More and more cosmetics are incorporating rice into their formulas inspired by the Japanese beauty tradition.
Japan is a country that traditionally uses rice in its beauty products to heal and enhance the white and smooth skin typical of the oriental race.
In the most traditional preparations were ointments with rice bran and other natural ingredients and, as a daily habit, to disinfect the face with the rice cooking water.
This practice coined the term nuha bijin“the beauty of rice bran” to designate women with white and smooth skin.
It was also common to use rice in the West, where the Greeks already gave their skin a mottled look with powders they made from starch and in the Renaissance women and men powdered their faces with it to show extreme whiteness.
Currently, the cosmetics industry has set its sights on certain substances derived from rice and brings this tradition closer to our toilet bags. Rice is mainly used to formulate protein hydrolysates to moisturize and nourish the skin.
Some of the various rice by-products that are currently added to cosmetics include rice liquor (kojic acid), rice hulls, bran oil, rice starch, rice protein, and rice powder. .
Rice liquor: kojic acid
It is no coincidence that some of the laboratories that use rice in their formulations are former sake producers. This rice liquor contains a substance called kojic acid which stimulates the synthesis of natural collagen.
Extracted after rice has been fermented by yeast, koji keeps the skin hydrated. By providing vitamins, amino acids and minerals, it is also integrated into formulas intended to regenerate the skin.
This acid was accidentally discovered by a Japanese monk after he observed that in sake distilleries, even the oldest workers kept the skin on their hands young and white.
Today it is one of the most widely used depigmenting substances to eliminate skin imperfections. It acts on melanocytes by inhibiting the action of thyroxines, a fundamental enzyme in the melanin formation process.
Its greatest advantage lies in the softness it gives to the skin. Does not cause irritation or photosensitization. Kojic acid is also an antimicrobial and bacteriostatic agent that blocks the action of bacteria responsible for causing acne.
Rice ball: excellent exfoliant
Rice Husk is also a good exfoliator. The phytic acid it contains activates blood circulation and stimulates cell renewal.
You can make a homemade peel by mixing two teaspoons of rice flour, one of cinnamon powder and thirty drops of wheat germ oil.
Another very effective facial mask is one that is prepared by diluting two teaspoons of rice flour in four of rose water and kept on the face for at least ten minutes.
Rice bran oil to stop aging
Bran oil is obtained as a by-product of husking white rice. The Japanese used it in ancient times to keep their skin soft. It is rich in vitamin E and neutralizes the free radicals responsible for aging.
Oryzanol is extracted from this oil, which makes it possible to stop the production of melanin by preventing the passage of ultraviolet rays. Thus, some sunscreens for the skin and hair incorporate this oil in their formulas.
Rice starch to protect sensitive skin
Cosmetics that incorporate rice starch are generally indicated for the most sensitive skin or skin exposed to external aggressions. It is a natural talc that calms, softens and provides a pleasant touch.
Rice powder has a wonderful calming, softening and cooling effect. Two tablespoons of this powder and a teaspoon of liquid honey are added to the bath water. The skin is soft and smooth.
Rice flour can also be used as a deodorant, especially useful for the feet. To deodorize the feet, mix 100 grams of white clay, an additional 100 grams of rice flour and a few drops of sage essence and apply it to dry feet after showering.