Skincare Miracle

Well, what to say about myself?  I have the gift of gab and I rarely make things brief, so here goes:  My name is Melissa.  I’m the face behind Lulu & Sweet Pea.  I’m 28 years old and have 2 children with my gorgeous husband Shayne.
Shayne is a tattoo artist (a very good one) & we are both what you would consider “heavily tattooed.”
People are probably afraid of our appearance but we are pretty much nice, normal people.
We don’t worship the devil or dress in “goth” clothes or anything like that (lol).
We are very very quiet, low key, private people who stick to ourselves most of the time.
I don’t smoke or drink.

I don’t party or go to bars.

We raise our children ourselves without the help of family & we haven’t had a babysitter in probably 2 years (we could use a date!).

We are pretty much homebodies and we love to just hang out at home.

One of our favorite things is to get in bed with a bunch of junkfood & watch Food Network til 2am.

You can find me over at Lulu and Sweet Pea to learn more!

I am so excited right now.

I can’t even contain myself.
I have finally found the solution to a problem I’ve had with my skin since I was about 13.
Yep, zits. Ance. Breakouts. Whatever you want to call them.
It’s never been absolutely horrible, thankfully.
It’s just annoying. And at the age of 28, embarrassing.
I know I should be very thankful that I don’t have it that bad.
I pretty much always have 1 or 2 though, and of course it gets worse when I’m PMSing or have a random breakout.
I have blackheads on my nose and chin & I’ve tried everything to get rid of them, but they always come back.
I get those big suckers every once in a while on my chin. You know, those cystic ones that don’t really ever do anything besides get big & sore? Yeah, those are the worst!
I have acne scars. Again, not horribly. It hasn’t changed the texture of my skin, but I definitely have some dark spots that I’d like to fade.
And again, the pimples. There’s always at least 1 or 2, or 5 or 10, depending on the day.
It’s just embarrassing and I’m tired of having to always put concealer on about 20 different spots on my face after I put on my foundation.
Covering zits is a huge pain in the butt. And it’s not like people don’t know the zit is still there. Hello, now it just looks like a big ol’ flesh colored volcano on your face. Yeah, it’s really camouflaged.
So. Are you ready to hear my amazing new beauty secret?!
Keep in mind…I’ve tried it all. Proactiv, Murad, Neutrogena, Clearasil, Clean & Clear, Oxy, Clinique, Olay, Cetaphil, Nature’s Cure…I’ve even tried going to the dermatologist & getting on a prescription cream like Epiduo. Nothing worked. If anything, my face got worse because it was so irritated.
The amazing skincare item is
Apple Cider Vinegar!


