10 Home Remedy Uses for Distilled White Vinegar

Updated on October 21, 2017
Austinstar profile image

Lela has worked in medical laboratory sciences, as an MLT and then a ASCP, for over 30 years. Her B.A. is in journalism.

Distilled White Vinegar

Distilled White Vinegar
Distilled White Vinegar | Source

There are lots of uses for distilled white vinegar!

1. Ringworm

I have raised many pets in my lifetime and there is a very common fungal infection that humans get from pets. It's called ringworm, but it's not a worm. It's a skin infection and it is very easily cured!

Just soak a cotton ball with distilled white vinegar and gently clean the area that shows the typical round, red irritation. Be careful around the eyes! This works for cats, dogs, humans, horses, or even inanimate objects. Vinegar's main component is acetic acid and fungal infections do not like acidic environments! This is a safe and effective treatment that will not harm you or your pets. It does take a few weeks to totally get rid of the fungus, but keep after it for best results. Remember, cats hate the smell of vinegar, so you might want to wrap kitty in a towel before treatment.

What Does Ringworm Look Like?

Appearance of ringworm
Appearance of ringworm | Source

Athlete's Foot, Insect Bites, Yeast Infections, Cat Spraying

2. Athlete's foot

Athlete's foot is also a fungus. Vinegar cures this too! It's cheap enough to use daily to soak your feet in for a few minutes. If your toenails are infected, it will kill that fungus also! Now, this really does take time, maybe even months, but if you make it a habit to dip your feet into vinegar once a day, you'll never have to worry about athlete's foot again.

After dipping your clean feet, just pat them dry and go about your daily routine. You might want to dust your shoes lightly with corn starch to keep your feet nice and dry. Moisturize your feet at night to keep them soft.

3. Insect bites

Did you know that white vinegar is one of the best treatments for the sting of insect bites? Strangely enough, packing a small bottle of vinegar is a good idea when going to the beach too. Jellyfish stings are stopped instantly with vinegar. Ant bites, bee stings, and other biting or stinging insect sites can be treated with vinegar. Pain go away!

4. Yeast infections

Some people get yeast infections in the folds of their skin. Straight vinegar is good way to cure these outbreaks. Just dab it with a soaked cotton ball as in the ringworm treatment. Keep doing this daily and for a few days after the infection clears up. This will eliminate yeast growth on the skin. You can also put a cupful of vinegar in your bathwater for those hard to reach places. Consult a medical professional before self-remedying reproductive issues and discomfort internally.

5. Stop cats from spraying the furniture

Cats really don't like the smell of vinegar and even in low doses, you can apply vinegar to the lower parts of your furniture once a week to keep cats from spraying. You can liberally use it outdoors to keep cats out of your gardens and from spraying the edges of your house.

Cats spray to mark their territory and when they smell vinegar, they don't want to claim that particular area.

Stings at the Beach

Used in Australia for any kind of Jellyfish sting or other marine animal sting.
Used in Australia for any kind of Jellyfish sting or other marine animal sting. | Source

More great uses for white vinegar!

6. Strawberries are good for you

Everyone knows strawberries are good for you. We know wine is good too. You can combine the two using red wine vinegar to soak strawberries in. Very interesting taste that is really good for you on the inside!

7. Lose weight with apple cider vinegar

No one is really sure why this works. Vinegar is just good for the inside and outside of a person. Mix a Tablespoon of apple cider vinegar and a cup of water and drink daily. Somehow this helps your intestines to absorb good minerals and nutrients from the food you eat and eliminate the fat.

Some studies have shown that this really works for weight loss. Well, you've tried everything else haven't you? Why not give this a shot. Apple cider vinegar is cheap and easy to find even in your grocery store. There are also supplements containing apple cider vinegar that you can buy that claim to work for this purpose too.

8. Clear a clogged drain

You know that experiment that they do in science class to make a volcano and make it erupt? Well, big secret here, they use vinegar! (and baking soda). You can use this same principal at home (no not the school principal) to clear a clogged drain.

Just pour about a cupful of baking soda down the drain, let it settle, then add a cup of warm vinegar (heat in the microwave for about a minute). Use a glass container to heat the vinegar in. Voila', the drain will clean itself. Flush with hot water after the bubbling stops.

