Vinegar has been used as a remedy for a wide range of ailments for thousands of years. When taken internally, the health-giving benefits ascribed to vinegar include the ability to: lower cholesterol, regulate blood glucose levels, aid dieting, and treat infections. Some believe it can improve the appearance of stretch marks when applied as a topical treatment.
Proponents of vinegar as an effective home remedy for stretch marks claim that acetic acid in the household ingredient exfoliates the upper layers of skin to reveal the smoother, more evenly pigmented skin underneath. Enzymes, minerals, pectin, and other nutrients provide additional skin benefits by stimulating circulation and regulating pH levels, according to Care2.com.
Apple cider vinegar or white vinegar should be applied to stretch marks twice a day using a cotton ball. Treated areas of skin will feel smoother and more supple immediately, with more noticeable results promised in 3 to 4 weeks.
Vinegar is readily available from any supermarket, and most people will probably already have a bottle in their kitchen cupboards. Vinegar is easy to apply, and considerably cheaper than over-the-counter products that promise to treat stretch marks.
Vinegar's skin care benefits are largely based on folklore and anecdotal evidence; there is no scientific evidence to support claims that vinegar is an effective treatment for stretch marks. Vinegar is far from fragrance-free when applied to the skin, and the variable acid content of apple cider vinegar can cause an adverse reaction in some people.
The degree of benefit gained from any topical stretch mark treatment will be affected by an individual's age, skin tone, and diet, according to MedicineNet.com. Those seeking an effective treatment for their stretch marks should consult a board-certified dermatologist.