Should you be using rice water for hair? Here’s our complete guide on how to make it, plus its benefits.
After Kourtney Kardashian shared sister Kim’s secret to long, healthy, and thick hair on Poosh, the #RiceWaterChallenge broke the internet. This simple DIY for healthy and lustrous hair is suddenly on everyone’s to-do list. But this practice of using rice water for hair dates back to the Heian Period in Japan. Rice water was used by the court ladies of that period—as it was known to promote hair growth. Yao women of the ancient Chinese village of Huangluo, known for their floor-length hair, also use rice water for hair.
But does this trend truly help you get thick and long hair? Read on to find out how beneficial rice water is for hair and how to make it.
What are the benefits of using rice water for hair?
Rice grains have a high starch content (70-80 percent) and are packed with amino acids, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that are saturated when soaked in water. All this goodness makes rice water extremely beneficial for your hair. It also:
- Repairs damaged hair
Rice water contains inositol, which penetrates damaged hair and repairs it from the inside out. By using rice water for hair, you can also prevent future damage.
- Strengthens hair
Rice water contains a high amount of starch. The starch from the rice coats hair strands, giving the hair a thickening effect. It can also strengthen the hair shaft.
- Boosts shine
Since rice water is rich in vitamin E, it is a blessing for people with frizzy and dull hair. Rice water provides a shiny and glossy finish to your hair— as it adds hydration. It also prevents split ends.
- Improves scalp health
The vitamins, amino acids, and other trace minerals present in rice water improve scalp health. It also clarifies dirt and buildup from the scalp, leaving your scalp clean and healthy.
- Potentially promotes hair growth
There is little scientific evidence that rice water promotes hair growth. However, rice water is rich in antioxidants that nourish the hair follicles, repair damaged cells, and create a healthy environment for hair growth.
How to make rice water for hair?
What you need:
- 1 cup organic rice (any rice)
Step 1: Rinse the uncooked rice, and drain.
Step 2: Place the uncooked rice in a bowl and add 1-1 ½ cups of water. Let it soak for at least an hour (you can let it sit for up to 24 hours) to allow fermentation.
Step 3: Strain the rice and save the water.
Step 4: Refrigerate the rice water until you’re ready to use it. You can store it for up to a week.
How to use rice water for hair?
Step 1: Wash your hair with shampoo and rinse as normal.
Step 2: Take the rice water you prepared and massage the rice water into your hair and scalp. Let it sit for at least 20 minutes to an hour.
Step 3: Rinse your hair.
Does rice water work for all hair types?
Although rice water can be used by everyone, people with dry hair and scalp should use it with caution. Rice water is rich in starch and can have a drying effect on the hair and scalp. To avoid it, use rice water in conjunction with a conditioner. People with fine hair or low porosity hair should also be careful while using rice water for hair. Rice water can create a protein buildup on fine hair, which can cause dryness and hair damage.