Rice Water – Here’s an Easy Tip and Recipe To Grow Your Hair

Rice water: If you haven’t been living under a rock, you’ve probably heard about the rice water challenge.

Literally hundreds of women all over the internet have been trying this hair hack for incredible growth.

But does rice water really do what it says it does, is she the girl she thinks she is? Here are some facts about the rice water method and why you might want to try it out.

Disclaimer: After succumbing to the pressure of the internet, I have a bottle of rice water brewing on the stove. And yes, l’ll leave a recipe below.

Okay, first things first. Your Hair Is Not actually Growing. Go back and read that again.

Sorry to disappoint you, but your hair isn’t growing. Rice water has a compound called inositol which helps to make your hair more elastic and have less surface friction.

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If rice water isn’t growing my hair, what’s really happening? 

Your hair is just becoming more elastic, which means less knots and less prone to breakage (which is great!). So, rice water is full of amino acids (the building blocks of protein) and minerals which contribute to the elasticity of your hair.

Where does the rice water method come from?
So the cool thing is that the rice water treatment is practised by the Yao women of China, who actually soak their hair in rice water and then rinse it in a natural stream. (I mean, we live for this luxurious energy!). Research also suggests that their natural diet and relatively stress-free lifestyle also contributes to the growth of their hair, so… don’t expect waist-length in a week.

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Who Should Not Try The Rice Water Method? 

  • If you are protein sensitive, then the rice water method is not for you. (If after you use a protein treatment, or even rice water, your hair feels crunchy and brittle – that’s a sign that you may be protein sensitive).
  • If you have low porosity hair, then you need to be cautious with protein treatments.

This is because your cuticles struggle to absorb the larger protein molecules. If this is the case, it’s best to spray the tips of your hair, rather than your entire head. The tips of your hair are older and usually a higher porosity (think of them like a roof with holes in it, they’re more open to receiving moisture).

WHAT’S A GOOD RICE WATER RECIPE?

You can make rice water in multiple ways – use it fresh, as is, boil it, or ferment it.

FRESH RICE WATER 

Get 1 cup of lukewarm water.

1 cup of rice.

Soak it for 45 minutes, Shake it up every 10 minutes. Make sure it’s cloudy.

Drain the rice and use the water.
I like to place mine into a spray bottle and spray the ends every day if my hair is in twists.

BOILED RICE WATER

  • 2 cups of water.
  • 1 cup of rice.
  • Boil it for 5 minutes on medium heat and then strain it.
  • You can also let the rice cook and use the water that’s leftover.

FERMENTED RICE WATER

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I know, but hear me out. If you want to ferment it, keep your rice water in a sealed container. Be warned though, fermented rice water has a very strong scent. (We warned you!)

I like to add orange peels, a green tea bag and once it has cooled down, a dash of lavender and teatree oil.
But the fermented scent is overpowering and should be washed out.

PRO TIP: On wash days, you can wash your hair with rice water, and then rinse it out. Don’t worry, the inositol rice water will still get to work even after it’s been rinsed out! I usually use rice water as a conditioner – and wrap my hair  in a shower cap for 15 minutes before rinsing it out.

After using rice water for about a month, I definitely feel that my hair has become stronger, there’s less breakage as well. It does also feel a bit longer (Or am I imagining things?).

Have you tried the rice water method before or would you try it? Let me know in the comments. 

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Supermelanin is South Africa's digital first haircare brand. We focus on creating customizable products. We believe in natural haircare and self care.

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