9. Cure dandruff and head lice

You can do one or the other or even both at the same time! Wet hair, pour on vinegar, let soak, then shampoo as usual for dandruff. For head lice, use a nit comb on the vinegar soaked hair to remove all of the head lice. The vinegar makes them come off of the hair shaft easily, so you can get them all. No more horrible lice treatments!

10. Relieve chronic heartburn

This works for most people, but if you have an ulcer, I would seek a doctor's advice. Just down a tablespoon of vinegary daily; it is best to dilute it in with an 8 oz glass of water. Some folks swear by this cure. It may even help you lose weight!

Bonus - Keep your CPAP humidifier holder free of mold

You can use this for any humidifier. I sleep with a CPAP device and I have to rinse out the water holder daily. My respiratory therapist said to rinse it with a little vinegar daily also to keep the mold and mildew out of it. Then just turn it upside down to dry. Works like a charm. You have to rinse the vinegar out at night just before use or it will smell like vinegar, but it doesn't take much to rinse it. I use filtered water.

Leave comments below if you think of other great uses for this cheap and plentiful home remedy!

How to Clean a Shower Head With Distilled White Vinegar

Favorite Uses for Distilled White Vinegar

What is your favorite use for distilled white vinegar?

See results

Questions & Answers

    © 2010 Lela

    Comments - What do you do with vinegar?

      0 of 8192 characters used
      Post Comment

      • Austinstar profile image

        Lela 8 months ago from Somewhere in the universe

        Shyanna, vinegar might help poision ivy, but the very best treatment for the rash is a hair dryer! It's a trick a nurse told me about when I was in the e.r. for a very bad case of poision ivy.

        Just gently heat the rash up with a hair dryer on high. Don't burn yourself, but you will instantly feel relief from the itch! The heat will also dry out the rash. Just keep it clean and don't scratch it. Also, there is a product that neutralizes the oil, it's called Tecnu available at Walgreens.

        I also wrote a hub on poison ivy, and I have been hospitalized with the nasty stuff.

      • profile image

        Shyanna 8 months ago

        Can i put distilled white vinegar on my poison ivy ?

      • profile image

        LF 18 months ago

        Apple cider vinegar is also good for ringworm and cats often like the taste of it so it's great to use on cats with ringworm.

        White vinegar with water is also a great solution for getting dried stool off litter boxes. Nothing lifts it off like vinegar.

      • Glenn Stok profile image

        Glenn Stok 21 months ago from Long Island, NY

        I also use vinegar for cleaning countertops. And I have used it to clear drains, but you taught me an additional step - to use backing soda with it. I'll have to try that next time I need to unclog a drain. I did see your last comment and I have had success with hair in drains. It just takes longer. I let the vinegar stay in the drain a full day, then flush with hot water.

        I also found your suggestion about strawberries and vinegar interesting. I'll try that too. I usually take a teaspoon of vinegar every day, so this is a better way to do that.

      • Austinstar profile image

        Lela 2 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

        I did try the clog unblock feature of baking soda + vinegar in a drain. It works better on greasy kitchen sink clogs than it does on bathroom tub hair clogs. Hair clogs are hard to dissolve with anything! But I would try it first before using harsh chemicals.

      • ketage profile image

        ketage 2 years ago from Croatia

        I throw a little bit of soda bicarbonate down the drain, then pour in vinegar. Works wonders on a clogged drain.

      • nicomp profile image

        nicomp really 2 years ago from Ohio, USA

        I use it to clean lime and calcium deposits from faucet strainers. We have hard water in this neck of the woods.

      • mariekbloch profile image

        mariekbloch 3 years ago

        White distilled vinegar is also the safest cleaning product for aquariums. It's particularly effective against hard water that leaves a lot of white build-up on clear surfaces, so it does a great job cleaning. While I'd avoid getting any in the water if you can help it, there's no consequence if a tiny amount is introduced, unlike other cleaning products.

      • Austinstar profile image

        Lela 3 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

        There are a lot of home remedies that really work, but there are some that are quite dangerous also. Wow. You just gave me an idea for another hub!

