Rice Water Rinse, The Benefits & Recipes
Exploring the reasons why it is important for your curly hair routine
Let's be honest why you have naturally curly hair we are always thinking of ways to make our hair stronger, healthier for some they may want longer curls. What ever your reason we are here to help you find the ways to do that. So lets dig into why rice water rinses can be such a hot topic within the natural hair community.
History of Rice Water Rinses:
Some of you may be asking is this just another trend or does this really work, Well.......Rice water has been used for many years on natural hair to help condition and strengthen your strands. The use of rice water goes as far back to around 1200 years ago in Asian history, mainly in Japan, where a lot of women were known to have strong, long lushes hair. There secret was combing their hair with rice water.
The Huangluo Yao village in China are known in the Guinness Book of World Records for being the 'World's Longest Hair Village', with them being known for their Rice Water Recipe.
But before we get into recipes lets talk rice water rinse benefits.
Benefits of Rice Water Rinses:
Rice water is known to contain vitamins, minerals, starch, amino acids and antioxidants that are beneficial for natural hair. Specifically rice water is rich in vitamin B and E, fibre, magnesium, manganese and zinc. This amazing combination support for fuller, thicker, shiner hair, it promotes hair growth and enhances hydration.
But this is not it there is a long list of amazing benefits rice water can give to your hair, they include:
- Increases hair elasticity, and bounce
- Adds volume, softness, curl definition and shine
- Smooths hair cuticle
- Reduces dandruff
- Promotes and stimulates hair growth
- Dissolves hard water build up
- Reduces hair loss
- Relieves dry, irritated, itchy and flaky scalp
- Penetrates the hair shaft to repair the hair from within
- Nourishes hair follicles.
Will everyone's hair benefit from rice water rinses ?
Rice water does contact protein, if you are protein sensitive this may result in your hair becoming hard and/or brittle after the use of a protein treatment.
If you do suffer from protein sensitivity you may want to consider if you choose to do this less regularly and maintain more moisture based treatments or consider using white rice over brown as brown rice contains more proteins.
For more information on protein sensitivity, check out our blog post.
Dr Khetarpal explains that their is no harmful chemicals or additives so this limits the risk, although you are dealing with scalp inflammation then best to show caution when using rice water as to avoid further irritation.
How to use a Rice Water Rinse:
Dr Joshua Zeichner who is the Director of Cosmetic and Clinical Research in Dermatology at The Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City recommends that you use a rice water rinse post-shampoo stage, ensuring your hair is rinsed through thoroughly with water. Pour the rice water onto your hair. Leaving it on for around 5-10 minutes and then rinsing it out and then following up with a regular conditioner/deep conditioner.
Rice Water Recipes:
The Yao Women Rice Water Recipe:
- White rice (preferably sticky rice)
- Pomelo Peels
- Tea Bran
- Fleece Flower root
Step 1: Rinse the rice to remove any impurities.
Step 2: Add water. Rub the rice in between your hands to extract the content of the rice. When the water becomes cloudy sieve it into another cooking pot to separate the water and rice.
Step 3: Heat the rice water until it boils.
Step 4: Add the other ingredients including the pomelo peels, fleece flower root, tea bran and ginger to the boiling rice water.
Step 5: Let the rice water cool at room temperature.
Step 6: Strain the rice water and let it sit in a sealed jar. Store the jar in a cool dark place for 3-4 days to allow fermentation to take place. If you want to go the extra mile some women have been known to use fermented rice that has been left for months.
Step 7: After the rice water has fermented lower your hair into the rice water and comb your hair to although the solution to even distribute through your hair strands.
Other Rice Water recipes:
Soaking your Rice
- Rice (organic, jasmine or basmati)
- Essential oil of choice
Step 1: Use half a pint of rice or a small cup of rice and rinse to clean our impurities.
Step 2: Put the rinsed rice in a bowl and add 2 pints of water or a couple of small cups of water into a bowl.
Step 3: Leave it to sit for around 30 minutes until you notice it has become cloudy
Step 4: Add some essential oils if you like, such as rosemary which is great for hair growth or peppermint oil to stimulate your scalp.
Step 5: Strain the rice from the water.
Step 6: As before lower your hair in the rice water ensuring each strand is coated.
Step 7: End of a conditioner of choice.
Fermenting Your Rice Water
Warning: fermenting rice can give a potent smell. It is not advised for anyone with a immune condition and/or pregnant due to bacteria created.
- Rice of choice.
- Optional: Conditioner/deep conditioner
Step 1: One small cup of rice.
Step 2: Rinse the rice to get our any impurities.
Step 3: Add around two cups of water.
Step 4: Leave this to sit and ferment within a dark room that is of temperature for around 24-48 hours.
Step 5: If you wish you can add some conditioner to this mixture especially if the smell is too potent.
Step 6: After the fermenting process, lower your hair into the rice water ensuring each strand is coated.
Step 7: Leave it to sit for around 30 minutes and then rinse our the rice water
Tip: If you do not use conditioner/deep conditioner with the rice water rinse it is recommended you do this after especially if you are planning to detangle your hair as this gives you extra slip, but you can do this in combination with the rice water.