When they say, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away,” were they talking about dermatologists? Hmm, prob not. But still, apples boast a bushel of benefits for your face and skin.
Apples and apple products like apple cider vinegar (ACV) may help:
- reduce the visible signs of aging
- exfoliate away dead skin cells
- help heal acne
- hydrate and moisturize
- tone and diminish the appearance of pores
- improve the appearance of dark circles
- kick-start hair growth (maybe)
Here’s a deep dive into the deets.
Ready to bite into the benefits? Without further ado, here are seven ways apples can promote healthy skin.
1. Reduce signs of aging
Apples are a solid source of flavonoids, a phenolic compound that’s been linked to beaucoup health benefits.
Studies show that flavonoids boast anticarcinogenic, antimutagenic, and anti-inflammatory properties. That means this versatile antioxidant might help protect your skin from free radical damage and oxidative stress.
In a 2019 study, researchers also found that flavonoids can help protect the skin from air pollution damage. Neat!
Because all those factors can speed up the aging process, apples might help stave off wrinkles. Just keep in mind, rubbing a Granny Smith on your face might not do much. We still need more research to show which exact apple extract concentrations or products can give you the best results.
2. Natural exfoliant
Apple cider vinegar (ACV) is a fab natural exfoliant. It contains alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs) like citric acid, acetic acid, and malic acid. According to a 2018 study, these acids can help slough off dead skin cells. This helps reveal the fresh AF skin cells underneath and can give you a dewy glow.
PSA: ACV can dry your skin out, especially when overused. A way around this is to dilute it with water and only use it a few times a week. But you should def discontinue use if you notice any redness, rashes, or irritation.
3. Banish blemishes
Remember those phenolic acids we mentioned earlier? According to a 2019 study, these plant compounds can help stave off environmental pollution. This might protect your skin from nasties that trigger an acne breakout. Also, since AHAs make good natural exfoliants, they can help unclog blocked pores.
Bonus: During a 2021 study, researchers found that acetic acid has antimicrobial and antioxidant properties that can protect your skin from fungal and bacterial infections. Woo!
4. It hydrates
Apples are overflowing with polyphenols. These micronutrients may help keep your skin supple and moist. Additionally, apples are high in water content. So, eating apples is a great way to keep your body and skin hydrated.
5. It’s a natural toner
Why spend big bucks on toner when all you need is some ACV? That’s right! The GOAT of versatile skin products is back. Thanks to its high tannin content, ACV has some sweet astringent properties. It may also help slay the bacteria on your skin thanks to its acetic acid content. And while we need more research to show the full effects, some peeps claim ACV can help reduce the appearance of pores.
More good news: Making an ACV toner at home is hella easy. Simply combine 2 tablespoons of ACV and 8 fluid ounces of purified water. Then dab a clean cotton ball into the solution and gently dab on your skin.
6. Reduce the appearance of dark circles
Ain’t no shame in the dark circle game. But if you’re not a fan of the raccoon eye look, apples might help.
The tannic acid found in apples may help lighten your under-eye area. Meanwhile, potassium, vitamin C, and vitamin B might help reduce puffiness and inflammation.
Just keep in mind, these perks are only anecdotal. We need more research to show if these benefits are legit. But since putting apple slices under your eyes can’t hurt, it might be worth a shot.
P.S. Be careful not to poke your eyes or get any ACV in them 👀.
7. May kick-start hair growth
According to a 2018 study, annurca apple polyphenols might help kick keratin production into high gear. This may encourage hair growth in folks who have patterned hair loss. Some folks also claim that apples can help balance skin pH and ward off dandruff. However, we def need more evidence on all accounts.
Ready to add apples to your skin care routine? You have a bunch of options.
- ACV boasts a treasure trove of potential perks. Use it as a light skin peel or toner.
- DIY an apple face mask to help hydrate and refresh the skin. (More on this in a minute!)
- Buy a high quality product that contains apple extracts and compounds.
- Keep things sweet and simple and eat some apples! They’re delicious and nutritious. Plus, you can find them at pretty much any grocery store for under a buck.
You’re sold on apples. You want these babies to change your life, starting with your skin. You’re giving them loving looks in supermarkets and being watched by security. You want to feel the soft, healing touch of those apples on your skin ASAP.
Well then, let’s make an apple mask!
- 1 tablespoon apple puree
- 2 teaspoons honey
- a pinch of cinnamon
- Plop all three ingredients in a small bowl.
- Mix them together until smooth.
- Cleanse your skin with your usual face wash.
- Liberally apply the apple mask all over your face, avoiding your eyes.
- Leave on for 15 minutes. Take selfies and send them to your friends.
- Wash off with lukewarm water.
- Pat your skin dry with a clean towel.
- Admire your new so-fresh-and-so-clean vibe.
Despite their superfood status, apples have some potential pitfalls. Ask Snow White, she’ll tell ya! But in case she doesn’t text you back, here’s the DL.
Basically, the only real risk here is ACV. While it does a top-notch job cleansing your face, it’s also used to clean toilets. That said, ACV can be pretty harsh especially if you have sensitive skin. It can do more harm to your skin than good if you overuse it.
As a reminder, dilute your ACV with water to reduce the concentration. This can make it easier for your skin to handle. You should also stop using it if you notice any irritation like rashes, itching, redness, or dry patches.
Apple has some pretty impressive (and proven!) perks for your skin. It contains nutrients and compounds that may help reduce the appearance of acne, wrinkles, dull skin, and dark circles. Apple cider vinegar also makes a great natural exfoliant and toner that won’t break your budget.
Adding apples to your skin care regime is super simple. You can buy a product that contains apple extracts or compounds. You can also make a dope DIY apple mask at home with a few simple ingredients.