      • liamhubpages profile image

        liamhubpages 3 years ago

        I find home remedies more useful than modern medicine, at least in some cases.

      • Austinstar profile image

        Lela 3 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

        Check with your tattoo artist. If it's an old tatt, it's probably ok, but it depends on the ink.

      • profile image

        Sk 3 years ago

        I want to soak my feet in white vinegar to help with toenail fungus. But I have a tattoo on my foot. Will it harm the tattoo?

      • Austinstar profile image

        Lela 5 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

        There is some evidence that White Line disease is a hoof fungus and therefore white distilled vinegar will definitely help.

        However, if the disease is caused by an anaerobic bacteria, I would treat it with both vinegar and a vet prescribes antibiotic.

        At any rate, vinegar will not harm the hoof, but I would not keep the horses hooves in a vinegar solution for more than a few minutes per day.

      • profile image

        stafford1959 5 years ago

        Has anyone used white vinegar on their horses hooves to treat seedy toe (White Line disease)?

      • laadhy profile image

        laadhy 5 years ago from Maldives- The Paradise on Earth

        Really very informative. thanx for sharing

      • Austinstar profile image

        Lela 5 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

        Eczema is a skin disorder not caused by ringworm or other parasites. I don't think vinegar will work for it.

        Try this instead - http://www.udderlysmooth.com/order.shtml

        And let me know if it works.

      • profile image

        raven 5 years ago

        can you use it for eczema?

      • Austinstar profile image

        Lela 5 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

        Vinegar is a great natural remedy. I just recently learned it is bad for your teeth, so don't use it as a mouthwash.

      • Ruchira profile image

        Ruchira 5 years ago from United States

        wow Lela this was such a usefulhub. I had no clue about the insect bites. my kid is allergic to insect bites and i will do this next time. I usually use white vinegar to clean my hard wood floors.

        voted up as useful and interesting and sharing it across!

      • Austinstar profile image

        Lela 6 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

        That depends on what is in the lotion. Vinegar is acidic and if mixed with an alkaline the result will be neutral, which defeats the purpose. Also, vinegar reacts strongly with some substances like baking powder, so if the lotion has baking soda or powder, I would not mix them.

        What you can do is use one in the morning and one at night. Or use them at different times like morning and afternoon, etc.

      • profile image

        Nokia 6 years ago

        Can you use the vinegar and the lotion the dr prescribed at the same time for ringworm or just one?

      • Austinstar profile image

        Lela 6 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

        Great news. I'm happy to have helped.

      • profile image

        Nadia Sikder 6 years ago

        I Love U Vinegar and the great people with great suggestions. I owe my puppy's life to you all!

      • oceansnsunsets profile image

        Paula 6 years ago from The Midwest, USA

        Hi Austinstar, I had no idea of this information. Thanks a lot for sharing. A few years back, I recall hearing of some things that vinegar was good for. I recall hearing some about apple cider vinegar in particular also. Great to know! I love learning new things from other hubbers. :)

      • Austinstar profile image

        Lela 6 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

        I've tried apple cider vinegar for weight loss. It helps a little and every little bit helps!

      • JamaGenee profile image

        Joanna McKenna 6 years ago from Central Oklahoma

        Yes, wish I'd known about this when the drain on both sides of my duplex was stopped up. Took three visits by the maintenance guys AND two visits by a plumbing company to get the drain draining again, and they were never able to determine if the stoppage was on my side or the neighbor's. Thank heavens I wasn't paying the bill! I'll sure try this if it happens again though.

        Also wish I'd know to use vinegar on ringworm when my kids were little and got it at least once a year.

        I've heard apple cider vinegar is good for weight loss but have never tried it. Will now. Those 20 extra pounds that won't go away better be veddy veddy scared! ;D

      • Gypsy Willow profile image

        Gypsy Willow 7 years ago from Lake Tahoe Nevada USA , Wales UK and Taupo New Zealand

        Wonderful hub wish I'd read it before I paid a fortune to the plumber to clear my drain! I shall print this out and put it on my fridge!

