Tatcha The Rice Wash Review
Tatcha’s latest releases never go unnoticed, so it’s not surprising that the newly launched Tatcha The Rice Wash ($35) already accumulated nearly a thousand reviews at Sephora. This creamy formula was designed to complement an already existing lineup of Tatcha cleansers that currently includes a cleansing oil, a deep cleanser, and the famous skin polishing cleansing powders.
The idea for this cleanser came from a centuries-old tradition of Japanese women to save the leftover milky water from rinsing rice for their beauty rituals. This first wash of rice is known to be rich in vitamins A, B2, B12, and E, as well as moisturizing proteins that soften and give a radiant glow to hair and skin. Tatcha put their own spin on this cleansing water by giving it a rich, creamy texture and adding rice powder that acts as a gentle gommage to exfoliate impurities and improve skin texture. According to the brand, The Rice Wash is ideal for people with normal to dry skin types, but, in my experience, it can also work for combination skin if it’s on the drier side. This formula is enhanced with Okinawa Algae Blend, Hyaluronic Acid, and proprietary HADASEI-3 complex.
I’ve been using this cleanser a few times a week since I got it, and it’s working pretty well so far: it does seem to remove impurities really well and leaves my skin feeling fresh and smooth. The Rice Wash comes as a thick cream paste in a squeeze tube, which is not the most luxurious packaging decision ever but it still looks nice enough on the counter. I normally squeeze out a small pea-sized pearl, add a little water, and work it into a lather by rubbing my hands together for a few seconds. It’s not a big, lush foam but more of a milky, lotiony one, which is gentler on the skin. The cleanser has that very distinctive Tatcha fragrance which kind of smells like soap, tree leaves, and wildflowers. It’s kind of hard to explain, but once you smell it you’ll always associate that scent with Tatcha.
What I liked:
- The texture and consistency of the cleanser make it easy to dispense a perfect pea-sized amount each time.
- The cleanser contains tiny rice particles that act as a mild powder exfoliant. They help improve skin texture without making it feel like you just scrubbed your face with sandpaper.
- My pH testing strips register around pH 6.0, which is a little higher than I personally prefer but still within the “good” range to ensure that you’re getting a thorough cleanse and the skin’s protective acid mantle is not disturbed.
- It smells like Tatcha! Can we please have a Tatcha perfume someday?
What I didn’t like:
- While I appreciate the nice textures and pleasant scents in my wash-off products, I think the expensive extracts are wasted here because they don’t linger on the skin long enough to deliver noticeable benefits. I recognize, however, that the HADASEI-3 complex is part of the brand’s identity and is included in most of their products.
- Even though it’s Tatcha’s most gentle foaming cleanser to date, it might not be suitable for very sensitive or sensitized skin due to the inclusion of rice particles. That means if you go hardcore on exfoliating acids, peels, or are prone to flareups, I probably wouldn’t risk it if I were you. This cleanser feels like it’s meant for people who can tolerate a scrub now and then.
- The plastic squeeze tube is not as pretty as Tatcha’s other packaging. I know it’s a very shallow ‘con’ but their skincare comes in such beautiful jars and bottles – even the samples! – that I’m feeling like we got a little slighted with this one.
And one helpful tip:
- I do not recommend using Tatcha The Rice Wash around the eyes. Technically, you’re not supposed to use most cleansers around the eyes, but many people do anyway. In this case, seriously, don’t! While it might be tempting to slather this creamy foam all over your face in one big sweeping motion, those rice particles are really small and could easily get in your eyes.
Ingredients: Aqua/Water/Eau, Microcrystalline Cellulose, Propanediol, Sodium Cocoyl Glutamate, Glycerin, Acrylates Copolymer, Sodium Caproyl Methyltaurate, Coco-Betaine, Parfum/Fragrance, Saccharomyces/Camellia Sinensis Leaf/Cladosiphon Okamuranus/Rice Ferment Filtrate*, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Powder, Chondrus Crispus Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, Betaphycus Gelatinum Extract, Lauryl Glucoside, Potassium Hydroxide, Polyquaternium-39, Disodium Edta, Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Sodium Benzoate, Sodium Carbonate, Alcohol.
As a cleanser snob and critic, I didn’t know what my experience would be like, but I must say, Tatcha The Rice Wash turned out to be really nice. It is currently the highest pH cleanser I’m using – I tend to stay between pH 4.5 and 5.5 – and yet it doesn’t make my face feel stripped or dry. And because it contains those tiny exfoliating rice particles, it helps get the sunscreen and makeup out of my pores better than if I was using a gentler cleanser. While I don’t use it daily, The Rice Wash is my new go-to for those days when I need a more thorough second cleanse, or if I think my pores are looking a little clogged in the morning.
Tatcha products are cruelty-free: neither the products nor the ingredients are tested on animals, and they don’t have a retail presence in the countries that require animal testing. However, the brand is owned by a parent company that is not cruelty-free – Unilever. Every Tatcha purchase helps support equality in education through their Beautiful Faces, Beautiful Futures program that empowers young women in developing countries.