Rosemary and Nettle Vinegar Hair Rinse

I’ve kinda got into the whole vinegar washing hair thingy. The OH thinks that I smell like a chip shop. That doesn’t really bother me, but I figured I’d try to find a way to alleviate the (nonexistent) vinegar smell and help with my rather  tender scalp. I came across the use of rosemary and nettle as plants to use to strengthen, soothe and protect hair and flaky/itchy scalps. Unfortunately I’ve had to rip up my rosemary plant as we’ve just had the garden done, and as much as I like getting my hands dirty, I’m not so fond of getting them covered in nettle stings (obviously I’d wear gloves, but I’m quite lazy). I came across some recipes that used both dried and fresh rosemary/nettles and in my usual way combined the different methods. I’ll outline how I made the hair rinse and then once it’s been used a couple of times, I’ll report back.


You will need:

  • Handful of fresh rosemary sprigs
  • Handful of chopped and dried nettles (I went for the picked and pre-dried option)
  • Cider Vinegar
  • Water
  • A small pan
  • A chopping board
  • Knife
  • Sieve of some sort (I used a common ol’kitchen one, but you can use cheesecloth, coffee filters, anything really)
  • Glass container for the rinse

First, take about 3 sprigs of rosemary and a handful of nettles and bash them up. I then chopped my rosemary up into chunks.

rosemary and nettles Rosemary and knife

Use 1 cup of water and put them all in a saucepan to heat up.  Once nearly boiling, leave for about 5 minutes and then remove from the heat. Let steep for about 5-10 minutes.

Rosemary and nettles in pan

Then take about 2 cups of cider vinegar and place in a large jar. When the rosemary/nettle tincture has finished steeping, pour through a sieve to catch the rosemary and nettle residue. Pour the remaining water into the jar along with the cider vinegar. Pop a couple of the remaining sprigs of rosemary in the jar with the concoction and then leave in the fridge or a cool, dark place for a couple of weeks.

Vinegar and bottle

Vinegar in a jar

When you want to use the concoction, drain off a cup or so and dilute 1:4 with water. You can use water that has had nettles steeped in it to be the cutting water if you want. This is what I have decided to do because the nettles that I had were chopped so finely that I thought it would be difficult to sieve out.

Once you want to use the hair rinse, follow the instructions in my previous blog post. If you have any alternative herbal suggestions or different methods to make a similar hair rinse, please let me know! I’m always up for trying different things!