      • profile image

        malificent 7 years ago

        i just started using vinegar for a chronic yeast infection my dr gave me diflocan and creams nothing works but the vinegar is clearing it right up and sooo helps the itching :)

      • Austinstar profile image

        Lela 7 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

        Vinegar is really a good thing to have around the house. I use it daily. Thanks for the read!

      • christryon profile image

        christryon 7 years ago

        Don't tell your Dr. about this remedy. It might put him out of business! Great tips on the uses of vinegar. You could start your own company and label it as a "miracle cure." I have heard of most of these remedies. I didn't know about its usefulness on cats.

        Thanks for writing such an informative article.

      • Pollyannalana profile image

        Pollyannalana 7 years ago from US

        Wish I had seen this earlier, my son thinks he has ring worm but it started like two half circles not meeting and white blister like and he is using different things, but the fungal medicine make him hurt and it is high up on his hip. Well anyway I will have him try white vinegar. My cat is sixteen and she is just beautiful and I used contact lens medicine in her eyes and somehow it made it to her sinuses and lungs too! No more black eyes, or wheezing! You just never know, I love sharing info here, even if I am a day late and a dollar short!


      • profile image

        sandy 7 years ago

        My mother said this really works for stinky feet.

        Soak your feet in vinegar and warm water. If your shoes smell, put vinegar in a spray bottle and spray the inside of shoes and sneakers. Hope the helps.

      • profile image

        GeorgiaMom 7 years ago

        Here is another good use with vinegar "Break a fever" I hate giving my children medication if it can be avoided. I always break their fevers naturally by rubbing them down with luke warm water and vinegar mixed. Rub down the body, the arch of their feet, cover them up and then continously gently wash their face, neck, behind the ears. They will smell something awful, but the fever will gradually drop "naturally".

      • TattooVirgin profile image

        TattooVirgin 8 years ago

        Great stuff thanks for the helpful tips with vinegar. ttyl

      • Pollyannalana profile image

        Pollyannalana 8 years ago from US

        Glad I ran across this, very interesting, I will bookmark it, great to know. I always have a jar of white vinegar and wonder why, now I know! Great hub.

      • Austinstar profile image

        Lela 8 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

        Wow, I'm going to have to pour it on the poison ivy oak that's growing in the back yard! Thanks for the tip!

      • daisyjae profile image

        daisyjae 8 years ago from Canada

        Vinegar is great for washing floors too. I pour a bit in with hot water. Also good for killing weeds. It will kill all plants actually so be careful around your lawn.

      • prasetio30 profile image

        prasetio30 8 years ago from malang-indonesia

        Really nice information. I liked to consume apple cider vinegar. And I felt healthy right now. Thanks you very much.

      • Austinstar profile image

        Lela 8 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

        Ear infections are soooo painful! I used to swim a lot so I discovered Swim Ear for preventing ear infections, but I'll be willing to bet that a drop of vinegar in each ear after swimming would work just as well.

      • habee profile image

        Holle Abee 8 years ago from Georgia

        Great tips! It also helps with some ear infections!

      • theherbivorehippi profile image

        theherbivorehippi 8 years ago from Holly, MI

        Are you kidding me with all this!! Ok..so I knew vinegar is good to clean my cutting board but that's about it. This is awesome! My aunt has 4 cats in her neighborhood that belong to "someone" that keep coming to the fence causing her dogs to bark and she is now on her third ticket for "disturbing the peace"...which we are sure its the owner of the cat calling the police. I'm going to tell her to try spraying this along the fence where they keep congregating. This is such a great hub! OH...and insect bites! I am always the "one" person that gets bit when no one else is being bothered. Thanks for sharing all of these wonderful ideas!

      • Austinstar profile image

        Lela 8 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

        Some home remedies really worked. Some were just pure torture. Remember castor oil?

      • breakfastpop profile image

        breakfastpop 8 years ago

        Interesting hub. White vinegar and apple cider vinegar really have amazing properties!

      • BkCreative profile image

        BkCreative 8 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

        I am soooo glad to see us returning to home remedies. Our moms and grandmothers used to be the healers - and what they did worked. One good reason it worked is because it was individualized - rather than the one size fits all toxic pharmaceuticals.

        I'll bookmark this for reference!