Read This Before Throwing Away Rice Water

There are plenty of reasons why you should be rinsing rice before cooking it. Mainly, running rice under some water will rinse off all the starch present on the surface. This starch, when not rinsed off, can make rice turn out sticky and gummy. The starchy water that is leftover from rinsing said rice, on the other hand, is actually good and has many uses.

Rice water is a popular ingredient when it comes to skincare. It can help lighten skin, soothe dry skin, fix damaged hair, and help with acne, among other things (via Healthline). What you may not know is that this starchy water that you get from rinsing rice can be put to good use around the house. The starch in the water is acidic and acts as a gentle abrasive, making the starchy water a great cleaning liquid. You can use it to clean pots and pans in the kitchen and to remove mineral deposits on shower heads and taps in the bathroom (via The Kitchn). But that's not all.

Starchy rice water has many uses

The water you get from rinsing rice is a very good cleaner. The liquid can be used for just about everything — from getting rid of stains on copper-coated pots and pans to cleaning greasy dishes and making countertops, door handles, and water taps shiny. Simply dip a clean cloth into the liquid and get scrubbing (via Southern Living).

Rice water is also the magic ingredient that makes hotel sheets extremely soft — something you just can't seem to do at home no matter how much you splurge on an expensive fabric conditioner. In an interview with the Daily Mail, cleaning blogger Shannon Bush said that rice water is the trick to making sheets at home as soft, crisp, and wrinkle-free as hotel sheets. Store some water leftover from boiling rice and mix one cup of that with two cups of plain water. Next time you re washing your sheets, pour one cup of the mix into the fabric conditioner slot and another half cup directly into the wash.

Before you start storing rice water, though, there's an important thing to keep in mind. In a conversation with Apartment Therapy, Sabrina Wang suggests that not all types of rice will give you a good rice water cleaning liquid. Basmati rice and brown rice, for one, aren't very starchy, which means that the water you get from cooking or rinsing these types of rice will not be as effective as a cleaning agent.