Published January 20, 2018 Shedding hair, dandruff and an itchy/irritated scalp — these are topics we receive emails about daily from women (and men!) who want to tackle their hair complaints naturally. Today I want to share my holy grail of mane maintenance that really gets to the ‘root’ of the issue: herbal ACV rinses! This antibacterial/antifungal remedy soothes inflammation, unclogs hair follicles, stimulates hair growth, and helps combat the bacteria/fungus associated with dandruff and other scalp conditions such as dermatitis and psoriasis. WHAT IT IS: An herbal apple cider vinegar hair rinse consists of: 1 part filtered water 1 part organic ACV 2 dropper bulbs of a nourishing herbal extract (I prefer licorice root and nettle for hair growth) After shampooing, mix the ACV, water, and herbal extract in a large mason jar. Leaning your head back, pour the rinse over your entire scalp, allowing mixture to run through your hair (avoiding contact with your eyes). Let mixture sit for 1-2 minutes, then rinse thoroughly and condition. I use this once a week. HOW IT WORKS + BENEFITS: The outer layer of the hair shaft (aka cuticle) is comprised of tightly packed, overlapping scales. The “acid mantle,” which is a slightly acidic film that maintains and protects our hair, helps these scales lie flat so that our hair is shiny, easily detangled, and protected from moisture loss. The acid mantle typically has a pH of around 4.5-5, which safeguards the scalp from fungal and bacterial growth. Unfortunately, many shampoos and hair products disrupt this naturally acidic pH. Apple Cider Vinegar rinses bring us back to the proper pH, which not only makes our hair look healthier, but also creates a hostile environment for the fungus/bacteria that is so often behind chronic scalp issues. ACV rinses also: detangle & reduce frizz decrease build up by gently exfoliating dead cells and residue from the hair shaft stimulate the scalp (thanks to vinegar’s tonic action that promotes blood circulation) decrease dandruff (via antifungal properties) On the herbal side, licorice root is packed with B-vitamins & is used in Ayurvedic medicine as a treatment for skin irritation and dermatitis.