Rice Water and Natural Hair: The Results Will Blow You Away

For the last 30 days I have been experimenting with growing my hair and achieving length retention by using rice water.  Rice Water has been all the rage in the natural community lately.  There is no doubt that the natural hair community has gone through many trends, (remember the Monistat for hair growth trend 😲) but this recent rice water trend may be a winner!


As I stated I have been using rice water in my wash routine for about 30 days now and have experience spectacular results.  The vitamins and nutrients in the rice water has made my hair

  1. Stronger: My curls no long snap when I comb them, I notice less breakage.
  2. Shinier: It appears that my strands are smoother my cuticles are healthier and there is a luxurious sheen to my tresses
  3. Longer: I have way fewer strands of hair in my comb when detangling. It’s amazing!
  4. Softer: I can run my finger through my curls before detangling which I could not do before using rice water

How I make the Rice Water

  1. ¼ cup of dry white rice (but I was told any rice will work) is rinsed thoroughly and placed in a clean glass jar
  2. Fill the jar with ¼ cup - ½ cup of water (I use tap water but distilled, spring or filter water will be ok as well)
  3. Seal jar tightly and place in a cool preferably dark place for 12-48 hours to allow fermentation to take place
  4. When ready to use transfer into an easy to use container (spray bottle, squeeze bottle etc.) to separate the fermented water from the rice.
  5. Discard the rice
  6. Store any unsure fermented water in the refrigerator. I haven’t seen any literature documenting that the water spoils or goes bad but I suggest to use within a week.


How I incorporate the Rice Water in my wash routine

After I wash my hair, I apply the fermented rice water to my hair via squeeze bottle and let it sit for 15-30 mins sort of like a hair treatment.   I cover my hair with a plastic cap to allow the heat to help keep my cuticle open so my hair and scalp can absorb the vitamins and nutrients with ease.  After the time is up, I rinse well then apply my conditioner.   I allow my conditioner to sit on my hair for 3-10 minutes then I follow up with a deep conditioner.  Following my normal deep conditioning routine which can be anywhere for 1 hour to 1 day of conditioning depending on my day.  I then rinse and style as normal.  If it is time for my hot oil treatment, I will then do my hot oil treatment which I only do once a month. 


So, I apply the rice water directly after I shampoo because I have heard that the smell of the fermented rice water is horrid.  While I do find the smell unpleasant it is not intolerable.  But I know we all have different tolerance levels and just in case the smell lingers in my hair I feel like by conditioning twice the chances of the smell lingering in my hair will be minimized. 

Some people have added essential oils (which is also beneficial to the hair and scalp) or some sort of citrus fruit peels to help reduce the unpleasant smell.


The key to using the rice water and seeing results is to figure out how to incorporate it in your regime.  Know your hair.  Is your hair protein sensitive?  Because ultimately the fact that the rice water is rich in protein is what causes growth.  If you know that you have protein sensitive hair then this may not be a treatment that will benefit you.  BUT don’t count it out completely yet. 

Try This First

  • Try diluting the water more figure out your water ratio. Maybe you need 1 cup of water to ¼ cup of rice or even 2 cups of water etc.
  • Cut down the time you allow it to sit on your hair. Instead of 30 minutes reduce the time your hair and scalp is exposed to the fermented water.  Experiment with 3 minutes, 5 minutes, 10 minutes etc.
  • Mix it in a hair product. You can mix the fermented rice water in your shampoo, your conditioner, your deep conditioner or your spray elixirs.  By mixing it in a product you may help to coat your strands with the butter, oils and other ingredients so the protein molecules can enter the hair shaft and scalp more slowly.  
  • Go for a once a month treatment instead. Perhaps treating the hair only once a month is all your hair desires and will still thrive. 

If your hair is not protein sensitive it is absolutely safe to use the fermented water everyday if you want.  It’s a natural elixir after all.

I will continue to update you on my growth using this technique.  But try it for yourself and let me know if it works for you.  How do you incorporate it into your routine?  I am on a growth journey to waist length hair in the next 24 months while curly.  I hope shrinkage don’t hate on me. LOL.

1st Month Results: (June 2019- July 2019)

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