How To Use Rice Water For Hair Growth

Rice water is all the buzz these days recommended by long haired TikTok influencers but does it really work to help with hair growth? Let’s talk about the history of rice water, how it works, how to make it at home, and what products to buy instead if you’re not the DIY type.


What is Rice Water?

Rice water is a well-loved hair care remedy that has been used for centuries in many different cultures. This natural liquid is produced by soaking rice grains in water, and it contains essential nutrients like protein, vitamins, and amino acids that are great for promoting hair growth and strength. Some people like to use rice water on its own, while others find that it works especially well when combined with other hair care products like conditioner or serum. Whatever your specific application may be, there is no doubt that rice water can be a great tool for strengthening hair and maintaining healthy, lush tresses.

History of Rice Water and the Yao

The history of the Yao tribe in China is rich and complex, with many unique customs that have been passed down through generations. One such tradition is their use of rice water to improve both the strength and growth of their hair. Legend has it that women of the Yao tribe discovered the benefits of fermented rice water centuries ago, when they noticed its ability to keep their long tresses shiny and strong. Today, this ancient beauty technique is still widely used in China and beyond, thanks to its powerful blend of nutrients and antioxidants.

How to Use Rice Water for Hair Growth

Rice water can be used in a variety of different ways to promote hair strength and growth. Some people use the water straight away as a rinse while others decant it into a spray bottle and use it as a leave in treatment. You can also combine your rice water with a favorite deep conditioner to make a hair mask. Just leave on for at least 30 minutes before rinsing and styling.

Are There Any Downsides to Using Rice Water?

Rice water adds protein to the hair which can be problematic for some hair types, specifically for those with low porosity hair that doesn’t require much added protein. When your hair has too much protein, it can be a real problem. Excessive protein overload can lead to breakage and hair loss. Protein is an important part of healthy hair, but too much of it can cause your strands to become brittle and dry, resulting in that dreaded “crunchy” texture. To avoid this problem, you should be sure to use protein-based products like rice water in moderation. Additionally, incorporating a good deep conditioning treatment into your regular hair care routine can help to restore moisture balance. Ultimately, with the right balance of protein and moisture, your hair will be strong and vibrant.

How to Make Rice Water at Home

Step One: Boil the rice

To make rice water for hair at home, the first step is to boil some uncooked white rice in a pot of water. This should be done over medium-high heat until the rice is very soft. Once the rice is cooked, drain it from the water and let it cool slightly. Keep the rice and water separately for the next step.

Step Two: Mash the rice

Use a spoon or a spatula to mash and crush the rice, or simply put it in a blender or food processor. Once your rice is well-mashed, you can add 1-2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar to help ferment and further extract nutrients from the rice. Let this mixture sit for several hours or overnight, stirring occasionally if necessary. When the mixture has fermented and has taken on a sour smell and appearance, you can strain out all of the solids using either a strainer or a cheesecloth and discard them.

Step Three: Add Extras & Store

If desired, you can add essential oils to your rice water before letting it cool and storing it in a spray bottle for ease of application.

When you’re ready to apply, spray a small amount from roots to tips. You can then gently massage your scalp using circular motions to stimulate blood flow and promote healthy hair growth.

Mimosu DIY Rice Water Hair Conditioner Kit

If you don’t have all of the supplies on hand, Mimosu has made it easy with this all in one kit that has everything you need.

  • Includes continuous spray bottle
  • 100% Organic white rice powder tea bags cut down on time needed to extract minerals, proteins, and amino acids.

If you’re not in the mood to DIY, there are also a host of rice water products available on the market so you can still reap the benefits.

Our Picks for Best Rice Water Products

Hairfinity Rice Water Hair Mist

  • Restorative hair mist promotes hydration and elasticity.
  • Contains rice extract to promote healthy hair growth
  • Suitable for all hair types
  • Safe for color treated, keratin treated, permed, and curly hair

Hair Thickness Maximizer Rice Water Hair Growth Spray

  • Rice water enhanced with Vitamin B, Vitamin C, and Aloe Vera
  • Stimulates hair growth along edges / hairline
  • Promotes volume
  • Free from parabens, hexane, and fragrances

ProBliva Rice Water Spray

  • Contains rice water along with minerals, Vitamin E, antioxidants, and amino acids
  • Caffeine infused to further promote hair growth
  • Castor oil and rosemary oil for scalp health

Mimosu Rice Water Shampoo Bar

  • Benefits of fermented rice water in an earth-friendly, zero waste shampoo bar
  • Contains Argan, olive, and rice bran oil to nourish hair
  • Equivalent to 3 bottles of liquid shampoo

If you’re curious about rice water for hair growth, give it a try! Hopefully you too will see the amazing lengths reached by the women of China’s Yao tribe using this ancient remedy.

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