How to make rice water for natural hair

If there is one thing that we all can agree on, then it’s that finding the perfect 4c hair care routine has a lot to do with trial and error. 

That’s why you always want to observe trends in the natural hair world from afar until they are proven to work. One of the trends that surfaced in the last few years has been the use of fermented rice water for hair growth. 

While I am not too sure when the craze around rice water started I know that multiple 4c hair YouTubers and bloggers have since jumped on the bandwagon and swear by its positive effects on natural hair. 

Therefore, I decided to try it out for myself. After all, I don’t have much to lose but a little rice.

How to make rice water for natural hair

Benefits of rice water on hair

While there are no medically proven benefits of rice water on hair, it is believed that the grain does indeed help promote hair growth. Rice is rich in starch which can cover the surface of your hair and therefore add strength and moisture. 

In addition, one of the main components found in rice water is inositol, which is a carbohydrate that helps protect and repair hair. The vitamins A and E lead to improved hair volume strengthened roots and an overall healthy feel. 

By using rice water on your hair you reduce friction between hair strands and increase hair elasticity while giving you hair shine and softness. 

Is rice water good for low porosity hair

If you are wondering whether rice water is good for low porosity hair, then the answer is: it depends. If you have low porosity hair then the rice water can create a protein build up on your hair that will cause extreme dryness and more damage than good. 

Of course, it completely depends on your hair and your scalp. Rice water can work, even if you have low porosity hair, but like I said before it is a trial and error and differs from individual to individual.

How to make fermented rice water for hair

how to prepare rice water for hair

Making rice water for natural hair is not as complicated as you might believe at first. It’s actually very simple and the steps will only take you a few minutes. It is also a very affordable hair treatment, as you only require rice and something to cover up the smell. In my case I simply used oranges, but you can use essential oil as well.

What you need to make rice water:

  • White Rice
  • Water
  • 1 Orange
  • Mason Jar
  • Spray Bottle

The method we are using in this tutorial is the Yao Technique, as used in China by the Yao women. The Huangluo Yao Village is often referred to as the land of Rapunzels because many of the women who live there have long beautiful hair. And the secret behind it is that for centuries they have been using rice water to wash their hair.

Luckily, their technique can easily be replicated right at home. 

  1. Insert 1/2 cup of uncooked white rice in a bowl
  2. Add 1/2 cup of water to is and rinse the rice properly
  3. Strain out the water 
  4. Add to 2/3 cups of lukewarm water to it
  5. Peel one orange and add the peels of it to the bowl
  6. Let it all soak in a mason jar for at least 24 hours (the Yao women ferment their rice for up to 30 days)
  7. Strain out the rice and orange peels
  8. Pour the strained water into a spray bottle

Now the rice water is ready to be used on your 4c hair.

How to use rice water for natural hair

fermented rice water for hair growth

While the traditional Yao women use rice water as their shampoo, most 4c naturals use it like a commercial conditioner. This is because you can comfortably use rice water multiple times per month, while you want to avoid shampooing your hair more than twice a month. Ideally you want to use your rice water like this:

  • wash your hair with shampoo
  • Rinse out the shampoo
  • Spray rice water onto the hair
  • Massage the rice water into your hair and scalp
  • Leave it on for up to 20 minutes
  • Rinse your hair thoroughly with warm water 

The one thing that is important when using rice water for 4c hair growth is that you don’t leave it in. Make sure you rinse it out completely and add a moisturizer to your hair afterward. Remember that rice water can have a drying effect on your hair and therefore women with a dry scalp should nor overuse it in their hair treatment. 

All in all, rice water is a great hair treatment to try. There is no doubt that the Vitamins, amino acids, and inositol promote hair growth, however, just like with any other natural beauty product it depends on how your hair responds to it.