What is rice water?

Rice water is the liquid byproduct created by soaking rice grains in water. It’s rich in vitamins and minerals, making it a fantastic, natural, and cost-effective ingredient in skincare and haircare. In this article, we’ll discuss the different uses of rice water for skin and hair, as well as how to make rice water. We’ll also take a look at some of our favorite rice water products, for readers who don’t jibe with DIY!

Benefits of brown rice & benefits of rice water

We all know that rice has been eaten for centuries, and most us have probably heard that brown rice is better for us than white rice. But what makes rice so good for us, and why is brown rice more nutritious than white rice?

Brown rice is essentially a less refined version of white rice. In order to make white rice, processors have to remove the aleurone layer of each rice grain–and this layer is where a significant amount of nutrition is stored. This is why brown rice is better for us than white rice: It contains more of the natural vitamins and minerals that are stored in the aleurone layer. Among other nutrients, brown rice contains manganese, fiber, and selenium. Eating brown rice may help us to maintain a healthy weight, lower cholesterol level, and healthy heart.

Read more about the benefits of brown rice here. 

Scientific research supports the idea that rice water has both antioxidant and elastase inhibiting properties, which makes it an excellent natural treatment option for mature skin. The antioxidant properties of rice water can help to fight free radicals, electric charges that can cause damage to the skin at the cellular level. And as it’s thought that elastase imbalances are also responsible for damage to the skin tissue, rice water’s elastase inhibiting properties may also be instrumental in restoring balance to the skin and preventing wrinkle formation.

All of this makes rice water an excellent, natural toner for aging skin. Its anti-aging benefits should help to both prevent future skin damage, and remedy some existing signs of skin damage. The enzymes and minerals in rice water can also help to treat acne and inflammation, and to restore softness and diminish redness.

How to make rice water

To make rice water, you’ll need a large bowl, a package of organic brown rice, and some water. Measure out your desired number of rice servings into the bowl, and cover the rice entirely in water. Let this mixture sit for about 30 minutes, adding more water if necessary to keep the rice submerged. Then swirl the rice around with a spoon and/or gently massage it with your hands to help release more of the nutrients. Finally, strain the rice out of the water, and store the leftover water in a sterilized jar.

How to use rice water

Rice water won’t make your hair or skin oily, so it’s ideal for use as a leave-on treatment. We recommend applying it to your skin as a mineral-rich toner, or to your hair as a leave-in, conditioning treatment.

To use rice water as a DIY toner, just soak a cotton ball or cotton pad in rice water for a second, then pat it gently into clean skin. For added benefits, combine ½ cup of rice water with ½ cup of organic green tea to make a DIY toner with rice water and green tea.

To use rice water as a DIY leave-in conditioner, start with a large bowl of rice water and clean, dry hair. Saturate your hair and scalp completely with the rice water, and massage it gently into your scalp. Then allow it to dry naturally.

Skin products with rice

If DIY is not what you’re about, you can still experience the beauty benefits of rice water. We recommend 100% Pure’s Fermented Rice Water Cleanser and Fermented Rice Water Toner for use in your daily skincare routine. These products will gently cleanse and tone your skin without stripping it of its natural oils, and will deliver nourishing vitamins and minerals deep into your skin. We also love Dermalogica’s Daily Microfoliant, which features rice powder and rice enzymes.

Camille Bond is a freelance writer based in New York City. She has interned in the film industry and the publishing industry, as well as for a political campaign. When it comes to the world of beauty and wellness, she loves researching natural skincare brands, concocting DIY recipes, and discovering new mediation techniques!