Back in March I tried a beer rinse for the first time on my hair as a protein treatment, and now I'm back to try a rice rinse!
Like I mentioned with the beer rinse, a rice rinse is a protein treatment that you can use on your curly hair to help maintain the balance between moisture and protein. This is a fairly standard practice that a lot of people use and I figured I would try it since you can get rice from bulk bins and easily have this be a zero waste hair care product.
To do this I followed the instructions on this blog post.
First, I measured out half a cup of rise and rinsed it in the sink. Then I put it in a pot with 1 cup of water and brought it to a boil, just like I was making rice!
After the rice came to a boil and the water was cloudy, I strained the water out into a bowl to use for my hair treatment.
Here is where I had a moment of hesitation, my rice wasn't nearly done cooking. What do I do with the rice now? I could compost it, but tossing it just felt wasteful. I couldn't find anyone who regularly did these rinses say what they did with the rice after.
Luckily, Kyle came up with a great idea on how to finish cooking the rice: I measured out the amount of rice water I had just removed from the pot (~3/4 cup), and I added in 3/4 cup of fresh water to the pot and brought it to a boil, then covered and simmered it for another 10-15 min. I wanted to see if I could actually fully cook this rice to eat after taking out the starchy water.
It worked too! I was able to cook the rice and even taste tested it to ensure it was perfectly fine rice! Pro Tip: do this hair rinse on nights when you're planning a rice dish for lunch or dinner and you've killed two birds with one stone!
Back to the hair though: after I had my rice water in a bowl and cooled completely, I took that plus a second bowl up to my shower to begin rinsing my hair.
First I wet my hair down and shampooed it like normal. After that, I let my hair sit in the rice water for a minute or so. Then, with the second bowl underneath my head I slowly poured the rice water over my head, catching it in the second bowl.
I repeated this process a few times and also let my hair soak in the bowl a few times in between. I took my wide tooth comb and combed the rice water through my hair detangling it as I went.
This whole process only took me about 5 minutes. After I was done I rinsed my hair completely, conditioned and styled like normal. Here are the results!
I'm really happy with how it came out and will definitely be doing this again! Even the side of my hair that struggles to curl was curly which is always a bonus.
If I had to compare this to the beer rinse I liked this one better for the lack of smell, plus I always have rice in my kitchen but I don't always have a beer. I think the beer rinse did a better job of conditioning my hair, it felt so much smoother and was easier to detangle in the process. But the rice rinse did a fine enough job.
What do you do to follow the Curly Girl Method and reduce waste? I'd love to try anything!
Join me as I document my journey to becoming zero-waste through this blog as a resource to others.