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Rose water, with its delicate fragrance and soothing properties, has long been cherished in the realm of skincare. Derived from the steam distillation of rose petals, it has been a beloved secret of beauty enthusiasts for centuries. Whether used as a facial toner, makeup remover, or ingredient in DIY masks, the versatility and benefits of rose water make it a must-have addition to any skincare regimen thanks to its calming, soothing, and hydrating properties. Discover more about rose water, and how to make your own at home, below.

What is Rose Water?

Rose water has been a beloved ingredient in various aspects of life, including skincare, culinary practices, and aromatherapy, for centuries. Derived from the process of steam distillation, it holds a special place in many households worldwide.

Rose water is made through a process called steam distillation. Selected rose petals are gently heated in a simmering water bath. This releases essential oils and aromatic compounds, which are carried by steam until it cools and becomes liquid again. The resulting water captures both the scent and properties of roses. Steam distillation has been used for centuries to preserve the soothing, hydrating, and aromatic qualities of roses, making it a versatile and concentrated essence.

Skincare enthusiasts incorporate rose water into their routines for its gentle and nourishing effects on the skin. It is commonly used as a facial toner, makeup remover, or ingredient in DIY face masks. Its delicate nature makes it suitable for all skin types, including sensitive or acne-prone skin, as it helps hydrate, soothe, and balance the skin.

DIY Rose Water Recipe

It is possible to make rose water at home with just a bit of time and effort. All you need is a pot with a lid, a smaller bowl, distilled water and, of course, rose petals.

Rose water ingredients:

  • Fresh roses (petals only – organic & pesticide-free)
  • Distilled water
  • A pot with a lid
  • Cheesecloth or a fine-mesh strainer
  • A clean, heat-resistant bowl
  • A sterilized bottle

Rose water recipe:

  1. Begin by gently rinsing the rose petals to remove any dirt or impurities.
  2. Place a heat-resistant bowl in the center of a large pot. The bowl should be smaller in size than the pot.
  3. Spread a layer of rose petals at the bottom of the pot, surrounding the outside of the bowl.
  4. Pour enough distilled water into the pot, covering the rose petals. The water level should be just below the top of the petals.
  5. Place the lid of the pot upside down. This will allow the steam to collect on the lid and then drip into the bowl.
  6. Bring the water to a simmer over medium heat. Do not let it boil vigorously.
  7. Once the water starts simmering, reduce the heat to low and let it continue simmering for about 30 minutes.
  8. Check the water level occasionally and add more distilled water if needed.
  9. After 30 minutes, carefully remove the lid of the pot. The inverted lid should have collected steam droplets that have now turned into rose water in the bowl.
  10. Allow the water to cool down completely.
  11. Once cooled, strain the rose water into a sterilized glass bottle or container. Discard the used rose petals.
  12. Store the cooled water in the refrigerator to extend its shelf life. It can typically be used for up to a month.

Creating rose water

How to Use Rose Water

Rose water has a variety of uses and can be incorporated into your beauty and self-care routine in multiple ways, such as:

Facial Toner: Rose water makes an excellent facial toner due to its natural astringent properties. After cleansing your face, saturate a cotton pad with rose water and gently swipe it over your skin. This helps to remove any remaining impurities, tighten the pores, and balance the skin’s pH level. Its hydrating properties also help to keep the skin moisturized and refreshed.

Makeup Remover: Rose water can be used as a gentle and effective makeup remover, especially for those with sensitive skin. Soak a cotton pad with rose water and gently swipe it over your face, focusing on areas with makeup. It helps dissolve and lift away the makeup, leaving your skin clean and refreshed without harsh chemicals or excessive rubbing.

Hair Rinse: Incorporating rose water into your hair care routine can bring numerous benefits. After shampooing and conditioning your hair, give it a final rinse with rose water. This will help to nourish the scalp and promote hair growth, soothe irritation, and add a natural shine to your locks.

Bath Soak: Enhance your bath by adding a few tablespoons of rose water to your bathwater. The aromatic properties create a luxurious and relaxing atmosphere, turning your bath into a soothing spa-like retreat while its moisturizing properties also help to hydrate and soften your skin while you soak.

Aromatherapy: Rose water can be used as a natural air freshener and mood enhancer in your living space. Put it in a spray bottle and mist it around the room to create a calming and soothing ambiance. The subtle  fragrance can have a positive impact on mood, reducing stress and promoting relaxation. You can also spritz your bed linens or pillows for a serene and comforting sleep environment.

What are the Benefits of Rose Water?

Rose water offers a wide range of benefits for the skin, making it a popular ingredient in skincare routines.

Hydration and Moisture: Rose water is an excellent natural moisturizer that helps to hydrate and soften the skin. It is packed with water-soluble vitamins like vitamin C, which promotes moisture retention and keeps the skin plump and supple.

Soothing and Calming: Rose water has anti-inflammatory properties that can help soothe and calm irritated skin. It can reduce redness, itching, and inflammation caused by conditions like eczema, dermatitis, or sunburn. Applying rose water topically can provide relief and promote healing.

Balancing pH Levels: The pH level of our skin plays a crucial role in maintaining its health and appearance. Rose water has a slightly acidic pH, which helps restore the skin’s natural pH balance

Toning and Tightening: Rose water acts as a natural astringent, and is an alternative to drying alcohols in skincare. Rose water toner helps remove dirt, oil, and impurities from the skin, leaving it refreshed and revitalized. Using rose water as a toner can regulate excess oil production and minimize the occurrence of acne and breakouts for a more even complexion.

Anti-Aging Effects: Rose water is rich in antioxidants, such as vitamin A and vitamin E, which help combat free radicals and prevent premature aging. It can help reduce the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, and age spots, promoting a more youthful and radiant complexion.

Refreshing and Cooling: The cooling properties of rose water make it an excellent remedy for soothing and refreshing tired or overheated skin, particularly in the summer. Spritzing rose water on the face as a face mist or using it in a face mask can provide an instant cooling sensation, reducing puffiness and reviving the skin’s appearance.

Antimicrobial Properties: Rose water possesses natural antimicrobial properties that can help combat bacteria and prevent infections. It can be used to cleanse and disinfect the skin, particularly for acne-prone individuals.