Rosemary Nettle Cider Vinegar Hair Rinse

Rosemary Nettle Cider Vinegar Hair Rinse

You know those times when you’re just so busy, your creativity falls to the side? (Hello, Creativity? Where are you!)

This is a super fast project for those times.   To coin a phrase from one of my favorite infomercials, this is a Set it and Forget it project.  There’s no measuring.  There are no rules.  Just stuff some fresh herbs in a jar, cover up and let them steep for a couple of weeks.

This simple project will give you the most amazing rinse for silky smooth and shiny hair.  Only possible drawback?  It’s vinegar.

But once you get over that mental block – vinegar on your hair! – you will positively fall in love with your new hair rinse and never go back to thick, chemically conditioner again.

Why would I want to put vinegar on my hair

Vinegar is one of those vintage remedies that I read about for years before I worked up the courage to try it.  Isn’t that old-fashioned? Wouldn’t I smell like vinegar?  Besides, the only vinegar I used was rich, sticky-sweet and expensive balsamic on my salads (and strawberries).  What was up with this Apple Cider Vinegar thing anyway?

Oh, how wrong I was.  Apple Cider Vinegar not only makes a deliciously refreshing drink in the hot summer months but has a ton of beauty-boosting properties too.

Since vinegar is acidic, when you use a small amount to rinse your hair, it helps remove buildup and deposits from other products.  It also seems to make my hair really shiny and smooth.  And no, you won’t smell like vinegar once your hair is dry!


Why rosemary and nettles?

Rosemary is a stimulating herb traditionally used to encourage hair growth.  Plus it smells great!

Stinging nettles are a nutrient and mineral rich plant that traditionally used to strengthen the hair and prevent hair loss.

I also like these two plants because they’re easy to find.  If you live in England, you’ll have more stinging nettles than you know what to do with…  If you don’t have fresh nettles, you could use some dried nettles … or just leave them out entirely!

There are also endless possibilities to customize your hair rinse:


What other plants could I put in this hair rinse?

OH the possibilities!  You could try almost any aromatic herb that you have in the garden, but here are some favorites…

Chamomile – lightens blonde hair

Sage – darkens hair (over time… I’m still testing this myself)

Peppermint – refreshing & invigorating

Rose – soothing and moisturizing, for dry hair or sensitive scalps


How to make Rosemary and Nettle Hair Rinse

This recipe is So Easy.

  1. Take a quart-sized jar with a lid, and put one handful each of fresh rosemary and nettles.  [extra credit: crush the plants a bit with your hands to release the essential oils]
  2. Cover completely with Apple Cider Vinegar.  Put the lid on the jar.
  3. Let the jar sit for 2-3 weeks (or more! Up to 6 weeks is fine), shaking occasionally when you think of it.  No pressure.
  4. Pour through a strainer to remove the plants, and put the vinegar in a pretty bottle in your shower.


How to use your Rosemary and Nettle Hair Rinse

You’ll need your Rosemary and Nettle Hair Rinse and a small cup or plastic container (about 1 cup or 250 ml in size, I don’t like to use glass in the shower!)

  1. After washing your hair (or whenever you want to do a rinse), put a splash of Rosemary Nettle Hair Rinse in your plastic cup (about 1 Tb. of rinse).  Fill the rest of the way with water from the showerhead (about 1 cup of water or 250 ml.)
  2. Pour the diluted rinse through your hair, concentrating on the ends.  If you have long hair, you can put the ends of your hair directly in the rinse cup.
  3. That’s it!  Either leave as is, or after a few minutes do a cold-water rinse over your hair to rinse away the vinegar.  It’s totally up to you.  I usually leave the vinegar in.

You will smell a bit of the vinegar on your wet hair, but the smell disappears once the hair is dry.

If the smell bothers you, try adding a few drops of Rosemary Essential Oil to the entire bottle of your Vinegar Hair Rinse.  Or simply do a good cold-water rinse after using the vinegar.  I honestly haven’t found this a problem though after a couple of uses – the end result of shiny silky hair is so nice,  I don’t mind the momentary vinegar smell.


Now, I’d love to hear from you.  Have you ever made an infused vinegar hair rinse?  How did you get over that initial fear of putting vinegar on your hair?  Any tips for first-timers? Let us know in the comments!

About the author

Amanda Cook is an author, entrepreneur, and alchemist. She helps successful women create lives of meaning & magic by connecting with the seasons. Her work has appeared on BBC Radio 4, The Sunday Telegraph, Natural Health UK Magazine, and more. Learn more at

Amanda Cook is an author, entrepreneur, and alchemist. She helps successful women create lives of meaning & magic by connecting with the seasons. Her work has appeared on BBC Radio 4, The Sunday Telegraph, Natural Health UK Magazine, and more. Learn more at

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  1. I thought I was reading about a rinse to stimulate growth, but that wasn’t mentioned at all in this article.

    1. You can leave it out and just use a water based rinse (like a strong herbal tea), but this rinse will only last a couple of days and you’ll have to throw it out. ACV rebalances the pH of your hair/scalp and also helps the product last a lot longer.

  2. Thank you Amanda for this recipe. I’m wondering like Daksna how you would use dried herbs instead of fresh?

  3. How would you adapt this recipe when using dried herbs? Would they be added directly to the ACV and steeped for several weeks or would it be better with dried herbs to make a tea out of them and combine the tea water with the ACV rather than diluting the ACV with plain water?

    1. You need to dilute the apple cider vinegar rinse with water … and once it’s diluted, it won’t keep very long (only a few days.) So if you felt like mixing it everyday and putting it in the spray bottle, that would work fine. But I just find it easier to mix in a cup in the shower and pour it through my hair.

  4. My Great grandmother used to save any left over tea and rinse her hair with it. It worked well as the tea stains the silver stands.

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