The internet may be making us depressed, zapping time away from friends and family and tampering with our health, but one major plus is that the deluge of information has helped raise awareness about ingredients in beauty products — for better or worse. One of the latest ingredients to come out on the right side of the equation is rice extract.
“Rice, which is rich in amino acids, vitamin E and ferulic acid, is one of the ancient sources of skin nutrients and, nowadays, science has proved that a water extract of rice has an anti-inflammatory and calming effect while also providing both short- and long-term skin hydration, even for sensitive skin,” says Elina Fedotova, cosmetic chemist, celebrity esthetician and formulator/CEO of Elina Organics. Rice extract’s anti-inflammatory properties also make it a helpful ingredient in acne and hair products because of its moisture retention properties, according to Heather Wilson, director of brand development and licensed esthetician at InstaNatural.
The most precious form of rice extract in terms of beauty benefits is rice protein. “Hydrolyzed rice protein, extracted from rice bran, is a water-soluble vegetable protein obtained after the processing of rice with specific enzymes,” says Fedotova. Unfortunately, not all rice extracts are created equal, but they will always be labeled the same way.
“There are quality differences when looking for this ingredient, but on a product’s label, ingredients are required by the FDA to be listed by their INCI (International Nomenclature of Cosmetic Ingredients) name no matter the source of the rice extract,” explains Wilson.
Given that rice is an ingredient that has high concerns for pesticide contamination, finding products that use extract based off of organic rice is important to lower your exposure, but this is impossible to know unless you’re buying a product that is totally organic, so only buy from trusted brands.
click through for some effective products that tout rice extract as their hero ingredient.