No, your eyes are not deceiving you.
Apple freaking Cider Vinegar.
I put it on my face.
And you know what?
7 days later, I have zero pimples, far less blackheads, smaller looking pores, and no more oily skin.
It’s a miracle, I’m convinced!!!
So just how does it work? Apple cider vinegar (ACV) is an amazing little product, actually. It has antibacterial and antiseptic properties, and it also helps to balance the pH of your skin. Used daily as a toner or astringent it will balance the pH, which will help your skin to function properly…warding off bacteria and shedding dead skin cells at the proper rate so that pores don’t become blocked (blackheads!) and the skin remains healthy. Sounds like the perfect solution for a person prone to breakouts, clogged pores, and oily skin, right?
That’s why it works so perfectly.
Here’s what I did:
1. Get a plastic container to store your magical potion in. It can be any clean, empty plastic bottle with a lid. (an old shampoo bottle, lotion container with a lid, heck…even a ketchup bottle if you wanted!) I used an old travel size conditioner bottle. I rinsed it really well with hot soapy water for like 5 minutes to make sure all of the conditioner was out first.
2. Fill the bottle 3/4 of the way full with water. I used tap water, but I’m sure if you want to be all fancy like you could used filtered or bottled water. I don’t really care about that crap though so I used water straight from the tap.
3. Fill the bottle the rest of the way (1/4) with ACV. Let me again tell you that I didn’t get all fancy here. All I had in my cupboard was some leftover ACV from dying Easter eggs with the kids. It’s not organic, it’s not pure, it’s not unfiltered or whatever. It’s just the plain old Safeway Select generic ACV that probably costs about $3 for a liter of it. Now, I’ve read online everywhere that you should use organic, pure, unfiltered, expensive ACV for whatever reason. It’s supposed to be better. I would love to make a batch with some better stuff next time, but don’t be fooled. You can totally use the cheap stuff and get good results too. So it’s up to you. If you’re down with the more expensive, organic stuff then go for it. If you’re a cheap coupon clipper like me, grab the Great Value or Kirkland sized one & relish in the satisfaction of a good bargain. Either way is fine.
4. Close the bottle and give it a little shake & swirl. Then pop the lid open, pour a little out onto a cotton pad or cotton ball. (I prefer the cotton pads…I’m snobby like that).
5. After cleansing, swipe that baby over your entire face, avoiding the eye area and lips. You can bring it down onto your neck too, or as far as you apply your foundation. Now fair warning: if you get it too close to your eyes it will make them burn slightly & get teary. So start off a little further away from the eyes & see how sensitive yours are to the ACV toner. Mine got a little watery for a second but that was it. My skin didn’t burn at all…especially not as much as I’ve felt it burn after using an alcohol based toner or astringent! I’ve had my face totally feel like it was going to melt off after using that stuff before. This is way more gentle than any toner I’ve used.
6. Let your face dry completely. Then apply whatever serums, creams, lotions, gels, etc that you normally use. Then you can apply your makeup like you normally do, or if you’re doing this at night you’re done!
I’ve been doing this for a week now, twice a day, and my skin has never looked this good. At least not this good since I hit puberty.
No pimples at all. And I don’t care if this is TMI, but I’ve been PMSing all week, so I should look like a gross zit monster at this point! I should definitely not have clear skin right now. My blackheads are way less noticeable. I’m thinking of getting some of those pore strips to remove them & then see if they even come back, because I’m kind of thinking they won’t come back now! The rest of my pores are less noticeable. I know you can’t actually shrink the size of your pores, but they definitely look a lot smaller when they aren’t all clogged with a bunch of oil & stuff. And one of the biggest things that I just noticed yesterday? My face has zero shine to it. This is huge for me. I’ve always had super oily skin. Almost every item I use in my skincare routine is supposed to be mattifying for oily skin. But even using like 5 different products that are supposed to rid me of oil, I still end up getting shiny about an hour or two after applying my makeup. I can’t tell you how many times I have to blot & reapply my powder. Plus, by the end of the day my foundation looks cakey and all splotchy from being messed with so many times. Not anymore! Last night I looked in the mirror at 10pm when I went to wash my face for the night and I was shocked. My foundation still looked perfect from when I applied it at 8am before church. That’s…let’s see, 14 hours and it looked like I had literally just done my makeup. You know how great it looks right after you do it? Yeah, and then a couple of hours later it’s all ruined & half rubbed off & smudged? Mine didn’t budge at all. My foundation is supposed to be long wearing anyways, but it never seemed to last very long until now.
No more oil = no more shine = makeup stays in place all day!
The only other question I’ve gotten so far regarding the ACV toner is about the smell. How bad is the smell? Do you have to walk around stinking like vinegar all day? Or a salad? Or an Easter egg? The answer is no. While the smell is less than appetizing while you’re applying it, it dissipates in time. By the time I’ve slathered on all of my serums and creams and whatnot, the smell is gone. And you know what else? I haven’t even told my husband I’ve been using this stuff, and hasn’t said one thing about the vinegar smell. That’s how I know I don’t reek of it, because my husband absolutely hates the smell of any kind of vinegar. Like whenever I use it to clean out the coffee pot or if I buy a cleaning product with vinegar in it he whines about the smell making him want to vomit. Yeah, he’s that sensitive to it. I’ve been putting it on my face for a week now and I haven’t repelled him with the smell of nasty vinegar yet. I don’t even think I’ll tell him for a while though because I’m sure then he’d insist that he could smell it after that.
So have I convinced you yet that you should try making your own ACV magical potion?!
I sure hope so.
If you want to have beautiful, flawless skin like me…
Again, the I did 3/4 water & 1/4 ACV.
I’ve read online that some people like 1/2 water & 1/2 ACV.
For others, that’s way too strong, and they use more like 7/8 water & 1/8 ACV.
I think it just depends on your skin. I started with the ratio that I did because it sounded like it was somewhere in the middle. I figured if it burned or dried my skin out that I’d dilute it more. If it seemed like it was OK but could be better, I’d bump up the ACV amount a little higher. But for me, for now, the 3/4 water & 1/4 ACV seems to be working perfectly. I’d suggest starting around there and adjust it up or down depending on your skin’s reaction. If it’s burning, it’s too strong. If you don’t notice a change at all after a few days it might be too weak. You should be able to tell almost immediately if it’s too strong for your skin, so do whatever seems fit for you.
I hope this information helps a lot of people out there. As of right now I am not using any kind of topical acne medication combined with the ACV concoction, and I’m shocked at the transformation of my skin. Like I said, this has been a very frustrating, very annoying problem for me for years. At the age of 28 it would be nice to not have to worry about zits anymore. I would love to have the kind of skin that I didn’t really have to do much with. No heavy foundation, no goopy concealer splattered all over the place. I’d love to maybe just throw on some tinted moisturizer and call it good. I’m hoping I’m on my way to that point now that I have my trusty magical potion in my bathroom vanity. 
Now the next mission for me is to find the best way to fade some of these acne scars and dark marks. When I find something that works I’ll be sure to share it with all of you lovely people. And also, I’ll be comparing different foundations & going over my entire makeup and skincare routine for you guys later on. Until then, good luck & I hope your results are as great as mine!
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***Two Month Update:***
A lot of people have emailed saying they wish I had a before & after picture of my skin. I wish I did too. I regret being so vain. I don’t have ANY pictures of me without makeup on because I’ve always been self conscious about my skin. Now that I’ve been using ACV for about 2 months I feel like my skin is mostly under control (except for hormonal breakouts of course…I’m convinced there’s no cure for that). Here is the first (& hopefully last) ever public picture of me without makeup:
Ok. Maybe not completely without makeup, but I’m certainly not going to voluntarily take a picture of myself without mascara on. That would be crazy.
As you can see, my skin is not perfect. I have tons of freckles & discoloration from previous breakouts. Plus, I’ve been out in the sun a lot this week so I’m tanner now than usual & I’m slightly pink in some areas where I forgot to reapply sunscreen (oops). But I have NO new breakouts at the moment, which 2 months ago would have never happened. I’m on the right track! I’ve even started using a tinted moisturizer on days when I don’t want to wear a full face of foundation. It feels great to not have to worry every day about something as dumb as having a zit or two, or ten. People with great skin who have never struggled with acne might look at this picture of me without makeup & think “Wow, not impressed.” but if you have stressed over your skin for years like I have then this picture is proof that I’m finally doing something right. Thanks ACV!!!

