser.
- Mouthwash: Considering ACV is great at fighting bacteria, use it as a mouthwash for fighting bad breath and for whiter teeth. Beware though: make sure to always dilute the ACV in water – being acidic, undiluted ACV can damage the tooth enamel.
- Sunburn salve: Though avoiding sunburn is a better option, some of us do get one even despite dousing a lot of sunscreen on. While there are plenty of natural cures for sunburn, using diluted ACV does the trick too. Again, please do ensure it is diluted. Apply it on the burnt area with a clean cloth or soak yourself in a cool bath with a cup of ACV added. Though acidic, it also balances the skin PH, thereby providing relief.
- Hair tonic: Not only does ACV help detangle those locks, reduce frizz, add shine, while reducing product build up, it also helps keep dandruff away (thanks to it being anti-fungal and anti-bacterial). For your once a week rinse, just mix one tablespoon ACV to a cup of water and wash your hair with this post your routine shampoo. Wash this off with cold water.
- Throat lozenge: Next time you feel you have a bad throat coming on, don’t reach for the throat lozenge instantly. Try using 1/4th cup ACV diluted with 1/4th cup warm water to get rid of those prickle causing germs in your throat and nip the problem in the bud.
There are two simple ways in which all of us can protect the environment every day:
- Reduce the amount of waste, and particularly plastic waste we put out everyday
- Reduce the amount of chemicals we use
A bottle of Apple Cider Vinegar can be used in so many ways, that it can help you cut the amount of solid waste you produce (think plastic shampoo and floor cleaner bottles), and it’s natural properties are a great replacement for chemicals.
Try these ideas out – and let us know what you think. If you have any others to share, we’d love to hear from you!