Abby Smith

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19 thoughts on “Skincare Miracle

  1. The best thing I've found for lightening acne scars is hydroquinone. It is used in some acne scar products, but not all of them. It has been used since the 50's at least to fade scars, freckles, and dark spots on skin. It even made the pitting from my acne scars somewhat less bad. I've also heard of using lemon juice, but I don't know if it works. Anyways, I hope this information will help you, or at least someone, find something that works. I had horrible acne as a teenager and into my late 20's until I discovered mineral makeup and hydroquinone.

  2. Just found this and started trying it! Let’s see if it works for me, I sure hope so! I’ve had issues with my skin since I hit puberty, with my combination dry/oily skin which is super sensitive and prone to constant breakouts. I’m now 23 and sick of it, AND sick of buying all the products out there that claim to be the “best” and “super effective.” I haven’t tried out a simple home solution until now, so maybe it’s what I’ve been missing all along! Thanks for the tips!

  3. Curious, are you washing your face before applying the ACV solution? If so, what are you washing with?
    What creams are you using after applying?
    Big thanks for the tips!

  4. Oh my gosh I need to do this! I’m 14 and have had horrible acne since 3rd grade and I am tired of it! I think I’ll get some… Do you recommend any dark spot removers?

  5. I can’t wait to try this! I found this on pinterest. My skin is the same way, I’m only 15 so I would love to get this over with as soon as possible. I have tryed sooooo many different face washes and even other natural ones, I used ACV in my hair once but never thought of doing it on my face. Thank you so much!

  6. I can’t wait to try this! I turn 28 in two days and have the same problem. My skin apparently never got the memo about leaving puberty ugh! My question is; does it matter what you use as a cleanser? What do you recommend? I’ve been using Proactiv for YEARS and I’m sick of paying for it. I’d love to switch to a cheaper cleanser. Suggestions?

  7. OMG! Ok, I will have to definitely try this. I always break on my chin during my PMS time. Thank for the tip. I have the same skin type as you..oily, little acne, but not too much, and blackheads on my nose that I have to “clean” once a week. Oh and talk about embarrassing, I’m in my late 30’s! Lol. By the way, I use Obagi Nu-Derm Clear #3 for my dark spots and it totally worked.

  8. OK, so I was looking up DIY face masks on Pinterest and I found your burning face mask link, so I clicked on it. I was interested in doing the mask until I read that it had lemon in it …(I’m allergic to!) Then I found the link to to the ACV toner and clicked on that and read your post. I am turning 27 (this Friday..ahh!) and I have never had acne the way I do now at 27. Even as a teenager it wasn’t this bad. Now, is my acne really horrible? Not really, but it is SO frustrating! I have tried EVERYTHING! People have been giving me the run around and I can’t seem to find the right answers. So, I am going to try this ACV toner..(*takes deep breath*) Hope it works. Thank you so much for posting this! I am so happy that you finally found something that helped you. You are so pretty! 🙂

  9. When I was reading this post I was thinking that it sounded just like ME! Nothing will combat this oily skin! So now I’m trying this ACV toner… I hope it works the same for me!!

  10. Iv’e been using this on and off for a month or so now. But now, I’m going to keep using it b/c Iv’e SEEN your results. It sounds like you and I have the same type of skin and I’m excited for this to work!

  11. She’s right! This stuff totally works! I use it too and it is amazing! I have super sensitive skin and it’s going crazy right now from postpartum hormones, but it still does the trick. Great post!

  12. I am also 28 suffering with crazy acne for a long time. Did all the same things u did, even acutane, yikes! The acutane did help but the acne eventually came back esp during and after my second pregnancy. I am going to take a shot and try this b/c also like you i am tired of the pimples…
    Here goes nothing!

  13. I haven’t ever found anything home-made to combat dark spots, but DDF makes little pods with a cream you apply on dark spots and they’re all but gone in 3 weeks. Be sure to exfoliate first (the cream gets down in there better), and definitely make sure to squeeze every last drop out of the pod. You can buy them at It’s a bit pricey but so worth it! Good luck and thanks for sharing

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